Combine academic research and business as an Industrial PhD with a company
An Industrial PhD is a research project conducted by you as an Industrial PhD candidate. You will be employed at the company and simultaneously be enrolled at the IT University of Copenhagen. An Industrial PhD is a great opportunity to train as a PhD student with one foot in the academic world and the other in the business sector.
As an Industrial PhD candidate, you will:
- Get experience with working in both academic and non-academic environments
- Get the opportunity to build or use your network outside the university sector and gain a career profile that is attractive both inside and outside the university
- Experience research outside the university
- Act as a bridge builder between company and university, and with that contribute to the creation of new research collaborations
In this video, you can hear an Industrial PhD candidate tell about her PhD project as well as her experience as an Industrial PhD student at ITU.
An Industrial PhD is funded by Innovation Fund Denmark and a Danish company. A prerequisite for initiating an Industrial PhD project is obtaining a grant from Innovation Fund Denmark, which goes to the company and the university. The company then covers your full salary and all travel costs, and the university covers costs related to the PhD education such as supervision and office space.
In order to apply for an Industrial PhD, first you must establish a contact with a Danish company and identify a potential company supervisor. Second, you must find a supervisor at ITU. Together with your supervisors, you define an industrial PhD project. The application process is divided in two parts. An application must be submitted to the IT University and another one to Innovation Fund Denmark. The company formally applies to Innovation Fund Denmark, and you, as the Industrial PhD candidate formally applies to ITU.
You must apply for approval of enrolment at the university. Your application is assessed by an Assessment Committee and the Head of Department in regards to the requirements outlined in the IT University’s guidelines for PhD applicants. Your qualifications will be assessed in order to determine if you are qualified for enrolment as a PhD student at ITU.
Applications to the IT University must be in English and include:
- Cover letter. A motivated letter accounting for your qualifications in relation to the industrial PhD project (approx. 1 page).
- Project description. The project description can be a draft of the application to be submitted to Innovation Fund Denmark. We recommend to use the template from Innovation Fund Denmark for the project description.
- Curriculum Vitae
- Diplomas from qualifying exam and transcript of grades. Information about the IT University’s minimum requirements for PhD applicants is found in the IT University’s guidelines for PhD applicants.
- Documentation of proficiency in English.Minimum requirements for PhD applicants is found in the IT University’s guidelines for PhD applicants
- List of scientific publications, if any
- Letters of recommendation, if any. Letters of recommendation must be of relevance to the assessment of your potential as a researcher
You will be assessed to be either qualified or not-qualified for enrolment as a PhD student at the IT University. You will receive the result before the application deadline set by Innovation Fund Denmark.
How to submit
Your supervisor has to send an Expression of interest for Innovation Fund Denmark Industrial PhD to Research Support and their Head of Department at the latest 3 weeks before the deadline of Innovation Fund Denmark. Research Support facilitates your internal assessment. Send the above-mentioned documents to your designated Research Support Consultant at least three weeks before the Innovation Fund's application deadline.
Industrial PhD applications are handled by Innovation Fund Denmark, and the application must be submitted by the company. On Innovation Fund Denmark’s website, you can find all relevant information about the programme including rules and requirements for you as PhD candidate.
It is highly recommended that your company prepare the application in close collaboration with you as the PhD candidate and the IT University.
Please note that the application for the IT University must be submitted at least 3 weeks prior to the deadline of Innovation Fund Denmark. The IT University’s deadline ensures that full applications, which includes the above listed documents, are assessed before the submission deadline of Innovation Fund Denmark.
For application deadlines at Innovation Fund Denmark, please consult their website.
If you have any questions about the university requirements for Industrial PhD candidates, you are welcome to contact PhD Support at ITU.
If you have any questions about the application process, you are welcome to contact Research Support at ITU.