2019 AHRC Innovation Placements

These placements are intended to provide an opportunity for students who have just finished their PhD to work with non-academic partners. The scheme aims to contribute to an increase in the capability of the UK’s skilled workforce across both industry and academia. The funding for this scheme comes from the National Productivity Investment Fund and this is the reason for the particular nature of the scheme and its associated requirements.

How many are available?

We have funding for SIX placements in 2019 for 6 months each, for WRoCAH students who have completed their PhD at Leeds, Sheffield and York.

Am I eligible?

  • To be eligible, your thesis must have been submitted AFTER 1 April 2018 – note: this is an update to eligibility for this scheme
  • The scheme requires that priority be given to those whose PhD was funded through WRoCAH by the AHRC, eg. AHRC Competition, CDA, CDP or Project award holders.
  • WRoCAH White Rose Networks studentship holders are eligible if no suitable AHRC-funded applicants are found.

Who can the placement be with?

Placements can be with any non-academic partner organisation in the United Kingdom.

The AHRC says: “We are basing our interpretation of the ‘Creative Industries’ on the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) definition- ‘those industries which have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent and which have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property.’  However, we are also extending this to include any organisation or business which uses creative elements without necessarily being a ‘creative industry’ (for example, a designer working within a banking organisation).

Note: There are thirteen sub-sectors under the term ‘creative industries’ and these are: advertising and marketing; architecture; crafts; design; fashion; film, TV, video, radio and photography; software and computer games; museums, galleries and libraries; music, performing and visual arts; and publishing.”

We would encourage you to look at the WRoCAH core partner organisations, many of whom operate within the creative industries under the broad definition above. They have been notified separately of the scheme so that they are prepared for enquiries.

What kinds of placements are eligible?

The sorts of placements that are sought under this scheme are very similar to the WRoCAH Researcher Employability Project scheme, ie. something that has a clear and necessary value to the partner organisation.  However placements must be with a non-academic organisation within the scope outlined in the previous section and the scheme requires that the partner organisation will provide you with training and experience to develop your technical and transferable skills to aid your transition from HE to the non-academic sector.

You will be required to describe this in your application and make the case for the relevance of the placement to your career plans and what you could bring to the partner organisation. You do not need to have a full project plan in place for the application, but you will be required to submit a project plan within one month of the project start.

What is the AHRC’s Creative Economy Programme?

The United Kingdom’s (UK) Creative Economy, which embraces the creative industries and the cultural sector, is a dynamic and vital part of the UK’s economy. It accounts for more than 5% of UK Gross Value Added (higher than Financial Services, Advanced Manufacturing and Construction), nearly 10% of the economy, and is estimated to be growing at a higher rate than any other sector.

The sector ranges from major corporations to small and micro enterprises. It is increasingly clear, however that the arts and humanities are a vital element of the Creative Economy, bringing further creativity, insight and knowledge to a sector as rich and varied as it is successful and innovative.

The AHRC supports research, training and knowledge exchange in the creative economy.

How long can the placement be and when can it begin?

Placements are for SIX MONTHS. The start date must fall between 1 January 2019 and 1 March 2019. Start dates outside this window are not eligible.

What is the salary?

The rate of pay is based on an entry level Level 2 Intern, at the University of York and is £24,543 pro-rata. All successful candidates will be employed and paid via the University of York, regardless of where the PhD was completed. Unlike your PhD stipend, this is a salary and will therefore be subject to tax and NI.

How to apply

Application is via online form. The deadline for the receipt of applications is the 5pm GMT on Monday 15 October 2018.

Click here to access the Application Form (WRoCAH login required)



Can I start the placement later than 1 March 2019? No.
Does ‘submission’ mean the first submission prior to viva or the final submission post-viva? It means the first submission prior to viva.
If I am delayed submitting my thesis, can the proposed start date of the placement be pushed back from the date I gave in my application? No, the start date cannot be pushed back.
Can the placement be with the same organisation I did my REP with? Yes it can.
I submitted my thesis before 1 April 2018, am I eligible for this scheme? No, sorry the parameters set by the AHRC for this scheme are very clear in this regard.
Can I do the placement with a research centre within another University? No, the placement must be completed with a non-academic partner organisation.
Can I do a placement of less than six months? No.
Can I do a placement of more than six months? No.
Is an email confirmation of support from the partner organisation okay instead of a letter? Yes, so long as it clearly shows their email address and the date.
Do I have to live near the location where the partner organisation is based? Ideally yes, as it will be difficult to fully benefit from immersion into the partner organisation’s work without being regularly on site.
How will I get paid? You will be paid monthly in arrears via BACS by the University of York.
Can I apply for WRoCAH funding (Large, Small Awards, KEP, SLF?) while I am on this placement?  No.