EPICUR PhD Exchange Programme – Research, Training & Skills Development

EPICUR > EPICUR PhD Exchange Programme – Research, Training & Skills Development

NEW starting from March 21st, 2022 !

  • Rolling admissions procedure: Now accepting applications year-round on an ongoing basis! Applications are reviewed on a monthly basis.
  • Flexible, two-pronged approach: Apply for acquired research stay positions at specific institutes or submit a general application for the tailor-made approach and receive support from EPICUR in finding a suitable institute for your research stay.

The EPICUR PhD Exchange Programme – Research, Training & Skills Development enables current PhD candidates to collaborate on interdisciplinary research projects at other universities within the EPICUR alliance while also receiving the latest methods of training. Besides the emphasis on skills development and interdisciplinarity, this programme fosters cross-border exchanges, connects the regions of the European University and enables future academic generations to jointly work towards finding solutions to societal challenges that Europe and the world are currently facing.


As an EPICUR PhD researcher, you can benefit from the following advantages:

  • Flexible, tailor-made exchange programme, allowing participants to define their own research focus (within a given research project) and training needs in close collaboration with a mentor at the receiving institute
  • Emphasis on skills development and developing an interdisciplinary approach
  • Collaboration on interdisciplinary research topics related to the EPIChallenges, which currently include the topics of:
    • Sustainability research (including Climate Change and Energy)
    • Mobility, Migration & Identity
    • Transition of Public Health
  • Networking opportunities with peers and researchers in other regions and disciplines
  • Gain first-hand research experience with world-leading experts and access to research infrastructures at another institute
  • Continuous supervision and guidance from a mentor
  • Intercultural experience


The PhD Exchange Programme offers four components to support participants in their research, training and skills development.

  • Interdisciplinary research: The interdisciplinary research activities addressing the EPIChallenges allow participants to broaden their horizons and deepen their knowledge by gaining exposure to new perspectives, approaches and methodologies, while also bringing their own perspectives into the project.
  • Training and skills development: This programme offers the opportunity to participate in a virtual workshop on the topic of intercultural competence, as well as additional skills and/or methods training as agreed upon in the initial meeting with the mentor.
  • Supervision and guidance: Participants will receive ongoing support and guidance from a mentor at the receiving institute.
  • Plenary sessions and peer networking opportunities: Participants will attend virtual introductory and closing sessions and will be invited to participate in monthly virtual networking gatherings.


  • Duration: 1-6 months
  • Blended format: The research exchange will primarily be offered on site at the receiving institute with the option of choosing a virtual format (if possible); the accompanying plenary sessions, workshops and networking gatherings will be offered virtually.
  • Funding options: Possibility to apply for Erasmus+ Traineeships or local/national funding programmes offered by the sending institutions (in some cases also by the receiving institutions)
  • ECTS recognition (if applicable): No general rule. Please confirm possible ECTS recognition with your home university.
  • NEW! Rolling admissions procedure: Applications are now accepted year-round on an ongoing basis
  • NEW! Two-pronged approach: Apply for acquired positions at specific research institutes or submit a general application for the “tailor-made” approach


The entire application process takes place online on the EPICUR Inter-University Campus (EIUC). To view and apply for available research positions or submit a general application for the “tailor-made” approach, please log in with your institutional account. Applications will be reviewed on a monthly basis on the 1st of each month for the previous month (i.e. applications submitted in February will be reviewed in early March). If you have any questions, you can contact the programme coordinators directly on EIUC or send an email to phd-epicur@intl.kit.edu.

Required application documents:

  • Master’s degree (or confirmation letter from university that master’s thesis has already been submitted and that degree will be issued shortly)
  • Transcript of records from master’s degree programme
  • Transcript of records from doctoral study programme, if available
  • CV (in English)
  • Proof of enrolment (if applicable)
  • Recommendation letter from doctoral thesis supervisor (serves both as proof of enrolment and agreement from supervisor to commence the exchange)
  • Letter of motivation in which research interests and current focus are outlined in English (compulsory) and in the language of the target country (optional). Please note: You will be required to use the template provided in the registration system
  • Language certificate(s): Either an official language test certificate such as IELTS/TOEFL or a certificate provided by a language instructor of the home university showing the level according to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) will be accepted.
    • Unless explicitly stated otherwise in the position description, working language (English, local language or any other language agreed on by the research stay provider) should be understood as B2 required, C1 desired
    • English (if not working language): minimum B2 for participation in the programme
    • Other languages (if applicable): required/desired level to be determined by research stay provider (see position description)


There are many scholarships available to finance your EPICUR research exchange. In the following list you can find a starting point for your scholarship search:

Additional scholarship opportunities than those listed above may be available, so contact the international offices at your home university and the host university for more information.


Please contact Ms. Kirsten Rosa and Ms. Jie Han at phd-epicur@intl.kit.edu.



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