The Laidlaw Leadership and Research Programme aims to develop and invest in highly talented and motivated undergraduate students, giving them knowledge, skills and experience to become active global citizens and strong next-generation leaders.
The programme uniquely funds up to 25 places annually, to undergraduate students in Durham each year, supporting a research project and a leadership in action experience. Scholars are supported by a generous stipend of up to £6000 (£3,000 per summer) to enable them to participate in two 6 week summer periods, a bespoke training programme and ethical masterclass. There are 5 core components to the programme:
This takes place over approximately six weeks during summer one. Working with an academic supervisor and/or an experienced research team, scholars develop their abilities in investigative study, analysis, problem-solving and data management.
Scholars begin their Laidlaw experience with a leadership training retreat. In a group, immersive environment, they discover their own innate leadership preferences, learn core leadership attributes, explore leadership values and develop their leadership skills through exercises and applied learning. Their leadership development continues through the academic year, after their research summer, with guest speakers, coaching and more.
In their second summer over approximately 6 weeks, scholars put their newly developed leadership knowledge into practice in challenging environments. Scholars will have the opportunity to choose from a variety of options including joining a charity expedition in a developing country, working closely with an NGO or putting their research findings into action by planning and leading their own project that allows them work in a community of need, brings about change and has a societal impact.
Scholars join a global network of fellow Laidlaw Scholars. This online community provides a dedicated space for scholars to contribute and collaborate. Undergraduate scholars publish their research here, can test their thinking, partner on projects and continue their leadership development. MBA scholars and alumni share career questions, advice and opportunities. Leading academics post their latest papers and thought leadership.
All Scholars benefit from joining a custom-designed global masterclass in Ethical Leadership, produced by London Business School, that consists of two LBS faculty-led two-hour virtual classes and follow-up consolidation group work facilitated by the Durham Laidlaw Team
Scholars begin their Laidlaw experience with a leadership training retreat. In their second summer, scholars put their newly developed leadership knowledge into practice in challenging environments.
All scholars will undertake one research project where they will develop, pursue and report on a research question supported by an academic supervisor. This project will either be defined by the scholar giving them the opportunity to explore a research area which they are passionate about or chosen from a list of pre-defined projects from leading academics within the university. In addition there will be a small number of opportunities offered through the central foundation working on bespoke projects with carefully curated partners. These projects will encompass both the summer one research project and summer two Leadership in Action experience. Research projects may be conducted internationally.
Scholars will have the opportunity to apply their leadership skills in challenging international environments, through an immersive bespoke, 6-week, Leadership in Action experience. Expanding their cultural awareness, Scholars will work on projects that will benefit wider communities in finding solutions and tackling real problems. Through this action-based learning, scholars will be encouraged to take on new challenges and further develop such skills as; strategy, planning, execution, communication, influencing, teamwork, resilience and being a global citizen. Leadership in Action projects may take place locally if research is conducted internationally in the first summer.
We aim to create an international network of diverse, passionate and ethical leaders who will reinvest their skills, knowledge and experience to help others succeed.
Find a supervisor, connect with peers, network with alumni and engage with the Laidlaw community.
These options may need to be adjusted to adapt to remote working restrictions:
All experiences will have clear goals and outputs specified. They must also adhere to the Foundation LiA criteria that allows the scholar to:
All aspects of the leadership training programme are compulsory – and initially scholars will need to commit to being available for a 2 day residential training programme delivered before their first summer research period, taking place mid- June .
Laidlaw Scholars will also be representing both Durham University and the Laidlaw Foundation and will be expected to take on ambassadorial duties as part of their commitment. These include supporting and mentoring younger scholars or perhaps delivering a talk at a conference/ event and will also include helping with promotion of the programme to future cohorts.
The scholars are supported by a generous stipend of up to £6000 (£3,000 per summer) to enable you to participate in two 6 week summer periods in both research and leadership activities.
Applications for the Laidlaw Scholars programme at Durham open in November each year with a deadline for submission in January 2023. Durham University undergraduate students must be in their first year of a three-year degree or in the first or second year of a four-year degree in order to apply for the Laidlaw Scholarship. There are no restrictions on discipline, division, nationality or fee status.
For more information please watch our short information video