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Erasmus Mundus in Distributed Computing, Ph.D.

  • Application Deadline
  • 36 months
University rank #314 (QS) Barcelona, Spain
Students carry out their research work over up to four years in two universities from different countries, with additional mobility to industry in most projects. Joint training schools cover both scientific topics and transferable skills, such as project and scientific management, communication, innovation techniques.
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The research projects address some of the key technological challenges of our time, mainly but not exclusively: ubiquitous data-intensive applications, scalable distributed systems (including Cloud computing and P2P models), adaptive distributed systems (autonomic computing, green computing, decentralized and voluntary computing), and applied distributed systems (distributed algorithms and systems, working in an inter-disciplinary manner, in existing and emerging fields to address industrial and societal needs in the European and worldwide context.

The consortium partners assembled in EMJD-DC have a high international reputation in the research fields described above. They complement each other very well in their specialisation fields of research, and in the corresponding training offers. The first language of all training and research activities will be English, but students are exposed to local languages.

The Consortium has a strong track record of participation in international projects for research and education, and in particular with each other. Three consortium members already collaborate in the Erasmus Mundus Master in Distributed Computing. The majority of partners are also participants in the ERCIM consortium, all belong to theCluster University network, and several EU Research Projects. 

EMJD-DC is supported by several labs with direct links with the industry, mainly the Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC), the Swedish Institute of Computer Science (SICS), the Centre of Excellence in Information and Communication Technologies (CETIC),INESC-ID Lisboa and several industrial labs such as Telefonica Research (TID), Ericsson, CA Labs, Yahoo Research, and SME asEuranova and Peerialism.

Detailed Programme Facts

  • Programme intensity Full-time
    • Full-time duration 36 months
  • Languages
    • Partially taught in English
    • Partially taught in Spanish
    • Partially taught in Catalan
  • Delivery mode
    On Campus

Programme Structure

Research lines:

  • Ubiquitous data-intensive applications
  • Scalable decentralized distributed systems: P2P, large-scale (grid, cloud, overlays)
  • Adaptive (self-managing) distributed systems
  • Advanced networking, including protocols, architectures, and intelligent networks
  • Applied distributed systems

English Language Requirements

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120.

  • Minimum required score:


    The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL®PBT is administered in a paper format and measures your ability to use and understand English in a classroom setting at the college or university level. It accurately measures how well you can listen, read and write in English while performing academic tasks.

General Requirements

Admission requirements:
  • CV of academic, professional and research activities, and portfolio designs.
  • References to research projects completed and publications.
  • Pre-proposal of the subject of the thesis (description, aims, methodology, point of view and bibliography). Maximum of five pages.
  • Report by a lecturer backing the applicant.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    2400 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 7200 EUR for the full programme and a duration of 36 months.
  • EU/EEA

    2400 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 7200 EUR for the full programme and a duration of 36 months.
We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

Living costs for Barcelona

  • 770 - 1360 EUR/month
    Living Costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Doctorate fellowships

There are excellent fellowship opportunities for students accepted to an Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate programme. An employment contract will be given to all selected PhD students during the study time, which is between 3-4 years.

Doctoral candidates eligible for an EMJD Fellowship

Two different EMJD fellowships can be awarded to doctoral candidates:

  • Category A fellowships can be awarded to third-country doctoral candidates selected by EMJD consortia who come from a country other than a European country (note 1) and who are not residents nor have carried out their main activity (studies, work, etc.) for more than a total of 12 months over the last five years (note 2) in one of these countries. The only exception to this rule applies to third-country doctoral candidates who have previously received an Erasmus Mundus masters scholarship in order to follow an EMMC.
  • Category B fellowships can be awarded to European doctoral candidates selected by EMJD consortia as well as to any doctoral candidates selected by EMJD consortia who do not fulfil the Category A criteria defined above.

Fellowship candidates fulfilling the eligibility criteria for both Category A and B – e.g. students with double nationality – must select the Category of their choice. As a result, they are entitled to apply only to one of the two categories of fellowship at a time.

Fellowship candidates must have already obtained a first post-graduate degree or demonstrate a recognised equivalent level of learning according to national legislation and practices (Candidates who will only obtain their postgraduate higher education degree at the end of the academic year preceding the one concerned by the fellowship application, can nevertheless apply for a doctoral fellowship and be selected by the consortium concerned, under the condition that they acquire the required degree prior to the beginning of the joint doctorate programme concerned).

Students not specifically selected for EMJD-DC fellowships might still be able to participate and follow the programme as well, but on an individual basis. These students need to pay all the fees and participation costs requested by the respective universities.

Who can receive an EMJD-DC fellowship?

Only candidates who have applied to and have been accepted by the EMJD-DC consortium, in accordance with its specific students’ application and selection criteria, are eligible for a fellowship. Both category A and B students are welcome to apply to the EMJD-DC PhD programme.

Individuals who have already benefited from an EMJD fellowship are not eligible for a second grant.

Students benefiting from an Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate fellowship cannot benefit from another European Community grant while pursuing their Erasmus Mundus PhD studies.

Students/Doctoral candidates can apply for an Erasmus Mundus fellowship to the Erasmus Mundus Action 1 joint programme (EMMC or EMJD) of their choice but the number of applications must be limited to maximum three different joint programmes.

How many fellowships are offered?

The number of fellowships in this application period is still unknown. As a reference, from previous calls, the approximate number of PhD fellowships that EMJD-DC offers was:

  • 5 fellowships category A
  • 1 for Category A candidates originating from Turkey or Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia)
  • 3 fellowships category B (applicants from Croatia are considered only for Category B fellowships only)

Fellowships rules and requirements:

  • EMJD-DC PhD students need to spend their study period in at least two of the consortium partner countries. Note that these two countries must be different from the country in which the doctoral candidate has obtained his/her last university degree. The mobility period is, however, tailored to the specific PhD research project.
  • EMJD-DC students should participate in the PhD programme in accordance with the terms defined by an, for each student, individual Doctoral Candidate Agreement (template document). Failure to do so could lead to the cancellation of the fellowship.
  • EMJD-DC students’ scholarships are awarded exclusively for a full-time enrolment in one of the programme.

How large is the fellowship?

Monthly allowances in the form of employment contracts, depending on the rules at the particular university, will be provided to all successful EMJD-DC candidates during 3-4 years depending on each individual doctoral plan. This applies to both category A and B students.

The basis of these contracts is that all students selected for the EMJD-DC programme should thus be able to participate full-time, independently of the personal financial situation.

The financial conditions are:

  • Fixed contribution to the travel, installation and any other types of cost: 7500 € for category A, 3000 € for category B if mobility foreseen to 3rd country partners.
  • A monthly gross salary of 2800 € (before deduction of any taxes or contributions) that corresponds to a net salary of around 1300-1500 € (to be fixed in the doctoral candidate agreement depending on national legislation).
  • Participation costs (tuition fees, supervision fees) and insurance are included in the fellowship. In addition, contribution to e.g. travels to the yearly workshop are provided for up to a certain limit.

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships 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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