Notification of the Opening of a Tender for the Awarding of Doctoral Degree Research Grants

Universidade Católica Portuguesa (UCP hereafter) hereby opens a tender for the awarding of 2 (two) research grants, subsequently referred to as Doctoral Research Grants, in the Culture Studies field, under the auspices of the FCT Research Grant Regulation and the Research Grant Holder Statute (RBI and EBI respectively hereafter).

These grants are financed by the Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia (FCT) under the auspices of the Collaboration Protocol for the Pluriannual Financing Plan for Doctoral Degree Research Student Grants, signed between the FCT and CECC – the Centro de Estudos de Comunicação e Cultura (UIDB/00126/2020).


The tender remains open from 4 June 2020 to 22 June 2020, 5pm (Lisbon time).

The applications and the candidate support documents stipulated in this current Tender Opening Notification are to be submitted via email and sent to   

Each candidate may submit only one application or face having every application annulled.

The submission of false declarations or undertaking acts of plagiarism on behalf of the candidates represents the grounds for annulment of the application irrespective of any other punitive type measures.


The doctoral research grants are provided to finance the research activities of the holder within the scope of obtaining the doctoral degree academic qualification from Portuguese universities.

The research activities leading to the obtaining of the doctoral degree title are to take place at CECC (UIDB/00126/2020), which thus becomes the host institution of the grant holder irrespective of any other works that may be undertaken with more than one institution.

The research activities leading to the obtaining of the doctoral degree academic title by the grant holders selected fall within the framework of the strategic activities plan of CECC (UIDB/00126/2020) and undergo development under the auspices of the Doctoral Degree Program in Culture Studies, the Faculdade de Ciências Humanas (FCH hereafter), of UCP.

The working plan should take place entirely or partially in a national institution (national grant or mixed grant, respectively). One national and one mixed grant will be awarded.

The duration of the grants is, as a rule, annual and renewable for a maximum period of four years (48 months) with grants not eligible for periods of less than three consecutive months.

In the case of mixed grants, the period stipulated by the working plan to be hosted by a non-national institution may never be greater than 24 months.


The Doctoral Degree Research Grants are awarded to candidates either who are registered or who meet the requirements in effect to enrol in the Doctoral Program in Culture Studies at the FCH/UCP and who are seeking to develop research activities leading to the obtaining of the doctoral degree academic title in CECC – (UIDB/00126/2020) or in its associated host institutions.


4.1 Candidate eligibility requirements

Eligible to submit applications to this tender are:

In order to apply for a Doctoral Degree Research Grant, applicants need to:

4.2 Application Eligibility Requirements

The following documents are all to be annexed to any respective application on penalty of exclusion from the tender:

  • The details stated on an identity or citizen’s card or a passport;
  • The candidate’s curriculum vitae;
  • , the classifications received in each subject studied or, alternatively, a declaration of honour by the candidate as to having completed their undergraduate or master’s degree studies prior to the closure of the applications period;
  • Records of the awarding of academic titles by international higher education institutions alongside a record of the conversion of the respective final classification to the scale applied to the Portuguese classification system or, alternatively, a declaration of honour by the candidate as to having completed the respective international equivalent to that of the Portuguese undergraduate or master’s degrees prior to the closure of the applications period;
  • Letter of motivation;
  • Doctoral degree pre-project within the scope of one of the following research group at CECC: a) Culture, Art and Conflict, b) Literature and the Global Contemporary, c) Cognition and Translatability or d) Media Narratives and Cultural Change (max. 2,000 words).

There are the following notes as regards the aforementioned eligibility requirements:

  • In the case of academic qualifications awarded by non-national higher education institutions, and in order to ensure the principle of equality in evaluating candidates with national and non-national academic degrees, the recognition of all academic qualifications and the conversion of their final classification grades to the Portuguese classification scale.

The recognition of non-national academic titles and diplomas as well as the conversion of their final classification to the Portuguese classification scale may be requested in any public higher education institution or from the DGES – the General Directorate of Higher Education (only for cases of automatic recognition). Further to this issue, we would suggest consulting the DGES website at the following address:

  • Candidate applications are only accepted on having completed the cycle of studies leading to undergraduate or master’s degree titles through to the end of the tender period. Should they not yet have the certificates testifying to their attaining the necessary qualifications for the submission of their applications through to the end of the tender period, then a declaration of honour is accepted in the meanwhile. However, the receipt of the grant shall always remain dependent on presenting the certificates demonstrating the awarding of the academic qualifications necessary to taking receipt of the grant.


The working plan of the grant holder is to be developed within the framework of one of the following CECC research groups: a) Culture, Art and Conflict, b) Literature and the Global Contemporary, c) Cognition and Translatability or d) Media Narratives  and Cultural Change.


The evaluation takes into account the merit of the respective candidate (as expressed in the letter of motivation, the doctoral degree pre-project and the interview). 

Candidates deemed eligible are evaluated according to a scale of 1-20 across each of the following evaluation criteria:

  • Criterion A – Candidate merit, with a weighting of 55%;
    • Sub-criterion A1 – Academic relevance and excellence, with a weighting of 40%
    • Sub-criterion A2 – Other relevant experiences, with a weighting of 15%
  • Criterion B – Candidate potential, with a weighting of 45%;
    • Sub-criterion B1 – Letter of motivation, with a weighting of 10%
    • Sub-criterion B2 – Doctoral degree pre-project, with a weighting of 15%
    • Sub-criterion B3 – Interviews, with a weighting of 15%

For the purposes of the decision on awarding the grants, the candidates are ranked according to the weighted classification grade obtained in each of the two criteria (and the respective five sub-criteria), as set out in the following formula:

In the case of ties, the ranking of candidate takes place according to the classifications awarded in each evaluation sub-criterion in keeping with the following order of preference: sub-criterion A1, sub-criterion B2, sub-criterion B3, sub-criterion A2, sub-criterion B1.

Important advice for candidates holding diplomas issued by non-national higher education institutions:


The candidate evaluation panel contains the following members:

  • Isabel Capeloa Gil, CECC, UCP (panel chair)
  • Peter Hanenberg, CECC, UCP
  • Maria Alexandra Lopes, CECC, UCP
  • Diana Gonçalves, CECC, UCP (alternate)
  • Nelson Costa Ribeiro, CECC, UCP (alternate)

The evaluation panel is to undertake its work in accordance with the evaluation criteria set out in this present Notification of Tender Opening, weighting the respective contents of candidate applications.

Every panel member, including the chair, commits to respecting a set of core responsibilities in this evaluation process, such as the duties of impartiality, the declaration of any potential conflicts of interest and due confidentiality. In every stage of the evaluation process, confidentiality is entirely protected and ensured to guarantee the independence of all opinions/evaluations issued.

The panel members, including the chair, may not act as supervisors or co-supervisors to candidates making applications within the scope of this tender.

For each candidate, the panel produces a final evaluation file that clearly, coherently and consistently sets out the arguments that led to the classifications awarded across each one of the evaluation criteria and sub-criteria.

The evaluation panel meetings result in the writing of minutes that are signed off by every serving member.

The minutes and their annexes are to necessarily include the following information:

  • Name and affiliation of all evaluation panel members;
  • Identification of all excluded applications alongside the respective justification;
  • Methodology adopted by the panel for cases holding particular characteristics;
  • Final Evaluation Files for each of the applications accepted;
  • Provisional list of the classification and ranking of the candidates in the descending order of the final classifications attributed to all applications evaluated by the panel;
  • CDI Declarations from every panel member;
  • Eventual delegation of voting and other competences on the grounds of the justified absence of panel members.


The evaluation results are released via e-mail sent to the respective address used by the candidate on the occasion of submitting their application to the tender.


Following communication of the provisional list of evaluation results, the candidates have available a period of ten working days so that, should they wish, they may express their respective position at a prior audience of interested parties under the terms of articles 121 and subsequent in the Code of Administrative Procedures.

The final decision is handed down following analysis of the positions submitted under the auspices of the prior audience of interested parties. The final decision may be subject to complaint throughout a period of fifteen working days or, alternatively, submitting an appeal within a thirty working day period, with both durations beginning on the date of the respective notification. Candidates who opt to submit complaints are to address them to the member of the FCT Governing Board with competences for such matters. Candidate opting to submit appeals should address them to the FCT Governing Board.


The research grant contracts are signed directly with the FCT

The following document are necessary to the process of any eventual awarding of a grant and the respective contract signing:

  1. Copy of each civil and fiscal identification document and, whenever applicable, that for social security[1];
  2. Copy of the certificates received for the academic titles held;
  3. Presentation of the registration of recognition for non-national academic qualifications and the conversion of their respective final classifications to the Portuguese classification scale whenever so applicable;
  4. Document demonstrating enrolment and registration for the Doctoral Degree Program in Culture Studies at the FCH/UCP;
  5. Declaration from the supervisor(s) expressing their acceptance of responsibility for the supervision of the working plan in accordance with the terms stipulated by article 5-A of the Research Grant Statute (term of declaration provided by the FCT);
  6. Document demonstrating the acceptance of the candidate by the institution hosting the respective research activities and guarantee the terms and conditions necessary for their smooth development while duly complying with that stipulated under article 13 of the Research Grant Statute;
  7. An updated document demonstrating compliance with the exclusive dedication regime.

The awarding of the grant also remains dependent on:

  • compliance with the requirements stipulated by this present Tender Notification;
  • the results of the scientific evaluation;
  • the non-existence of any unjustified non-compliance in terms of the duties of grant holders within the framework of any prior awarding of a financial grant contract, whether directly or indirectly, by the FCT;
  • the budgetary capacity of the FCT.

The failure to deliver any of the documents necessary to complying with the grant contractual process within a period of six months beginning on the data of communicating the conditional awarding of the grant implies the expiry of the aforementioned concession and the closure of the respective process. 


The payment of the grants begins following the candidate returning the duly signed research grant contract, which is to take place within a maximum period of fifteen working days beginning on the date of its receipt.

The grants awarded under the auspices of this current tender at to be financed by the FCT with funding from the State Budget and, whenever eligible, with funding from the European Social Fund provided within the framework of PORTUGAL2020, in particular and especially through the Operational Program for the Norte Region (NORTE 2020), the Operational Program for the Centro Region (Centro 2020) and the Operational Program for the Alentejo Region (Alentejo 2020), in accordance with the regulatory stipulations defined to this end.


Grant holders are awarded a monthly living allowance according to the terms of the table to be found in RBI Annex I.

The grant may also include other components in accordance with that defined in RBI article 18 and the amounts established in its Annex II.

All grant holders benefit from a personal accident insurance policy with the premiums incurred by the FCT.

All grant holders who are not otherwise covered by any social protection regime may take up the right to social security through means of registering with the social security voluntary regime, under the terms of the Contributory Regimes Codes for the Social Security Welfare System, with the FCT meeting any charges resulting from the respective contributions made in accordance with the terms and limits stipulated in EBI article 10.


The payments due to grant holders are made via bank transfer to the account number provided. The monthly maintenance allowance is paid on the first working day of each month.

The payment of registration, enrolment or other fees are made directly by the FCT to the respective national institution where the grant holder is registered/enrolled in a doctoral degree program.


The renewing of the grant always depends on the submission of a request by the grant holder with a period of not less than sixty working days prior to the date of renewal and accompanied by the following documents:

  1. opinions issued by their supervisor(s) and by their host institution(s) resulting from the monitoring of the grant holder’s works and evaluating their activities;
  2. an updated document demonstrating compliance with the exclusive dedication regime;
  3.  a document demonstrating renewal of the registration in the doctoral degree study cycle.


In all of its R&D activities, whether directly or indirectly grant financed, specifically in every communication, publication and scientific output, as well as the resulting theses, carried out with grant related support, grant holders are to explicitly mention the financial support received from the FCT and the European Social Fund (ESF), especially through the Operational Program for the Norte Region (NORTE 2020), the Operational Program for the Centro Region (Centro 2020) and the Operational Program for the Alentejo Region (Alentejo 2020). To this end, such documents are to include references to these actions and the acronyms of FCT, MCTES, of ESF and the EU according to the norms in effect for each operational program.

The dissemination of the research results financed under the auspices of the RBI is to follow all the norms for open data access, publication and other research results in effect at the FCT.

Every grant awarded, in particular in the case of actions receiving EU support, specifically from the ESF, may be subject to monitor and control actions undertaken on behalf of national and European organisms in accordance with the legislation applicable and with grant holders in receipt of support obliged to cooperate and provide the information requested, which shall include the completion of evaluation surveys and studies even after the duration of the grant has expired.


UCP implements a policy of non-discrimination and equality of access and correspondingly no candidate may be favoured, benefitted, harmed or deprived of any right or exempted from any duty especially as a result of their ascendancy, age, gender, sexual orientation, civil status, family situation, economic position, social origins or conditions, genetic heritage, reduced working capacity, disability, chronic illness, nationality, ethnic or racial origin, territory of origin, language, religion, political or ideological convictions and/or trade union membership.


This Tender falls under the auspices of the regulations of this current Opening Notification, the Regulations for FCT Research Grants, as approved by Regulation no. 950/2019, published in the 2nd DR Series on 16 December 2019, the Research Grant Holder Statute approved by Law no. 40/2004, of 18 August, according to the version in effect in conjunction with any other applicable national and community legislation.

[1] The availability of these documents may be substituted, according to the option of the candidate, by their in-person presence in the financing entity, which shall then proceed to store the details valid for the writing of the contract, including the civil, fiscal and social security identification numbers as well as the duration of validity of the respective documents.