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PhD opportunities and innovation vouchers for industry

UT teams up with industry to invest in additional research

The knowledge-intensive industrial sector and the University of Twente are joining forces in the coming years to create 100 extra positions for PhD research. The first twelve PhD positions have recently been awarded to four companies: Océ Nederland, Aquaporin, Emulate and TPRC. In addition, UT is making 20 innovation vouchers available to SMEs this year, each with a value of €10,000.

Océ Nederland, Aquaporin, Emulate and TPRC are the first four organizations to make use of Top Technology Twente: UT Impulse PhD Positions. They have been allocated twelve PhD positions in total. PhD students from the University of Twente will devote four years to specific research projects with these companies. Océ Nederland is utilizing this research know-how in the field of inkjet technology, partly with a view to exploring 3D printing options. Aquaporin is conducting research on the next generation of membranes for producing clean water. Emulate is working on a new method for the analysis of biomarkers for the pharmaceutical industry. TPRC is a consortium of companies and knowledge partners engaged in the development of thermoplastic composites.  

In the coming years, the University of Twente and its industrial partners will jointly invest over €40 million in 100 PhD positions. “It’s about research projects that feed into five key themes for industry: advanced materials, advanced manufacturing mechatronics, medical technology devices, wireless remote sensors, and safety security. The university (in collaboration with the High Tech Systems Materials Top Sector) and its industrial partners will each fund half of the PhD positions,” explains Miriam Luizink, Director of Strategic Business Development at UT. 

A dozen PhD positions have been assigned in the first round, the second round has just opened up.

Innovation vouchers 

The University of Twente is also seeking to step up its cooperation with SMEs. With this objective in mind, 50 innovation vouchers with a total value of €500,000 will be issued. Businesses can use these vouchers to invest in facilities, coaching, training or research at one of the university’s Centres of Expertise. Miriam Luizink adds, “The aim of this initiative is to make our Centres of Expertise more accessible.”

The first 20 innovation vouchers will be issued this year. Companies have until 1 November to submit their project proposals. To qualify for a voucher of €10,000, a company must be a new user of the facilities of the relevant Centre of Expertise. The company is also required to make a minimum contribution of €2500. 

The vouchers can be used at one of the following UT Centres of Expertise: 

  • European Membrane Institute (EMI)
  • Thermoplastic Composites Research Centre (TPRC)
  • MESA+ NanoLab
  • Experimental Centre for Technical Medicine (ECTM)
  • Centre for Service Robotics (LEO)
  • Virtual Reality Laboratory (VR Lab / T-Xchange)
  • DesignLab

The PhD positions and the innovation vouchers are part of the University of Twente’s Strategic Business Development programme, which is designed to strengthen the university’s relationship with industry.

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