Doctoral Program Environment and Society

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When are the deadlines for applications to the Doctoral Program Environment and Society?

The doctoral program usually accepts new candidates in both the winter and summer semester, though there may be exceptions. Calls for candidates are announced through the application portal and other channels. The deadline for applications is 15 May for candidates wanting to start in the winter semester and 15 November for those aiming to start in the summer semester. Potential applicants may apply directly to a supervisor at any time and apply to join the program at a later stage.

I missed the deadline. Will my application still be considered?

No. We regret that we cannot consider any applications received after the deadline. Please apply to start a semester later.

What is the language of the application?
The language of the application portal is English. We accept applications in English and German.

When will I know if my application has been successful?

Candidates will be notified of acceptance into the program no later than eight weeks after the application deadline. The members of the academic board decide which new doctoral students to admit. The top candidates are selected based on the strength of their applications; interviews may be conducted prior to the final decision. Applicants are informed via email as soon as a decision has been made.

Do I need to have a supervisor from the academic board for my dissertation project?

Yes. In order to obtain a doctorate through this program, at least one member of your supervisory committee (three people) must be involved with the doctoral program. Therefore it is essential that your dissertation project relates to at least one of the participating subjects. These are as follows: American Cultural History/Transatlantic Studies, Anthropology, Biology, Economics, Geography, Geology, History, Art History, Law, Sociology, and Theology/Ethics. We expect that you will inform yourself about the members of the academic board and identify possible supervisor(s) in your application. You may contact your favored supervisor prior to submitting your application, although this is not a requirement. However, please be aware that members of the academic board may not be able to respond to individual proposals during the application process.

Can I choose a primary supervisor who is not a member of the academic board?

Yes. Only one of the supervisors on your committee needs to be a member of the academic board.

The application process requires a statement of purpose and an outline of my dissertation project. What is the difference between these documents?

In your statement of purpose you are expected to put forward the reasons for your application to the Doctoral Program Environment and Society. You can describe why you would be a good fit for the program, how you would benefit from participating in it, and what you might bring to the program in turn.
The outline serves to provide a more focused description of your dissertation project. You should therefore describe, among other things, the subject of your research, the originality of your topic, and the methods and theories involved. The outline should also include a short bibliography and a proposed timetable.

Tuition Fees and Living Costs

Are doctoral candidates participating in the program required to pay tuition fees?

Currently (October 2016) LMU's administration fees are set at a basic rate of € 52 per semester, plus a € 65 fee for the semester ticket for public transportation. There are no additional fees.

Will I receive funding through the Doctoral Program Environment and Society?

No. The doctoral program does not offer any stipends to cover living expenses. Your supervisors will be able to assist you in applying for funding from other sources, e.g. the DAAD. You can find more information on how to obtain funding here.

Study Program

How many courses do I need to take?

Each candidate must:

  • fulfil the requirements for doctoral study in their discipline (this usually involves attending between 3-5 graduate level courses in their main and secondary subjects; exact requirements vary from discipline to discipline).
  • regularly attend the Lunchtime Colloquium and other events at the Rachel Carson Center;
  • participate in at least one key skills workshop offered by the LMU Graduate Center (e.g. Academic Writing in English, Didactics, Project Management etc.) or by other LMU institutions. Attending one of these workshops is a program requirement, but doctoral candidates are encouraged to attend three.

Please see the Guidelines section of this website for more information on the program requirements (timetable, conference attendance, workshops etc.).

Language Skills

Which language skills are required for participation in the doctoral program?

In order to be accepted to the Doctoral Program Environment and Society, applicants need to have a good command of English. Depending on the discipline, courses are taught in German and/or English. Some departments will accept dissertations written in English while others require them to be in German. Please consult the respective doctoral regulations (Promotionsordnung) for specific requirements. LMU Munich offers German language courses for its international students.