Employment in a private company

You may be employed in the private sector, on an industrial doctoral studentship

On an industrial doctoral studentship, you normally receive all of your salary from the company, but it is possible to have part of your salary paid by the university. Sometimes the money comes from funding that the university and the company receive jointly, sometimes the money comes entirely from the company.  It is the university’s responsibility to check that there will be adequate financing for you for the entire duration of the studies, that you will be able to devote enough time to your studies, and that you will have the necessary resources.

You normally have a main supervisor at the university. An assistant supervisor is often appointed at the company.

It may be the case that you are working full time on your doctoral studies, or you may be dividing your time between the studies and other tasks at the company. The study pace, however, cannot be below 50% overall, as you are expected to be able to graduate within at most eight years for a doctoral degree, and four years for a licentiate. 

There normally exists an agreement between the company and the university, regulating the way that responsibility for you is shared. The agreement should make explicit the time you are to spend on your studies versus other tasks, as well as what the university and the company should provide in terms of resources for your research. 

You may be doing your research entirely on university premises, or you may be also working on research at the company. In either case, the university should provide you with a research and educational environment, guaranteeing you a sufficient workspace and making sure you get the chance to participate in the scholarly community (through group meetings, workshops etc). The university is responsible for the course part of your education. If you are participating in conferences, costs may be covered by the company, the university, or both. 

Expectations about the division of your time should be in the Individual Study Plan (ISP) as well. The ISP should also cover the extent of supervision expected at both the company and the university. The ISP is usually discussed with the student and all supervisors, although it is ultimately a decision of the university.

An agreement between the company and the university may also cover how Intellectual Property of your research is to be handled. You can ask, either at your employer or at your university, to see the agreement between them.