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Summer schools and research conferences for doctoral students

The LERU and U21 networks arrange summer schools and conferences for doctoral students. Current Lund University doctoral candidates (PhD students) apply through Lund University, which then nominates a limited number of candidates. Accepted students will partially be sponsored by Lund University.

LERU Doctoral Summer School

LERU Doctoral Summer School is organised annually and is hosted by one or more of the LERU members. The aim of the doctoral summer school is to provide doctoral candidates with professional and personal development opportunities. 

The theme of the summer school is of general professional development interest to doctoral candidates. By creating an international, intercultural and inter­disciplinary environment, the summer school provides a highly stimu­lating learning experience, which is of value to the participants’ future careers. 

The Summer school is to further strengthen ties within the network and to contribute to increasing the network’s reputation and influence in European policy setting in higher education. It is also a way to show that LERU universities are at the forefront of innovative practices in training new researchers.

LERU Doctoral Summer School 2021 – Online

Due to the uncertainties and possible travel restrictions in connection with Covid-19, the 2021 LERU Doctoral Summer School will be a fully online edition. Trinity College Dublin has redesigned the programme to tailor it specifically to a virtual audience.

The revised format has allowed to broaden the number of speakers and to include speakers who otherwise might not have been able to travel to participate.

Theme: Reasserting the Value of the Expert; The role of Doctoral Research and Researchers in Promoting the Importance of the ‘Expert’ in Europe
Dates: 8–13 August 2021
Host institution/venue: Trinity College Dublin is this year's host. The summer school is organised online.
Application deadline: Wednesday 7 April 2021
For whom: Doctoral candidates from all academic disciplines with an interest in this topic are invited to apply.

The focus of this summer school is on how the next generation of researchers can reclaim the role of the expert and convince people – including the suspicious and the cynical – as to the value of expertise and thus of research and researchers.

Format of the Doctoral Summer School

Each day of the Summer School will include a two-hour slot where invited speakers present their papers, followed by a discussion facilitated by a session host.

Each day will also include a one-hour slot with short presentations from summer school participants. In advance of the Summer School, each participant will sign up to speak about one of the selected themes. Each participant will prepare three PowerPoint slides and present them for a maximum of five minutes. After lunch, the participants will be divided in small groups and have workshop sessions of about 90 minutes–two hours.

The main focus is on the development of a policy paper and resources for early-career researchers. The completed programme is equivalent to 5 ECTS credits.

There is also an online social event every day, hosted by the Graduate Students' Union.

Preliminary timetable for the LERU Doctoral Summer School 2021

Entry requirements for applicants

  • You must be registered as a doctoral candidate at Lund University.
  • You should be approximately half way or at a later stage in your doctoral education.
  • You must be keenly motivated to work on the topic of the LERU Summer School as set out in the programme and description.
  • You must be able to participate in all activities in the programme.
  • You must be fluent in written and spoken English.

More information about the application process and the summer school – LERU blog

Required documentation

The application, in English, shall include:

  1. A statement of purpose of one A4 page. In the statement of purpose, you should motivate your interest in the topic of the summer school and give a description of what makes you a suitable representative for Lund University and the contribution you can make to the conference. It should also include the theme and title of the your own research project.
  2. A letter of recommendation from Head of Department
  3. A CV
  4. An excerpt from Ladok showing your admission date and accomplishments

The application deadline is Wednesday April 7, 2021. Applications with reference number U 2021/221 are to be sent by email to registrator [at] lu [dot] se.

Selection Criteria and Conditions

The selection criteria are the quality of the statement of purpose, your arguments for participation, their relevance to the theme of the conference and an overall judgement of your application, grades and CV.

Lund University conducts a selection procedure and nominates and ranks candidates. Places are then assigned by the organisers of the Doctoral Summer School at Trinity College Dublin and the LERU Doctoral Studies Community steering group after consideration of all applications. The aim is to achieve a balanced representation with regard to disciplines, gender and university affiliation with due consideration of rank order and merit.

More information about LERU and contact details

LERU Office, Leuven, Belgium
Veerle Van Kerckhove, veerle [dot] vankerckhove [at] leru [dot] org

Research Services Office, Lund University
Cecilia Gagné, cecilia [dot] gagne [at] fs [dot] lu [dot] se

U21 summer activities for doctoral students

Summer activities for 2021 to be announced.