How to become a ViDSS student

ViDSS students benefit from the supervisory structure of the Doctoral School, take part in cohort-related activities and can apply for additional funding for research and travel expenses. To join the ViDSS, doctoral candidates have to

Public presentation at the Faculty within the first year

For candidates who have not yet successfully passed the public presentation at the Faculty, membership in the ViDSS will initially be temporary for nine months, after which they should complete the public presentation at the Faculty. The ViDSS may extend this deadline by up to three months.

Participation in activities

Student members of the ViDSS are expected to regularly submit progress reports and to participate regularly, at least once per year on average, in the events of the ViDSS (kick off retreat, workshops, brownbag sessions etc.). Student members are also expected to join a PhD Club – disciplinary or thematic groups of doctoral candidates who meet monthly to discuss their work in progress – and present their work in the form of a departmental or faculty-wide lecture or at an international conference at least once during the first three years of doctoral studies.



  • Do all doctoral candidates have to join the ViDSS?

    No. Membership of the ViDSS is voluntary for supervisors and students. It is still possible to complete the doctoral programme in Social Sciences without joining the ViDSS. Please check the different routes to a doctoral degree in the social sciences.

  • I have questions about my application for admission to the doctoral programme in Social Sciences. Can the ViDSS administration team help me to submit my application for admission to the doctoral programme?

    No. The ViDSS is not responsible for the admission to the doctoral programme. Applications for admission to the doctoral programme in Social Sciences have to be submitted to the Research Services and Career Development service unit. The processing of an application may take several weeks. Due to administrative reasons, candidates cannot be informed about the status of their application during this process.

  • I have submitted the documents for the admission to the doctoral programme. Can I already apply for admission to the ViDSS?


  • None of my supervisors is on the list. Can I join the ViDSS?

    No. To join the ViDSS as a student member, doctoral candidates need to have at least one supervisor who is a member of the ViDSS.
    Only supervisors who are employed with the University of Vienna (subject to an employment contract of 50 % or more) can join the ViDSS. Encouraging students to choose at least one supervisor employed with the University of Vienna aims at fostering the integration of doctoral candidates at the University’s departments. The “internal” supervisor also serves as the main contact person if there are questions or problems regarding a doctoral project. For a list of participating supervisors incl. their research areas, please click here.

  • I am already at an advanced stage of my doctoral research. Does it make sense for me to join the ViDSS?

    Yes. Several of the activities and funding schemes organised by the ViDSS aim to support doctoral candidates at an advanced stage of their research. Some examples are:

    • ViDSS Research Funds for research-related costs, travel expenses or proofreading
    • ViDSS Final Year Fund
    • ViDSS Completion Scholarship and ViDSS Short-term Finishing Contracts
    • PhD Clubs
    • Transferable skills and coaching
    • Career-oriented events and support measures

    All funding schemes and many activities are available to ViDSS students only. The ViDSS Alumni Programme is also open only to graduates from the doctoral programme in Social Sciences who have been members of the ViDSS. Doctoral candidates who have a supervisor who is a member of the ViDSS only have to submit the online application form to become members of the Doctoral School.

  • How long can a doctoral candidate participate in the ViDSS?

    Doctoral candidates can be members of the ViDSS until they obtain their doctoral degree. Please note that doctoral candidates may only apply for funding schemes within a specified period after the successful publication at the Faculty and may need to provide evidence of study progress.