Call for applications: PhD scholarships


Family Dog Project, Department of Ethology, Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE), Budapest, Hungary

Hungarian Scholarship application deadline:  31 May 2017

Stipendium Hungaricum Scholarship Programme deadline: March

We seek outstanding PhD candidates who are interested in exploring the cognitive ageing of family dogs. We are developing a behavioural test battery using an interdisciplinary approach with behavioural, genetic and neuroscience testing methods in both longitudinal and cross-sectional studies. The results are expected to aid our understanding of pathologies associated with human cognition during ageing, to create guidelines for a healthy lifestyle toward successful ageing, and to pave the way for the development of therapies and preventive methods to increase welfare. The project is funded by an ERC Starting Grant.

Familiarity with ANY of these areas is an advantage: behaviour testing in Canines, motion path analysis, identification of behaviour using inertial sensors, fMRI, behaviour genetics, DNA/RNA sequencing technologies, bioinformatics.

Work environment
elte_nyugati2Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) is the largest university of Hungary. Our modern, green campus is located next to the river Danube, close to the centre of Budapest, with state-of-the-art facilities. This research will be conducted within the Cognitive Ageing group led by Dr. Enikő Kubinyi. You will work closely with members of the Family Dog Project, led by Prof. Ádám Miklósi, head of the Department of Ethology. The internationally renowned group was founded in 1994 to study the behavioural and cognitive aspects of the dog-human relationship. It is one of the largest dog research groups in the world, with over 100 published papers in peer-reviewed journals. It hosts more than 30 PhD students and postdoctoral researchers, offering a stimulating and multidisciplinary research environment.
You will have the opportunity to regularly present your work at international conferences and meetings. We will encourage and support you in applying for competitive career development fellowships towards the end of the project.

If interested
Please, send an e-mail to Enikő Kubinyi (PI); e-mail:

Your e-mail should include:
your CV (including a list of publications and your research experience)
(preliminary) research plan (approx. 3 pages). The plan should consist of a general introduction and brief plans for at least 3 studies with a research question and a short method. References and time plan  (for 2-4 years) should be also added. The length of training is 2+2 years. You can finish it sooner if you fulfill the requirements (two published papers in refereed journals and attendance of 8 courses). The topic of the research plan can be changed in the first 18 months.

Do not wait until the deadlines because you might need help for the research plan from the principal investigator of the ERC project (Enikő Kubinyi). The PI should also sign the research plan.


After the initial contact with the PI you can start the official application procedure for the Doctoral Training (deadline for application: 31/May, info from

The application process is the following:
Name of selected doctoral school: Doctoral School of Biology, Name of doctoral programme within doctoral school: Ethology
Doctoral School of Biology
The following documents must be attached to the application form:
– resumé (cv; including publication list, awards, scholarships, current activities)
– research plan signed by applicant and supervisor
– copy of the master’s degree (if already obtained); or an official document issued by the applicant’s current home university, certifying that s/he is expected to have satisfied the requirements for a master’s degree by the end of the current academic year
– certificate of clean criminal records
– proof of payment of the application fee (9000 HUF – EUR 29).
You could make a bank transfer using the following bank details:
Name of the account holder Eötvös Loránd University Address Egyetem tér 1-3,1053 Budapest,
Hungary Account number 10032000-01426201-00000000
IBAN (International Banking Account Number) HU03 1003 2000 0142 6201 0000 0000
Swift code HUSTHUHB
Announcement/Name of transfer your Name and this number: AD9301/00
Bank of the address: Budapest, Hold u. 4, 1054, Hungary
– If English is not the applicant’s mother tongue, or if the applicant hasn’t pursued her/his university studies in English: language certificate which proves suitable English language skills (at least B2, but preferably C1 level) – only language exams recognised by the Hungarian Accreditation Centre for Foreign Language Examinations are accepted (e.g.: IELTS)
– transcript of all higher-education records
– these documents should be sent by post (the letter should arrive before 31/May):


2. There will be an interview on 6th of July in front of a committee headed by Prof. Ádám Miklósi at the Department of Ethology. You can do the interview by skype. You have to present yourself in 2 minutes than the research plan in approx. 10 minutes. The length of the interview is approx. 20 min.
3. The committee will rank the applicants. The first 2-3 will get a Hungarian scholarship. The PhD scholarship will be enough to cover the living cost and renting a room/flat in Budapest.
4. In addition to the score of the interview you will get additional scores for the followings: (1) marks during your undergraduate studies, (2) abstract on conferences, (3) published papers, (4) awards on student research competitions. Frankly, there is no chance to win a scholarship, if you have bad marks and no abstracts/papers.
5. However, if your research proposal is excellent, there is still a chance that you will get funding from the ERC grant.