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2017 Call for PhD Scholarships

Latest News

10.11.2017 - Final Results of FCT 2017 Call for PhD Studentships
903 studentships have been recommended for funding.
See the results by evaluation panel

19.07.2017 - Results of FCT 2017 Call for PhD Studentships, after evaluation
900 studentships have been recommended for funding.


Important Dates:

  • Applications: 1-31 March 2017, 5pm (Lisbon Time)

Purpose and Overview

With this call, FCT aims to support graduates who wish to pursue research leading to a PhD degree. This call is open to both Portuguese and foreign applicants, across all fields of research.

PhD Scholarships support graduates who comply with the requirements to apply for PhD studies and who wish to carry out research towards this degree. Scholarships have a maximum duration of four years, and must run for a minimum of three consecutive months. The work programme may be carried out at Portuguese or foreign institutions.

Read about changes in relation to previous calls here (in Portuguese)

Who Can Apply

Portuguese citizens and citizens of EU member states may apply. Citizens of other countries may also apply, as long as they are resident in Portugal or are citizens of countries with which Portugal has exchange agreements.

Only citizens (Portuguese or foreign) with long-term resident status in Portugal may apply for scholarships with work programmes to be carried out totally or partially at foreign institutions.

Applicants need to:

  • Have completed a Masters degree upon application, or alternatively:
    • Hold a first degree and a highly relevant academic or scientific curriculum, acknowledged by the legally capable scientific body of the university where the applicant wishes to be admitted, attesting to the applicant's ability to carry out studies leading to a PhD degree;
    • Hold an acknowledged academic, scientific or professional curriculum attesting to the applicant's capacity to carry out studies leading to a PhD degree, provided by the legally capable scientific body of the university where the applicant wishes to be admitted.
  • Not have held any prior FCT-funded PhD scholarship, of any duration.


Selected applicants will be awarded monthly stipends and supplementary support, which may include tuition fees, relocation costs, travel awards and health insurance, whenever applicable, as detailed in the Regulations.

The scholarships to be awarded in this call will be funded by the Portuguese state budget, through the Ministry for Science, Technology and Higher Education and, when applicable, by the European Social Fund within the 2014-2020 Strategic Framework.

How and when to apply

The call for applications is open from 1 to 31 March 2017 (5pm, Lisbon time).

Applications should be submitted online. Only one proposal per applicant is allowed.

For further information on how to apply and detailed guidance notes, applicants are advised to download the Notice of Call, the Application Guide, the Evaluation Guide, Research Fellowship Holder Statute, and the Regulations.


Proposals will be evaluated by evaluation panels specifically set up for this call, based on the Field of Sacience (FOS) areas defined in the Frascati Manual. Applicants will be awarded grades from 1.000 to 5.000, for each of the following three criteria:

  • i) merit of the applicant;
  • ii) merit of the work programme;
  • iii) merit of the host conditions.

The relative weights of three criteria are 40%, 30%, 30%, respectively.

The merit of applicants for PhD Scholarships will be assessed on two sub-criteria: core grade (reflecting academic achievements) and personal curriculum.

Applicants’ personal curricula will be assessed in an integrated manner, taking a global view of scientific and professional achievements. Thus, motivation and reference letters (required documents) and the various dimensions of the curriculum that may demonstrate relevant scientific and professional backgrounds will be important contributions.

Assessment of the work plan and of the host institution conditions will be based on the qualitative evaluation by the review panel.

Applicants will be ranked according to weighted average of the scores for each criterion.

The information on this page does not replace or override any requirements set forth in the Regulations or the Notice of Call