Establishment of a doctoral position at GPH

The first step in the admission process is to apply for establishment of a doctoral position. The application is evaluated by the Doctoral Board at the Department of Global Public Health. The prospective main supervisor submits the application three weeks in advance of the next board meeting.

The purpose is to assure the quality of the research project, the supervision constellation and the doctoral education environment.

Application for establishment of a doctoral position at GPH

The prospective main supervisor applies by submitting the following documents:

  • Establishment form
  • Research plan (7 pages)
  • Green light application at the Department of Global Public Health signed by the main supervisor and research group or team leader before submitting it to the department (länk till doctoral forms)
  • CVs of all the supervisors (max 2 pages per supervisor)
  • Financial plan
  • If exemption from advertising: a support letter explaining the reasons for exemption
  • Agreement on funding of doctoral education (external employment)” or “Samverkansavtal” is required for student who are funded by industry, private clinics or other regions than Stockholm region

The documents can be signed via EduSign and submitted by mail to three weeks in advance of the next board meeting. More information about the deadlines can be found at Doctoral board at GPH | Karolinska Institutet (

If mandatory attachments are not included or instructions not followed, the doctoral board might not review the application.

Doctoral board at the department

The doctoral board at the department meets twice per semester and evaluates if all the requirements to establish a doctoral position are met.

The doctoral board evaluates that:

  • The scientific project is viable and suitable as a doctoral project
  • The principal supervisor has an approved green light application
  • The supervisory constellation is relevant to the project
  • The doctoral student can be offered a sound doctoral study environment
  • Ethical permits (if required) are in place or planned

See the evaluation form (pdf) that lists all the topics assessed by the board. Please note that the overall aim and specific questions should be relevant from a public health perspective.

It is also assessed whether an exception from the requirement to advertise the doctoral position is in line with the regulations.

An exception to advertise may be approved if:

  • the prospective doctoral student is to study within the framework of employment by an employer other than the higher education institution (e.g. Region Stockholm)
  • the prospective doctoral student has already begun his/her third-cycle studies at another higher education institution, or
  • there are similar special grounds – KI defines special grounds as positions where the student already has been selected in a competitive recruitment process.


The prospective supervisor will receive a decision, for example accepted, conditionally accepted (changes are needed) or rejected within one week after the meeting. If needed, the supervisor will be offered the possibility to revise the plan within the two following weeks.

Rejection decision

Reasons for rejecting the application to establish of a doctoral position will be given in writing. Once the reasons have been addressed, a new application may be submitted.

If the department for the position changes, the new department must be notified of the previous decision even though the department is also required to carry out their own assessment.