International PhD in Food Engineering and Biotechnology


Program Description

The purpose of this International Ph.D. program is to train a new generation of globally renowned researchers to apply approaches of engineering and biotechnology to food processing by giving them the opportunities to transfer and exchange knowledge with national and international research centers and industries.

Course Description

The three-year program mainly focuses on research concerning primary food production, set-up, and management, as well as the validation of food processes, and the application of omics techniques to condition and characterize food processing and food products, with a particular emphasis on fermented foods. The main features of the Ph.D. are an interdisciplinary scientific approach and the participation of internationally renowned scientists on the Scientific Committee.

If you have excelled in higher education, this Ph.D. will enable you to continue your career in academia in a stimulating, multilingual environment with fellow researchers from a wide range of cultural and linguistic backgrounds. During the course, you will gain the competences required to carry out innovative and methodologically rigorous and advanced research projects. For this purpose, you will be required to design an original research project under the supervision of an Italian and/or foreign lecturer, to spend at least six months at a renowned foreign research center and, concurrently, to develop the ability to work both independently and in a team.

This International Ph.D. opens up several career opportunities. Once you obtain your doctorate, you will be able to continue your research activities in academia, in public or private research centers, in leading food industries, or as a business consultant within the specific research areas of the program.

At a glance

  • Duration of the course: 3 years
  • Courses will be conducted in English
  • Places available: 10 with scholarship + 2 without scholarship
  • Campus: Bozen-Bolzano
  • Tuition fees: € 163,50 per year

Structure of the course

The Ph.D. covers the research areas of Food Processing as one of the focuses of the faculty. Engineering and Biotechnology are the high throughput approaches to food processing science. Upon acceptance into the program after a public selection procedure, you will be required to design a research project and write a prospectus with your supervisor, including the purpose of your project and the steps necessary to implement it. Occasionally, you will be required to update the steps in consideration of the progression of your work and the latest developments in your research field.

Your stay for at least six months at a foreign research center is mandatory and you will be required to publish or submit for publication at least three articles in international peer-reviewed journals. During the three-year program, you will also be required to regularly attend classes and seminars specifically designed for Ph.D. students.

The Stages of the Ph.D.

The Ph.D. program consists of five stages, which end after 2, 6, 12, 24, and 36 months, respectively.

  • During stage 1, you will define your research plan, also preparing a draft of the prospectus.
  • During stage 2, you will define your research project in more detail based on the pertinent literature.
  • During stage 3, you will start your work in the lab applying the approach defined for your project.
  • During stage 4, you will continue your research, you will plan your stay abroad, and you will be expected to begin preparing manuscripts for publication in peer-reviewed journals.
  • During the final stage - stage 5 - you will complete your research project, the publication of your manuscripts, and your dissertation.

Fieldwork Abroad

During the three years of the Ph.D. program, you will be required to commit to your research project full-time. Your stay at a renowned foreign research center for at least 6 months is compulsory. This will be an opportunity to diversify your study experience, by conducting research in highly stimulating and competitive contexts, exchanging ideas with other researchers, and, thereby, networking with international colleagues.


In order to be admitted to the Ph.D. program, you will need to have previously obtained 300 ECTS credits (i.e., Bachelor and Master) and to have relevant academic training, a relevant cultural background, or relevant professional experience related to the focus of the Ph.D. program. You will have to certify your English proficiency at a B2 level and be deemed eligible during the public selection procedure.

Last updated Dec 2020

About the School

The Free University of Bozen-Bolzano is located in one of the most fascinating European regions, at the crossroads between the German-speaking and Italian economies and cultures. Its trilingualism in ... Read More

The Free University of Bozen-Bolzano is located in one of the most fascinating European regions, at the crossroads between the German-speaking and Italian economies and cultures. Its trilingualism in teaching and research, its high level of internationalization as well as an ideal study environment guaranteed by its excellent facilities are some of the reasons why Unibz regularly reaches top positions in national and international rankings. Read less