Back

Latest News

Major funding boost for bioscientists of the future

28.10.19

Norwich Research Park Biosciences Doctoral Training Partnership (NRPDTP) has been awarded £12 million to train the next generation of bioscientists.

The funding award means the NRPDTP, with additional funding from Partners and Associate Partners, will be able to offer at least 32 PhD studentships per year for the next five years starting in October 2020.

The NRPDTP is one of 12 successful partnerships announced as part of a £170 million award from the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC, a part of UK Research and Innovation).

The John Innes Centre is the lead organisation of the NRPDTP alongside full partners the University of East Anglia (UEA), Quadram Institute Bioscience, Earlham Institute and The Sainsbury Laboratory – all based at Norwich Research Park.

Associate Partners of the successful bid are: Norfolk & Norwich University Hospitals; Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; Food Standards Agency; Public Health England; IBM Research UK; Biosciences Eastern and Central Africa – ILRI Hub; The Forum Trust; The Saw Trust; Agri-Tech East; Anglia Innovation Partnership and New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership.

TSL Executive Director Nick Talbot commented; “This is fantastic news. We are deeply committed to providing the best possible PhD training environment at The Sainsbury Laboratory. The new Norwich Research Park Biosciences Doctoral Training Partnership award is a great endorsement of the quality of PhD training offered across the research park and the exciting science here.  We are helping to train the world-leading scientists of tomorrow.”

NRPDTP director Professor Dave Evans of the John Innes Centre said: “We are delighted to receive this funding which reflects the important role played by Norwich Research Park and its partners in the UK’s world-leading bioscience sector.”

“This award will enable the delivery of a high-quality doctoral training programme to enable our PhD candidates to gain the attributes required for the highly-skilled workforce of the future.”

DTPs will offer four-year PhD studentships during which each student also undertakes a 3-month Professional Internships for PhD Students (PIPS) placement to develop their skills further and to explore possible future career directions. Projects for October 2020 intake are now being advertised.

Professor Fiona Lettice, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Research & Innovation), at the UEA said: “The NRPDTP is an exciting opportunity for us to bring together world-class expertise from across the Norwich Research Park to enable the next generation of scientists to work on novel bioscience research projects, to create new knowledge within their discipline, and to work with our Associate Partners to develop innovative solutions and make an impact within these organisations and beyond.”

Announcing the DTP award, 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.”