Applying to the Zurich Graduate School in Geography


All doctoral students must have a Masters or Diploma degree in a subject and from an institution acceptable to University and Faculty regulations. There are no other restrictions on admission.


Doctoral students are recruited to the Department of Geography in two main ways:

  1. as doctoral students paid by central university funds attached to individual units and
  2. to work on third-party funded research projects.

In both of these cases, doctoral students are recruited by individual professors or by the principal investigators (PI) of research projects in agreement with the unit’s head. 

The complete process of registration involves stages at the University, Faculty and Graduate School level and is described here. All PhDs in the Geography/ESS Graduate School are "Track Two".

If you are a new PhD student commencing a degree in Geography/ ESS then you need to fill out a supervision agreement (DOCX, 60 KB) as part of the registration process. Only after doing this, we will issue you with a letter admitting you to the Graduate School.

Equal opportunities and awareness

All those with an appropriate Masters degree, regardless of sex, race or disability will be equally considered for the Graduate School. International doctoral candidates are encouraged to attend German language courses early in their studies, as we believe this increases the possibilities for integration of doctoral candidates in the department and the wider community.

Candidates who wish to complete a PhD part-time due to family-related reasons might face difficulties in complying with the timetabled course attendance, or in completing international sojourns. Such topics will be discussed within the supervisory network, to ensure that due consideration is given to the development of a curriculum which increases, and does not decrease, opportunities. With the University a flourishing programme of networks and events already exists, supported through the Abteilung Gleichstellung – we will ensure that doctoral students are made aware of these opportunities and encouraged to participate if they wish.