Doctoral programs

Doctoral programs

Beyond the status as HEI (Institution of Higher Education), POLIS also has the official status of “University”. As such, he has rights to organize third-level academic programs. The “Doctoral Program” at POLIS University was first established with the Order No. 563 date 19.11.2012  from the Ministry responsible for Education and Science in Albania. It focuses on two directions: i) Architecture; AND ii) Urban Planning, but it is also open to other or related fields and specialties that develop applied and innovative ideas, as well as advance the research boundaries for the two aforementioned scientific directions. The program was assisted from the start by the Department of Architecture, University of Ferrara (UNIFE), Italy, within the scientific cooperation projects between Italy and Albania.  
A year later, the two universities in question raised the quality of the institutional cooperation and the program in question, to the level of an “International Doctoral Program” (PhD) of the “Double-Degree” format, with the support of the rectors respective ministries responsible for education and science in Italy and Albania. The program has been officially recognized and evaluated by the authorities of both countries as an international and unique program for both countries and respective fields. It has a high approach and sensitivity to quality and innovation. The program is accredited every year in Italy, and periodically according to the law in Albania as well. In addition to the two co-founding institutions, the “International PhD Program” jointly organized by U_POLIS and UNIFE, has a network of affiliated academic-research partners such as the University of Malta; Pécs University, Hungary; University of Bratislava, Slovakia; University of Minho, Portugal; University of Portsmouth UK, etc. The program is entirely conducted in English, and requires each participant to first prove a high and certified level of mastery and defense of this language.  
Students and talented researchers interested in this PhD Program can apply, compete, and register (including the payment of the relevant obligations and fees) at the institution where they apply, according to the practices and standards adopted by the EU countries. The program has regulations, procedures, practices and a common academic board; there are staff, consultants, and shared physical and online infrastructure, for the most normal functioning of the program during the 3-year life of study and research. Meanwhile, students/researchers are registered, assisted, monitored, and evaluated in parallel at both universities. The program simultaneously respects the relevant legislation for education and science in Italy/EU and in Albania. The students participating in the program are mainly from Albania and Italy, but there are also those from other countries of Europe and the world.  
Those interested and applicants from Albania, the region, or beyond, can apply by sending a message to:, or through the contact number: +355 69 731 1954, or on the social media of POLIS University. Visits to the campus are also welcome (where you can contact and clarify directly with the coordinator of the PhD program) at the address: Rruga Bylis, No. 12, Tirana-Durrës Highway, Km5, Tirana, Albania.
Calls and applications are usually made every year in the June-July period, while the final competition and selection is usually in the August-September period. For more information and clarifications below you have as an example the most recent call for applications that was made by the Program in question, as well as the publications of the research work in this program. 

The cost of a PhD Program at U-POLIS/UNIFE is at least 10,000 Euros in 3 years. The program legally requires full-time commitment to the University.

For POLIS staff, 50% of this amount is covered by the University, and 50% is paid in installments by the scientific researcher as a minimum fee.

The university temporarily grants a 3-year research-teaching contract for the full-time staff/researcher, which also includes payments as a further incentive for research.

In cooperation with the applicant, POLIS works to mobilize additional funding from the authorities, the private sector, or European science and mobility projects.

Call for International Research Doctorates in Architecture and Urban Planning – Cycle 38,
The notice

The Notice for admission to the International Doctorate in Architecture and Urban Planning (I.D.A.U.P.) for the academic year 2022/2023 (XXXVIII Cycle) at the University of Ferrara and Polis University of Tirana (Albania)

NB: The project sheets relating to the topics defined by the Ministrial Decree 351/2022 and 352/2022 are visible on this webpage.

The course has been activated throughout an international agreement signed between the Università degli Studi di Ferrara (Italy) and the Polis University of Tirana (Albania). Slovak University of Technology (SLK), University Do Minho (PT) and Lawrence Technological University (Southfield, Michigan – USA) participate in training and researching activities provided for the Ph.D.

With grant6
Research contracts6
Intersectorials Doctorate (CNR – ISAAC)1
Candidates holding a foreign government scholarship2

The research topics are available on the webpage of the PhD course. Selection application forms, together with all documents listed below, must be submitted using the online procedure

The choice made will be binding and determine the allocation of available places, which shall be awarded according to the order of final classification, until all places depletion. The Commission shall evaluate the Candidates’ qualifications and interview. For the acceptance of the admission application, each candidate must also have at least 2 recommendation letters written and signed by teachers, experts, researchers or professionals, qualified for the course’s topics. The interview will be conducted via conference call on the Internet: interviews will be held within September 16th, 2022After the proceedings approval, the list shall be published on this web-page. Candidates admitted to the course will be enrolled by both Partner Institutions:

Ferrara University: information will be available here

Evaluation of Qualifications

Interview results

Final ranking list



We inform all 38 cycle future UniFE PhD students that will available housing opportunities at discounted price rental. Information and request form will be published at the IUSS College page.


Note / Attention
1.       Candidates with a research contract
a.       Are engaged in full time research activities at Polis University

2.       Candidates applying for a positions reserved to Republic of Albany public employees
a.       Must be involved in research activity in an institution that deals with research activities according to Albanian low in higher education.
b.       Must guarantee 40% of the research time at Polis University, while the rest of the research time is dedicated to the institution from which they come.
c.       The candidate must upload online in the category other documents a document that guarantee that he/she is working in an institution interested in research activities

This year, POLIS University encourages and welcomes applications that incorporate subjects, objectives, or dimensions of just green transition, as defined under the frame of the EU Green Deal.

Some potential areas of interest that can influence or be incorporated in the research proposals’ themes are:
(Just) Green Transition policies and planning instruments;
Circular economy as a means to ensure the green transition in a territory, community, or industry;
Nature-base solutions for green transition; Ecosystem services for enabling green transition/s;
Costs and benefits of green transitions in a territory, community, industry, or space;
Initiatives, designs, and processes that align with the New European Bauhaus of EU, aiming at contributing to space transformation at any scale (city, public space, urban production, housing, etc.) by people through innovation, citizen science and engagement and aiming at the reduction of Carbon emissions.
Infrastructure and energy systems innovations and transitions to lower Carbon emissions and contribute to climate change adaptation and mitigation;
Innovative materials, structures and designs that contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gasses and climate change adaptation and mitigation;
Climate resilience disaster risk reduction/management for climate change adaptation and mitigation.

Regardless of their research focus – on Architecture or Planning, students are encouraged to incorporate the green transition dimension in their research proposals and objectives, regardless of the particular focus of their research. Green Transition is cross-cutting to so many areas of life and we would like our PhD researchers to critically think of how to enable a green transition analysis in their research interests.

Out of the enrolled PhD candidates, one will be co-supervised by two external experts/researchers, besides POLIS and Ferrara University supervisors. The potential pool of co-supervisors brings researchers from the Polytechnic University of Turin, University of Belgrade, and Nordregio in Sweden. This is made possible under the framework of the Twinning Horizon Europe project “GreenFORCE – Foster Research Excellence for Green Transition in the Western Balkans”, where POLIS University is a partner.