I recently ran a poll on Twitter about how PhD students get their funding, and I was actually quite surprised by the results. In the Netherlands, most PhD students are hired as employees when funding for a project for 4 years is arranged. The student then receives a salary, social security, and other benefits for the period of four years for which the contract is signed. I thought that in other countries, funding for PhD students also came mostly from research funding, but according to the results of my poll, most actually have scholarships.
You can read about the results of the poll and the explanations of others here: