This site use cookies to provide the best possible experience for you. By closing this message you agree to our use of cookies. Our full privacy policy is available here.
Close disclaimer
Skip to content

Earning doctorates in companies

The Industrial Ph.D. scheme for funding for industry-oriented doctoral research fellowships was established to facilitate the recruitment of researchers to Norwegian industry.

The Research Council launched the Industrial Ph.D. scheme in 2008, with the first years as a trial period. It is modelled on the Industrial Ph.D. Programme in Denmark, which was established in 1972.

Giving companies a boost

Funding for industry-oriented doctoral research fellowships will help many companies to step up their research efforts. The Industrial Ph.D. scheme does not represent a new type of doctoral degree, but is designed to support long-term, industry-oriented research that has the same level of scientific merit as the general doctoral degree education.

The Industrial Ph.D. scheme is designed to enhance interaction between companies and research institutions, increase research activity in industry, and equip newly-educated researchers with knowledge of relevance to their company.

The scheme offers substantial benefits to all three involved parties:

  • The company acquires new expertise and expands its network of contacts in academia.
  • The degree-conferring research institution obtains new, industry-relevant knowledge and connections in the business sector.
  • The doctoral candidate completes a doctorate and gains research-related work experience at the same time.

Under the Industrial Ph.D. scheme, companies receive an annual grant equal to maximum 50 per cent of the applicable rate for doctoral research fellowships for a three-year period. The candidate must be an employee of the company and be formally admitted to an ordinary doctoral degree programme.

The scheme supplements other initiatives at the Research Council, and may be a good alternative for companies that do not have the resources to participate in larger-scale research projects.

The Industrial Ph.D. scheme – key facts


The company

  • is the formal applicant and recipient of the funding;
  • must have staff and other resources dedicated for internal R&D activities;
  • must have a binding collaboration with a degree-conferring institution;
  • must document the relevance of the research project.

The doctoral candidate

  • is an employee of the company;
  • will divide his/her time between the company and the degree-conferring institution;
  • must have advisers from both the degree-conferring institution and the company.


  • will be awarded conditional to the employee’s admission to an organised doctoral degree programme;
  • will be awarded for a period of three years;
  • is determined after completion of a simple, efficient application process.

Read more about the scheme in the call for proposals.