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Businesses face many challenges and working with the right expertise can be hugely beneficial to solving them. Universities can offer expertise, skills, knowledge and graduates to help your business.

The Scottish Graduate School for Social Science (SGSSS) ( a partnership of 16 universities across Scotland, combining the incredible depth of expertise from our world-class research institutions. We support the training of more than 2,500 PhD students across Scotland and, as part of that, support placements in industry and elsewhere so that the next generation of social science leaders are comfortable working across the academic, private, public and non-profit sectors.

The SGSSS recently received funding to boost engagement with business and is working closely in particular with The Universities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen to deliver this. We are interested in developing closer links between businesses and our talented researchers, working with you to help you solve the problems you face, to help you grow and innovate.

Developing future talent – funding available for businesses

A clear focus for SGSSS is developing the skills of our early career researchers to engage more with business. Doctoral internships are one of the ways we do this, helping businesses to fill short-term skills gaps and attract talent for the future, whilst providing on the job training for PhD students to hone their skills and experience in a non-academic setting.

We have match-funding available for private sector business or industry partners who are interested in hosting a PhD student for short term research placements. The total cost of a three-month internship (though it can be shorter) is £5,500, this covers a monthly stipend and expenses for the student. SGSSS will fund 50% of this, the remaining amount must be matched by the host organisation.

Our Interns say:

“The internship has changed my perspective on future career plans. I now understand that there are other environments where you can utilise your research skills outside academia.”

Our Hosts say:

“The internship provided additional capacity to ensure that this important work could be undertaken at an earlier stage than planned and much more rapidly than would otherwise have been possible.”

We want to be collaborative in how we maximise the opportunities this brings so please get in touch to talk about how we can work together and how social science can help your business. Please send any enquiries to Anna Scott at