Cotutelle de Thèse – joint supervision of doctoral study

What is a Cotutelle?

Cotutelle de Thèse is a term for doctoral study – regardless of the field of study – in which PhD candidates are enrolled at two universities and have a supervisor at each institution. Upon concluding their studies, PhD candidates will be awarded a degree from each university. The diploma will have the notation "cotutelle". Through the project, PhD candidates have the opportunity to expand their scholarly network and to become acquainted with different research cultures and academic systems.


PhD candidates must present sufficient reason based on the content of their thesis as to why two institutions are necessary to complete doctoral study.

Research stays

PhD candidates in a cotuelle project will spend approximately two thirds of their doctoral study at their home university and one third at the partner university.


For each cotutelle, a cooperation agreement will be drawn up to define the exact conditions and requirements. This cooperation agreement must be signed one year after the formal start of doctoral study at the very latest. The University of Zurich is under no obligation to participate in a cotutelle agreement.