The Department of Communication at the University of Vienna in cooperation with the Center for Doctoral Studies offers the possibility of conducting a PhD in Communication Science as part of the Doctoral Program in Social Sciences. A doctoral thesis is an original piece of research of substantial length that makes a genuine contribution to human knowledge and sciences. It is therefore significantly different to a Master thesis and much more demanding. 

The program is open to research which explores diverse contents, processes, effects, contexts and systematic research questions within the area of communication and media.

The Center for Doctoral Studies at the University of Vienna offers potential doctoral students a structured overview of the requirements as well as the curriculum online. Information on admission for graduates of universities other than the University of Vienna can be found on the website of Teaching Affairs and Student Services.

Starting October 1, 2020, the Vienna Doctoral School of Social Sciences will be established. ViDSS aims to promote innovative, excellent and problem-oriented research.

For the doctoral research field "Media Studies & Communication Science", the following is the doctoral advisory board.


When searching for a supervisor for their doctoral thesis, interested students are advised to read through the academic/research profiles of available professors and habilitated scientific researchers with habilitation respectively. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to direct your questions to the Center for Doctoral Studies.

In order to gain registration approval, prospective students have to write research proposal and present it to a special committee. This presentation is public. Dates and times of these public presentations can be accessed here. Generally two presentations dates are available per semester.

For a successful presentation of your exposé, a close collaboration with your supervisor is essential. Your exposé should:

  • be formulated in a clear way,
  • be well-grounded,
  • be coherent,
  • include leading research question and hypotheses,
  • and focus on the research aim.


Moreover, a clear elaboration on how the method-in-use enables answering the research question is crucial. The presentation takes about 7 to 8 minutes.