Three-year structured PhD programs | start October 1, 2023

Deadline: February 1, 2023

Giessen University’s International Graduate Centre for the Study of Culture (GCSC) offers a three-year, structured PhD-programme in the study of culture, tailored to the needs of PhD students with optimal conditions and a custom-made preparation for the time thereafter. We encourage cooperation across status groups in interdisciplinary research areas and support the organisation of our own conferences and first publications already during the doctorate. Our doctoral students receive intensive supervision in regular research colloquia and financial support for research and conference travel. At the Teaching Centre, they can gain qualifications in higher education didactics and initial experience in university teaching; the GCSC’s own Career Service prepares them for both academic and non-academic careers.

As of 1 October 2023, the GCSC grants for up to three years:

up to 6 PhD scholarships

up to 20 memberships

up to 2 PhD scholarships from the DAAD ‘Graduate School Scholarship Programme’ (GSSP).

The GCSC expects members and scholarship holders to:

  • become actively involved in at least one research area
  • participate with commitment in the GCSC’s curriculum
  • assume residency in or near Giessen.

Eligibility – GCSC scholarships:

  • Graduation with excellent marks in the field of humanities, social and cultural sciences
  • Applications from students who expect to obtain a first or upper second class honours M.A. degree (or the equivalent) are welcome as well.
  • An excellent dissertation project that contributes to the GCSC’s research profile* and can be supervised at the Justus Liebig University.
  • An international research perspective, i.e. international study experience, is an advantage
  • Applicants must not have completed a PhD previously
  • (business) fluent knowledge of at least one of the GCSC’s working languages (German, English); German language skills up to level B1 must be acquired in the course of the PhD studies

Additional requirements – GSSP scholarships:

•    Applicants should not have graduated any longer than six years before the time of nomination (exceptions s. Section 2)

  • Applicants must not have been resident in Germany for more than the last 15 months prior to the nomination.
  • Citizenship of or permanent residence in one of the countries listed here by the DAAD
  • We particularly invite projects that deepen the GCSC research profile towards a “transnational study of culture” and deal with perspectives, epistemologies, bodies of knowledge, social practices, etc. outside of European modernity or that decentre, decolonise or critically expand Western-influenced concepts and theories.

*The GCSC focuses its research within the following Research Areas:
Cultural Memory Studies
 | Cultural Narratologies | Cultural Transformation and Performativity Studies | Visual and Material Culture Studies | Media and Multiliteracy Studies | Cultural Identities | Global Studies and Politics of Space | Cultures of Knowledge, Research and Education | Ecology and the Study of Culture.

In addition, the GCSC has established Emerging Topics Research Groups, dealing with particularly current challenges and dynamic issues. They are located at the intersections of cultural studies and migration, economics, life sciences and religion.

The application deadline is February 1, 2023. All applications have to be submitted online – please register at (as of 1st December).

Please find all information about the two-stage application procedure on our website at and

If you have any questions concerning your application, please contact us at Detailed information will be provided at the digital Information Day on December 21, 2022 (more information on the homepage in due course)