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 In the beginning, 2013, the research school had 10 PhD students engaged in companies stretching from Braås in the south to Sandviken in the north. The school was extended after two years with another eight students in SiCoMaP+. Some of the PhD students have for various reasons not been able to complete the program, and they have been replaced by others.

The school has been organised at University West with a Program Director, a Programme Secretary, administrative support and a Controller, and the participating companies have taken part in a steering group. The follow up project SiCoMaP+ was also funded with a very much appreciated scholarship for international experience for three to four months at an internationally renowned research organisation.

An industrial PhD student performs his/her research project with a clear focus on an industrial relevant research question, takes part in academic supervision by professors at University West, and follows normal course activities together with the university employed PhD students. In this way, networks are strengthened between the PhD students, the supervisors, and the industrial partners, and these are expected to give a long-term collaboration after graduation. The motivation for a company to participate in an industrial research school are manifold; the development of the individuals, their colleagues take part in the research results, and consequently developing the company.

The school has, in addition to the supervision of the PhD students’ research works, organised a two-day seminar twice a year, either in Trollhättan or at a participating company. The seminar themes have varied, e.g. Innovation and entrepreneurship, study visits, dissemination of research results, experience exchange, and always included follow up of all individual students’ progress and a social activity. The steering group has met during these seminars to be able to follow the progress and to be able to give guidance. The university employed PhD students have also been invited as well as the supervisors.

Before SiCoMaP, University West had experience from coordinating the industrial research school CAPE in cooperation with Chalmers, Jönköping University and Skövde University. By then the PhD students followed the regulations from Chalmers. University West now participates in the industrial research school Smart Industry, also funded by the Knowledge Foundation.

SiCoMaP is an acronym for Simulation and Control of Material affecting Processes.

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