PhD International Doctoral Program in Social Sciences

Humboldt University Berlin

Application deadline: December 22
Tuition fee:
  • Free (EEA)
Start date: October  2015
Credits (ECTS): 180 ECTS
Duration full-time: 36 months
Partnership: Joint
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time
Project type: Open
Funding: Partial
Educational Form: Academic

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Doctoral researchers who participate in the training structure of the BGSS International Doctoral Program complete their doctoral degrees in either Sociology or Political Sciences as awarded by the Faculty of Arts and Humanities III of Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. Members of the program are prepared for careers in social sciences research or related fields.

The promotion of young researchers is centered around the two themes Inclusion and Democracy.

The systematic training program provides individual supervision for researchers and requires members to achieve regular progress milestones throughout their dissertation. Additional extracurricular support is provided by BGSS management. As such, the program fosters the achievement of an optimal outcome for individual projects throughout all stages of the process.

The BGSS maintains a closely knit network of non-university research institutions in Berlin as well as partner universities world-wide.


Research of the Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences is related to the comparative analysis of the following research areas and topics.The combination of areas and topics is welcome:


- Social inequality and life chances
- Social protest and social conflict
- Immigrant integration, cultural diversity, and the politics of immigration
- Life courses and demographic change
- Work, education, and the conduct of life
- Urban inequalities and resourceful cities


- Comparative constitutional politics
- Processes of democratization, and the resilience of autocracy
- Theory and empirical research on the crisis of democracy
- Evolutionary approaches to the global diffusion of political regime types
- Political attitudes and the determinants of political behavior
- Institutions, elections, and the politics of sustainability
- Health and welfare in the 21st century


Our faculty of over 30 professors and senior lecturers stands for high supervision standards fixed in a supervision agreement and provides access to research projects and networks:


Admission is based on academic excellence and is open to students with a Masters
degree or equivalent in social sciences (sociology, political science, and neighboring
disciplines). We expect high-level knowledge of current theoretical debates in the
social sciences. Precondition for the application is the documentation of in-depth
knowledge of quantitative or qualitative techniques of social research, the
commitment to empirical research, and English proficiency at an academic level.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 7
TOEFL iBT® test: 90


The BGSS together with its cooperating partner institutes can award a limited number of doctoral scholarships/ positions and funding of conferences and research stays abroad. BGSS invites candidates to simultaneously apply for outside sources of funding, such as the DAAD, Erasmus Mundus Funding and fellowships from foundations.

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