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Next generation of biomedical researchers at University of Warwick to benefit from new funding

  • Medical Research Council-funded Doctoral Training Partnership based at Warwick Medical School has been renewed
  • Renewal will see 12 more postgraduate students a year funded to undertake biomedical research
  • One of 17 DTP awards announced amongst £79 million MRC investment

The University of Warwick is to receive a share of new national investment in doctoral training, supporting postgraduate students to engage in interdisciplinary research to help understand, diagnose and intervene in human disease.

The Medical Research Council will fund six postgraduate students per year, and a further six will be matched funded by the University of Warwick and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, as part of the renewal of the University’s Medical Research Council-funded Doctoral Training Partnership in Interdisciplinary Research (MRC DTP). The DTP will be funded for 3 years in the first instance (2022-24) with the possibility of an extension for another two years (2025-2026).

MRC has committed £79 million to support doctoral training for the next three years, through its Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP) competition. The MRC has announced it will fund 17 DTP awards across 34 UK Research Organisations (ROs) for student intake 2022 onwards. MRC’s vision for these DTP awards is to support high quality doctoral training programmes that take a student-centred approach, focusing on scientific excellence, positive research culture and wider training opportunities.

These DTP awards will provide doctoral training for around 200 students per year across MRC’s remit. This includes:

  • skills in data science at the interface of human health and biology
  • whole organism physiology to enable progress towards a cross-level approach to medical research in human health
  • interdisciplinary ways of working.

The renewed MRC DTP based at Warwick Medical School will build on the proven strengths of the existing programme - interdisciplinarity, an outstanding training environment and excellent student cohort experience – and deliver new streams of research that map to clinical needs in understanding, diagnosing and intervening in human disease.

To realise this, the DTP will be working in partnership with University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire NHS Trust (UHCW), along with the Warwick co-founded Alan Turing Institute and more than 25 industrial partners.

Professor Jonathan Millar, Director of the University of Warwick MRC DTP, said: “I am delighted that the MRC has awarded us a new Doctoral Training Partnership to support our mission to train the next generation of researchers capable of developing and applying innovative analytical methods from the physical, computational and engineering sciences to address important issues and questions in medical and clinical research. We are really looking forward to recruiting enthusiastic, talented students from diverse backgrounds to join our exciting and supportive training community.”

Professor Sudhesh Kumar OBE, Dean of Warwick Medical School, said: “I’m delighted that following a competitive peer review process, the MRC Doctoral Training Partnership has been successfully renewed, enabling us to continue training the biomedical researchers of tomorrow with the opportunity to undertake exciting projects alongside our world-class researchers working at the leading edge of their fields. This is fantastic recognition of the calibre of our staff and students and the success of the programme so far.”

Professor Pam Thomas, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Warwick, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has clearly demonstrated the value of biomedical research to society and the need for talented scientists, equipped with the right skills, to make a significant impact across multiple sectors. This latest funding from the MRC is an acknowledgement of the wealth of expertise in biomedical research at the University of Warwick that continues to remain vital in training high-calibre researchers for the future.”

Investments in doctoral training are an important component of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the MRC’s overarching vision to develop research talent and skills. These investments will provide a breadth of professional development training opportunities to enhance the capabilities of doctoral candidates and develop a world-class, highly skilled workforce for the UK.

Professor Fiona Watt, Executive Chair, MRC, said: “We are thrilled to announce our funding for the next generation of MRC PhD researchers through 17 new UK-wide Doctoral Training Partnership awards. Outstanding research is only possible when we invest in people to conduct that research. Our new awards are student-centred, setting out to increase the diversity of individuals pursing research careers and providing opportunities for students to widen their horizons during and post-PhD.”


9 July 2021

University of Warwick press office contact:

Peter Thorley

Media Relations Manager (Warwick Medical School and Department of Physics) | Press & Media Relations | University of Warwick

Mob: +44 (0) 7824 540863