Every year, Chimie ParisTech - PSL welcomes around a hundred PhD students in its research teams, distributed across its 3 laboratories.
The PhD is the highest university degree. This PhD is recognized worldwide and is practically required for professionals who want to work in R&D, especially in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries.

Training PhD students through research allows them to acquire project management skills on top of technical skills. Doing a thesis at Chimie ParisTech - PSL is particularly relevant given the proximity of the school to the industrial world. In addition to their scientific education, PhD students acquire training in innovation and a knowledge of the socio-economic world. Of the approximately one hundred students doing their thesis at Chimie ParisTech - PSL, 25% are financed by the industry (CEA, ADEME, IFP, companies, etc.), of which 16% are under a CIFRE agreement. This shows how close research laboratories are to companies.

PhD schools

ED 397 Physics and Chemistry of Materials
ED 388 Physical Chemistry and Analytical Chemistry of Paris Centre
ED 621 ISMME Systems, Materials, Mechanics and Energy Engineering
ED406 Molecular chemistry Paris Centre

PhD schools offer compulsory training in addition to the research work. This program allows students to learn how to manage innovation, bibliographies, etc.
It also supports PhD students with their thesis by monitoring them and their work throughout the thesis with a yearly review and assigning them a teacher-researcher who will be responsible for the supervision of their thesis.

Doing a thesis at Chimie ParisTech - PSL

Students must contact each research team manager based on the research subject they have chosen

The vast majority of the thesis Chimie ParisTech - PSL offers are published on the websites of the doctoral schools and the school’s research laboratories:

Chemistry Research Institute of Paris (IRCP), CNRS Chimie ParisTech - PSL UMR 8247
Institute of Chemistry for Life and Health Sciences (i-CLeHS) CNRS Chimie ParisTech - PSL FRE 2027
Institut Photovoltaïque d’Ile de France (IPVF) UMR 9006

International joint supervision PhD programs

The school develops international joint supervision theses. As a symbol of excellent and lasting scientific relations, joint supervision PhD students benefit from the best assets of both partners.

Since 2018, six joint supervision programs have been set up, notably with Mexico, China, South Africa, Italy and Canada.


PhD students are registered in both institutions and carry out their work under the responsibility of a thesis manager in each country. Students work on their thesis while splitting their time between the institutions concerned based on a schedule and terms predefined in the joint supervision agreement.

The language in which the thesis is written is defined in this agreement. When this language is not French, a substantial summary in French needs to be added to the paper. The title of Doctor is conferred simultaneously and jointly by each institution concerned and they each issue their own PhD degree to the student after a single thesis defense.

The establishment of a joint supervision thesis is up to its future managers. Chimie ParisTech - PSL researchers are invited to contact the International Relations Department to set it up.

International co-management of the thesis

If the thesis is internationally co-managed, PhD students carry out their research work under the responsibility of two thesis managers, one from the institution where they are registered and another from the partner. A co-management agreement may be signed by both institutions and the research directors concerned.

PhD students are enrolled in only one institution, from which they will receive the rank of doctor. A single defense takes place at the university in which the students are enrolled.

For a PhD student enrolled in France, the thesis is usually written in French. This international co-management system allows the PhD student to benefit from a joint supervision.


PhD students have 3 years to complete their thesis in France. During this period, they retain the status of student while receiving a remuneration that gives them an employee status (social security contribution, retirement, unemployment). This remuneration may be:

  • A PhD contract from the Ministry of Higher Education for Research and Innovation.
  • A Convention Industrielle de Formation par la Recherche (CIFRE, “Industrial Convention of Formation by Research”) associated with hiring by a company.
  • A training contract through research (CFR in partnership with the CEA, etc.)
  • A research contract (ANR, Europe, Ademe, DGA, foundations, etc.).
  • A scholarship from a foreign government. For example, ParisTech and the China Scholarship Council (CSC) signed a PhD program agreement in France in 2011. This program is open to highly qualified Chinese students who want to pursue their PhD education in a ParisTech school. The funding granted covers a period ranging from 36 to 48 months in France. From 2013 to 2018, 27 students were admitted to the program to do their PhD at Chimie ParisTech. Students also have the opportunity to carry out a co-supervised PhD as part of a collaboration between the research group they come from in China and their host laboratory in France, with a CSC scholarship covering 6 to 24 months in France.

Thesis registration 

Students must first have the agreement of the PhD school and of the thesis director to proceed with their registration. The Chimie ParisTech - PSL thesis department takes care of the administrative registration or re-registration of PhD students carrying out their thesis at Chimie ParisTech - PSL.

Link to the Admissions page (Top menu)/PhD

To learn more

Find out more 

Learn more about financing
CIFRE forum
Occupational integration of doctors: website of the Bernard Grégory association