Programme for PhD Education

The ERCIM Programme for PhD Education (EPPE) is a new mobility programme for cooperation in PhD education among ERCIM members. The goal is to add a European international dimension to PhD education by crossing national, scientific and institutional borders.

With experience from the successful ERCIM postdoctoral Fellowship Programme, the EPPE reduces administrative and formal obstacles for PhD students, supervisors and institutions when establishing cooperation.


  • Improve the quality of PhD education.
  • Exploit complementary qualities of institutes and universities.
  • Facilitate research cooperation among institutions and candidates.
  • Disseminate research results from EU funded research.
  • Make ERCIM institutions more attractive in recruiting good candidates.


1. The EPPE provides added value to programmes already run by ERCIM members. Participation is on voluntary basis.  .

2. The EPPE is limited to the duration of the actual presence at the two cooperating ERCIM institutions during the PhD studies.  The cooperation can result in a:

  • Single Degree:  A national degree is delivered by one ERCIM institution (Home). Research visits are of 3 months minimum in another ERCIM institution (Host).
  • Double Degree: Two national diplomas are issued by two institutions of higher education and recognized officially in the countries where the degree-awarding institutions are located. Research visits are of 12 months minimum at each institution.

The Double Degree requires additional formalities, in particular regarding the the content of the curriculum and research thesis, and on the evaluation procedures. National and institutional laws and regulations must be respected. In both cases, PhD candidates will have formally assigned supervisors at both institutions.

3. Candidates have a Home Institution and a Host Institution.

  • The Home Institution is responsible for the student. This is usually the institution where the student is affiliated, which funds the candidate and appoints the principal supervisor.
  • The student spends a limited time at the Host Institution.

4. The EPPE provides templates for cooperation agreements dealing with scientific supervision, costs, IPR, evaluation for double degrees, and other matters.

5. The programme is efficiently operated and simple to use. It provides a safe and legal platform. The rules, documents and information system permits supervisors students to easily establish a safe cooperation.

6. Through the ERCIM platform, members can raise awareness of their PhD programs and call for candidates.

How it works in practice

A set of contract templates and guidelines is available for members on request (see contact). Based on the experiences from several member institutions, the package is composed of three main documents:

  • Framework Agreement   between ERCIM, Home and Host Institutions on participation in EPPE
  • Individual Agreement involving the Host and Home institutions for a joint supervision at doctoral degree level of a doctoral candidate
  • Glossary

Please contact:: Emma Lière (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)