Supervision framework

Doctoral candidates and supervisors at ISOS commit to the co-supervision with regular supervisory committee meetings. Protocols are due on 31 January and 31 July every year. Please follow the links given in the right bar to download guidelines and a template for your Supervisory Committee Meetings.


The format of regular supervisory meetings is not without controversies so we asked advisors (replies = 76) and doctoral candidates (replies = 60) for their opinion.

Feel free to leave your own thoughts on the topic here.

A lot of valuable information is lost by putting things into plain numbers and percentages.
We received 21 individual feedbacks from supervisors and 9 comments from doctoral candidates. Here are some examples from those individual feedbacks:

“Supervisors should be reminded that supervising is not only talking about results and papers. It is also about giving a helping hand, showing interest in the doctoral candidates work, giving advices and open doors for the candidate, like introducing him/her to important people in the field of research or giving an overview about upcoming conferences and workshops or other meetings.”

doctoral candidate


“Generally the dependency of the doctoral candidates to the main supervisor in Germany is too strong. Advisory Comittee meetings might mediate this to some extent. The ultimate solution, however, would be to decouple supervision from evaluating the thesis at the end, as it is the case in most other countries. […]”


“I totally agree about having an advisory committee, because it is needed to have a direct feedback from supervisors. Having more than one supervisor is very positive, because it can add different point of views to the formation of a doctoral candidate, in addition to the experience that himself may absorb in the years of development of his studies.  Finally, in the case of conflict between students and supervisor, it is the best scenario to successfully solve the issues.”

doctoral candidate


“I like the semi-formalized way of ISOS where doctoral candidates gain benefits when they stick to their time schedule of meetings and protocols. It naturally encourages. […]”