Industrial PhD – University of Copenhagen

If you aim to conduct a research project with commercial perspectives, you can apply for an industrial PhD. You will be employed by a private sector company and at the same time enrolled as a PhD student at the Graduate School at a university.

Why choose an industrial PhD?

As an industrial PhD student you will carry out research where results are applied in an enterprise setting. The cooperation between university and industry gives you access to new knowledge and innovation provided by the private sector company.

Application process for the industrial PhD

  • Start by finding a private sector company and a university supervisor for your PhD project.
  • The private sector company must send an application to Innovation Fund Denmark to apply for the industrial PhD grant on your behalf.
  • If successful, you can apply for enrolment at the Graduate School.

Visit the website of Innovation Fund Denmark to learn about application deadlines, how to find a company and a university supervisor, and how to proceed with your application.

  • Many university professors and associate professors can help you find a private sector company through their network.
  • The private sector company must be the formal applicant, but the application is made jointly by the company, the university and you.

Requirements to your supervisor and your employer

  • You need to find a project supervisor from your prospective employer and a principal supervisor from the university to help oversee your project. The principal supervisor must be an associate professor, senior researcher, professor, clinical associate professor or clinical professor.
  • Your employer must be based in Denmark and can be a private sector company, a private non-profit institution, or a private sector organisation with a substantial element of self-financing activity.
  • Notice that the company R&D facilities and hereby your future workplace, can be situated abroad, as long as the company has a division in DK.
  • You must have a financial guarantee from your private company employer, who will have to pay 50 pct. of your salary.

Specific requirements for an industrial PhD applicant

  • A master's degree or similar qualification
  • A grade point average of at least 9.5 for the master’s degree alone (if it has a nominal duration of at least 120 ECTS)  or a grade point average of 8.2 for both the bachelor’s and master’s degrees
  • A grade point level of at least 10 (Danish scale) for any final thesis/examination project
  • If your grade point average is slightly lower than the above mentioned, you can apply for approval depending on other relevant qualifications.

Learn more about grades and other qualifications in the Guidelines for Industrial PhD at Innovation Fund Denmark.