The Europaeum Scholars Programme is a world-class training programme that is alongside an existing doctorate. It is designed for those exceptional students who have the capacity and the desire to shape the future of Europe for the better. It runs for two years alongside Scholars’ existing doctoral studies and is multi-disciplinary, multi-university, and multi-locational and focused on contemporary European policy.

Programme update

COHORT 2: In 2020, 34 Scholars were appointed, following an intensive selection process and they embarked on their journey in Spring 2020. Their group projects will be presented at a big conference n Madrid in early October. You can read more about the Scholars here 

COHORT 3: We will announce a new application round for the 3rd cohort (2022/23) this summer, for a deadline in early December.

The prime aim of the Europaeum Scholars Programme is to engage academic thinking with policy making and to produce a new generation of leaders, thinkers and researchers with the capacity to meet the cultural, political and societal challenges facing Europe today.

Scholars attend eight modules, taken over two years, alongside their existing degrees.  Being multi-locational and multi-institutional the programme draws upon the resources of all the Europaeum university members.  Teaching is by Europaeum affiliated academics together with a wide range of external experts and leading thinkers. Scholars visit key European and international institutions where they learn about how they function in conversation with practitioners and policy makers.  There are opportunities to directly engage with people facing some of the most difficult circumstances in contemporary society.

At its core, the Scholars programme involves multidisciplinary team work engaged in problem solving within the context of contemporary Europe. Scholars work intensively in small groups on a policy project that they identify, design and develop under the guidance of a mentor.  Each team’s policy recommendations are judged by a panel of external experts, and there is the potential for publication of the best.

Each student is fully funded by a scholarship worth €10,000 per annum for two years.  This covers full accommodation, travel, food and all tuition.

The Programme started in April 2020 and the provisional schedule was as below. However, Covid-19 has not allowed this group to meet in person yet, so we have had to hold them online. It is hoped that physical modules can resume at some point in 2021.  Scholars participating in the Programme are expected to attend all modules in full. Dates for each module will be published as soon as possible.

1 OXFORD (Spring)
Introduction to Europe, Leadership &

Societal Problems

5 LEIDEN/DEN HAAG (Spring) tbc
Law in Europe
Policy Formation & European Institutions
Ethical Leadership & Global Governance
3 BERLIN or GENEVA (Autumn)
The Transatlantic Dimension
7 HELSINKI (Autumn)
Intensive Project Work &

Policy Evaluation

4 KRAKOW (Winter)
Skills & Project Development
8 Final Conference (November)
Scholar Presentations to the Policy World & Europaeum Alumni Gathering

The Programme will introduce a syllabus in terms of broad topics for certain modules while leaving sufficient flexibility to incorporate the interests of the specific individuals chosen to be part of the cohort. The contents of the modules are structured so that there is progression through the leadership, ethical, and training strands of the programme, as well as enabling organic group project development.

Each module will last between 3 and 5 days. Project work will increase proportionally throughout the modules. Applicants should make sure they know about the commitment that comes with being on the programme. More information about this can be found in our FAQs (pdf).

Why Apply?

The Europaeum Scholars Programme offers a unique opportunity to be part of a network of some of the brightest people of your generation who are interested in shaping the future of Europe. You will be able to connect your doctoral research with the world of policy making, to draw on the combined resources of seventeen of Europe’s leading universities, to learn how to work as a team, to learn what leadership entails, and to understand the complexity of policy making. You will learn more about yourself. You will have the opportunity to visit key European institutions and learn about how they function in conversation with leading academics, practitioners, and policy makers aiming to tackle societal and cultural challenges. You will directly engage with people facing some of the most difficult circumstances in contemporary society and you will emerge with knowledge and a set of skills and contacts equal to any group anywhere.

Key benefits include

  • the experience of working in at least three other European universities in addition to your own
  • the opportunity to form professional networks with scholars and academics from leading European universities
  • the opportunity to learn from a range of professionals shaping policy in Europe and academics who engage with them
  • the experience of multi-disciplinary teamwork and problem solving on issues of contemporary European significance
  • the experience of formulating a policy recommendation and presenting it to stakeholders
  • the opportunity to develop many of the key skills required for a successful career in either the public or private sectors or to influence these sectors while pursuing an academic career
  • training sessions which build on and cross-fertilise the best practice from current professional and academic training
  • the ability to stand out in the increasingly saturated job market for graduates by sending a clear signal to potential employers of your ability to work as a member of a team and to analyse contemporary European problems

Testimonials from three alumni of the Programme:

The Europaeum has been a defining part of my PhD journey. A valuable learning process; I have learned much about myself, other people, collaboration, Europe, history, politics – and I could keep going! It has been full of ups and downs, frustrations and successes. I would go back and do it all again.

The Europaeum was not something I expected to be part of my PhD, but I have felt extraordinarily lucky to have been part of it, and the insights it has given me into contemporary European issues and academic engagement, plus the opportunity to travel and meet people from across Europe, has been an unexpected highlight of the last two years.

I had a great time meeting interesting people, listening to a range of different topics from different experts as well as learning new things. Though group work could be tough, I realised in the final module how it had shaped me, and how I had to reach out to experts and others outside the project for more info which made me work outside of my academic bubble.

Europaeum Scholars will be people who “think for themselves but not just of themselves”. They should have the desire to shape the future of Europe for the better. And they should have the potential to do so. They will combine academic excellence with a clear commitment to promoting the public good and have the personal skills to take on leadership roles. Highly motivated and well-organised, they will have a strong interest in taking the lessons that can be learned from academic research to the public arena. Enrolled on a doctoral programme at a Europaeum university, Scholars will be pursuing research related to the study of Europe (broadly defined), typically, but by no means exclusively, in one of the following subjects: Anthropology, Area Studies, Cultural Studies, Economics, European Studies, Gender Studies, Geography, History, International Political Economy, International Relations, Languages, Law, Literary Studies, Management, Media Studies, Political or Moral Philosophy, Political Science, or Religious Studies. They may be studying a joint degree that partially falls into Humanities or Social Sciences.

All applicants must have the support of their home university and their supervisor. Candidates should have two years left on their doctoral programme and have an excellent command of English.

To read our selection criteria please click here

Overview of Modules for Cohort 1, 2018-19
Please note that the details below are no indication or guarantee of the same topics being covered again for a future module, as they are very much tailored to focus on current affairs, the interests of the cohort, the focus of the group projects and they also draw on local expertise. With only 8 modules and twice as many member institutions we try to go to as many places as possible, so locations and therefore local resources and expertise will differ and may or may not be repeated in the future.

Module 1, Oxford | January 2018

The main focus of the module was to provide an introduction to key policy challenges facing Europe, the ethical challenges of leadership, and getting to know one another and working together.

Plenary sessions on Europe Today, and Brexit & Europe, Multi-Disciplinary Perspectives on Research Problems, Doughnut Economics, Europe & the World: Perspectives from Brussels
Talks about being an MP/MEP; Empathy; Ethics & Public Policy; Europe: Where Next?
Group discussions 
on the topics raised in the plenary sessions
Workshop with the Oxford Character Project about Altruism and Leadership

Module 2, Brussels | March 2018

The main focus of the module was getting insights into different European and international organisations based in Brussels and to hear from a range of stakeholders about current policy discussions. Scholars pitched their project ideas to their groups and by the end of the module every group had agreed on the project they were going to undertake.

Plenary sessions on Speechwriting and Communication in Europe; NATO; European Security
Talks about the UN; Challenges in Europe; Discussion Panel on Migration; Populism
Group discussions about possible projects
Visits to the European Parliament; International Red Cross Office; House of European History; European Political Strategy Centre; Brussels Town Hall

Module 3, Geneva | June 2018

Module three focussed on three areas: professional skills training, learning more about two key international organisations based in Geneva, and developing the group projects.

Talks about the UN and institutional reform; the SDGs; Media branding and online media profiles; Experts/Expertise and the Policy Academic
Training sessions on Multilateral Negotiating Skills and Professional Report Writing
Group work developing the projects
Visits to UN and WTO

Module 4, Leiden/Den Haag | September 2018

Module four also had a strong emphasis on training: this time a mixture of academic and professional training, some of which was linked to the group projects.

Plenary Session by Professor Jaap de Hoop Scheffer
Specialist talks linked to the group projects
Professional and academic training sessions on Organising an academic workshop or conference; Media Training; Abstract Writing Workshop; Academic Article Publishing and Videography
Group work developing the projects
Workshop with the Oxford Character Project on collaborative leadership
Visits to Leiden City Hall with talk by the Mayor & Policy-coordinators; International IDEA; Humanity House

Module 5, Barcelona | January 2019

The talks in this module largely focussed on giving voice to those who are affected by policy—those who have sought asylum or those working to help marginalised members of society.

Plenary session on Challenges to Democracy in the Twenty-First Century
Talks about Policy Making in Theory and Practice; Euroscepticism; Seeking Asylum in Europe; Refugees; Gang-affected Women; Energy Poverty; Challenges of Teaching in Europe’s Political Environment
Group work developing the projects. Some groups met with specialists to discuss their project ideas and receive feedback on them.
Workshop on Ethical Dilemmas in Leadership
Visit to the Catalan Parliament

Module 6, Berlin | March/April 2019

The media landscape has a profound impact on our politics, so this was the focus of module 6.

Talks about Media Pluralism in Europe; Social Media and Democracy; The Threat of Corruption to Economic and Political Development and Security; Approaches to online communication and politics; Speechwriting and Politics; A life in publishing
Group work on the projects
Training on Public Speaking
Visits to Bundestag and Axel Springer Verlag

Module 7, Prague | June 2019

This module was designed to examine topics we had not had a chance to and to look at other topics afresh from an East-Central European perspective.

Plenary lecture on Protests for Catalonian Independence and the Spanish response
Talks about Youth Engagement with Civil Society; The 2019 EU Elections and the EU Parliament; New Political Parties and a New Politics?; Changing Attitudes in the Czech Republic; Rule of Law in Europe
Discussion panel on EU and European Neighbourhood/perspectives of accession states
Group work on the projects. Any groups who had not yet had a chance to receive feedback from an expert in their field had a session with an expert at this module

Module 8, Oxford | September 2019

The final module focussed on finalising the project work and providing professional training that will help the Scholars as they look beyond their towards the job market. Each group presented their policy recommendation(s) to a panel who will judge which project (or projects) deserves to win the prize sponsored by the Financial Times.

Training on aspects of job applications, career planning, grant applications, publishing, and knowledge exchange.

Ethical workshop on resisting institutional pressures.

Group work finalising the projects and policy recommendations.

Presentations by the scholars to a panel of judges from the policy world

I am grateful for the positive impact that this is having on me. I am learning from every single exchange and dialogue… it is a different way of learning together and engaging with our everyday world… learning to cultivate ourselves to openness, friendship and engagement.

There have been many benefits of the Programme … working with and befriending an international group of other PhD students; receiving training that will support my career development; networking and debating with leading scholars and practitioners; and visiting various NGOs, research centres and policy institutions across Europe.

It is really an incredible experience: gaining a real multidisciplinary experience, improving my skills in so many fields, meeting so many interesting people and so having an extraordinary opportunity for networking … Last but not least, the teamwork presents the most essential part of this all: putting all the experience and knowledge gained into practice, combined with ethical and moral issues…  To be honest, I am really overwhelmed!