General Overview

PhD-COMP’s research lines are designed to respond to Comparatism’s interdisciplinary status and transnational focus, in the firm belief that these features play a privileged role within the Humanities today.  The programme also aims to offer rigorous, thought-provoking and state-of-the-art pedagogical content representative of the European dimension of contemporary research in comparative studies. On a curricular level, prominence is given to the development of autonomous skills and competences: in this sense, the PhD Programme’s structure is flexible, with a broad and heterogeneous core curriculum, covering major fields in current Comparative Studies. These fields are also reflected in the structure of the research groups structure into which students will be integrated. There are also a full range of options which can be adapted to each student’s needs and research projects, including activities designed to strengthen the student’s future integration in a competitive research and teaching market. Student and Faculty mobility is structural to the Programme, allowing for different levels of internationalisation – ranging from access to international research environments, to the supervision and dissemination of research conducted within PhD-COMP and in international contexts. The consistency of the PhD Programme is ensured through the involvement of a highly skilled international teaching staff, supported by the participating institutions and by an advisory board that gathers renowned academics in Comparative Studies.

The thematic programme stems from the guidelines common to the four participating institutions and is designed to present a version of Comparative Studies open to new types of texts other than the literary: it relies on interdisciplinary and comparative methods of inquiry to account for the complexities of the relations between the artistic, the cultural, the social and the historical, the textual and the contextual. It also explores how language, culture and power are constructed, transformed or contested across space and time, with particular attention given to the role of Comparative Studies in the development of a reflective approach to cosmopolitanism and a critical view on global studies. Literary and cultural studies are associated with art studies, film studies and the Social Sciences, in such fields as anthropology, history, sociology, and geography, in the belief that studies built on relations and comparisons foster creative, innovative and reflective investigations, crucial to the challenges faced by European research.

This Programme therefore proposes to combine advanced training with innovative research, in articulation with the CEC’s strategic project outlined for 2015/2020 and with the research guidelines of renowned foreign partners. Given the setting of PhD-COMP, designed to attract highly gifted international students to Portugal, particular emphasis is put on training oriented towards Portuguese-speaking areas, albeit always set in an international research and training context.

Informed by specialised teaching and research in Comparative Studies, PhD-COMP aims to respond to the profile and interests of different students allowing them to develop the necessary skills to be able to compete in national and international research environments. The Programme offers a competitive, flexible and diverse, yet consistent curriculum that allows for the intense training of doctoral students through collaboration with existing European partners, as well as direct and active contact with established and recognised research groups and projects hosted by the CEC.