Doctoral School

Tomorrow's leaders in digital technologies

Europe is facing great societal challenges and needs to educate students with both excellent basic knowledge in their field but also with the capability to transform ideas into products and services, from the labs to the marketplace, from being students and researchers to becoming entrepreneurs.

The Doctoral School offers an ICT Innovation programme where doctoral candidates acquire a mindset for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (I&E).

After graduation, these doctors will be commercially aware ICT leaders who understand current and future challenges, as well as the opportunities that these present to industry. To achieve this goal, the Doctoral School organizes a standardized I&E education that complements and enriches the doctoral studies of each candidate.

Doctoral School Presentation

Elements of the Doctoral School on ICT Innovation

EIT Digital Doctoral School graduates

The Doctoral School on ICT Innovation features three specific elements:

  • Hands-on Innovation and Entrepreneurship Education consisting of two phases; Business Competence phase followed by a Business Development Experience
  • Mobility; six months of geographical mobility and six months of organisational mobility
  • Thematic alignment of the I&E thesis to the Innovation Areas of EIT Digital

Business Competence

The Business Competence courses are followed during the doctoral studies and amount to a study load of 30 ECTS. The Business Competence phase consists of three components:

  • Opportunity Recognition (one week);
  • Business Modelling and Development (15 weeks);
  • Growth and Harvest (one to two weeks).

Videos: Student stories from the Business Competence courses

Jose Peralta
Toni Maki
Kumaripaba Athukorala

Business Development Experience

The Business Development Experience provides six months of organisational mobility to work in a business-driven environment. It can be either an internship period at a large company or SME, or with a startup in an innovation-friendly place, such as an incubator. The Business Development Experience is assessed with an I&E thesis, written in English.

Doctoral Training Centres

 Students of the Doctoral School work in the Doctoral Training Centres.

 Doctoral Training Centres (DTCs) provide a multi-disciplinary and inspiring work environment, aligned with the thematic innovation areas of EIT Digital. For more information about the DTCs, visit the DTC web pages on the Doctoral School website.


The Doctoral School is a doctoral education that will deliver 50 graduates per year to society and industry. Each student is equipped with deeply specialized ICT knowledge at PhD level, and with skills to understand and assess current and emerging ICT technologies, as well as the opportunities that these present to industry.

Maurizio Gabbrielli


Maurizio Gabbrielli

Head of Doctoral School

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