In May 2019 Ilia State University (ISU) concluded its first international joint supervision agreement. The partner institution is the University of Ghent (UGent) in Belgium and based on the mentioned agreement, both universities have agreed to cooperate on the doctoral degree of doctoral student Mariam Gabelaia. As a doctoral student in the field of ecology Mariam’s work is focused on studying Caucasian rock lizard species. Her supervisor at ISU is Prof. David Tarkhnishvili (School of Natural Sciences and Medicine). At UGent, Prof. Dominique Adriaens (Department of Biology) is in charge of co-supervising Mariam’s research.

A joint doctorate (often also referred to as “Cotutelle”) is in most cases a bilateral cooperation between two universities, which gives the doctoral student the opportunity to conduct their research at both partner institutions. In charge of the doctoral supervision is, thus, a supervision team composed of at least one professor from each university. The doctoral thesis will be assessed in a joint procedure and the defense of the thesis will as well take place by way of a joint examination. In addition to being able to do research internationally at two universities, a Cotutelle doctorate offers the unique opportunity of obtaining doctoral degrees from two universities (double degree) for one doctoral thesis. Click here for more information on joint doctorates/Cotutelle.

Mariam has already completed several stays at UGent and will submit her dissertation to both universities in the near future. An important contact for Mariam in all questions and concerns of her Cotutelle doctorate is the International Doctoral School of ISU, which has designed the joint supervision agreement, provided its services and accompanied her along the way.

Doctoral students and professors of ISU, who are interested in Cotutelle doctorates, are welcome to contact the International Doctoral School. We will be happy to consult with you about this topic.

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