Internationalisation of the PhD programme

The University promotes the internationalisation of the PhD programme by developing collaborations with foreign Universities and Research centres, as well as via participation in international research projects and programmes.

Research stays abroad

The PhD students enrolled at the University of Bologna have an opportunity to spend periods of study and research at foreign Universities and research bodies.

A top-up scholarship can be granted for research periods of at least 30 days.

PhD students may also obtain mobility incentives by participating in the following programmes: Erasmus+ Study Mobility and Erasmus+ Internship Mobility.

PhD programme degree with foreign Universities

The University signs agreements with foreign Universities in order to encourage the internationalisation of the PhD programme.

Co-tutorship framework agreements

The framework agreements signed with foreign Universities, covering one or more PhD programme degrees, assure scientific collaboration over the medium-long term. They establish general terms for the collaboration between the two contracting parties, and the general commitment to the signature of individual co-tutorship agreements.

Co-tutorships agreements (cotutelle)

The co-tutorship agreements are bilateral agreements between the University of Bologna and a foreign University. They are signed for the purpose of establishing a joint doctoral programme for specific PhD students enrolled at one of the two partner Universities.

For further information, read Co-tutorship agreements for PhD students enrolled at foreign Universities.

Mobility framework agreements

Mobility framework agreements with foreign Universities cover the mobility of PhD students, in order to:

  • facilitating the PhD students' mobilities at the partner University;
  • developing joint research projects;
  • creating networks of scientific cooperation.

International collaboration

Joint Doctoral Programme in Cultural Heritage (Una-Her-Doc)

The University of Bologna has signed a Consortium Agreement, in collaboration with the Universities partners of the Una Europa Alliance, aimed at establishing the joint doctoral programme Una-Her-Doc.

The call for applications is launched yearly: Applicants have to be enrolled in one of the Partner Universities.

PhD programmes funded by the China Scholarship Council

The University of Bologna and the China Scholarship Council have signed a Cooperation Agreement for the admission of outstanding Chinese students to the PhD programmes degrees offered by the University with funding from the China Scholarship Council. 

Reale Collegio di Spagna

There has been an agreement between the University of Bologna and Reale Collegio di Spagna since 1999.

This agreement enables Collegio di Spagna PhD scholars to attend University of Bologna PhD programme courses following the completion of their first programme year with a Spanish University.

Mobility Confap Italy (Brazil)

The MCI “Mobility CONFAP-ITALY” project is a mobility programme promoted by the University of Bologna and CONFAP, which is the Brazilian national confederation of State research foundations.

This programme awards mobility incentives to Italian and Brazilian PhD students who wish to complete their training paths, in whole or in part, at a member University.

Other opportunities for international collaboration

Scholarships from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAECI)

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation awards scholarships to foreign citizens and Italian citizens resident abroad who register for PhD programme degrees at Italian Universities.

This programme envisages the assignment of extra places to participants in the call for applications who pass the admission tests, subject to the formal award of an MAECI scholarship.

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions

In the context of the Horizon Europe programme, the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions are intended to award funding to international, interdisciplinary and intersectoral networks for starting PhD programmes, aimed at the establishment of training paths for outstanding researchers.

In addition to the Doctoral Network type, there are two different types of MSCA funding supports for PhDs:

  • Industrial Doctorates (DN-ID), involving also non-academics, in order to encourage entrepeneurial skills;
  • Joint Doctorates (DN-JD), aiming at the awarding of joint, double or multiple degrees, acknowledged in two countries members or associated with Horizon Europe.

The Early Stage Researchers (ESR) are selected in international competitions and awarded extra positions on University of Bologna PhD programmes, with no need to participate in the call for applications published by the University.

Vinci Programme

The Université Franco Italienne launches yearly the Vinci Program supporting cooperation initiatives (cotutelle) between Italian and French Universities.

Chapter 2 is aimed at funding mobilities for cotutelle PhD candidates.

Chapter 3 awards funding for three-years scholarships for PhD program co-tutored by an Italian University and a French University, under the cotutelle scheme.

DAAD - German academic exchange service 

Each year, DAAD funds scholarships for PhD programme degrees co-tutored by an Italian University and a German University.


DIRI - Internazionalizzazione del Dottorato di Ricerca


Via Filippo Re 4 - 40126 Bologna (BO)

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