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Information for partners and supervisors

Each project is designed to meet a partner’s needs, through work done by a dedicated student at MPhil, research master's or PhD level, supervised by an academic team at the University.

Further benefits of participation include:

  • a route to attract, develop and retain new researchers into the business, with relevant skills
  • establishing and building on-going links with University staff, facilities and expertise
  • the low cost of participation
  • positive marketing, publicity and promotional opportunities.

KESS gives us access to people and resources that we wouldn't normally have access to. We would definitely work with KESS again. We've had two very good PhD students who have made a real difference to the business. We've certainly learned a lot working with them, and we hope that they've learned a lot from working with us, too.

Ian Cameron - Micropharm

Key requirements

Partners must have a base in the relevant region of Wales in order to strengthen on-going benefit to that region. This does not have to be a head-quarters. Priority is given to private sector organisations (Micro Enterprises; Small to Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs); Large Companies). Third and Public Sector partners will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Partners are asked to make a cash contribution of £5,500 - £7,000 per year (excluding VAT, depending on company size and start date of the project). Intellectual property arising from the project must be owned by the University. Licences to IPR are subject to further negotiation. Students will spend at least 30 days a year with the partner.

KESS2 may not be appropriate for every business. You could also consider one of our other funded schemes such as Knowledge Transfer Partnerships.

How to apply

No further PhD places are available for East and West Wales.

Please download East project application to apply.

Priority will be given to private sector partners and partners who have not previously received KESS 2 funding.

Academic supervisors must liaise with their school PGR/Research offices when preparing applications - applications should be submitted via Academic School office to KESS2 at with School approval.

Please contact the KESS2 administration team at to discuss your ideas before developing a full proposal.

Current KESS2 vacancies.

The quality and the variety of research that KESS offers is way beyond what we would be able to do in-house. For us, this isn't just about one project - it's about our research portfolio moving into the future. It's been given real focus by the academic partners' ability to understand the water industry's challenges.

Philipa Pearson - Dwr Cymru Welsh Water

Contact us

Esther Meadows

Finance and Compliance Project Officer

Our funders

Knowledge Economy Skills Scholarships (KESS) is a pan-Wales higher level skills initiative led by Bangor University on behalf of the Higher Education sector in Wales. It is part-funded by the Welsh Government’s European Social Fund (ESF).