Doctoral Programme in Governance, PhD

  • Application Deadline
  • 36 months
    Duration
  • Tuition
    Free
    Tuition (Year)
    Free
    Tuition (Year)
  • English (take IELTS)
    Language
The Doctoral Programme in Governance from Hertie School of Governance is a three-year, English language programme with a focus on governance and public policy. The programme offers rigorous academic training in research design and familiarises students with cutting-edge methods and concepts in the field of governance.
  • Overview
  • Programme outline
  • Key facts
  • Admission requirements
  • Fees and funding

About

The Doctoral Programme in Governance from Hertie School of Governance starts in early September each year. The candidates will be prepared for their dissertation research by colloquia and common coursework in research design and methods during the first year of the programme. Candidates will find a unique support structure for their independent research in the subsequent years of the programme: Depending on their topics, students are associated with one of the Hertie School’s Research Clusters which bring together faculty, visiting scholars, post-docs, and candidates to discuss their projects and research progress in the stimulating context of the cluster colloquium. The programme is complemented by a set of skills workshops offering special training ranging from research methods to professional development.

An Interdisciplinary and International Experience

The programme is targeted at PhD candidates with a strong foundation in economics, law, political science, sociology, public administration, management or related fields. It offers a stimulating academic environment for students seeking to explore modern governance in an interdisciplinary and international context.

A Unique Research Agenda

The Doctoral Programme is closely associated with the Hertie School’s Research Clusters. PhD students are linked to one of the clusters and work together with faculty members in the respective area. The three clusters are Political Economy, European Global Governance, and Organisation, Management & Leadership.

Structure & Supervision

From the first year onwards, each PhD candidate works with a doctoral committee which eventually comprises three dissertation advisors who provide intellectual guidance and monitor the candidate’s research progress. The first and main advisor is a Hertie School Core Faculty member. One of the other advisors should be a professor from outside the Hertie School.

Work Plan and Professional Development

The candidate agrees on a work plan with her/his advisor which serves as basis for the advising and supervision process. The work plan serves as a timetable of when to submit parts or chapters of the PhD thesis and as a track record of changes and amendments to earlier versions. The goal is to identify students' strengths and weaknesses and to develop strategies to support them towards completing their work within three years and to prepare them for the next steps of their careers.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Full-time duration 36 months
  • Study intensity Full-time
  • Languages
    • English
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus
  • Project Type Open
  • Educational Form Academic

Programme Structure

Research Design
In their first year, the PhD candidates attend two semester-long courses that offer rigorous academic training in research design, supporting them in the design of their dissertation research.
Methods
The PhD candidates also take courses familiarizing them with cutting-edge methods and concepts in the field of governance in the first year of the Doctoral Programme.
Doctoral Research
At large, an increasing amount of time is allocated to independent work on the dissertation project. PhD candidates will find a unique support structure for their research. Each candidate works with a doctoral committee which eventually comprises three dissertation advisors who provide intellectual guidance and monitor the candidate’s research progress.
Skills
The programme is complemented by a set of skills workshops offering special training ranging from research methods to professional development. PhD candidates choose two workshops.
Research Colloquium
The Doctoral Programme is closely associated with the Hertie School’s Research Clusters. PhD candidates are linked to one of the clusters and regularly attend their cluster’s colloquia. In the second and third year of their studies, students present their research in the colloquium.

Academic Requirements

Candidates with an outstanding master’s degree or equivalent in economics, law, political science, sociology, public administration, management or related fields are invited to apply for the Doctoral Programme in Governance.

A complete application encompasses

  • Online application form
  • The transcripts* and certificates of all acquired university degrees
  • A curriculum vitae* in tabular format
  • An English proficiency proof (TOEFL IBT 100, PBT 600, CBT 250; Cambridge ESOL qualifications CPE C, CAE B; or IELTS overall 7.0 incl. writing score 7.0)
  • A Funding Statement* to explain personal circumstances and funding situation (see Funding Process for details)
  • A short letter of motivation* (600 words maximum)
  • A research proposal* (5000 words maximum) with
    • description, goals, and methods of dissertation project
    • timetable of dissertation project
    • Name(s) of potential dissertation advisors from the Hertie School Core Faculty
  • Two letters of reference (in English language) from scholars at universities or research institutions

Tuition Fee Per Year

  • Free International
  • Free EU/EEA
  • No tuition fees, living cost stipends available.
  • Funding for travel, workshops, language courses, etc. available through the PHD GLOBAL project.

Funding

  • All admitted candidates need to secure the financial means to support the three-year Doctoral Programme in Berlin. There are no tuition fees. The Hertie School offers stipends to a limited number of outstanding applicants who apply by 1 February.

The Hertie School of Governance does not charge tuition for its doctoral programmes, but seeks to ensure that all admitted candidates have secured the financial means to support the three-year doctoral programme in Berlin:

  • The Hertie School can offer living cost stipends to two doctoral students: 1,200 EUR /month (including 100 EUR for research and travelling) for a period of up to three years.
  • Applicants can be admitted without a stipend offer, but they need to prove that they have the financial means to support their studies when they start the doctoral programme. These means can come from sources such as third party stipends, paid positions in research or other part-time positions. (Please note that candidates who work full-time cannot be admitted to the programme.)

We therefore ask each candidate to explain their personal circumstances and how they intend to support themselves during the three-year doctoral programme as part of the online application procedure.

Because of the limited number of stipends that we can offer, we strongly recommend that you prepare an application for a third party stipend when you apply to the Doctoral Programme in Governance. (Please note that stipend applications usually need to be submitted 6 months prior to the beginning of the doctoral programme. An offer of admission is often required by the funder.)

IPID4all Travel Grants

Attending conferences, workshops, winter and summer schools or traveling to collect data are important parts of working on a PhD thesis. The Hertie School of Governance is able to provide limited support for such travel.

Letters of eligibility for DAAD applications

The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) offers stipends to non-German students. The deadline for an application to the DAAD depends on the country of origin.

StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships Students can that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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