Medical Research Scotland announces an innovative change in funding stream

Released: Wednesday 6th April 2011

Following a strategic review of Medical Research Scotland's activities, including a detailed consideration of how our funds are best used to support young people in biomedical research in Scotland, the Trustees have decided to introduce an innovative new funding stream which will replace the traditional Project Grants. The very firm intention is to continue to support the careers of such young people, albeit by a different route.

The Trust will, therefore, be funding four-year PhD studentships (in addition to continuing to offer up to 20 Vacation Scholarships for undergraduates each year). These new awards will involve close working between universities & biotechnology companies in Scotland and will also incorporate additional training on how to develop science careers in an increasingly difficult and competitive market.

We believe this will enhance the support that Medical Research Scotland gives to training and preparation for a career in science and aim to have the first PhD studentships starting in the autumn of 2012.

Consortia will submit project proposals which will be reviewed in the early autumn of 2011 by a panel of academic and industrial experts chaired Professor Walter Nimmo, a successful and still very active academic entrepreneur who founded and led Inveresk Research.
In due course, successful consortia will advertise for students, who will be chosen by a committee comprising the company, academic partner and Medical Research Scotland.
Novel elements in Medical Research Scotland's approach to supporting PhD students include:

·         the company taking the lead in finding academic partners - it will be market-driven

·         Medical Research Scotland will pay student stipend, fees (UK/EU only) and consumables

·         IP generated will reside firstly with the company

·         PhD students will take part in a Commercial Training Programme, organised by Medical Research Scotland and running alongside universities' own Doctoral Training Schemes.

Companies will be notified during April 2011, to begin to seek out academic partners. Further details will appear on the Medical Research Scotland website in due course.

Scott Johnstone

View all News