BIGSSS PhD Program of Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences, Germany

Publish Date: Sep 13, 2016

Deadline: Sep 15, 2016

Current Call

Deadline: September 15, 2016

If you are interested in the BIGSSS-departs PhD Program starting in February 2017, please download the current BIGSSS-departs call for applications.

Application Requirements

  • An excellent MA degree (or national equivalent) in a discipline pertinent to at least one of BIGSSS' three Thematic Fields, i.e. Political Science, Sociology, Psychology, or related social science disciplines e.g. Law, Economics or Mass Communication. The degree must be completed by the end of December of the year of application, which means you may apply before having finished your MA degree.
  • English proficiency as described in the application materials section below.
  • Applicants must apply with a freely chosen dissertation project which fits into one of BIGSSS' three Thematic Fields.
  • In the Statement of Purpose which applicants submit, they need to include a statement of fit between their dissertation proposal and faculty members they have identified as potential supervisors (list of recent research areas and supervisors). Please note that applicants are requested not to contact faculty members directly.
  • All accepted researchers must move to Bremen for the BIGSSS-departs PhD Program.
  • EU Mobility Rule: Due to EU COFUND regulations, applicants must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Germany for more than 12 months during the 3 years immediately prior to the date of their application to BIGSSS-departs. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
  • Early-Stage Researchers requirement: Due to EU COFUND regulations, all applicants shall, at the start of the BIGSSS-departs PhD Program (February 2017), be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree.

General Application Guidelines 

Please submit your application for a BIGSSS-departs PhD Fellowship electronically via our online admissions system.
Please note that the program commences on February 1, 2017. The application deadline for the BIGSSS-departs PhD program is September 15, 2016 in order to be considered for the program starting in February 2017. All deadlines refer to the date of receipt of the application, not the mailing date. Please apply by using our online admissions system.
Our online admissions system will only accept documents in pdf-format. You can download a free version of PDFCreator.
If you have any questions regarding the admissions process, please consult our Frequently Asked Questions section below or contact our Admissions Officer (

Application Materials

Please make sure to download and read the complete list of application materials for the BIGSSS-departs PhD Program, including all detailed descriptions and guidelines!

Checklist of application materials for a BIGSSS-departs Fellowship:

  • Personal Information form (to be completed in the online admissions system)
  • Curriculum Vitae (free text - PDF)
  • Preliminary Dissertation Proposal (free text - PDF)
  • One-page Proposal Abstract (free text - PDF)
  • Statement of Purpose (free text - PDF)
  • Statement of Skills and Experience with Methods of Empirical Social Research (free text - PDF)
  • MA/BA/Diplom/Magister Certificates (scan - PDF)
  • University Grade Transcripts (scan - PDF)
  • Certification of English Proficiency (we accept TOEFL, iELTS, CAE/CPE (Cambridge Exams)) (scan - PDF)
  • Ethics Form (download form - PDF)
  • EU Mobility Rule (EUMR) and Early-Stage Researchers (ESR) Confirmation Form (download form - PDF)
  • Two Recent Letters of Recommendation (to be submitted by referees via the online admissions system)
  • Optional: Graduate Record Examination (GRE) (scan - PDF)

Please make sure to download and read the complete list of application materials for the BIGSSS-departs PhD Program, including all detailed descriptions and guidelines!

All application materials must be submitted via our online admissions system only.

To APPLY click "Further official information" below and fill the ONLINE application form.

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