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The University of Southampton

Southampton led consortium awarded 19 studentships in multi-million pound UK bioscience investment

Published: 24 October 2019
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The University of Southampton, leading a consortium of four other institutions, has successfully bid for 19 studentships from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC, a part of UK Research and Innovation).

Funding for the studentships, awarded to the Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), South Coast Biosciences (SoCoBio), which comprises of the universities of Southampton, Kent, Sussex, Portsmouth and the horticultural and agricultural research institute NIAB-EMR, is part of a £170m boost to fund 1,700 PhD researchers over five annual cohorts at academic institutions nationwide. The University of Southampton consortium is one of just 12 successful bids across the UK.

Professor Matthew Terry, Director of SoCoBio DTP and Deputy Head of School (Research and Enterprise) of the School of Biological Sciences at Southampton comments: “We are very proud of our work in developing the SoCoBio partnership over the last two years and look forward to working with our partners to train the next generation of PhD graduates in the Biosciences for the region, the wider UK and for global society.”

The 19 studentships, shared across the DTP institutions over four years, consist of 14 standard studentships and five CASE (jointly supported by industry) studentships to be allocated initially over three years – then a further two years after review. Each studentship will pay fees, stipend and training costs for successful PhD candidates, who will undertake world-leading research work within the Biosciences.

Members of SoCoBio DTP
Professor Rachel Mills (centre) with members of SoCoBio DTP

Dean of the Faculty of Environmental and Life Sciences at the University of Southampton, Professor Rachel Mills said: “We are proud to lead a great team of bioscientists, with strong industrial links, to provide innovative doctoral training in the South Coast region. We will attract new and diverse talent into the region and produce outstanding graduates ready to tackle global problems across the life sciences.”

Announcing the DTP awards nationally, Professor Melanie Welham, BBSRC’s Executive Chair, said: “The success of the UK’s science sector and the consequent benefits to society and the economy relies on great researchers doing great work. Our Doctoral Training Partnerships have already supported the training of hundreds of early career scientists working at the cutting edge of biology and biotechnology. By continuing to fund, through this significant £170 million investment, vital training of the next generation of researchers we will help ensure that the UK consolidates its position as world-leader in this crucial sector.”

Each of the 12 successful DTPs have also received some additional Flexible Support Funding, to provide additional opportunities for students within and across cohorts. This funding will also be used to encourage under-represented groups of undergraduates to experience research through summer placements, as well as provide additional funds to support high-cost research projects.

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