Microsoft PhD Scholarship Programme in EMEA

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Microsoft scholarships consist of an annual bursary up to a maximum of three years for PhD supervisors and students to do collaborative research projects with Microsoft Research Cambridge.

Each year, PhD supervisors from academic institutions in EMEA are invited to submit their proposals for collaborative research projects with Microsoft Research Cambridge. Applications are then peer reviewed and up to 16 projects will be selected for funding. PhD students are appointed to the selected projects and begin their research in the following academic year under the supervision of their academic supervisor, with co-supervision from a researcher at Microsoft Research Cambridge.

The Microsoft Research PhD Scholarship Programme in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) was launched in 2004 and has so far supported more than 200 PhD students from more than 18 countries and 51 institutions.

Some of the Scholars may also be offered—at the sole discretion of Microsoft Research—an internship in one of the Microsoft Research laboratories. Internships involve working on a project alongside and as part of a team of Microsoft researchers. Scholars are paid during their internship—in addition to their scholarship bursary. Interested Scholars can apply through the Microsoft Research careers page.

Current schedule

For the application process:
Online submission tool open: 15th September 2017
Application deadline: 12th October 2017
Notification of results: Stage 1 ~ By the end of October 2017
Stage 2 ~ By the end of January 2018
For successful applicants:
PhD Agreements sent to Institutes by: 16th February 2018
Signed PhD Agreements returned to MSR via Docusign by: 30th June 2018
PhD students to be appointed by: 31st March 2019


Eligibility criteria

Applications must not be made by students but by PhD supervisors, who must have been in dialogue with the prospective Microsoft supervisor and jointly collaborated on the proposal prior to the submission deadline. If their project is selected, the supervisor has until 31 March 2019 to find the best possible student for the project; otherwise, the PhD Agreement will be terminated automatically. Only applications from institutions in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa will be considered.

For an application to be considered, the following key requirements apply:

  1. The institute agrees to the terms and conditions in the PhD Term Sheet and EPSRC Term Sheet where appropriate .
  2. The applicant must be in dialogue with the prospective Microsoft supervisor prior to the submission deadline and jointly drafting the proposal.
  3. The proposed research must be closely related to our research ambitions at Microsoft Research in Cambridge:

This year, we are particularly interested in proposals related to:

  • Machine Learning for Healthcare
  • Optics in the Cloud (networking, storage and compute)
  • Confidential Computation
  • Designing AI for Human Partnership

Microsoft actively seeks to foster greater levels of diversity in our workforce and in our pipeline of future researchers. We are always looking for the best and brightest talent and pride ourselves on our individuality.

How to Apply

2018 PhD Scholarship Application

The online submission tool will be live on the 15th September 2017 – please submit your application via this link




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