Doing a PhD at Institut Curie

EuReCa International PhD Program

Institut Curie's COFUND program

>> EXTENDED DEADLINE: January 28, 2021 - 4pm CET <<

The second call for applications is now closed.

Next call will open in Fall 2021.


What is EuReCa?


EuReCa (Europe Research & Care) is Institut Curie’s international PhD Program which provides PhD students with an excellent interdisciplinary, inter-sectorial, and international training. It includes a personalized career development plan, coaching, mentoring and the possibility of undertaking secondments in partners' institutions.

What is Institut Curie ?

A leading player in the fight against cancer, Institut Curie brings together an internationally-renowned Research Center and an advanced Hospital Group that provides care for all types of cancer. Founded in 1909 by Marie Curie, Institut Curie comprises three sites (Paris, Saint-Cloud and Orsay), where more than 3,500 members of staff are dedicated to achieving three objectives: hospital care; scientific research; and the sharing of knowledge and the preservation of legacy.

As a private foundation that is recognized as serving the public interest, Institut Curie is supported by donations and grants. This support is used to fund discoveries that will improve treatments and the quality of life of cancer patients.

EuReCa PhD fellows will carry out research in a vibrant environment based on the pluri-disciplinary approaches and excellence offered by over 85 research groups comprising Institut Curie’s 12 research departments grouped into 4 domains and a translational department:


Current PhD positions

Acentrosomal microtubule organization in neural stem cells

Thesis supervisor(s): Alexandre Baffet

Research group: Cell Biology of Mammalian Neurogenesis

Project 1

Deciphering the role of transcription-replication conflict and R-loop in causing genome instability in breast cancer

Thesis supervisor(s): Chunlong Chen

Research group: Replication Program and Genome Instability

Project 2

Extracellular Vesicles in invasion, metastasis and ferroptosis resistance: a specific role for CD133/Prominin in aggressive gastrointestinal carcinoma

Thesis supervisor(s): Gisela D’Angelo & Sarah Watson

Research group: Structure and Membrane Compartments

Project 3

A multidisciplinary approach to determine the 3-dimensional organization of centromeres in mitosis

Thesis supervisor(s): Ines Drinnenberg

Research group: Evolution of Centromeres and Chromosome Segregation

Project 4

Characterization of the functions of protein arginine methyltransferase 4 (PRMT4/CARM1) in triple-negative breast cancers

Thesis supervisor(s): Thierry Dubois

Research group: Breast Cancer Biology

Project 5

Novel chemical tools to study base-excision DNA repair

Thesis supervisor(s): Anton Granzhan & Sophie Bombard

Research group: Chemistry for Nucleic Acid Recognition

Project 6

Control of gut development and physiology by cytokine signaling

Thesis supervisor(s): Pedro Hernandez

Research group: Development and Homeostasis of Mucosal Tissues

Project 7

Immune and epigenetic biomarkers assessments based on a basket prospective trial with Pembrolizumab and Vorinostatin patients with late stage squamous cell carcinoma

Thesis supervisor(s): Christophe Le Tourneau & Nicolas Servant

Research group: Bioinformatics and Computational Systems Biology of Cancer

Project 8

Mechanotransduction at the Golgi apparatus

Thesis supervisor(s): Jean-Baptiste Manneville & Stéphanie Miserey-Lenkei

Research group: Molecular Mechanisms of Intracellular Transport

Project 9

Genetic determinants of tumor microenvironment in high grade serous ovarian carcinomas

Thesis supervisor(s): Marc-Henri Stern & Manuel Rodrigues

Research group: DNA Repair and Uveal Melanoma


Project 11

Comparative mechanisms of spindle assembly dynamics and scaling

Thesis supervisor(s): Phong Tran & François Nedelec

Research group: Cytoskeletal Architecture and Cell Morphogenesis

Project 12

20.01.2021 - Notice - the project #10 Identification and targeting of lncRNA sequence motifs regulating melanoma oncogenesis  in A. Shkumatava’s team has been cancelled for administrative reasons and is therefore no longer available. Candidates having already applied for this PhD project have been informed and can apply for any another PhD project available in the list above.

Application process

Applicants have to complete an online application form in English when the call is open. They may apply for 1 or 2 thesis project(s). Incomplete applications will not be eligible. No application will be accepted after the deadline January 28th, 2021 at 4:00pm CET (GMT +1). The following documents are required:

  • a CV,
  • a motivation letter,
  • a copy of the high school degree,
  • a copy of the university degrees including the European Master’s degree or equivalent master's degree (translated by the applicant in English) if already available,
  • a copy of the university grade transcript from the Master’s degree or equivalent master's degree which would formally entitle to embark on a doctorate (translated by the applicant in English) if already available,
  • 2 recommendation letters. Referees must have submitted their recommendation letters by the end of the call. We strongly advise applicants to contact their referees as soon as possible so that referees have enough time to upload the recommendation letter online. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that the 2 recommendation letters are uploaded by the referee before the call ends.


Recruitment process

Main steps

EuReCa Application process


Eligibility criteria

  • Early-stage researchers (ESR) shall at the call deadline be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and have not been awarded a doctoral degree. Full-time equivalent research experience is measured from the date when a researcher obtained the degree which would formally entitle him or her to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited or seconded, irrespective of whether or not a doctorate is or was ever envisaged.
  • Applicants from all countries are eligible. The applicants may not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc) in France for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the first call deadline. Time spent as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention, compulsory national service and/ or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
  • Applicants must be in possession of (or be about to obtain) a European master degree or equivalent master's degree which would formally entitle them to embark on a doctorate.

For more information, please download the Applicant’s Guide (PDF).

>> Applicant's Guide LAST UDATED: APRIL 13th 2021


Benefits of completing a EuReCa PhD


Excellence in research

The EuReCa programme fundamental objective is to provide excellent, multidisciplinary and intersectoral training to ESRs in cancer research, while generating new scientific advances in different fields. By attracting promising and talented young researchers our ambition is to build a multifaceted community able to communicate, interact, build and share expertise to tackle the challenges of cancer.


International environment

More than 80 nationalities are represented at Institut Curie. The university accredited international courses offered on campus and abroad gather students from all over the world and enable networking opportunities. As associate member of PSL Research University, Institut Curie is part of a trans-disciplinary world-class research and training center. Institut Curie’s involvement in the EU-Life Alliance also offers international course and secondment opportunities. In collaboration with a European partner institute, the students’ association organizes an annual scientific meeting that allows lively interactions as well.


Personalized Career Development Plan (PCDP)

Throughout their thesis, ESRs will be designing their Career Development Plan in accordance with their career track. They will benefit from coaching sessions, courses and training, take part in out-of-the-lab internships and various activities on campus.

  • University accredited international courses
  • Transferrable skills courses
  • Hands-on training on scientific techniques & apparatus
  • Career Development workshops
  • Public engagement activities
  • Out-of-the-lab internships
  • Secondments


PhD supervision, mentoring & thesis committee meetings

All ESRs will be supervised by a researcher holding an Habilitation à Diriger les Recherches (HDR), a diploma which authorizes the supervision of research.

At their arrival, they will choose a mentor to guide them throughout their thesis. They organize yearly PhD thesis committee meetings with their thesis supervisor(s), their mentor and a representative of their doctoral school. These meetings are required by the university to follow the progress of the thesis.


Cutting-edge transversal & core facilities

ESRs will benefit from top-notch technology platforms and equipment for scientific imaging, genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics. Training will be provided by the platform managers.


Links with industry & partners

This program is run in close partnership with L’Oréal, Bristol-Myers-Squibb, CryoCapCell and Institut Roche as well as public and academic European & Amercian partners. With a strong record of scientific collaborations with industrial partners, Institut Curie offers ESRs the possibility to screen for industrial partners all along their project; as well as to receive training on intellectual property, startup set up, interaction with the industrial sector job market…

Institut Curie also offers opportunities for secondments with its membership in the EU-Life Alliance.


A Students’ Association (Adic) deeply involved in Research

Institut Curie’s students and postdocs’ association (ADIC) enables ESRs to get involved in the organization of conferences, the Young Researchers Life Sciences Congress, career development workshops and social events. Its aim is to represent young researchers at Institut Curie, facilitate their access to the work market, reinforce their role in the scientific life of the institute and promote doctoral training.


Annual scientific meeting

PhD fellows organize and participate in the Young Researchers Life Sciences Congress organized by ADIC together with another European institute. It is a great opportunity for young researchers’ career development as they all present their research work with a poster, a short talk or an elevator pitch.


Travel Grants

ESRs can apply for travel grants covering travel, accommodation or registration fees. They can also ask for financial help from their host laboratory to attend meetings, summer schools, conferences or courses abroad.


Conferences on campus

Institut Curie researchers benefit from around 300 conferences in English on campus each year. Speakers are Institut Curie researchers and physicians as well as renowned international scientists.


Registration at a French University

Institut Curie is an associate member of PSL Research University. This university groups 24 partner institutions and aims at promoting laboratories with international visibility, attracting internationally renowned researchers and building an integrated approach for top-level research and training. Most of Institut Curie laboratories are affiliated with PSL.


Institut Curie organizes a yearly PhD Graduation Ceremony to celebrate all PhD students who defend their thesis.

With elevator pitches and testimonials, this event is an opportunity to gather laureates, talk about their future, and connect with the Institut Curie Alumni network.

>> See previous ceremonies



Housing at the CIUP

Housing is secured for EuReCa PhD fellows. Institut Curie has booked student accommodations at the Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris (CIUP). The monthly rent is paid by the PhD fellow (Single room: 581 € per month for students under 30 years - 661 € per month for students over 30 years).


Signature of contract

From their formal acceptance to the EuReCa PhD Program, PhD fellows are in contact with the English speaking staff from Institut Curie’s Human Resources Department and the EuReCa Management Team to organize their arrival. They will get help for their visa application, residence permit, and other administrative procedures like social security and insurance among others.


Registration at a French University

All EuReCa PhD fellows will be registered with a partner university and affiliated with a Doctoral School.


French language courses on campus

Institut Curie’s Training Unit and the student’s association (ADIC) offer extensive and intensive French courses for PhD students throughout their thesis.


Induction Month & Welcome meeting

At their arrival in September, PhD students will have an induction month for a smooth integration at the institute in France. They will have time dedicated for administrative & orientation activities.

PhD fellows are also invited to attend the welcome meeting organized by the Training Unit, presenting courses available on campus and explaining the Career Development Plan.




As Institut Curie employees, PhD fellows benefit from various advantages among which subsidized access to cafeteria for lunch and sports on Campus in Paris (PSL Sports) & Orsay.


The Students’ association

The student’s association Adic organizes social events on a regular basis. These informal meetings help students to network and get acquainted.


>> FAQ

>> Previous international PhD program IC-3i

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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions grant agreement no 847718.