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PhD Student Information

Africa PhD Seminar - applications closed.

MAY 14-15, 2019

Johannesburg, South Africa

Hosted by the Africa Centre for Philanthropy and Social Investment at the Wits Business School


Asia Pacific PhD Seminar -applications closed.

 JULY 13-14, 2019

Bangkok, Thailand


LAC PhD Seminar -  applications closed.

 JULY 2-3, 2019

 Medellín, Colombia

 Hosted by Universidad EAFIT



Amsterdam, Netherlands
July 8 - 10, 2018
VU University Amsterdam

The fourth ISTR PhD Seminar took place at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, from the 8th to the 10th of July 2018.



Three highlights of the ISTR PhD Seminar 2018: Or why participation is highly recommended 

 by Franz Koranyi who is writing a PhD on ‘philanthropic engagement in community-based networks in the field of education’ at the Freie Universität Berlin, Germany.


Do you know that feeling of anticipation preceding an important presentation or event? You anticipate 

your own excitement, helpful feedback of others, interesting encounters and wonder how you will experience the ambiance of the event. Preparing for the fourth ISTR PhD Seminar from 8th to 10th July on the train to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, I had this exact feeling.

Group sessions: a key element of the PhD Seminar were the group sessions of about six or seven students and two faculty members. 

Community: an important element of the PhD Seminar was the interaction outside of group sessions. There were tons of opportunities to enter into conversations with each another. We mingled in breaks (with delicious catering), enjoyed a lovely BBQ together, drank a glass of wine at the reception, or danced at the PhD party (to the music played by René Bekkers and band). This allowed us to meet fascinating people from all over the world in a more informal setting (more than 50 students from over 20 countries).

Professional development: the PhD seminar as well as additional workshops during the conference provided the opportunity for us to also think about our future careers. 

To read the full article, please click here.

Networking in the Netherlands: reflections on the International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR) PhD Seminar 2018

 by Steph Haywood, PhD candidate at the Centre for the Study of Philanthropy & Public Good

(originally from this blog post)

From 8th-10th  of July 2018, the fourth ISTR PhD seminar was held at Vrije University in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Immediately preceding the society’s conference, the seminar was an excellent opportunity for students to meet other third sector PhD researchers and ISTR faculty members, and benefit from each other’s insights. This year, the seminar was attended by 50 students from over 20 different countries.

The seminar began Sunday afternoon with an opening talk from Professor Taco Brandsen of Radboud University about the history of the third sector in the Netherlands.

The majority of the seminar was spent in smaller working groups, formed on the basis of our research topics. Within these, every student had the opportunity to briefly present their PhD topic and current progress, before highlighting any issues or questions they wished to put to the group. The following discussion sought to help the student, providing advice and recommendations ranging from alternative methods to useful reading material.

To read the full article, please click here.


2016 PhD Seminar Impression
by Santiago Sordo Ruz, PhD student at Tecnológico de Monterrey, Mexico

This past summer I had the opportunity to take part in ISTR’s PhD Seminar in Stockholm. I had attended some regional ISTR events but this year’s seminar and conference were going to be my first international events, so my expectations for both events were high.

It all started at the welcome meeting where I realized the event, in its third edition, had a much larger scale and diversity than I had imagined. Not only were there participants from every region of the world very diverse backgrounds, and stages of their programs, but also an interesting group of very qualified scholars that would lead the different sessions and activities. It seems the seminar is well on its way to becoming an ISTR institution.

To read the full article, please click here


ISTR 2014 PhD Seminar Report


In the run-up to the 11th International Conference, the second ISTR’s PhD seminar brought together 46 students from 22 countries at the political science department in Muenster from Sunday July 20th to 22nd . Established two years ago in Siena, the seminar aims to provide doctoral students from the broad variety of third sector research with the opportunity to receive extensive intellectual and methodological advice on their doctoral research, to introduce them to main theories and developments in the field, to reflect upon publication and career strategies, and to provide a unique opportunity to network with junior and senior scholars within the international ISTR research community.

To learn more, please click here.



ISTR 2012 PhD Seminar Report


ISTR held its Inaugural PhD Seminar immediately prior to the 2012 conference in Siena. The seminar is part of the Society’s mission to build the field of third sector research and focused on providing extensive intellectual and methodological advice on the participants’ doctoral research, introducing students to the main theories and recent developments in the field, guiding reflection upon publication and career strategies, and providing a unique opportunity to network with junior and senior scholars within the international research community. 

To read the full report, click here.


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