Who can apply?

The aim of this programme is to give excellent master students with a degree in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), business management and economics the opportunity to apply for PhD work in Data Science, carried out at Zurich University of Applied Sciences ZHAW and with a PhD degree awarded by the University of Zurich UZH.

The program is open for students with a MSc degree from a university or a university of applied sciences.

PhD students with a MSc degree from a university of applied sciences (including degrees awarded by ZHAW such as Master of Science in Engineering (MSE), MSc in Business Information Technology, MSc in Life Sciences with Specialization Applied Computational Life Sciences) will have to fulfil the convergence process, consisting of attending additional modules at UZH during their PhD studies which are worth in total 30 ECTS.

Modus Operandi

The student will carry out the PhD research and has a co-supervisor at ZHAW. In addition, the student will be supervised by a Professor at UZH. The UZH supervisor must be associated with the Faculty of Science (MNF). The student will be enrolled as PhD student in the PhD programme in data science at UZH. The duration of the PhD is typically 4 years.

How to apply

The application consists of two steps:

  1. In the first step an interested student has to find a co-supervisor at ZHAW. A research project has to be defined and a supervisor at UZH has to be identified. The student then applies to the ZHAW-UZH PhD Programme in Data Science

  2. After acceptance in step one, the second step consists of formal admission as PhD student at UZH within the scope of the UZH PhD programme in data science


  1. Identify co-supervisor at ZHAW, employment conditions, and research topic

  2. Identify supervisor at UZH Faculty of Science (MNF)

  3. Submit application documents (see below) to the scientific coordinator of the PhD programme: Frank-Peter Schilling (

  4. The coordinator will formally approve the documents and send them to the commission

  5. The application is evaluated by the commission of the ZHAW-UZH PhD programme, consisting of several representatives of ZHAW and UZH

  6. Provided the outcome of step 5 is positive, the student and their co-supervisor at ZHAW will be accepted to the ZHAW-UZH PhD programme in Data Science

  7. The student applies, with the recommendation of the commission, for enrolment in the UZH PhD programme in data science (see below)

Application Documents:

  • Application Form (PDF) (DOCX) (including funding information)

  • Appendices (required):

    • Project description (3-5 pages, including time plan) containing state of the art in the respective research field, relevant literature, and the scientific problem that will be tackled by the PhD work

    • CV of candidate (including publications, if any)

    • Master diploma (including grades)

    • CV of supervisor at ZHAW

PhD program at UZH

Accepted PhD candidates must also enrol in the PhD Programme in Data Science at University of Zurich UZH.

At UZH, the «Promotionsordnung für die Promotion an der Mathematisch-naturwissenschaftlichen Fakultät» applies.