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The ProFile study

In general, little is known about doctoral education in Germany. Even the total number of doctoral candidates at German universities can only be estimated, official data do not exist. Therefore, reliable information on the conditions, processes and success of doctoral education is essential. Due to the insufficient data availability, the iFQ has set up ProFile: ProFile is a longitudinal study focussing on the situation of doctoral candidates and their postdoctoral professional careers. Since April 2009, doctoral candidates of different universities and other (funding) institutions are surveyed at regular Intervals. ProFile aims at identifying determinants of postdoctoral career development and providing information on conditions of doctoral education in a comparative perspective. Special attention is paid to the effects of structured doctoral programs, which have increasingly emerged during the past years.

ProFile addresses:

  • doctoral candidates and doctorate holders,
  • universities and other funding institutions,
  • scientific and political actors and the interested public.



Profile data will be available from January 2016 as on site SUF. A first training session to work with the data took place in September 2015.

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