Doctoral Programmes (DKs)

Target group
Scientists/Scholars of any discipline who are working in

  • Austrian universities and
  • non profit-making, extra-university research establishments

Doctoral Programs form centres of education for highly qualified young scientists/scholars from the Austrian and international scientific community. The programme should support centres of excellence at Austrian research institutions and help ensure the continuity and impact of such centres. A Doctoral Program may only be established at a research institution that is entitled to award doctoral qualifications.


  • A Doctoral Program is a unit formed as a result of a joint undertaking by several scientists or scholars (at least 5, at most 20; target quote of 30% female scientists / scholars requested) whose research is of an internationally leading standard. Based on a clearly defined mid-term research programme (ideally transcending traditional borders between disciplines), these scientists /scholars should offer a structured educational programme to doctoral students. Doctoral Programs should primarily be established in close cooperation with existing large-scale research programmes (SFB or NFN).
  • The available facilities (space, laboratories and equipment etc.) required to perform scientific /scholarly work of high quality
  • Assurance from the host university that the education provided by the Doctoral Programs will be accepted as sufficient for award of a doctoral degree, as well as special support for the programme


8 years, with interim reviews every four years to decide upon continuation

5 to 20 contracts of employment for PhD students (1 PhD per Faculty member), 100 % contract for administrative support (for someone with academic qualifications) as well as support for consumables, travel and other expenses, costs for education; for a maximum of two "associated" students per Faculty member, only the education costs will be paid