The Programme

The Norwich Research Park Bioscience Doctoral Training Partnership is a PhD programme involving the John Innes Centre, the University of East Anglia, the Quadram Institute Bioscience, The Sainsbury Laboratory and The Earlham Institute.

With the global challenges in ‘omics and a wide range of new analytical techniques, it is a particularly exciting time to set out on a career in biosciences research. The global challenges of the 21st century are enormous, and advances in the biosciences offer real opportunities to address topics such as food security, new sources of energy and development of sustainable sources for chemical products.

The NRPDTP is unique in bringing together the resources of five world-class research institutions on a single site – the Norwich Research Park. As a consequence, students joining the Norwich programme will have the opportunity, within a single programme, to pursue multidisciplinary research encompassing everything from atomic level structural studies, through computational and systems biology, to large scale crop field trials.

In our DTP programme students pursue a single research project which occupies the great majority of the four year degree. In addition all DTP students are required to spend three months during their degree undertaking a professional internship; working in a professional environment on a topic that does not directly relate to their PhD project. All students will also be required to pursue the UEA Personal Professional Development (PPD) programme. Both the internship and the PPD programme are aimed at developing the necessary skills to become an effective researcher and making a successful transition into a future career, whether within academia or in other professions.

The institutions of the Norwich Research Park have an established history of working closely together and many NRP scientists are engaged in research programmes involving colleagues from two or more laboratories. The DTP programme builds on this foundation and offers students the opportunity to become part of a vibrant multinational research community within which they can learn from internationally-recognised scientists and contribute to new and exciting discoveries. So whether your background is in biochemistry, plant sciences, microbiology, cell biology, computational sciences or physics, you are likely to find stimulating research projects within our DTP programme.

The major discoveries in bioscience today most often arise from collaborative research between labs with complementary skill sets. The NRPDTP aims to train a new generation of bioscience researchers with the skills and the aptitude to develop the novel integrative approaches that can be achieved by this type of collaboration.

One of Norwich’s most successful alumni, Nobel prize winner Sir Paul Nurse who gained his PhD at UEA, spoke of just such an approach when he described his vision for the role of scientists. Giving the annual Richard Dimbleby lecture in February 2012, Sir Paul said: “I do not want scientists to stay in their labs all the time, I want them to mix with the best minds from industry, the city, the public services, the media, to spark off new ideas to help science benefit us all.”  Our DTP programme aims to attract outstanding and committed graduates, who are keen to realise Paul Nurse’s vision of 21st century bioscience.