Assessment of applications for financing of doctoral students in Neuroscience within the KI-NIH doctoral programme

Assessment of KI-NIH-PhD-applications

The applications should be evaluated by assessors with proven expertise in the field of neuroscience (in a broad sense).

Assessment panel

The Committee for Doctoral Education has decided to introduce a joint assessment panel for all applications. Assessors will be nominated by the Vice rector of Doctoral Education.
All applications shall be assessed on the same grounds. No application may receive special treatment with reference to the applicant's gender, age, origin or other irrelevant aspects.

All applications are assessed on the basis of the following five criteria

  • - scientific quality and potential of the proposed project
  • - project feasibility
  • - the project's suitability as a doctoral education project
  • - quality and potential of the supervision
  • - coherency between the proposed KI and NIH substudies

Weighting of the following criteria is performed by the KID office: 1 + 1 + 2 + 1 + 1 (for suitability of the project as a doctoral education project the scores are doubled).

Scientific quality and potential of the proposed project

  • - Is the project original, innovative and challenging of reigning opinions or praxis?
  • - Does it include an innovative hypothesis or does it seek to resolve important obstacles for continued progresses within the research area?
  • - Does the project involve new ideas, therapies or interpretations?
  • - If the project aims are achieved, would that significantly enrich knowledge in the particular research field and knowledge of health, disease and healthcare?
  • - Does the project have clinical relevance and would the likely results be clinically implementable in the future?

Project feasibility

  • - Are the total financial resources realistic in relation to the scope of the doctoral project?
  • - Are the available spaces, equipment and time sufficient to permit implementation of the project?
  • - Is there sufficient methodological know-how to implement the project in the manner described?
  • - Are there other experiences that in combination with the applicants various competencies strengthen the projects feasibility?
  • - Are materials, patients and methods well-chosen and adjusted for the hypothesis or problem area in question?
  • - What are the strengths and weakness of the chosen approach?
  • - Is the project ethically defensible?
  • - Are there sufficient financial resources to cover: a) project costs; b) supervision; c) doctoral candidate

The project's suitability as a doctoral education project

  • - Is the doctoral project designed to follow KIs general study plan for studies at this level?
  • - Is the research environment suitable for doctoral education projects?
  • - Are there opportunities for liaising with other doctoral candidates for example, via network activities?
  • - Is there support for the candidates studies for example, in the form of postdocs, statisticians, BMA and other researchers?
  • - Are there opportunities for international sharing of knowledge and interaction (exchange/contacts)?
  • - Are there alternative approaches to achieving the stated objectives, if the chosen does not prove successful?
  • - Is there a description given of how the general and specific knowledge associated with the project is to be attained for example, in suggestions of suitable courses?
  • - Is there sufficient argumentation for individual subprojects and are such projects well integrated with the overall goal of the project?
  • - Is the time plan adequate?
  • - Does the project include clearly described learning outcomes?

Quality and potential of the supervision

  • - What previous experience of supervision has the constellation of supervisors, i.e. principal and co-supervisors? Do they have formal supervision competence?
  • - How many PhD candidates are currently under the applicants supervision? What is their presence in the group (full or part-time, physical workplace, etc.)?
  • - The ability to describe the idea of supervision and to motivate how they want to organize the supervision in the suggested project.
  • - The assessment of applicant competence shall pay special attention to the persons development and activities over the past five years in the form of grants, publications and supervision.
  • - How do the applicants intend to organise supervision in the proposed doctoral project? (That is, in what way will the applicants various competencies benefit the project?)

Coherency between the proposed KI and NIH substudies 1

  • - Is the research plan consistent with the expertise, research focus and equipment of all collaborating parties?
  • - Is the collaboration or collaborative idea credible?
  • - Is there a demonstrated clear and believable division of tasks and activities between the collaborating labs?
  • - Do factors exist that could emphasize the coherence of the proposed project, such as prior collaborative efforts as evidenced by common publications and/or grants?
  • - Does the application make clear that the achievement of the project goals is dependent on the participation and interaction of both supervisors and on their complementary skills and knowledge?

1 The project is a acollaboration between two principal investigators (i.e. supervisors of the joint doctoral student), one at KI and one at NIH, who together develop a coherent research plan.

Assessment scale

5 points = outstanding
4 points = excellent
3 points = very good
2 points = good
1 points = insufficient

Written feedback to applicants

There will be no written feedback to the applicants. All applicants will receive an e-mail with a decision if they are granted funding or not.


Paulina Mihailova

08-524 863 60
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