Research Degree Committee

The Research Degree Committee (RDC) is responsible for the PhD programme at the International Institute of Social Studies.

It takes care of admitting PhD students, assigning supervisory teams, offering training courses, monitoring the progress that PhD students make through three monitoring seminars over a period of three years, and quality assessment of the dissertation before it is admitted to the PhD defense procedure of Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Tasks RDC

  • The implementation of the PhD programme at ISS, including decisions about admission, training and supervision, monitoring seminars, under overall responsibility of the Deputy Rector for Research Affairs.
  • Examination Board for the PhD programme, including Go-/No-go decision on the draft design seminar or de-registrations due to lack of progress. Note that for this role, the PhD researchers are not part of the RDC.
  • The ISS rector (as Dean) is accountable for the quality of the PhD degree. The RDC is responsible for the quality of the degree.
    This brings with it:
    - Quality of input: do we admit the right candidates? Do we admit the right number of candidates?
    - Quality of programme: do we offer relevant coursework? Do we offer an environment where PhD candidates can be motivated and enabled to produce a quality PhD? Is the support system appropriate and accessible?
    - Quality of individual journeys: is the supervision good? Do we have the mechanisms in place to improve supervision and resolve problems where needed?
  • The RDC initiates or responds to requests for new policy, rules and regulations about the PhD programme of the ISS. It has an advisory role and proposes policy, rules or regulations for approval by the Institutional Board of the ISS.
  • The RDC is the first port of call where PhD candidates, individually or collectively, can table issues of concern regarding their programme.

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