UoM – CNRS Graduate Research Projects Scheme

Critical Dates

7 December 2021

Call for joint PhD proposals opens

15 February 2022

Applications due

March 2022

Results released


Following a sought-after call in 2019, the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) and UoM are calling for proposals to establish joint PhD projects. The first Graduate Research Projects scheme established the Melbourne – CNRS Network, with recruited joint PhD candidates undertaking research across a range of multidisciplinary projects. Candidates participating in the program are jointly supervised by UoM and CNRS Principal Investigators (PIs) and jointly enrolled at UoM and the CNRS affiliated French university.

Up to ten joint PhD projects will be funded across five separate pairs of PIs, comprising one PI from UoM and one from CNRS. Each of these five pairs will receive one    PhD scholarship from UoM (allocated to the UoM PI) and one PhD fellowship from CNRS (allocated  to the CNRS PI). These awards will also include travel and establishment support.

Those PhD candidates participating in the awarded Graduate Research Projects must meet the entry requirements and enrolment criteria to jointly enrol at both the UoM PI’s Faculty as well as that of the CNRS PI’s affiliated French university:

  • France: PhD candidates seeking to undertake a joint research project funded by the CNRS PI must commence the first year of their PhD at a host French University by December 2022.
  • Melbourne: PhD candidates seeking to undertake a joint research project funded by UoM must commence the first year of their PhD at UoM by March 2023.

This call is open to proposals from all areas of research.

This call for joint PhD project proposals is open to applications from academic supervisors only. If you are a prospective candidate interested in applying for a joint PhD, please refer to the information available here.


The supervisory team must comprise of at least two Principal Investigators (PIs), one from UoM and one from CNRS. The PIs must have capacity to serve as primary supervisors for two jointly enrolled PhD candidates.

UoM academics

UoM academics must be registered to supervise as per the Supervisor Eligibility and Registration Policy. Primary supervisors should be employed at UoM beyond the envisaged submission date of their PhD candidates (2027). If their employment contract does not extend beyond the submission date, then alternative arrangements must be in place, by either having:

  1. A named co-supervisor at Melbourne beyond the envisaged submission date of their PhD candidates (2027); or
  2. A letter of support from the respective Head of Department/Head of School detailing the arrangements in place to ensure continuity of supervision.

For more information, including forms for supervisor registration, please consult the information for supervisors section on the Graduate Research Hub.

Honorary employees whose primary academic affiliation is the University of Melbourne are eligible to lead an application as a PI if they are a registered Principal Supervisor at Melbourne, and either:

  1. Their primary employer has entered into a written agreement for this call to fund the Melbourne cash component of the collaborative activity; or 
  2. They participate at their own expense if they are otherwise unaffiliated (for example, they hold an emeritus position).

CNRS academics

CNRS-based PIs must hold accreditation to supervise PhD candidates. The PI’s affiliated university must also be able to support the negotiation of an agreement to facilitate the enrolment of joint PhD candidates.

Additional notes for all applicants

Previous recipients may not currently reapply to this scheme but may participate in joint PhD projects as co-supervisors.

Additional colleagues (including other partners in Australia, from non-CNRS affiliated institutions in France, or internationally) are not eligible to apply as primary supervisors, although they can participate in the co-supervision of joint PhD candidates. PIs cannot submit more than one proposal (for two joint PhD candidates) as part of this call but can co-supervise other projects.


Up to a total of five proposals will be funded, with each proposal supporting two joint PhD candidates. One of these candidates will have UoM as their Home Institution, and the other will have the French university affiliated with the CNRS PI as their Home Institution.

The Home Institution is where the candidate spends most of their research time and is likely to commence and conclude their degree. The Host Institution is where the candidate spends the remainder of their candidature as part of a research stay. Candidates should submit their thesis within three years of commencement and spend at least 12 months at each institution.

From UoM:

Tax-free scholarship, including a stipend, for each Melbourne-based candidate. Refer to the Graduate Research Scholarship page for full details.

Tuition fee waiver (scholarship) for both Melbourne and CNRS based candidates.

Access to a lump sum of up to $20,000 to support Melbourne-based candidates and UoM PIs for relevant activities, including:

  • Candidate travel
  • PI travel
  • Workshop costs or virtual collaboration expenses
  • Graduate recruitment

From CNRS:

Full PhD Grant for 3 years for each CNRS-based candidate.

5,000 EUR per year to support CNRS-based candidates and CNRS PIs for relevant activities, including:

  • Candidate travel
  • PI travel
  • Workshop costs or virtual collaboration expenses

How to apply

  1. Review the Guidelines

    Please review the guidelines before the submission.

  2. Submit the application to CNRS

    PIs from UoM and CNRS should submit one joint application, in English, via the dedicated CNRS website: https://www.cooperation.cnrs.fr

Supporting documents

CNRS-UoM Call Guidelines

CNRS Title Page


Melbourne contact

Kim Turner

Researcher Development Schemes, The University of Melbourne


CNRS contact

Eudora Berniolles

International Program Manager, International Relations Office (DERCI), CNRS