Co-supervised PhD Thesis (Co-tutelle)

Co-Supervised PhD Thesis programme is a type of internationalization specifically aimed at PhD students, and leads to the issuing of a double doctoral degree which is valid in two different countries. This programme requires an alternate and approximately equivalent research period at the Vita-Salute San raffaele University and the host university.
The “Co-Supervised PhD Thesis”, written under the supervision of two supervisors, is defended in a single disputation at Home or Host Institution.

The Vita-Salute San Raffaele University has already activated numerous co-supervised PhD Thesis agreements with several University: l’ Ecole des Haute Etudes en Sciences Sociales, l’Université Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, La Pontificia Università Lateranense – PUL, la Ecole Normal Superieur e l’ Université François Rabelais, Tours

Each Co-Supervised programme usually takes place within the framework of a preliminary general agreement (intergovernmental or bilateral between two universities) and on an ad personam agreement (Individual Co-supervised Agreement) that binds the partner universities.
At the moment intergovernmental cooperation for co-supervised programme are in force with:

  • Francia (Accordo Quadro 02/1998 tra CRUI e CPU),
  • Germania (Accordo Quadro 11/2000 tra CRUI e HRK),
  • Spagna (Accordo Quadro 06/1998 tra CRUI e CRUE)
  • Svizzera (Accordo Quadro 01/2003 tra CRUI e CRUS).

If you intend to start a co-supervised PhD thesis programme with Universities belonging to one of the above mentioned countries it is possible to negotiate and sign directly the specific Individual Co-supervised PhD thesis Agreement (ICA).

Nevertheless, the University may sign co-supervised agreements also with Universities outside of the countries listed above. In this case it is usually necessary to draw up an International Agreement for Educational and Scientific Cooperation complemented with a draft of the Individual Co-supervised PhD thesis Agreement for the candidate to be signed whenever a student is willing to activate the exchange.
Upon approval of the PhD programme Committee and the Department Board of both institutions, the agreements can be send for signature by the Rectors.

The co-supervised agreement can be activated for PhD students enrolled in the 1st year of the course. The Faculty Council may also authorize the activation of a thesis co-supervised for PhD students enrolled in the 2nd year of the course if there are particular scientific interests.

How to start a thesis co-tutelage

It is necessary that the PhD Office is immediately involved in the stipulation of a thesis co-tutelle agreement. This agreement, in fact, involves many administrative aspects that are followed, as well as by the PhD office, also by the Legal Affairs Office. Anyone – student or teacher – interested in receiving further information or in concluding a thesis co-tutelle agreement is therefore requested to promptly contact the PhD Office (segreteria.dottorati@unisr.it , 09-91751552/553).

In the same way, the competent Offices of the partner University must also be involved in the drafting of the agreement.

First of all, the student – or his / her tutor – must already have scientific relationships with a researcher or research group of the partner institution, who must be available to act as tutor for the student.

Note that, once started the thesis co-tutelage, the student will be enrolled at both universities but will pay taxes only in the institute of first registration.

It is recommended to inform yourself in advance about the requirements established by the partner Institution to start a co-protection, to avoid unpleasant inconveniences. For example, many institutions, unlike UniSR, set a deadline within which the co-tutelage project must be submitted, or require that it be approved by a special committee.