Placements & internships

UK National Productivity Investment Fund Innovation Placements

We have a small pot of money from the NERC via the UK National Productivity Investment Fund to support placements to enable and encourage PhD students and post-doctoral graduates to explore impact from their research and develop links between academia and industry, sharing knowledge and skills, and increasing mobility and flow of talent between these sectors.

Innovation placements funded by GW4 FRESH CDT are available to any individual at a GW4 institution who is studying for, or has recently completed, a PhD within the NERC remit within the area of freshwater bioscience and sustainability. Placements can be up to 3-4 months for current students and 1-2 months for post-docs (or the part-time equivalent) and must demonstrate a clear link with the government’s Industrial Strategy. 

Priority will be given to PhD students who will complete their PhD within the 2018/19 academic year, or recent GW4 PhD graduates who completed their PhD within the last 12 months, though we may be able to demonstrate some flexibility in this. All placements must take place in the academic year 2018/19. Current studentship funding and submission dates will be extended by the length of the placement, and funded at the current stipend and fee rates. Recent doctoral graduates will be funded at the post-doc rate.

To apply fill in this online application form; the closing date will be 2nd September 2018. If there are any funds remaining, there will be a second call with a closing date of 3rd December 2018.

2018 Research Councils Policy Internships Scheme 

The below information was received from NERC Research Careers Team on 21 June. The closing date for applications is 13 August 2018.

The Policy Internships Scheme provides the opportunity for PhD students funded by the research councils of UK Research and Innovation to work for three months in one of a selected group of highly influential policy organisations.

The research councils organise the Policy Internships Scheme for current research council-funded PhD students to work at host partner organisations on one or more policy topics relevant to both the student and the host. The student will be expected to produce at least one briefing paper, participate in a policy inquiry and/or organise a policy event, or equivalent piece of work.

Internships are available with a number of parliamentary departments, government departments and non-governmental bodies, learned societies and other organisations.


Internships are financially supported by the research councils and host partners. For all students, PhD stipend and fees should continue to be paid by the research organisation throughout the three month internship period. Students can also claim for eligible travel and accommodation costs incurred during the internship up to a maximum limit of £2,400 per student. The funding details will depend on the applicant’s research council and the chosen host partner. Applicants should review the applicant guidance for full details of the funding arrangements for NERC students.


This scheme is open to PhD students funded by the research councils of UK Research & Innovation including NERC. Internships will take place during 2019 and students must be able to start their internship before the end of their funded period of study.

Further details and how to apply

Full details of how to apply, including links to the online application form and guidance documents are available through the UK Research & Innovation policy internships page. Further information, including examples of previous work by NERC students is available on the NERC policy internships page.


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