Co-tutorship "cotutelle" agreement for PhD candidates enrolled at a foreign University

An opportunity for PhD candidates enrolled at a foreign University.

A co-tutorship (or “cotutelle”, as this type of cooperation originated in France) is a bilateral agreement signed by two universities located in two different countries on behalf of a PhD candidate.

The agreement is aimed at the awarding of a double PhD degree, should the single thesis defense be successful.  

Candidates enrolled at the first year of a PhD programme can request the setting-up of a co-tutorship agreement, using the relevant form.

The main features of the co-tutorship agreement

A co-tutorship agreement must comply with the following conditions:

  • The PhD candidate’s training and research activities are supervised by two professors, one from the Home University (namely, where the PhD candidate firstly enrolled), the other one from the Host University.
  • The PhD candidate is required to spend more or less the same period of time at both universities (for UNIBO, minimum one year) according to a calendar set up by the two supervisors.
  • The PhD candidate will take just one final exam (usually at the Home University) and the examination board will be composed by members from both universities.
  • Both universities will award a PhD degree: the co-tutorship does not imply a joint academic degree.
  • As a general rule, the PhD candidate is enrolled in both Universities but he/she will pay the tuition fees only to the Home University, being exempted from that payment to the Host University.