FCT Call for Individual PhD and Post-doctoral Fellowships in Portugal

Purpose and Overview

With this call, FCT aims to support graduates who wish to pursue research leading to a PhD degree in Portuguese or foreign research centres, and post-doctoral researchers wishing to pursue cutting-edge projects at Portuguese research centres. This call is open to both Portuguese and foreign applicants, across all fields of research.

Post-doctoral Fellowships are available for PhD holders, preferentially with less than six years post-doctoral experience, to carry out research in established Portuguese research centres. Fellowships have a maximum duration of six years (upon mid-term approval), and must run for a minimum of three consecutive months.

PhD Studentships support graduates who comply with the requirements to apply for PhD studies and who wish to carry out research towards this degree. Studentships have a maximum duration of four years, and must run for a minimum of three consecutive months. The work programme may be carried out at Portuguese or foreign institutions.

Who Can Apply

Portuguese citizens, and citizens of EU member states may apply. Citizens of other countries may also apply, as long as they are resident in Portugal or are citizens of countries with which Portugal has exchange agreements.

Only citizens (Portuguese or foreign) with long-term resident status in Portugal may apply for studentships or fellowships with work programmes to be carried out totally or partially at foreign institutions.

Foreign researchers who are non-residents in Portugal may apply to post-doctoral fellowships, as long as their application is supported by a Portuguese institution and the research project is to be carried out entirely in Portugal.

Applicants to PhD Studentships need to:

  • Have completed a Masters degree upon application, or alternatively:
    • Hold a first degree and a highly relevant academic ou scientific curriculum, acknowledged by the legally capable scientific body of the university where the applicant wishes to be admitted, attesting to the applicant's ability to carry out studies leading to a PhD degree;
    • Hold an acknowledged academic, scientific or professional curriculum attesting to the applicant's capacity to carry out studies leading to a PhD degree, provided by the legally capable scientific body of the university where the applicant wishes to be addmited.
  • Not have held any prior FCT-funded PhD studentship, of any type or duration.
  • Not have been selected for a PhD studentship in an FCT PhD Programme.

Applicants to post-doctoral fellowships are required to:

  • Have completed their PhD at the time of application.
  • Not have held any previous FCT-funded post-doctoral fellowship, regardless of the duration.

What is included

Selected applicants will be awarded monthly stipends and supplementary support, which may include tuition fees, relocation costs, travel awards and health insurance, whenever applicable, as detailed in the Regulations.

The studentships and fellowships to be awarded in this call will be funded by the Portuguese state budget, through the Ministry for Science, Technology and Higher Education and, when applicable, by the European Social Fund within the 2014-2020 Strategic Framework.


Proposals will be evaluated by evaluation panels specifically set up for this call, based on the Field of Sacience (FOS) areas defined in the Frascati Manual. Applicants will be awarded grades from 1.000 to 5.000, for each of the following three criteria:

  • merit of the applicant;
  • merit of the work programme;
  • merit of the host conditions.

For PhD Studentships, the relative weights of three criteria are 40%, 30%, 30%, respectively; for post-doctoral fellowships, the relative weights are 40%, 40%, 20%, respectively.

The merit of applicants for PhD Studentships will be assessed on two sub-criteria: core grade (reflecting academic achievements) and personal curriculum.

The merit of applicants for post-doctoral fellowships will be assessed according to the single criterium of personal curriculum (which reflects the applicant's scientific and professional achievements).

Applicants’ personal curricula will be assessed in an integrated manner, taking a global view of scientific and professional achievements. Thus, motivation and reference letters (required documents) and the various dimensions of the curriculum that may demonstrate relevant scientific and professional backgrounds will be important contributions.

Assessment of the work plan and of the host institution conditions will be based on the qualitative evaluation by the review panel.

Applicants will be ranked according to weighted average of the scores for each criterion.

Application date
15 Jul 2016
1 year, renewable
Europe Portugal
Humanities Anthropology & Ethnology Archaeology Architecture Art & Art History Classical Studies Digital Humanities History Linguistics Literature Media Studies Music & Musicology Philosophy Religion & Theology Social sciences Business and Administrative Sciences Communication Sciences Demography Economics Environmental Sciences Gender Studies Geography International Relations Law Pedagogic & Education Research Political science Psychology & Cognitive Sciences Social Anthropology Sociology Other Agronomy Biology Chemistry Computer science Engineering Mathematics Medicine Physics
Required post-doc experience: 
between 0 and 6 years