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CASE studentships (formerly known as 'Collaborative Awards in Science and Engineering') are collaborative training grants that provide students with a first-rate challenging research training experience, allowing top quality bioscience graduates to undertake research, leading to a PhD, within the context of a mutually beneficial research collaboration between academic and partner organisations.
We fund CASE studentships through:
- Industrial CASE Studentships (iCASE)
- An annual competition for 90 collaborative training awards. See related links for details of any current call
- Block allocations covering several years' intake are made to strategic industrial partners with established track records in collaborative doctoral training.
- We are running an invite-only competition for block awards 2014-16, see related links for details of the current call
- For 2012-13 allocations see our Studentship allocations: Industrial CASE, Industrial CASE Partnership Awards, MSc and MRes page
We also encourage conversion of training grants to CASE awarded through the Doctoral Training Partnerships competition (DTP). For further information see the Studentship handbook.
Case study: Dr Mark Taylor, TMO Renewables
After graduating from Imperial College, I joined TMO in 2007 to undertake a CASE Studentship-sponsored PhD.
Broadly, TMO are concerned with commercially-viable production of a wide diversity of fuels and chemical products from cellulosic materials, using microbes. I studied and characterised a range of related strains to the current TMO collection of Geobacilli, which are aerobic, thermophillic strains of bacteria. We characterised all our strains based on a number of criteria, such as catabolic versatility, then went on to develop systems for gene knockout and demonstrate the value of this approach in improving target product yields. I also designed some molecular genetic tools - plasmids - that facilitated both my iCASE Studentship work and subsequent studies at TMO.
The CASE funding allowed the lab to purchase some key equipment, without which a number of advances we made simply would not have happened, and from a personal point of view, the extra money (in the form of a bursary), helped with the cost of living in London - I am not sure I could have managed to study in the city without it. Furthermore, the partnership enabled my placement at TMO Renewables, and this environment was ideal for carrying out high-value molecular studies.
We published much of the CASE work in a paper with TMO (see paper at: Metabolic engineering of Geobacillus thermoglucosidasius for high yield ethanol production (external link)), which describes the breakthrough we made in the development of Geobacillus strain TM242. We also published the work we did on constructing novel plasmids for genetic studies at high temperatures. The genetic tools developed were central to my research, and have helped a number of other researchers; TMO regularly receive requests for one of our key plasmid constructs from researchers worldwide.
At present I work at TMO in Guildford on a variety of molecular based projects studying fundamental aspects of bacterial strain physiology and strain development.
Read an in-depth feature about the TMO Renewables story at Big score for British biofuel technology.
Innovation and Skills Group - Studentships