PhD Program in Public Health Sciences for Universities of Applied Sciences (SSPH+UAS)

A collaboration of the Universities and the Universities of Applied Sciences in Switzerland supported by swissuniversities.


The PhD Program in Public Health Sciences for Universities of Applied Sciences (SSPH+UAS) aims to strengthen the research skills of people working at Universities of Applied Sciences in the domain of Public Health. It offers the possibility to make a PhD research project at one of the partner universities and to profit from further networking and training activities.

Call for new PhD candidates

Description of activities

All PhD students will be required to comply with all regulations and ordonnances defined by the selected university and enroll in one of the structured PhD programs offered at the partner universities. PhD students will be regularly evaluated and regular meetings will take place with the supervising committee.

The SSPH+UAS program will offer additional network and interaction workshops for both PhD students and supervisors and financial support to attend these workshops.

Potential candidates

As a minimum requirement, candidates should possess a university or UAS master’s degree in a research topic in a discipline pertaining to public health (health sciences, health economics, public health, nursing) and formally qualify for the registration at the chosen university. Such as:

  • Teachers and researchers working at UAS in the domains of health sciences, nursing science, health economics, public health or other.
  • Professionals working in the public health sector and wishing to acquire a doctoral degree through the program, since their profiles and job require advanced research competences.


The application dossier should include the following documents:

    • the research topic of interest
    • the financing of the PhD. Secured funding has to be shown for 3-4 years.
    • the time available for the PhD training (50% is minimal requirement)
    • the fit between the topic and the institutions involved in the PhD

Selection procedure

The Steering Committee of the program selects twice a year candidates which can profit from the program. The applications for this call will be evaluated in the beginning of November 2019 and the results will be communicated thereafter.

Selection criteria

  • Fit of the proposal with the SSPH+ goals
  • Coherence with the applied research profile of UAS· Quality of the proposed co-supervisor(s)
  • Fulfilment of requirements set by the chosen university to qualify as PhD candidate and as supervisor/co-supervisor.

Deadline for application

15 October 2019. Please send all documents as one pdf with the questionnaire as cover sheet to Anja Matthiä. Later applications will not be taken into account.


For any questions please contact the coordinator of the SSPH+UAS program Dr. Anja Matthiä.

Workshop for supervisors

As a supervisor for PhD students, you might wonder about how to better gain and apply the necessary skills for supervision. In this workshop, we will focus on these skills and determine expectations on both sides, as supervisor and as PhD student. Furthermore, we will reflect on good agreements for the supervision process and point out difficult situations.

Aims and Content
In this workshop we will

  • reflect on your own experiences during your Master or PhD and collect conclusions for the role as supervisor
  • get an insight in different skills as supervisor
  • increase consciousness about possible problems during a supervision process
  • point out the importance of clear defined agreements
  • practice how a meeting with a student could be designed (structure, question types etc.)
  • develop a guideline for forthcoming supervision meetings

Inputs, individual work, exchange in groups
The participants are encouraged to reflect on their own experiences in exchange with the group.

Date and Organisation
23 September 2019 10:00-17:30h Room ZL E0.01, ZHAW, Lagerstrasse 41/45 in Zurich.

Dagmar Engfer, MSc Geography, Coach and Consultant for Career Development, Certified Member of BSO (Berufsverband für Coaching, Supervision und Organisationsberatung), Lecturer and Trainer at universities and in different organisations and companies.

Registration until 31 July 2019: