The “New Doctorate” in Austria: Progress toward a Professional Model or Status Quo?

  • Hans Pechar
  • Gülay Ates
  • Lesley Andres
Keywords: Bologna reform, doctoral studies, professional model, apprenticeship model, Austria


Until recently, both policy direction and public awareness of the Bologna Process has been focused almost unilaterally on the introduction of the Bachelor’s degree to European universities. This is understandable, as for most European countries, the Bachelor is a new academic degree. However, commencing with the Berlin Ministerial Conference (Realising the European Higher Education Area, 2003), reform of doctoral studies has been highlighted as a second equal pillar in the Bologna reform process. In this paper, we begin by providing an
overview of the general policy background and the rationales that underlie the attempts to restructure doctoral studies in Europe. Next, we focus on the specific situation in Austria, where peculiarities of the status quo collide with uniquely Austrian approaches to reforming doctoral education. Finally, through two case studies, we examine initial attempts – and related challenges – to implement the “New Doctorate” in Austria.


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