Giving

Alan Davidson Foundation establishes new scholarship to support Architecture students

The scholarships will be matched by the University as part of the Access Edinburgh matched funding scheme.

School of Architecture student display
A display of student work in the School of Architecture

The Alan Davidson Foundation has committed to establish scholarships for University of Edinburgh students who qualify for funding through the Access Edinburgh scheme. The scholarships will support students from low-income backgrounds who have been accepted on either the BA or MA Architecture programmes and who qualify for a means-tested scholarship.

The Foundation’s annual gift of £10,000 will support one Alan Davidson Scholar for the whole duration of their six year degree course at £1,500 per scholar per annum. The University will match this amount per scholar per annum meaning each scholar will be awarded £3,000 per annum to support them during their studies.

The Alan Davidson Scholars will also receive a one-off student experience support payment of £1,000 in the first year of their studies. This payment can be spent freely, providing students with resources to enhance their university experience in ways they deem most beneficial, whether academic, personal, or professional.

Alan Davidson

Alan attended Edinburgh University from 1978 to 1984, first studying Fine Art and then Architecture. He went on to become an accomplished architect, artist, technologist and innovator, best known for pioneering architectural visualisation in the eighties, founding and building the world-leading visualisation studio Hayes Davidson in 1989. 

The Foundation

The Foundation was founded by Alan after he was diagnosed with MND in 2012. He was committed to helping people suffering from MND and associated neurological conditions, and wanted to help initiatives that improved their lives through better care and support, and by funding research work to find a cure for MND.

Alan lost his battle to the disease in August 2018, but the Foundation has continued his legacy by supporting a wide range of organisations, charities and worthy causes. There is a strong focus on MND research, care and initiatives that help support those with disabling neurological conditions, to date the foundation has pledged over £3 million to MND research and care including over £1 million to fund clinical trials at the University’s Euan MacDonald Centre in October 2023. 

Inspired by Alan’s career, the Foundation also supports architecture and architectural initiatives with The Davidson Prize as its flagship project.

Alan’s sister, Jane Craik, Trustee of the Alan Davidson Foundation said:

“Alan believed in the value of education and was particularly interested in identifying, encouraging and nurturing talented individuals. One of his final wishes was to support architectural students who showed promise and commitment to the study of architecture and who might otherwise be unable to fulfil their potential. Alan studied at Edinburgh University and the trustees felt that it was fitting that the annual £10,000 Alan Davidson scholarship be awarded to a student studying there.”

Jane CraikTrustee of the Alan Davidson Foundation

Access Edinburgh

The University of Edinburgh believes that everyone deserves an equal opportunity to study at Edinburgh, but recognises that not everyone gets the same chance to show their academic potential at school or college. The Access Edinburgh scholarships scheme seeks to address this by offering the best financial aid package for undergraduate students in the UK.

“The Alan Davidson scholarship constitutes a unique opportunity for the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture to make a difference in widening access to architectural studies, with the aim of bringing a broader diversity of voices and experiences to the future development of our built environment. We are particularly enthusiastic about its commitment to support individuals through their full six years of study, and believe that it will be a lasting testament to Alan's educational vision.”

Dr Miguel Paredes MaldonadoHead of the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA)

Related links

Alan Davidson Foundation

Hayes Davidson visualisation studio

The Davidson Prize

Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture (ESALA)