This programme is implemented by the United Nations University International Institute for Software Technology (UNU-IIST). Below you will find general information about the programme. For comprehensive details, including the full admissions requirements and application materials, please visit the UNU-IIST website.
The United Nations University International Institute for Software Technology (UNU-IIST) together with the Università di Pisa (University of Pisa) offers a Double PhD Programme in Information and Communication Technology for Sustainable Development. This programme is designed to train expert researchers in this emerging field. The programme emphasizes issues of sustainability closely linked to the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the ways in which current and future information communication technologies (ICT) may be able to contribute to these global priorities.
The programme consists of both coursework and research components, and culminates in the writing and defence of a doctoral thesis. Coursework covers the essential concepts of sustainable development as well as cutting-edge ICT. Students will pursue research within UNU-IIST’s multidisciplinary environment, which boasts a wide range of opportunities for hands-on research. The institute’s activities in policy bridging will further expose students to key issues in science-based policymaking.
The research carried out in the programme will focus on the following areas: education, governance, health, environment and poverty reduction. Click here to access more information on these focus areas.
The programme duration is 42 months (seven semesters) and enrolment is on a full-time basis. Students are primarily located at UNU-IIST in China, Macao SAR, and spend at least one semester at the University of Pisa. In addition, students have the opportunity to carry out field work at one or more of UNU-IIST’s project sites, depending on their research topic.
Upon graduation, students are awarded a double PhD degree in Information and Communication Technology. Students will receive two distinct PhD degree certificates (diplomas), one from the United Nations University and one from the University of Pisa.
Applicants must have a strong academic record and hold a master’s degree in ICT, software engineering, computer science or other discipline with a large ICT component. General information on English-language requirements and scholarships is provided below; however, please visit the UNU-IIST website for a comprehensive list of admissions requirements and to download the necessary application forms.
The sole medium of instruction in the programme is English. Applicants are therefore required to demonstrate English-language proficiency before entry. Applicants who are not native English speakers are required to submit official evidence of English-language proficiency. Please click here for more information on the minimum English requirements.
UNU-IIST offers scholarships to outstanding applicants. Tuition and registration fees are waived for holders of scholarships provided by UNU-IIST. Click here for information about scholarships available for students starting in September 2012. Note that holders of these scholarships are expected to work on research projects assigned by a UNU-IIST Principal Investigator, who shall in most cases also be the thesis advisor. Note that scholarships may be terminated in conjunction with the termination of study due to unsatisfactory performance or misconduct.
PhD students are required to acquire six course credits, each of which consists of a minimum of twenty lecture hours. Some courses may be delivered via e-learning or in a “blended” modality that incorporates both face-to-face and e-learning components. Credits may be acquired by attending graduate courses offered by UNU-IIST, by the Department of Computer Science of the University of Pisa or, in some cases, by other universities or advanced schools. Students must take at least three courses in the area of sustainable development or the application of ICT to sustainable development.
The following courses will be offered at UNU-IIST during the first semester of the 2012/2013 academic year,
Please click here for a list of courses to be provided by the University of Pisa in 2012.
United Nations University
International Institute for Software Technology
Office of Admissions
PO Box 3058
Macao SAR China