Pursuing a Doctorate at the University of Bremen


Most young researchers at the University of Bremen decide to pursue an individual doctorate with a scientific supervisor. You can start your search for suitable professors with the help of the research and expert information system forex navigator or directly on the faculty sites. Alternatively, you can find out about advertised positions in your research area.
In structured doctoral programs, the University of Bremen offers doctoral candidates, in addition to independent research, intensive professional exchange as well as specially designed courses. They also benefit from innovative forms of supervision.
In addition to professional supervision, the University of Bremen supports its PhD students from all faculties with a wide range of support and service offers.
You can find more information and assistance on the organization of supervisory relationships on our BYRD page about doctoral supervision.


Before starting your PhD, the financing of the doctoral phase should be clarified. If you are not employed by the university, talk to your supervisor about financing options right at the beginning.

The majority of doctoral students at the University of Bremen are employed as research assistants. Research assistants are generally given time for scientific qualification within the framework of their contract. The current job advertisements can be found here. Many of the scientific staff members of the institutes of the U Bremen Research Alliance are also doing their PhD at the University of Bremen.

If you would like to finance your doctoral project by means of a scholarship, you can find out more about the "Begabtenförderwerke" here. You can find further scholarship offers via the portal mystipendium.de, at e-fellows.net, or Euraxess Germany. For foreign doctoral students, it is also worth taking a look at the scholarship database of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

It is also possible to do a doctorate as an external doctoral student part-time or to finance it through a part-time job.

If financing is unclear, you are welcome to ask us for advice.


Administrative Matters

The formal start of your doctorate is the acceptance by the doctoral commission of the faculty. All documents required are stated in the doctoral regulation (“Promotionsordnung”) of the respective faculty. The most important prerequisite is a higher education qualification that is officially recognized in Germany. You also need to have a supervisor who is willing to supervise your project.

The doctoral regulations of the University of Bremen also allow bi-national doctoral degrees (cotutelle) in cooperation with a foreign university. Detailed information about the procedure is available here.

While the acceptance by the doctoral committee is obligatory, the following enrollment as a PhD student (“Immatrikulation”) is non-compulsory. If you have not yet been accepted by the doctoral commission, enrollment is initially possible for two terms (one year). Enrolling as a doctoral candidate is necessary to take advantage of the social benefits available to enrolled students and to use university facilities and equipment. Enrollment is possible at any time, also in the middle of the semester. The university charges a contribution per semester; see here for current fees. Often, the decision is a financial one, and many PhD candidates decide against enrollment. For further information and for the enrollment procedure please refer to the Student Office (SfS).


Information for international doctoral researchers and their supervisors

General Information about the German Doctorate

The “Research in Germany” portal is the central information platform about the German doctorate initiated by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

It provides helpful general information about the paths to a doctorate in Germany and gives you an overview of the German research landscape and funding system. It also offers ideas on how to plan one's career in academia and beyond.

Bremen Early Career Researcher Development

BYRD is the support center for early-career researchers at the University of Bremen. We are the central contact point for doctoral candidates, postdocs as well as advanced researchers for further training, networking, information and consulting.

Teilnehmer vor einer Pinnwand während eines Workshops

Welcome Center

The Welcome Center of U Bremen Research Alliance supports international researchers and their families before and during their stay in Bremen, regardless of the duration of their stay or how the stay is financed. As a central service point, it assists all newcoming researchers in non-academic matters to help organize their life in Bremen and make it as enjoyable and uncomplicated as possible. Whether you are here for a month or have been appointed to a permanent post, our services are available to you. Through a broad network of internal and external partners, the Welcome Centre provides a range of administrative and social services.

Updated by: BYRD