Up to £17 million will be made available to 31 higher education providers, including seven as part of a collaborative project. Funding will be available between April 2023 and March 2025 to support the delivery of scholarships worth £10,000 each.
In March 2023 we awarded up to £8.17 million to deliver 817 scholarships in the 2023-24 academic year. The awards were made as part of an open funding competition.
A further £8.18 million has now been confirmed to deliver a further 818 scholarships in the 2024-25 academic year.
The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology announced the funding competition in June 2022, which opened in September 2022.
The scholarships aim to encourage more women, black students, disabled students and students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds into the technology industry.
These groups of students are currently significantly underrepresented in these types of courses, and in AI and data science industries.
The UK currently has a shortage of digital skills which estimates suggest costs the UK economy as much as £63 billion a year in potential GDP. So we also encourage employers to take part in the programme and to co-fund scholarships.
As part of the assessment process, bids were reviewed by an external panel of experts in equality and diversity, AI, tech and industry.
Programme funding is allocated on an annual basis. For 2023-24 we have allocated £8 million in funding to 25 lead providers.
Provider funding allocations for 2024-25 will be confirmed by March 2024.
A total of £13.5 million worth of funding was provided between April 2020 and March 2023.
- £3.5 million was provided to develop postgraduate conversion courses.
- £10 million was provided to deliver 1,000 scholarships, worth £10,000 each, to groups underrepresented in the AI and data science sector to increase diversity, particularly for black, women and disabled students.
The scope of the programme was extended in 2021 to include the National Data Skills pilot.
Read more about the evaluation findings so far.