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Doctoral Programme

Application deadline: 31 January 2017 ( 24:00 – CET)

The Application Form for the 2017-2018 academic year (starting 1 September 2017) will be activated on 2 November 2016.

Approximately 150 Ph.D. scholarships are available to eligible candidates for the 2017-18 academic year.


Why Choose the EUI Doctoral Programme?

  • Join our culturally diverse academic community – study alongside more than 900 scholars from over 60 countries
  • Develop your intellectual curiosity – well-structured Ph.D. programmes that enable original research in four disciplines 
  • A dynamic multi-lingual environment – work predominantly in English, while enjoying our view on the beautiful city of Florence
  • Fully-funded four-year Ph.D. programmes – approximately 150 scholarships offered annually
  • Be part of an international professional network – our alumni hold positions in academia (69%), international organisations (12%), national institutions (6%) and the private sector (4%)*

 *Alumni Destination Survey (2014).



Before joining the EUI, aside from an Erasmus exchange, I had not lived outside Germany. In fact, I never imagined going abroad for my Ph.D. until a professor at my previous university recommended the EUI. Moving to Florence was already a big change for me.  However my EUI experience, so far, has changed me in that I now think about issues from a more international perspective. Here I mix with people from different backgrounds and different experiences, which has really broadened my mind. Everyone at the EUI is very passionate about their research and we have high quality discussions about our work, not just in our seminars where we are actively encouraged to question topics. I find it really inspiring to be undertaking my Ph.D. in such an environment.

  Simon Skipka, second-year researcher in the Department of Economics (Germany)


When you say that you want to do a Ph.D., most people tell you that it will be a lonely experience. However, that simply isn’t the case at the EUI!  Despite being a relatively small community, there are lots of events to attend – public lectures, conferences and social activities – which are great opportunities to get to know everyone. You can get interdisciplinary feedback on your work from fellow researchers, professors, post-docs and visitors to the EUI. Such exchanges further the development of your own research, as well as your general knowledge. And being funded for four years gives you the time to work on your contribution to your field. You don’t have to just jump straight into your thesis, you can further explore and even change your original ideas. I believe this allows you to produce a more thoughtful and higher quality piece of research. I still find it amazing that I can just go for lunch at the EUI bar and interact with people studying in different fields and coming from very different backgrounds to me. I studied away from my home country for both my undergraduate degree and my Masters. However, the EUI remains one of the most international and social places that I have ever experienced.


  Diana Roxana Galos, second-year researcher in the Department of Political and Social Sciences (Romania)


I did my undergraduate degree in the UK and then studied in East Asia. So I joined the EUI having spent several years outside of Europe and yet my advice to myself now, when I first started at the EUI, would be to show greater sensitivity to the different academic and cultural backgrounds of those around me. My British training, for example, was to raise questions and be direct in seminars but I’ve found that other European academic cultures operate in a different way. Sharing both aspects of this academic style has been a significant and enriching way to develop my work. I would also tell myself to be more confident speaking a language other than English. English is obviously my mother tongue but others at the EUI are working in this as a second language and it can seem daunting, at first, to meet people here who speak two, three or more languages. I’ve pushed myself to develop my linguistic abilities, so I can have real discussions and debate in a second and third language. It has taken time but now I would say to myself, when starting my EUI experience, not to worry. Language ability seems like a big deal but with practice and the confidence to have a go, you’ll get there in the end!

  Nick Mithen, third-year researcher in the Department of History and Civilization (United Kingdom)


I would tell a new researcher, when first applying to the EUI, to prepare carefully and to be really passionate about his or her research theme. I had initial ideas for my research proposal and talked these over with some of my former professors. Such discussions further shaped the proposal that I eventually submitted with my Ph.D. application form. Then, before my EUI interview, I also took a lot of time to shape and put together my presentation, and I was obviously pleased with the successful outcome! Undertaking my Ph.D. at the EUI has allowed me to grow academically and professionally, to learn about different viewpoints and perspectives, and to undertake independent research. Personally, I think the EUI provides wonderful conditions for study and I can’t think of a better location to be inspired than the beautiful hills of Tuscany. I had been doing a job that I enjoyed, that offered me fantastic experiences and chances to travel, but I always had thoughts about doing a Ph.D. in the back of my mind. Then along came this wonderful opportunity to study at the EUI!

   Aderito Vicente, second-year researcher in the Department of Political and Social Science (Portugal)


The EUI provides this environment where your opinion is valued, where you are free to argue and discuss your work with your peers, on an equal footing. Such discussion is supported by the many interesting events here, such as seminars, conferences and working groups, that enable further conversations between researchers, professors and visiting fellows. In my first year, I probably attended too many of these events actually! However it all ensured that my EUI experience, so far, has made me much more confident about my work and how I approach my research topic, in a much broader overview. Of course, not all exchanges take place in such a formal setting. I’ve discovered a good work-life balance here, especially since I joined the EUI rowing club. There is a real sense of community at the EUI and these social activities enable further exchanges amongst researchers from all departments. Plus, when I went rowing for the first time in this new academic year, I felt very happy to be back on the water in fantastic Florence, with good friends all around me. I remembered how lucky I am to be in this stimulating environment. 

  Christy Ann Petit, second-year researcher in the Department of Law (France)

EUI Ph.D. Presentations for Prospective Applicants

The EUI is organising presentations across Europe: Please check the list of upcoming events.

150Available scholarships/year

900Academic staff/researchers


Countries of origin

84Researchers who successfully defended their thesis
69Alumni employed in academic positions
12Alumni employed
in international organisations


Page last updated on 21 October 2016