TRANS-DOC: Transatlantic Doctoral Training

Panoramic view of North Campus across Lake LaSalle in early spring, with geese Photo: Douglas Levere

The TRANS-DOC Project

TRANS-DOC is a trans-Atlantic collaborative project between the Coimbra Group of Universities and a group of North American partners with support from the Erasmus Mundus programme of the European Union. TRANS-DOC stands for the TRANS-Atlantic aspect of the project as well as the TRANSferability aspect of DOCtoral training.

There is a growing consensus among policy makers and within the larger research community that the doctoral level will be crucial strategic areas in the future in which decision makers and research universities in the European Research Area and in North America must invest and perform well to ensure research excellence and promote research based innovation and entrepreneurship. There are several aspects to this renewed focus on the doctoral level, among which is the importance of creating mobility for young researchers to enable them to establish networks, but also to ensure dissemination and transferability of research and innovation. The ‘mushrooming’ of doctoral schools at research universities reflects a growing awareness of the importance of research training and the increased focus on development, innovation and entrepreneurship. This renewed and intensified focus on doctoral training has informed the main activities in the TRANS-DOC project:

1.     A survey of the main trends in the organization of doctoral training in Europe and North America;

2.    The development  of a residential interdisciplinary program for doctoral candidates. The residential program was developed under the leadership of Professor Janina Brutt-Griffler at the University at Buffalo, the State University of New York (SUNY) in July-August 2012 with the international group of doctoral candidates from partner universities. The initiative aims to provide a leading example of innovative ways of providing doctoral candidates with the knowledge and tools to enrich their research careers, thus enabling them to respond to the needs of a society in constant change.

Participating Universities: Aarhus University (DK), University of Alberta (CA), University at Buffalo, SUNY (USA), University of California, Davies (USA), University of Granada (ES), University of Graz (AT), University of Leuven (BE), York University (CA).

More information on the TRANS-DOC project can be found at:

Student Testimonials

Doctoral students from partner universities report their experience.