2013 CDT exercise

Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs) are one of the three main ways by which EPSRC provides support for Doctoral Training. The other routes are the Doctoral Training Partnerships (DTP) and Industrial CASE Studentships (ICASE), where much of the need for doctoral students in many areas continue to be met and together make up more than 50% of our current spend on studentships.

Through the 2013 CDT exercise, EPSRC aimed to deliver “a balanced skills portfolio to avoid systemic skills shortages in the UK and increase the satisfaction of both students and their employers” (EPSRC Strategic Plan 2010). All of the three routes for support for Doctoral training should adopt a student-centred approach that is fit for purpose and anticipates future need. Quality (of student, training and research environment) is our first priority, in addition to academic excellence which is a prerequisite. Through this exercise, we also expected our investment to be a positive enabler of change to achieve impact through the people we supported.

EPSRC Centres for Doctoral Training evolved over time from the EngD centres established in 1992 through the Life Science Initiative centres in 2002 to a large roll out of the concept in 2009. Following review of the progress of Centres in 2011, EPSRC’s Council confirmed that the centre route should continue to be part of EPSRC’s portfolio in the future and we began an engagement process on future priorities. The priority descriptions represented both the outcomes from, and the conclusion of, that engagement process.

Timetable for the call

Activity Date
Publish outcomes from engagement November 2012
Issue call February 2013
Closing date for outlines April 2013
Invite full proposals May 2013
Closing date for full proposals July 2013
Announce grants November/December 2013
New CDT cohort starts October 2014