3-year Cultural Studies PhD Scholarships, Germany

Deadline: 1 March 2013
Open to: graduate students who have or expect to obtain a first or upper second class honours M.A.-degree (or equivalent) in one of the GCSC’s academic subjects or in the arts/humanities, cultural studies, or the social sciences
Scholarship: monthly stipend of approximately €1,465 (plus family allowances when applicable)


Giessen University’s International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC), funded by the German federal government’s Excellence Initiative, offers a three-year, structured PhD-programme in the study of culture. With its excellent research environment, a doctoral programme which is tailored to the needs of PhD students and the intensive personal support it provides, the Graduate Centre offers doctoral researchers optimum conditions for their PhD-projects and custom-made preparation for the time thereafter, both with regard to academic and non-academic careers.

The GCSC invites applications for one of the up to 13 PhD scholarships available, which are funded by the Excellence Initiative as well as the Justus Liebig University Giessen.

The PhD scholarship period starts on October 1, 2013 and includes a monthly stipend of approximately €1,465 (plus family allowances when applicable). Scholarships are offered for one year with the possibility of two extensions, each of one year. Acceptance of a scholarship requires participation in the study programme and wide-ranging events offered by the GCSC, as well as active involvement in at least one GCSC graduate research group. PhD scholarship holders must register as PhD students at the Justus Liebig University. There are no tuition fees for doctoral students at the JLU, except for an enrolment fee of approximately €200 per semester. All scholarship holders are expected to assume residency in or near Giessen.

The GCSC expects scholarship holders to:

  • Research a dissertation project that contributes to the GCSC’s research profile and can be supervised at the Justus Liebig University
  • Actively participate in one of the GCSC’s research areas by initiating, coordinating and documenting collaborative research projects, such as conferences or publications
  • Participate in the GCSC’s curriculum

The GCSC offers a research-intensive environment and comprehensive multi-tier supervision at all stages of a dissertation project through e.g. interdisciplinary research colloquia and professional support in preparing academic papers and conferences. The GCSC Teaching Centre offers systematic qualification in HE teaching; opportunities to teach at the BA level are available.


They invite applications for contributing to the study of culture in various historical contexts as well as those analysing contemporary phenomena. An international research perspective i.e. international study experience is an advantage.

The GCSC encourages applications from graduate students who have or expect to obtain a first or upper second class honours M.A.-degree (or equivalent) in one of the GCSC’s academic subjects (see list HERE) or in the arts/humanities, cultural studies, or the social sciences. The GCSC’s working languages are German and English, and applicants must be fluent in at least one of them; knowledge of both is an advantage and should be acquired during the scholarship period.


The application deadline is March 1, 2013. All applications (including an application form and further documents as stated on the GCSC-website) have to be submitted online. The main selection criteria are the candidates’ academic qualifications, the academic quality of the research proposal and the suitability of the project for the GCSC’s research programme.

To apply for GCSC scholarships, you will first be asked to fill in and submit our online application form HERE and to upload the following documents before the current deadline (March 1st):

  • a 1-2 page cover letter, explaining your motives for applying at the GCSC;
  • a short abstract of your research project (approx. 500 words), including the title of your project and a brief outline of the methodology you will use;
  • curriculum vitae.
  • Please compile one single PDF-document containing all of the above documents (1-2 pp. cover letter, abstract, and CV). This document should then be labeled according to the following format: Lastname_Firstname.pdf.
  • In addition, they require two letters of recommendation provided by university professors. Your two referees can send their letters of recommendation directly by post (see application process website), or email them to gcsc-application@uni-giessen.de.

Please read the full description of the application process HERE.

If you have any questions concerning your application, please contact the organizers at gcsc-application@uni-giessen.de.

You may find the official call for applications HERE.

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