International dissertation Cotutelle (joint doctorate program)

To support the establishment of a European space for higher education and research and to further develop international cooperation, a French institution of higher education that is authorized to award a PhD may conclude, with a foreign institution of higher education, an agreement with the aim of organizing an international Cotutelle for dissertations under the stated conditions (Decree of May 25, 2016 establishing a national framework in France for the education and conditions leading to a French PhD diploma).

Doctoral candidates in such a joint program are enrolled in both institutions and conduct their work under the supervision of a dissertation supervisor in each country.
The dissertation itself is prepared during alternating periods spent in each of the institutions, following a balance and conditions defined in the Cotutelle agreement.

The language in which the dissertation is written is defined in the agreement between the contracting institutions. Where that language is not French, the full dissertation is accompanied by a substantial abstract in French.

The title of Doctor is conferred simultaneously and jointly by each institution concerned who each issue his doctoral degree to the student after a single thesis defense.

The Cotutelle agreement also specifies the enrollment procedures for doctoral candidates, how tuition is paid, the conditions for social security coverage, and housing and financial aid available to doctoral candidates to support their mobility.

International joint dissertation supervision

In the case of international joint dissertation supervision, doctoral candidates conduct their research work under the responsibility of two dissertation supervisors, one at the institution where they are enrolled / their doctoral school in France and the other at a university abroad.

A joint supervision agreement is signed by both institutions and the research directors. Doctoral candidates may be attached to two research units with a single enrollment and the issuance of a single doctoral degree by the institution of its unique administrative registration.

A single defense takes place, at the university where the student is enrolled.

The dissertation is generally written in France, unless certain clauses are specified in the agreement.

The establishment of an international co-supervision of thesis is an agreement that is generally only put in place with foreign institutions that refuse the principle of cotutelle, involving the issuance of a diploma jointly with the one issued by PSL after a single defense. This international co-supervision mechanism allows the doctoral student to benefit from a joint supervision in the absence of a diploma from each institution belonging to the co-directors.

European Doctorate

Enrollment conditions

This is an certification granted in addition to the PhD awarded by each institution when the following four conditions are met:
Authorization for a dissertation defense is granted based on the reports written by at least two professors belonging to two institutions of higher education at two member states within the European Community other than the institution hosting the defense.

At least one member of the jury belongs to an institution of higher education at a member state within the European Community other than the institution hosting the defense.

Part of the defense is given in a European Community language other than the national language(s) of the country where the defense is held.

This doctorate must have been prepared, in part, during a stay of at least one quarter in another European Community country.

Practical Information

To earn this certification, doctoral candidates must request it from the dissertation service after their defense.

They will be provided with an affidavit that can appear on the final doctoral dissertation.

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