Doctoral programme in Epidemiology

Epidemiology can be defined as the science of disease occurrence in the population and its determinants. Disease is caused by complex interactions between genetic, environmental, lifestyle, social and behavioral factors.

Programme overview

Epidemiology draws on central concepts, principles and methods, and can be considered the methodological backbone in a number of medical research disciplines. A common feature of epidemiological applications is their theoretical and methodological basis, including tools for defining problems, designing studies and interpreting study results.

In the context of a strong research and educational environment, the Doctoral Programme in Epidemiology supply doctoral courses and other activities. The target group is doctoral students at Karolinska Institutet, who pursue doctoral studies in the field of epidemiology and related areas. Students with diverse professional and educational backgrounds take part in programme activities.

The overall aims of the programme are:

  • to contribute to doctoral training at Karolinska Institutet by supplying doctoral courses and other activities of high quality, on tools for defining problems, central concepts, principles and methods essential for designing, conducting, analysing, interpreting, reporting, communicating and critiquing epidemiological studies,
  • to consider progression, i.e. gradual deepening and complexity of knowledge and skills, in terms of subject matter, scientific and ethical approach as well as generic skills, as an issue of specific importance, and,
  • to be excellent in education, meaning that the education should be scientifically based and be grounded in educational research.

Epidemiology courses

Courses include introductory and more advanced courses in theory and methods, as well as courses focused on specific areas of epidemiological applications. A set of core courses in theory and methods (Epidemiology, I, II and III, and Biostatistics I, II and III) are arranged every academic year. A variety of elective courses are arranged regularly in order to enable tailoring of individualised study plans. Even more advanced courses are given more sporadically.

The courses are to be followed in a logical order and imply a gradual deepening and complexity of knowledge and skills, with regard to subject matter as well as scientific and ethical approach, and the ability to make judgements.

The courses are announced in the KI course catalogue for every semester.

Courses Fall semester 2024 (filter search on Epidemiology)

Courses Spring semester 2024

Courses Fall semester 2023

Courses Spring semester 2023

Courses Fall semester 2022

Courses Spring semester 2022

Courses Fall semester 2021

Courses Spring semester 2021

Courses Fall semester 2020

Courses Spring semester 2020

Other educational activities

Doctoral student activities

Doctoral student activities arrange one to two activities per semester. These activities are planned and supported by the head of the programme.

Steering group

The steering group for the Doctoral Programme in Epidemiology has the overall responsibility for the curriculum design and the quality of the programme by monitoring and evaluating teaching and learning activities.

Members of the Steering group:

Anita Berglund, head of programme

Matteo Bottai, teacher representative IMM

Mark Clements, teacher representative MEB

Maria Feychting, teacher representative IMM

Thomas Frisell, teacher representative KEP

Amaia Calderon Larrañaga, teacher representative NVS

Nicola Orsini, teacher representative GPH

Jette Möller, teacher representative GPH

Sara Öberg, teacher representative MEB

Giorgi Beridze, student representative NVS

Anna Humphreys, student representative IMM

Ahmad Abbadi, student representative MEB

Application and admission

Do you want to sign up for the doctoral programme in Epidemiology?

As a doctoral student at Karolinska Institutet (KI) you can sign up for one or more doctoral programmes and thus obtain information on the courses and activities that are arranged. An expression of interest is submitted when you apply for admission to doctoral education. In addition, you can submit your expression of interest to any programme at any time during the doctoral education. If you are interested in the courses and activities etc. in the Epidemiology programme, please send an email to Johanna Bergman (e-mail address This means that you will receive information directly from this programme. You may choose from what is offered, but you do not commit to participate in any activity. To attend a course organized within the framework of the programme, you need to apply as described below.

Application and admission to courses on doctoral level

Application to courses is made directly in the Course catalogue at KI. The available courses on the doctoral level are announced once per semester. The catalogue for courses is published on around April 15 or October 15 and is open for application during one month.

After the application period is closed the applicant can only be admitted according to availability. A late application is made directly to the course organizer. KI's courses are open for registered doctoral students at all universities and colleges. If space allows, other applicants may also be accepted.

Formal note about admission (or not) is emailed to the applicants within a month after the application time is closed. If you are not admitted, you will be asked for interest to be on the waiting list. The applicant needs to confirm participation by a form signed by the applicant and his/her supervisor.

Course catalogue

All syllabi for courses at doctoral level at KI are collected in the KIWAS database.

Do you want to become a doctoral student at KI?

Doctoral education at KI (aiming for a Ph.D. degree) is to a large extent based on the individual research project of each doctoral student. The starting date is different for each doctoral student. The thematic doctoral programmes at KI are not organized “programmes” (e.g. as Master’s degree programmes) in the sense that a whole class studies together. Once admitted to doctoral education at KI, the doctoral student can sign up to one or several of KI’s doctoral programmes to obtain information about the courses and activities that are arranged within the specific research fields.

Information about how to become a doctoral student at KI and the procedure from recruitment to admission.

News and announcements

Workshop: Methods in Pharmacoepidemiology Drug Utilization Studies, 20 May, 2024


25 January, 2024, Workshop: All you wanted to know about publishing but never dared to ask
25 April, 2023 - Peer Review with Confidence: a Workshop for PhD Students
Plenary talk by Miguel Hernán: What does “learning from data” mean? A taxonomy of tasks for health data science
Workshop - Transporting treatment effects from randomized trials to real world target populations
Workshop - Causal inference with competing events
Workshop - Advanced Quantitative Genetics Using Twin and Family Data, 7-9 June, 2022
Workshop "Outcome-wide Epidemiology and Causal Inference" with Tyler J. VanderWeele, 15 March 2022
Webinar on ”Open science within register-based research: Opportunities and challenges”
Learning statistical inference: a novel approach for the case of interaction effects
Workshop - Transporting treatment effects from randomized trials to real-world target populations
Workshop “Introduction to Python for Health Researchers”, arranged by the Doctoral Programme in Epidemiology at Karolinska Institutet
Webinar - Impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the conduct of scientific research and communication of its results


Anita Berglund

Head of programme
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Johanna Bergman

Educational administrator
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