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Doctoral education pilot arouses wide interest among applicants and corporate partners

The doctoral education pilot has got off to a fast start. More than 3000 applications have already been received for the open positions in which Aalto University is involved, even though the spring application period is still ongoing.
Image from the conferment ceremony

Aalto University received a total of 178 new doctoral student places in a pilot funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The places are divided into 11 different theme-based consortia. Most of the places at Aalto University were awarded to consortia with the themes of quantum technology, bioeconomy and artificial intelligence.

The first theme-based consortium to launch its call for applicants was AI-DOC (Finnish Doctoral Program Network in Artificial Intelligence). The number of applicants was very high – a total of 2530 applications were received by the universities in the network.

Many of the consortia are currently accepting applications. Business partners are also still being sought to join the consortia.

Open positions in doctoral education pilot

Information about business cooperation

Artificial intelligence was of particular interest

In the AI-DOC network applicants applied through a 'one-stop shop' to all ten universities in the network. The goal of the one-stop method was to increase the visibility and attractiveness of AI-DOC both within Finland and globally. The first application round closed at the beginning of April. There were just over 2500 applicants, which is many times more than the number of applicants in regular application rounds.

'The application arrangement differed from many previous applications for doctoral studies in that the applicants expressed interest in certain areas when applying, but the actual integration into the topics is supervisor-led. Instructors get to suggest topics to students who seem to have the strongest potential.. This also helps to ensure that the most promising individuals, i.e. those with the jointly vetted potential to succeed in their doctoral studies, can be recruited to the programme,' says Professor Arno Solin.

'An important part of the pilot is also corporate collaboration, the implementation and match-making of which takes place specifically at this stage, when the supervisors interview and connect applicants with topics and potential partners in companies and participating research organisations,' Solin continues.

Research cooperation discussed with dozens of companies

The doctoral education pilot enables universities to respond to the growing shortage of experts. The aim is to increase the mobility of doctoral researchers between universities, companies, research institutes and other organisations.

Companies and research institutes have shown significant interest in the doctoral pilots . Aalto University is currently discussing research collaboration with more than 30 companies. Companies are also interested in acting as career mentors and doctoral thesis supervisors for doctoral researchers.

Ready to welcome new doctoral researchers

The national pilot focuses on helping doctoral researchers get an efficient start on their studies. Orientation days are held for the new doctoral researchers so they can familiarise themselves with Aalto University's doctoral education as a whole. The supervising professors and doctoral thesis supervisors tailor a personal study plan with each doctoral researcher. The plan consists of research, supervision and study plans as well as career and funding plans. The consortia participating in the doctoral pilot familiarise new doctoral researchers with the practices of their group, appointing mentors for them.

Aalto University is designing services suitable for the doctoral education pilot, integrating doctoral researchers into Finnish society. This includes, among other things, familiarisation with the business world in a context where companies are investing both time and money to have a voice in the choice of research topics. The common goal is to transfer the results of research to the business world and to hire graduates to work in companies. Company representatives also mentor doctoral researchers on career opportunities in the business world.

We invite companies to participate in the pilot

Aalto University invites companies to participate in the pilot either as a partner or as a mentor for a doctoral student. The call for partners is open now.

Doctoral hats

Join the MEC-funded doctoral pilot at Aalto University 2024-2027

Aalto University offers companies a unique opportunity to participate in the doctoral education pilot funded by MEC.

Corporate collaboration
Dipoli julkisivu Käpy-teos Kuva: Markus Sommers / Aalto-yliopisto

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More information about the doctoral education pilot

A gold-plated cryostat sits half open with many cables coming out from the bottom.

Doctoral education pilot

We are hiring 178 new doctoral researchers - get your doctorate from Aalto

Two people in laboratory working with research equipment wearing safety goggles.

Open positions in doctoral education pilot

Open doctoral researcher positions

Doctoral education pilot
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Doctoral research and studies make you an expert in your research topic and increase your professional abilities.

Doctoral education pilot
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Aalto granted 178 positions in doctoral education pilot

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