KI - CSC Programme

The China Scholarship Council (CSC) and Karolinska Institutet (KI) signed an agreement in August, 2015. The agreement entitles KI to receive up to 30 doctoral students, 20 post-doc fellows, 5 senior visiting researchers, and 5 master degree students supported by CSC scholarships per year during 2016-2020. For the master degree students, the scholarship recipients will also receive a CSC-KI joint support to cover tuition fees.

The KI-CSC program is exempt from the new regulation in the Higher Education Ordinance regarding time limitation of financing doctoral studies with scholarships.

Current support from CSC to doctoral students is SEK12,000/month, for postdoc fellows SEK13,000/month for a period of 6-24 months, for visiting researchers SEK13,000/month for 3-12 months. KI supervisors for post-docs and registered doctoral students must top up the CSC stipend to the minimum level required by KI with either a complementary scholarship or by part time employment (

Note, the CSC scholarship is sought and awarded to the Chinese applicant, the KI host/supervisor provides the opportunity and project with which the applicant can apply for a scholarship.

Note 2, CSC only accepts post-doc scholarship applications approved by the employer of the applicant. Thus, the applicant should have received her or his doctoral degree, and be employed in China on the date of application submission.

Information for potential KI hosts/supervisors

  • Before October 10 (the deadline has been extended from October 5 to October 10), interested hosts at KI submit a one-page intent of research hosting to KI international office (use the template provided below). These project descriptions will be listed at the CSC website prior to the CSC 2018 Recruitment Fairs in mid-October, in which KI representatives will participate. Interested KI hosts must get approval from their department chair to host a CSC scholarship recipient before submitting the project description. KI supervisors for potential doctoral students must have Green light from their department to submit a project description. Approval/Green light form must be submitted together with the intent of research hosting. No project descriptions will be published on the CSC website without an approval/Green light.
  • From October 2018 to January 2019, students, post-docs, and visiting scholars will contact potential KI supervisors or hosts according to their research interests. KI hosts are strongly recommended to have direct communications with applicant’s references, and to conduct video interviews for the evaluation and judgement of applicant’s scientific competence and language skills.
  • If a KI supervisor is contacted by a potential doctoral student without having a project description posted on the CSC website, the supervisor must urgently apply for a Green light before taking the discussion further with the potential student.
  • Before the end of January 2019, if a mutual agreement is reached, the supervisor/host will issue a letter of invitation together with a detailed research plan for the research training, usually 2-4 pages. Importantly, the invitation letter must be co-signed by the head of department and a copy of the letter of invitation must be sent to KI international office for documentation and for KI’s endorsement to CSC. CSC will only consider applicants with invitation letters included in the official KI endorsement list.
  • KI supervisors for registered doctoral students and post-docs must top up the CSC stipend to the minimum income level required by KI (
  • According to the new regulation for doctoral student admission at KI, the student must be admitted to doctoral studies and get their student visa before starting at KI. A period on a visiting researcher permit before admittance is no longer allowed. However, the potential student may be invited for a short visit to the lab on a visitor’s visa. If your potential doctoral candidate has not got a qualified English proficiency score (TOEFL 90 IBT, ≥20 on the written section; or IELTS 6.5, no section below 5.5) or does not hold a master diploma issued from an English-speaking country or Sweden, it would be advisable that the prospective supervisor encourages the candidate to take TOEFL or IELTS test as soon as possible. This is because, once the scholarship is granted, the candidate will need the English proficiency score for the eligibility assessment of doctoral study entry at KI. More information about admission and entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

It should also be noted that it is not advisable for KI supervisors/hosts to issue more letters of invitation than their actual hosting capacities.

Detailed instructions for KI hosts for doctoral students (PDF)

Detailed instructions for KI hosts for post-docs and visiting researchers (PDF)

Information for Master's students

Information regarding KI-CSC scholarship program for Master’s studies will be available shortly on the KI Global Master’s web site

Information for prospective doctoral students, post-docs and visiting scholars

  • From October 2018 to February 1 2019, students, post-docs, and visiting scholars should identify and contact potential KI supervisors or hosts according to their research interests from, but not limited to, the list of KI hosts published at CSC website.
  • CSC only accepts post-doc scholarship application approved by the employer of the applicant.

Detailed instructions for Chinese applicants for doctoral studies, post-docs and visiting researchers  (PDF)

Later stage procedure for CSC application and selection outcome 

  • During mid-February 2019: With the letter of invitation and a research plan (for doctoral students, post-docs, and visiting scholars) or the letter of admission (for master degree students), the applicants submit their online applications for CSC scholarships at the CSC website under the category of CSC-KI collaborative project (国家留学基金委与卡罗林斯卡医学院合作项目). Upon completing their online application, the applicants submit their hardcopy applications with all required documents to their own universities/institutions for institutional endorsement/recommendation. After going through institutional endorsement procedures, the universities/institutions will mail the hardcopy applications to CSC. Notably, CSC must receive the complete applications (both online and hardcopy applications) by early March 2019. Hence, it is highly recommendable that all applicants complete online application early, and proceed to institutional endorsement early.
  • For the applicants who presently are in Sweden, they can submit their applications through Education Section of the Chinese Embassy in Stockholm.
  • KI collects copies of all issued letters of invitation or global master’s degree programme admission to prepare an official list of the applicants having received a letter of invitation or admission. The list will be sent to CSC in early March 2019. Only applicants on this list will be considered by CSC.
  • CSC organizes independent evaluations of all submitted applications during late March to early May, 2019.
  • CSC informs applicants’ universities/institutions, as well as KI of the final outcome of the applications in late May, 2019.
  • KI International Relations Office informs KI supervisors/hosts, as well as admissions office of global master’s degree programmes of the outcomes of CSC scholarship applications upon receiving the notifications from CSC.
  • KI supervisors/hosts and corresponding CSC scholarship awardees plan the doctoral education or visiting research at KI. Potential doctoral students must apply for assessment of eligibility as soon as possible after receiving notice of awarded scholarship. Once eligibility is established, the potential doctoral student applies for admittance to doctoral studies at KI following the instructions for “Admission procedure in the case of exemption from the announcement requirement” (, and finally after being admitted applies for a student visa.
  • CSC-funded master’s degree students should contact the admissions office of the global master’s degree programmes for information about enrolment and housing assistance.


Template of an Intent of research hosting (project description)


Dr Katarina Drakenberg, KI international coordinator for China

Associate professor Nailin Li, KI academic coordinator for China