PhD by Industry



“Bridging Innovative Thinking and Knowledge for Human Capital Development”


What is PhD by Industry?

PhD by Industry offers an alternative route for industry practitioners who wish to pursue a doctorate degree without leaving their workplace.  This programme is developed to encourage knowledge sharing among industry practitioners and academicians in producing highly knowledgeable professionals. This programme aims at inspiring innovation and enhancing competitiveness at the industry via industry-based research through collaboration with UPM.

PhD by Industry features are:

  1. The focus of the research is based on industrial issues or problems;
  2. Joint supervision (at least one supervisor will be assigned from UPM and one from industry). The supervisor from industry must possess substantial experience or expertise in the areas related to the research topic;
  3. Research is conducted at the industry and candidates do not have to leave their work place;
  4. Supervision and monitoring process are similar to those practiced in a conventional PhD programme.

What are the fields of study offered for the programme?

There are wide ranges of research fields available for students to choose from, particularly in engineering, business and economics, agriculture, food technology, computer science and biotechnology. Generally, all fields of study offered in UPM can be done through this programme.

What is the duration of study of the programme?

The duration of study is 2 – 5 years.

How much is the programme fee?

Local students: 

International students: 

What is the admission requirement for this programme?

  1. Applications are open to local and international candidates with academic qualifications that fulfil the requirements of normal PhD programmes, including specific requirements (if any); and
  2. International candidates must fulfil the UPM English language requirements as stated at
  3. This programme is open to all nationalities and there are no age restrictions.
  4. The candidates must be currently employed by a private company and the employment status must remain active until completion of the programme.
  5. The candidates must obtain a written consent from the employer prior to joining the programme. The employer must also agree to provide sufficient funding to support the research activities conducted by the candidates at the workplace.
  6. Civil servant, private college/university staff are not eligible to apply

What is the application procedure?

To apply for the programme, please follow two (2) easy steps as below:

Step 1: Identify the supervisor at UPM and at your workplace for your PhD project

Step 2: Submit your application to UPM through the UPM online application system at Please note that the following documents must be submitted to the Institutional Relations Unit at

For Online Application Guideline, please visit

What is the criteria for appointment of supervisor from the industry?

  1. Hold a senior position in the company/industry;
  2. The candidate must have good academic background with significant working experience in the related industry as follow:
    • PhD holder; or
    • Master's degree holder with minimum working experience of at least 10 years.

How the programme is implemented?

  • Students who are admitted to the PhD by Industry programme must meet all the programme requirements set by UPM such as registration, compulsory courses, progress reports, comprehensive examination, thesis and publication requirements;
  • Students must complete Seminar and a minimum of six (6) credits of coursework including Research Methodology and other courses as required by the faculty or supervisory committee. Malay Language is compulsory for international students;
  • An industry expert will be appointed to be part of the Student Supervisory Committee. The person must meet the eligibility requirements determined by UPM. He also must have substantial experience or expertise in the area related to the research topics proposed by the student;
  • The research project proposed by the students will be conducted at the industry and the students do not have to leave their work place;
  • In order to ensure proper supervision are given to the students, the Student Supervisory Committee should always be in touch with the students either via electronic or face to face meeting. Supervisors from UPM will make regular visits to students' workplaces;
  • The thesis examination (viva voce) of PhD by Industry students will be conducted at UPM. The appointment of Thesis Examination Committee will be based on the regulations at UPM;
  • Any form of collaboration document such as LoI / NDA / MoU / MoA or any other related documents can be signed between UPM, students and employers if the need arises. When a collaboration is established, the faculty/institute/school where the student is placed will be the anchor of the document.

For further enquiries, please contact Institutional Relations Unit at


Updated:: 14/12/2023 [aslamiah]


Universiti Putra Malaysia
43400 UPM Serdang
Selangor Darul Ehsan
03-9769 4225