SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit

MSc students awarded 50th Anniversary Scholarships

In 2016, to celebrate fifty years of shaping innovation research, teaching and policy, SPRU launched a new scholarship programme to attract the very best Masters students from around the world.

The SPRU 50th Anniversary Scholarships are funded by SPRU alumni and friends who share our vision for innovation policy for transformative change. In recognition of the generosity of our benefactors, many of the scholarships are named after their donors.

Ashif Anam Siddique, a civil servant from Bangladesh, was awarded the Richard Nelson scholarship:

Serving in development administration, my prime focus is on sustainable development through scientific solutions and innovations in governance. As a result, I was in search of higher study that would introduce me to the global advancement of science, technology and innovation policy.

I think an MSc in Sustainable Development from SPRU will enrich my career prospects. The University of Sussex offers a multicultural and professional networking opportunity, from which valid, strategically-sound and technologically-advanced policies are more likely to come. This will help me to gather ideas and guide my country’s efforts towards sustainable development, and sharing my opinions in the Sussex community will give me the exposure to act on global needs. By acquiring in-depth knowledge and experience from the international scholars of SPRU, I will be in a position to overcome the future challenges in the development sector.

Dimitrios Apostolopoulos says, of his Geoffrey Oldham scholarship, that “apart from being a financial help it is also an additional impetus to my studies which are targeted towards helping my country overcoming its crisis.”

Dimitrios continues:

Through my previous studies I gained a strong background in political science and economics. I have a firm grounding in the so called “macro-level” of analysis, i.e. the role of international organizations and international financial institutions, the structure of our global economic system and the complex interrelationship between politics and economics.

I came to SPRU so as to gain valuable knowledge over the “micro-level,” that is the role of the firm. I am eager to identify growth-promoting policies and their application in practice and also different pathways to development.

Aware that the major development issues cannot be tackled without adopting a multidisciplinary approach, the SPRU MSc in Sustainable Development stands out given its training across a broad spectrum of areas. This will allow me to build a solid understanding of the major development issues and schools of thought. In addition, it will allow me to develop a comprehensive understanding of the relative importance of institutions towards achieving development goals and how various actors at different levels (i.e. local, national, etc.) promote or prohibit development.

After graduation I hope to gain some practical experience in NGOs, think tanks or international organisations. I aspire to build a career in the Greek General Directorate of Development, specifically in its scientific advisory unit. There, apart from the theoretical aspect of conducting research and drafting reports on development (both at national and international level) I would also take part in the actual implementation process.

The extensive and broad training this course offers will allow me to get a better grasp of the major development issues and the factors that permit or prohibit international cooperation. It will give me the full academic credentials to engage in public dialogue on global issues like global governance and poverty, with cutting edge knowledge.

Garth Williams, awardee of the Mansell-Steinmueller scholarship, says that his “being here studying towards an MSc in Science and Technology Policy would not have been possible had I not been awarded the Mansell-Steinmueller scholarship.”

Originally from South Africa, Garth explains:

I have worked for the Department of Science and Technology for a few years in manufacturing technology policy, strategy and implementation, and started to get to the point where I felt that to progress further professionally I needed to get a decent international qualification. SPRU at the University of Sussex stood out due to its excellent international reputation, as well as the foundational role it played in establishing and shaping the fields of science, technology and innovation policy.

I applied to study at the university in mid-July and was accepted within a few days, but I only heard that I had been awarded the Mansell-Steinmueller scholarship on 30 August, which was the main 'go/no-go' point for me in terms of viability to study in the UK. I believe that competition was quite tough, and so I'm humbled, honoured and privileged to have been awarded one of the scholarships. 

The first few weeks of lectures have been amazing. I'm particularly enjoying the whole peer-to-peer teaching and learning approach. I was also fortunate to attend a bit of the SPRU 50th Anniversary Conference before fresher's week. It was quite an experience to be in the same space as some of the pioneers and rock stars of science, technology and innovation policy. I'm still pinching myself that I'm here!

As for the future? I'm already having mad thoughts of a PhD...

Additional SPRU 50th Anniversary Scholarships were awarded as follows:

Renee Gotopo – awarded Baroness Margaret Sharp Scholarship (MSc Energy Policy)
Muhammad Talut – awarded Baroness Margaret Sharp Scholarship (MSc Energy Policy)

Further reading

For more information on SPRU’s postgraduate courses, visit our MSc and PhD Study pages.

The SPRU 50th Anniversary Scholarship fund will run for five years (until 2020 entry). Read more about how to apply for or how to donate towards the scholarships.