I am a student from 3rd world Asian Country and want to do a PhD in Pure mathematics. I wrote to prospective supervisors of UK and France on 22 December, 2021 (I have never met any of them before). When I got no reply from some of them, I wrote them again on 15 January, 2022. Still I got no reply from these specific professors.

I didn't knew that it was a holiday season in these universities near this time.

Now, my applications from most of the other universities I applied to have been rejected and some of the professors which didn't replied are those with whom I really want to work with.( None of these profs are most sought after in their field, most of them are in 50- 150 ranked universities).

I am considering to write a third e-mail as I am desperate because I am afraid not to receive a funding offer. So, should I write them a third e-mail?

  • @Sursula-they- No, it doesn't . The question you mentioned is a very complicated one I think and has a lot of extra information. I have asked it a very simple and informative manner mentioning countries I applied to , dates on which I send e-mail.
    – user135061
    Commented Mar 18, 2022 at 13:13
  • Have you submitted a formal application for a PhD in those departments? In the UK, you don't need to have the support/approval of a supervisor before doing so (broadly speaking), and all admissions are dealt with by a department committee rather than individuals. This could explain the lack of replies. Commented Mar 19, 2022 at 21:04
  • @astronat Ya, I know that but still 1 has to fill application form in which one has to write who is prospective supervisor and title of research project and research proposal.
    – user135061
    Commented Mar 20, 2022 at 6:24

1 Answer 1


Yes, write to them. You have nothing to lose. But don't make the email a flood of information. Say something about your interest and a short bit on your background. Ask if there is a possibility of joining them and also ask what additional information they might want to see. Save the flood for a follow up.

A long and detailed email with a CV and support material is too easy to ignore since it takes time and effort to digest.

If you have read any of their papers or other papers closely related to their field then you might mention one or two of them in writing about your interest.

  • What should I mention about my previous e-mails? Should I write to them that this e-mail is a remainder of previous one?
    – user135061
    Commented Mar 18, 2022 at 13:16
  • That is hard to say. Most people would do that, I'd guess. If you flooded them in the past, it might even be appropriate to apologize for that. But the goal is to get communication, not a final decision. Ask for a reply: "Is there anything else I can provide to help you evaluate my suitability?"
    – Buffy
    Commented Mar 18, 2022 at 13:31
  • @Bufffy I have written two e-mails, will it be considered flooding?
    – user135061
    Commented Mar 18, 2022 at 13:32
  • By flooding, I mean sending long emails with large attachments. And, since other options are now closed, you have limited options.
    – Buffy
    Commented Mar 18, 2022 at 13:34