More than 70 centres will train 3500 postgraduate students

UK science minister David Willetts has announced 72 new centres to train more than 3500 PhD students over the next four years. More than 170 applications from universities eager to host the new Centres for Doctoral Training (CDT) were considered in the largest peer review exercise of its kind.

This is the second round of funding for CDTs, which were created in 2009. CDTs differ from conventional PhDs as cohorts of students receive technical and transferable skills training, and benefit from coursework modules, in addition to working on a research project. The new centres will work on a wide range of projects relevant to the chemical sciences including nanomaterials, photonics and bioenergy.

The £350 million core funding for these new CDTs from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) was approved in January. The EPSRC says another £250 million has also been secured from businesses and the public sector who will work with the CDTs.