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Sources of Funding and Scholarship Support

A database of all sources of funding and Postgraduate Scholarships is available elsewhere on this website or on request from the Scholarships Administrators, whose Office is located on the ground floor north, of the Clocktower Building, Room G08.

Contact details are:
Tel 64 3 479 5292 or 5291
Fax 64 3 479 5650

An ongoing display of this material is also set up in the Clocktower Building.

University of Otago Postgraduate Scholarships

Each year the University offers about 180 of its own Postgraduate Scholarships for PhD study. Application is made at the same time as applying for admission to PhD study. PhD Scholarships are tenable for a maximum of 3 years (no extensions are given), and provide for payment of tuition fees in addition to an annual emolument.

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University Guidelines for the Acceptance of External Research Grants

Prospective Doctoral candidates should be familiar with the Externally Sponsored Graduate Research Procedures.

This procedure seeks to protect the integrity of the University and the interests of the students involved in externally-funded or externally-supported projects. External funding of a research project can raise issues relating to the ownership of the research findings. The University's general policy is that researchers must be able to publish and make presentations of the results of their research, including externally sponsored research. In some cases, a delay in the publication of the results may be required, or special arrangements for the secure examination of a thesis may have to be made, to ensure the commercial interests of the Sponsor and the University are protected. This being the case, various procedures should be followed:

  • The student(s) should be fully informed, in writing prior to their acceptance of the thesis topic of any agreement into which the University has entered, and which may restrict their publication rights.
  • If the student is an employee of an organisation which, by virtue of this relationship, may claim ownership of some or all of the research findings, there shall be a formal agreement between the University and the Employer to the effect that the student will have the right to present his or her thesis with their personal interpretation and use of the data and results. The conditions allowing secure examination may apply.
  • Only in exceptional circumstances will the normal thesis examination procedures be modified. In these exceptional circumstances the University will arrange for commercial-in-confidence agreements to be completed by all prospective examiners before they receive the thesis for examination.
  • The delay in publication will be formally agreed in the following or similar manner: The sponsor recognises that, under University policy, the results of the University Project must be publishable and agrees that Researchers engaged in Project shall be permitted to present at symposia, national, or regional professional meetings, and to publish in journals, theses or dissertations, or otherwise of their own choosing, methods and results of Project, provided, however, that Sponsor shall have been furnished copies of any proposed publication at least [ __ ] months in advance of the submission of such proposed publication or presentation to a journal, editor, or other third party. Sponsor shall have [ __ ] months, after receipt of said copies, to object to such proposed presentation or proposed publication on the basis that there is patentable subject matter which needs protection. In the event that Sponsor makes such objection, said Researcher(s) shall refrain from making such publication or presentation for a maximum of [ __ ] months from date of receipt of such objection in order for University to file patent application(s) with the Patent and Trademark Office and/or foreign patent office(s) directed to the patentable subject matter contained in the proposed publication or presentation.
  • Access to the thesis in the University Library may be restricted for a period of time to persons designated by the University supervisor in agreement with the Head of Department.
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Travel to Conferences

Students often enquire about possible funding support to assist them in attending conferences related to their research. The University will provide grant-in-aid to support doctoral candidates to present at one major international conference. Each Division administers the application and funding process, so consult your Divisional Office.

A special conference fund is available for Māori candidates. Information and application forms are available at Māori Student Conference Assistance.

Some outside organisations also offer general financial support and those which the University holds information on, are available through the Scholarships Administrators in room G08, in the Clocktower Building.

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University Research Funding

Further information concerning other funding sources can best be obtained from the staff of the department concerned. In general terms, however, applications for modest amounts are handled on a Divisional basis with closing dates determined by the individual Divisions.

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Postgraduate Publishing Bursaries

These are bursaries of up to three months duration at an equivalent rate of a Postgraduate Scholarship stipend and awarded to PhD candidates whose theses are under examination so as to continue with their student research by preparing papers to the submission stage for publication in journals of international standing. If candidates submit their thesis for examination within 4 EFTS (four equivalent full-time years) and are working no more than 10 hours a week, then they are eligible to apply. Further details, forms and an FAQ sheet are available on the PhD Examination Process web page.

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