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Durham University

Intensive Industrial Innovation Programme

Intensive Industrial Innovation Programme


****PhD students to be registered and linked to an SME by 1/10/2020****

North East England’s universities are joining forces under an extension application to the £6.5m scheme which initially commenced in October 2018, funded by the European Regional Development Fund, to connect the region’s businesses with research to encourage growth and job creation. Further funding has been confirmed to allow 30 SMEs to apply for a position on the programme. Application forms are now available - to request the application forms please send an email to

The Intensive Industrial Innovation Programme (IIIP) extension will see Durham, Newcastle and Northumbria universities work directly with small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the region to develop new services and products for the market.

Eligible SMEs will be supported by a dedicated PhD research student for three years, as well as access to senior academic researchers and university research facilities.

The project is targeted at supporting businesses in (or hoping to access) the priority sectors identified in the economic plans of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership . The ultimate aim of the IIIP is to encourage a culture of innovation that benefits business, leading to greater export opportunities and increased graduate employment, particularly in science and engineering.

Work with industry experts as part of your PhD

Do you want to work with industry experts to apply artificial intelligence to engineering, or help develop new methods to improve how synthetic diamonds are made?

We have a number of great PhD placements where you’ll get the opportunity to work with industry as part of your three year programme.

Innovation, inspiration

The PhD placements are part of the ERDF Intensive Industrial Innovation Programme (IIIP), which encourages innovation by connecting businesses with researchers.

As part of your PhD, you’ll work with and be supported by our world-leading academics on your specialist subject area, as well as with a company based in the north east of England.

The IIIP is a great opportunity to carry out research while gaining valuable industry experience and to see how academic research can help businesses to grow and develop.

Find out more

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