Information for organisations

Our experience shows that organisations who engage with the scheme report that postgraduate researchers bring new energy and fresh insights to their organisation and produce valuable reports that inform future work.

Aims of the scheme:

  • To provide PGRs with the opportunities to develop their professional skills and collaborative understanding of research users and their needs through research-based engagement with businesses/organisations.
  • To provide organisations with access to innovative ideas, knowledge and research that could improve policy or practice and enhance organisational learning and performance.
  • To foster the development of collaborative partnerships between businesses/organisations and researchers at the University of Leeds.
  • To enhance the take-up and application of evidence-based knowledge and maximise the impact of social science research within the business community.

The Project

The scheme allows social science postgraduate researchers to undertake a co-designed research project, tailored to the needs of the external partner, that provides the researcher with skills and career development opportunities. The project will also result in a report for the external partner at the end of the placement.

The scheme expects postgraduate researchers to commit a maximum of 130 hours, with specific weekly hours to be agreed with the partner organisation. As an example, previously, researchers have phased their projects over a 13 week period (10 hours/week).

Projects could, for example, include:

  • We are particularly interested in projects that are ‘policy-facing’ or that include ‘policy engagement’ activities.
  • Surveying or interviewing users of providers of relevant services to identify ways in which they could be improved.
  • Evaluating a project or scoping out the potential for a new project which aims to bring social or economic benefit to a particular community.
  • Gathering evidence, writing reports and responding to government consultation exercises/informing policy making.

LSSI will offer the postgraduate a bursary to cover their expenses. If the project entails costs that are outside of this, these would need to be covered by the partner organisation.

If you would like to discuss the scheme further, please contact Cheryl Harris (

The Process

If you have a project in mind, please complete the template form below and return to Cheryl Harris ( for consideration by the deadlines below:

9th February 2022 (12-noon)
11th May 2022 (12-noon)

You will want to consider the following details:
-The proposed project and timescales
-The ideal candidate and skills required
-Details of your organisation
-Details of who would supervise the student during the placement and where the student would be based
-The anticipated benefits, both for your organisation and for the researcher’s skills and experience
-Details of any costs that you will be covering (financial or in-kind) to support the placement.

Applications will be internally reviewed and, if deemed suitable, details of the project with be circulated across University networks to suitable students. We will ask interested students to submit a CV and covering letter and you will then select the most suitable candidate for the role.

Once a suitable candidate has been selected, we ask you to sign a Triparte agreement which indicates your responsibility to the student while they undertake the project. You will also need to undertake and sign a Health & Safety Assessment with the student on their first day and confirm that you are happy with the IP terms.

For projects that include research with human participation or personal data such as interviews and focus groups the PGR will need to submit an ethics application for review by the University of Leeds ethics team which may take 2-3 weeks to approve.

LSSI Postgraduate Research Student Placement – Organisation Application Template

LSSI PGR Placements External Partner Advert