Law & Society Institute – New doctoral programme

The doctoral programme Law & Society of the Integrative Research Institute Law & Society (LSI) in cooperation with the Berlin Graduate School of Social Sciences (BGSS) is currently accepting applications for two doctoral scholarships at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD, Graduate School Scholarship Programme). 

The LSI and the BGSS have established the joint doctoral programme Law & Society to promote innovative interdisciplinary legal research. The programme is dedicated to investigating the role and function of law for tackling the current and fundamental challenges for a democratic global society (inter alia climate change, digital transformation, the rise of populism and the decline of the rule of law) from a genuinely interdisciplinary perspective.

The programme offers interdisciplinary supervision and support of the doctoral students within the international structured doctoral programme of the BGSS. The LSI is a stimulating interdisciplinary and international research environment in the heart of Berlin at the Humboldt-University.

The courses of the doctoral programme will be taught in English. However, applicants are expected to acquire a working knowledge of German. Fully funded language courses will be available as part of the doctoral scholarship. The doctoral thesis may be written in English or German.

Application Deadline: April 30, 2021.

For all application requirements and more information, please find the full Call for Applications here.

Max-Planck-Institut für ethnologische Forschung / Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology

The Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology is one of the leading centres for research in social anthropology. Common to all research projects at the Max Planck Institute is the comparative analysis of social change; it is primarily in this domain that its researchers contribute to anthropological theory, though many programmes also have applied significance and political topicality. 

Department ‘Law & Anthropology’ at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology is offering

1 PhD position (starting date June 2021 – to be confirmed) 

The position is offered within the Minerva Research Group “The Ethics of Exchange” which will focus on how the law’s boundaries are shaped in decision-making processes in organ donation and transplantation in the UK and Germany.

Project Description
The Ethics of Exchange: the regulation of Organ Donation and Transplantation is an exciting new research project led by Dr. Farrah Raza that combines doctrinal legal methods and medical anthropology to uncover how the law on organ donation and transplantation is negotiated in practice in two jurisdictions with different regulations. The guiding question of the project is how various actors make decisions about organ donation and transplantation in different sets of cases. This includes how hospitals and specialist ethics committees devise policies and procedures, how clinicians engage with patients and their families in decision-making and understanding the role of religious and cultural norms in obtaining consent. The aim of the project is to provide a detailed account of how the different layers of decision-making in organ donation and transplantation intermesh within the clinical setting. The project will consist of two key inter-related workstreams. The first workstream The Procedures and Substance of Hospital Ethics Committees and decision-making in Organ Donation and Transplantation will focus on the emergence and application of ethical frameworks and norms in practice. The second workstream Religion, Culture and Minority Rights in Organ Donation and Transplantation will focus on how religious and cultural diversity is accommodated in clinical decision-making. (for further information see:

Essential Duties & Responsibilities
The essential duty of the PhD student will be to develop, write and submit a PhD dissertation on a subject of relevance to the research group project. This should include a substantial period of ethnographic fieldwork in the UK or Germany at relevant hospitals and/or appropriate research sites. The PhD student will be encouraged to develop his/her own project in collaboration with the Project Leader in order to achieve a coherent and comparative approach to the research questions. The PhD student will be expected to contribute to project outputs such as publications and conferences.

Your Profile
Applicants should hold an advanced degree in Law. Excellent academic writing and communication skills in English/German are essential. 
Prior field experience in the designated region and knowledge of additional relevant local languages are desirable. Brief research proposals (maximum 2 pages) should be attached; successful applicants are expected to be ready to modify details of their proposal when the research group is consolidated. The research proposal should outline how the proposed topic fits within either one or both of the workstreams.

Our Offer
The PhD positions are awarded for three years, with the possibility of two six-month extensions. PhD students are expected to complete six to twelve months of fieldwork as part of their studies. Employment will be on a full-time contractual basis. The workplace is Halle/Saale (Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany).
The Max Planck Society strives to ensure gender equality and diversity. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society is committed to employ more persons with disabilities and explicitly encourages applications.

Please submit your application electronically by 31 March 2021 following the link for vacancies on our homepage (under ‘Career’), or by going directly to the online application form using the link below. 

Applicants should send the following documentation: 

  • cover letter
  • CV including a list of publications
  • two-page summary of the proposed research, which should demonstrate clear links to the applicant’s previous work and qualifications and to the respective research field
  • copies of university degrees
  • names of two or three referees whom we may contact

Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology 
Personnel Administration 
Janka Diallo ([email protected]

Informal enquiries concerning the position may be directed to Dr. Farrah Raza ([email protected]).

We look forward to receiving your completed online application

15 PhD positions for Early Stage Researchers as part of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network “ADAPTED”

  • ORGANISATION/COMPANY: Ruhr University Bochum (Germany), Erasmus University Rotterdam and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (Netherlands), Boğaziçi University (Turkey), Centre National de Recherche Scientifique in partnership with Université Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne (France) 
  • RESEARCH FIELD: Economics, Juridical sciences, Political sciences
  • RESEARCHER PROFILE: First Stage Researcher (R1) 
  • APPLICATION DEADLINE: 31/03/2021 23:00 – Europe/Brussels
  • LOCATION: Multiple locations, see work locations below. 
  • TYPE OF CONTRACT: Temporary 
  • JOB STATUS: Full-time 
  • HOURS PER WEEK: 35-40 
  • OFFER STARTING DATE: 01/09/2021
  • EU RESEARCH FRAMEWORK PROGRAMME: H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions 


The ADAPTED consortium:

The European Joint Doctorate ADAPTED is a consortium of European Universities, important internationally active European development organisations and think tanks and six African partner universities. Within ADAPTED,

  • the European universities – including Ruhr University Bochum, Germany (coordinator), Erasmus University Rotterdam and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands, Boğaziçi University, Turkey, and Centre National de Recherche Scientifique in partnership with Université Paris 1 Panthéon Sorbonne, France – will host the ESRs, direct their research, organise training and implement the European Joint Doctorate based on project-specific binational agreements (cotutelles de these),
  • the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the Deutsche Investitions- und Entwicklungs GmbH (DEG) and the Centre for Research on Multinational Corporations (SOMO) host selected ESRs during non-academic secondments and add to the intersectoral relevance of the research done within the consortium while the European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI) provides ESRs with advice and training on the dissemination of research output and acts as a global dissemination platform for the ESRs,
  • researchers from six cooperating African partner universities, including the University of the Western Cape and the University of Cape Town (South Africa), Bahir Dar University (Ethiopia), University of Development Studies (Ghana), Moi University (Kenya), and University of Douala (Cameroon), will supervise ESRs during field work, provide them with access to local actors and to locally available data sets and link them to the non-academic sector in the fieldwork countries.

The ADAPTED research and training programme:
The Overarching Aim of the EJD ADAPTED is to deliver high-level training with intersectoral relevance in

  • validating pathways towards poverty eradication,
  • analysing interactions between poverty reduction and other policy areas
  • and optimising the impact of poverty reduction policies

to high achieving early stage researchers (ESRs) to bridge the existing knowledge gap in understanding poverty dynamics and by equipping the ESRs with a unique skills portfolio that is equally attractive for research institutions, development organisations and internationally active firms.

ADAPTED will implement the empirical components of its research programme with a clear but non-exclusive focus on countries in Sub-Sahara Africa. The EJD’s research programme is organised in three work packages (WP) that address the following broad research areas:

  • WP 1: Validating Pathways: We want to investigate how effective different growth- and social protection-oriented policies are in improving poverty-related outcomes, given the large heterogeneity of low- and middle-income countries and the differences in the target groups that these policies are able to reach. (5 PhD positions).
  • WP 2: Analysing Interactions: Poverty reduction-related policies are not implemented in a policy vacuum. Usually they are implemented side by side in settings, which are characterised by the existence of a multitude of other policies, which serve purposes other than poverty reduction. We therefore want to study poverty-related trade-offs and co-benefits within different growth- and social protection-oriented policy frameworks on the one hand, and between them and other policies on the other hand for deriving recommendations towards a policy mix responsive to poverty reduction. (5 PhD positions).
  • WP 3: Optimising Impact: We want to identify mechanisms that increase the relevance and the quality of delivery of social protection schemes, which allow for an improved coordination of fragmented social policies, and support the design and implementation of poverty reduction-related policies in neopatrimonial environments. (5 PhD positions).

The ADAPTED training programme combines local doctoral training offers at the beneficiary organisations with high-level network-wide training and training through secondments. The programme includes the training of core research skills acquired via the individual research project, modules on advanced research skills delivered by the consortium and transferable skills training offered by local graduate schools and during secondments with practice partners.

Open ESR positions: 
ESR 1: The Effect of Foreign Direct Investment and Official Development Assistance on Job Creation and Poverty Reduction

ESR 2: Mining and Poverty – A focus on artisanal mining and on CSR in industrial mining

ESR 3: Effectiveness of social protection in fighting poverty

ESR 4: Labour regulation and economic performance in SSA

ESR 5: Universal health coverage in West Africa

ESR 6: A political ecology approach in evaluating the development agenda: The cases of Ghana and Kenya

ESR 7: Costs/benefits of climate policies in the context of informal economies

ESR 8: An analysis of nationally determined contributions (NDCs) of African countries under the Paris climate agreement and how these NDCs relate to SDG1

ESR 9: Mobilising international law for cross-border tax justice

ESR 10: The effects of governmentally enforced minimum wages on formal sector employment

ESR 11: Rights-based social assistance schemes

ESR 12: Building coherent social protection systems

ESR 13: Demand for good governance and policy access for the poor

ESR 14: Neopatrimonialism, pockets of effectiveness and policy making for the poor

ESR 15: Coalition-building and pro-poor governance reform

The Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies: Call for Applications for scholarships and places in our doctoral programme

Deadline: 11 November, 2020, 12 noon CET

The Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies will admit up to ten PhD fellows to its doctoral programme, which is to begin on 1 October 2021. The Graduate School is a joint institution of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient, which brings together scholars in the humanities, social sciences, and area studies.

The Graduate School investigates the plurality, changeability, and global connectedness of Muslim cultures and societies. Applications with a focus on strategies of negotiating diversity, difference, and distinction, both among Muslims and between Muslims and non-Muslims are especially encouraged. Successful applicants will have a master’s degree in one of the disciplines represented at the Graduate School (Arabic Studies, Central Asian Studies, History, Human Geography, Iranian Studies, Islamic Studies, Political Science, Semitic Studies, Social and Cultural Anthropology, South and Southeast Asian Studies, Southeast European History), with a ranking, where applicable, of above average. Our language of instruction and communication is English.

The application needs to be submitted via our application platform and includes the following information and documents:

  • Outline of the dissertation project (pdf file, up to 6 pages);
  • Curriculum vitae (pdf file, up to 3 pages);
  • Certified copies of degrees received (pdf files);
  • Proof of proficiency in English (C1 CEFR or equivalent, native speakers of English or applicants who have graduated from an English-speaking university in a country with English as an official language are exempt from this verification) (pdf file);
  • Evidence of proficiency in the language(s) relevant to the dissertation project (pdf file);
  • One letter of recommendation must be uploaded by the applicant’s referee directly to the application platform (signed and stamped on official paper).

Two full PhD scholarships will be available with funding from the Gerda Henkel Stiftung. Two scholarships will be available through the DAAD Graduate School Scholarship Programme. Two pre-doc scholarships are available with funding from Einstein Stiftung Berlin. Two further positions for PhD students with Chinese citizenship are available through the cooperation of the Chinese Scholarship Council and Freie Universität Berlin’s Beijing Office (FU-CSC PhD Scholarship). Candidates with funding from a third party are encouraged to apply. All doctoral fellows admitted to the Graduate School will receive a travel allowance. The first supervisors must be members of the Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies. Fellows are expected to take residence in Berlin during the three-year programme.

Applications will be reviewed by the School’s Admissions and Grants Committee, and interviews will be scheduled in early February 2021.The complete application package must be submitted by 11 November, 2020, 12 noon Central European Winter Time through our application platform. The Admissions and Grants committee will not consider incomplete or late applications.

For further information, please refer to our FAQ and our application guidelines. Please send an Email to [email protected] for help with your application. No legal entitlement shall be constituted by applying to the programme. On account of the large number of applications we are regrettably not able to provide feedback on unsuccessful applications. Prospective applicants are invited to join our live Q&A session on October 9, 2020 (the link to the stream will be published on our website).

Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme


Established by the Research Grants Council (RGC) of Hong Kong in 2009, the Hong Kong PhD Fellowship Scheme (HKPFS) aims at attracting the best and brightest students in the world to pursue their PhD studies in Hong Kong’s universities.


Candidates who are seeking admission as new full time PhD students in the following eight universities, irrespective of their country of origin, prior work experience and ethnic background, should be eligible to apply. 

  • City University of Hong Kong
  • Hong Kong Baptist University
  • Lingnan University
  • The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • The Education University of Hong Kong
  • The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
  • The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
  • The University of Hong Kong 

Applicants should demonstrate outstanding qualities of academic performance, research ability / potential, communication and interpersonal skills, and leadership abilities.

Fellowship Award

The Fellowship provides an annual stipend of HK$319,200 (approximately US$40,900) and a conference and research-related travel allowance of HK$13,300 (approximately US$1,700) per year for each awardee for a period up to three years. 300 PhD Fellowships will be awarded in the 2021/22 academic year*. For awardees who need more than three years to complete the PhD degree, additional support may be provided by the chosen universities. For details, please contact the universities concerned directly.

* Universities in Hong Kong normally start their academic year in September.

Back to top

Selection Panel

Shortlisted applications, subject to their areas of studies, will be reviewed by one of the following two Selection Panels comprising experts in the relevant board areas:

  • Sciences, Medicine, Engineering and Technology 
  • Humanities, Social Sciences and Business Studies

Selection Criteria

While candidates’ academic excellence is of primary consideration, the Selection Panels will take into account factors as follows:

  • Academic excellence; 
  • Research ability and potential; 
  • Communication and interpersonal skills; and 
  • Leadership abilities.