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Masters Dissertation Scheme 2021: another fantastic year of projects!

A record number of students from UK universities applied to the Masters Dissertation Scheme (MDS) this year. Of more than 80 applications, a total of 20 students were selected to partner with 15 organisations for their 2021 Masters dissertations. 

Real-world data was used across a range of issues to produce innovative research in areas from loyalty card and gambling harm data to housing, social media, health, retail, transport, construction and the justice system.

Abstracts for each dissertation can be found on the Project Archive page.  Five students have also recorded videos, talking about their experiences of the Scheme.

The range of subject areas covered gives the MDS a broad appeal and applications were received from students studying across numerous diverse disciplines, ranging from Business Analytics to Sustainable Urbanism, and Spatial Data Science to Logistics and Supply Chain Management. Applications also came from a wide range of UK universities including Bristol, City, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Loughborough, Nottingham, Oxford, UCL and Westminster. 

Congratulations to all of this year’s students, and special thanks to the sponsors and academics who supported the 2021 Scheme.  

For enquiries about the Masters Dissertation Scheme, or to discuss next year’s Scheme, please email info@cdrc.ac.uk  

Background to the CDRC Masters Dissertation Scheme 

In 2012, ESRC funding allowed for the establishment of the first MDS. Following its success, the MDS has continued to be funded annually, with ESRC funding used alongside business co-funding to sponsor Masters degree dissertations that address business horizon-scanning topics.

Proposals from business sponsors are sought during the first term of Masters courses and are posted on the CDRC website. Any interested Masters students studying at a UK institution are invited to apply for proposals from February 2022 (second term of the Masters). Dissertations are conducted by postgraduate students and are co-supervised by academics and business analysts from the sponsoring organisation.

Although funded initially on an ad-hoc basis, and subsequently subject to short term renewals of CDRC funding (such as under the World Class Labs’ funding stream), the Scheme has proven remarkably successful, with a total of 76 dissertations completed with external organisations to 2020 and a further 20 dissertations completed in this year’s very successful annual round (2020-2021 intake). 

Our LinkedIn network brings together a network of 90 students, sponsors and academics who have been involved in the Scheme over the past years. CDRC alumni and friends are invited to join here: www.linkedin.com/in/cdrc-alumni-group-1613a31ba/.  

Past MDS alumni work in a range of sectors worldwide, including retail, banking, hospitality, logistics and academia.