Doctoral Programmes

An unparalleled postgraduate degree experience

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UNU offers a small number of focused doctoral programmes. The University anticipates significant growth in the number and scope of its doctoral programmes in the coming years. We invite you to visit this page regularly for updates.

UNU doctoral students pursue problem-oriented studies, utilizing advanced research methods to address real world problems that are the concern of the United Nations, its Peoples and Member States.

Applicants to a doctoral programme must demonstrate that they have completed an accredited master’s degree programme (or equivalent) from a recognized institution of higher education.

Application procedures differ by programme and institute. If you are interested in one of the doctoral programmes advertised on this website, please contact the relevant institute directly with any questions.

PhD in Sustainability Science

Offered by UNU-IAS (Tokyo, Japan), this programme takes an innovative approach to sustainability, seeking to promote a better understanding of the issues by incorporating global change perspectives, specifically those related to climate change and biodiversity.

Part-time PhD Programme

Offered by UNU-MERIT (Maastricht, Netherlands), the part-time PhD Programme, previously known as the Dual Career PhD Programme on Governance and Policy Analysis (GPAC²), aims to support fellows in setting up, carrying out and finishing a research project leading to a PhD, alongside their regular job. The programme is offered at UNU-MERIT in Maastricht, leading to a doctoral degree awarded by Maastricht University upon successful defence of a dissertation.

PhD Programme on Innovation, Economics and Governance for Sustainable Development (IEGSD)

Offered by UNU-MERIT (Maastricht, Netherlands), in partnership with Maastricht University, IEGSD offers high-quality education, training and supervision to PhD candidates working in the core disciplines of UNU-MERIT, leading to a doctoral degree from Maastricht University.  

PhD in Integrated Management of Water, Soil and Waste 

Offered by UNU-FLORES (Dresden, Germany) this joint PhD programme with Technische Universität provides graduate students with detailed knowledge, critical understanding, strategies, and tools to take an interdisciplinary and integrated approach towards the management of environmental resources.

Joint Junior Researcher Programme (Doctoral Dissertation)

Offered by UNU-FLORES (Dresden, Germany) this joint PhD programme with Technische Universität (TU Dresden) builds on the Joint PhD Programme in Integrated Management of Water, Soil, and Waste and extends scientific cooperation to all faculties at TU Dresden that engage with research themes related to the Resource Nexus.