Summer schools, study visits, development of an interdisciplinary programme of doctoral studies and provision of stipends for doctoral students are the main elements of the “Humanities and Social Sciences for Society and Enterprise” programme (NCBiR project) being implemented by the Graduate School for Social Research (GSSR) at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences (IFiS PAN) .
Recruitment to the 4 year interdisciplinary full-time doctoral programme is open until 3rd September 2018.
The GSSR team attaches particular weight to enabling students with disabilities to undertake doctoral studies within the framework of the project.
The main aim of the project is to achieve the highest standards of quality of education in the doctoral programme of IFiS PAN’s Graduate School for Social Research (GSSR). The project runs from 01.-06.2018 to 31.05.2023.
Thanks to the project a new study programme is being developed in which students will have the opportunity to shape their own individual path of study, working with professors and research teams of IFiS PAN, and benefit from the Institute’s well-developed international network of contacts. The new programme, besides giving a solid philosophical or sociological grounding is open to an interdisciplinary view of research problems. The project provides support for study trips abroad and for participation in three summer schools with programmes devised in cooperation with foreign scholars. Doctoral students joining the project will be provided with stipends helping them to concentrate on their own development. They will also be able to take advantage of other opportunities offered by IFiS PAN, such as participation in competitions for grants to carry out their own doctoral research.
The GSSR PhD Programme is open to candidates who want to develop any area of contemporary philosophical problems as well as the history of philosophy. In particular research group investigations concern both continental philosophy together with its most contemporary currents concerning philosophy of politics, philosophy of culture, philosophical anthropology and philosophy of science as well as analytical philosophy, cognitive science, ancient and medieval thought. At the same time the School is open to bold and innovative currents in methods of theoretical research.
Similarly, we deal with all areas of sociological problems broadly understood, whether related to cultural studies and institutional approaches, or to social structure, big data and advanced qualitative and quantitative methods. To give one example among many possible profiles, we seek sociology applicants who seek to develop their methodological skills in quantitative research and learn to apply appropriately cross-country comparisons, multilevel modelling, response style, model selection, machine learning, latent variable modelling etc. in their substantive studies in various research fields. We also look for candidates devoted to cultural and institutional studies in various fields. Students with a degree in Sociology or in another related discipline (including social anthropology, ethnography, history, education studies, economics, psychology, and biology) are invited to apply.
The project “Humanities and Social Sciences for Society and Enterprise” is supported from European Funds within the Operational Programme Knowledge Education Development (PO WER) priority axis III: Higher Education for the economy and development, Action 3.2 Doctoral studies. The Intermediate Body is the National Centre for Research and Development.
Individual study programme
What this means
Each PhD student will work together with their supervisor each academic year to agree a programme of individual study for the next twelve months. In addition to compulsory courses taught in GSSR students will be expected to join wherever possible a research project underway within the Institute (or, exceptionally, in an equivalent research centre).
Building your individual programme
Your individual study programme should be designed to ensure you have the methodological skills and theoretical knowledge necessary for successful completion of your doctoral research and, for those who choose, for your further academic career. These skills and knowledge will be gained by participation in taught courses and in the research work of the Institute. On completion of the four years of the programme in addition to completion of your doctoral research you will have gained insight also into aspects of a research group’s work, such as elaboration of a concept and its realisation by the different stages of proposal writing, grant administration, preparation of work for publication, as well as the important ‘soft skills’ gained from working in a team.
The PhD programme lasts four years – the maximum period for such a programme normally allowed by Polish law (limited additional time is permitted for students interrupting their studies for the various reasons clearly specified in Ministerial regulations).
A preliminary list of projects willing to receive students is given below (see: projects open to students in 2017-18)
MA as the first year of the PhD
Studies at the GSSR are aimed at three kinds of applicant:
- Those who wish to study for an MA to improve their qualifications before seeking employment;
- Those who wish to study for an MA as a preliminary to embarking on a PhD;
- Those who wish to begin the PhD programme directly.
This can be illustrated by the following schema:
non specialist entry
non specialist entry
Candidates apply directly either to the MA or the PhD programme.
1. Some students will simply attend the School in order to complete the MA programme.
2. Students who successfully complete the MA programme and successfully apply to continue at the School as doctoral students may, if they choose to do so, enter directly to the second year of the PhD programme.
Students applying and accepted directly to the PhD programme may if they wish choose to follow all the MA programme requirements in their first year and so have the possibility of obtaining a British MA as the first part of the PhD programme.
Some otherwise well-qualified applicants to the PhD programme whose level of preparation is in some respects not quite sufficient for entry to doctoral studies may nevertheless be accepted to the PhD programme on condition they satisfy the requirements of the MA programme before continuing to the second year of doctoral studies.
3. All doctoral students in any year of the PhD programme are entitled to take and obtain credit for courses offered in the MA programme, but those accepted directly to the PhD programme need not take any MA courses if they do not wish to.
Courses open to PhD students
Courses to be taught in English as part of the School’s doctoral programme
in the academic year 2018-2019.
Compulsory courses: Philosophy
- Agata Bielik-Robson:
- Andrzej Leder:
- Adam Lipszyc:
- Szymon Wróbel :
Compulsory courses: sociology
- Sławomir Kapralski:
- Zbigniew Karpiński, Marta Kołczyńska, Małgorzata Mikucka:
- Piotr Binder, Marta Olcoń-Kubicka,:
- Irina Tomescu-Dubrow, Josh Dubrow, Ilona Wysmulek, Kinga Wysienska-Di Carlo:
Courses taken outside GSSR
Courses may also be taken at other Higher Education institutions in Poland or abroad (Erasmus+, Fulbright etc).
Courses offered in GSSR in the MA programme (open to PhD students):
- Sławomir Kapralski (UP Krakow)– Social & Political Theory
- Henryk Banaszak (U. Warsaw)– Research methods
- Radosław Markowski (SWPS) – Political sociology
- Andrzej Rychard (IFiS PAN)– Economy & society I
- Michał Federowicz/Michał Sitek (IFiS PAN) – Political economy of policy reform
- Magdalena Grabowska (IFiS PAN))/Joanna Regulska (UC Davis)– Women’s political identity in making
- Sławomir Kapralski (UP Krakow)– Theories of Culture
- Annamaria Orla-Bukowska (Jagellonian U.)– The Holocaust and its cultural meaning
- Zdzisław Mach (Jagellonian U.)– Culture and Nationalism
- Andrzej Rychard (IFiS PAN) – Sociology of Institutional Change
- Marta Olcoń Kubicka (IFiS PAN)– Qualitative methods
- Henryk Banaszak (U. Warsaw)– Quantitative Methods
- Sławomir Kapralski (UP Krakow)– Contemporary Social Theory
- Michał Federowicz/Michał Sitek (IFiS PAN)– Economy and Society II
- Sławomir Kapralski (UP Krakow)– The Roma in Central/Eastern Europe
- Edwin Bendyk (Collegium Civitas)– e-Media
- Paweł Załęski (U. Warsaw)– Civil Society in Theory and Practice
- Peter Przytuła (U. Minnesota)– Mass Communication and Society
- Peter Przytuła (U. Minnesota)– Media Ethics
- Jan Kubik (Rutgers)– Beyond political Culture
- Leslie Holmes (U.Melbourne)– Organised Crime and Human Trafficking
- Leslie Holmes (U.Melbourne)– Corruption
- Jan Pakulski (University of Tasmania) Elites and Leaders in Contemporary Politics
- Radosław Markowski (SWPS) Backsliding to Authoritarianism
Courses taken outside GSSR
Course may also be taken at other Higher Education institutions in Poland or abroad (Erasmus+, Fulbright etc).
Projects open to students in 2018-19
Projects in Philosophy
Unit for Philosophy of Culture
(Zespół Filozofii Kultury)
Semiotics and semantics of culture (cultural normativity, theory of film), Contemporary philosophy (phenomenology, philosophy of existence, structuralism and post-structuralism),
The modern sources of contemporary philosophy, philosophy of language (semantic theses, performatics)
Unit for Logics and Cognitivist Studies
(Zakład Logiki i Kognitywistyki)
All aspects of formal and informal logics, especially: logical pragmatics, logic of speech acts, logic of probability and statistics
The main problems of contemporary philosophy, political philosophy, psychoanalysis, cognitive science, philosophy of language
Philosophy of cognitive science, philosophy of computer science, philosophy of psychology, and philosophy of mind
Unit for the History of Modern and Contemporary Philosophy
(Zakładu Historii Filozofii Nowożytnej i Współczesnej)
History of modern philosophy from 15th to 18th century.
History of Reformation and Counter-Reformation.
Aristotelian and Platonic tradition in Western culture.
Philosophy and political thought in school and academies of the early modern period.
The Scientific Revolution of the 17th century, its premises, aftermaths and philosophical relevance.
European and Polish Renaissance in thought, Letters and arts. The intellectual relevance of Humanism.
„Not-rational” animals as a philosophical and a cultural problem.
Neoscholastic philosophy (16th-20th century).
History of Polish philosophy (15-17th century).
History of early modern political thought (from Machiavelli to Hobbes and further).
Political thought as a collective enterprise (development, dissemination, censorship).
The impact of printing on Western culture.
Censorship and freedom of thought in the history of philosophy.
II History of Russian philosophy of the 18th – 20th centuries (from Radischev to the Russian religious renaissance).
Soviet studies (sovietology).
The phenomenon of ideology in the 20th and 21st centuries.
Polish philosophy of the 19th and 20th centuries (from romanticism to the interwar period).
Philosophy of history.
Philosophy of culture.
Messianisms and catastrophisms.
Philosophy and mystic experience.
Erotology in modern philosophy.
Reinterpretations of Christian ethics in the philosophy of the 20th century.
Ethics in the philosophy of the 19th and 20th centuries
III Theological turn in French Phenomenology (Marion, Henry, Chretien, Derrida, Nancy itd.).
Phenomenology of Eros.
Phenomenology of surprise, admiration and astonishment.
Phenomenology of moral emotions.
Existential phenomenology in Poland.
Descartes’ First and Late Philosophy.
Comparative studies on the beginning of the Early modern thought.
IV History of classical German Philosophy
History and theory of German Transcendentalism
Philosophy of Immanuel Kant
Philosophy of Ernst Cassirer
Philosophy of symbolic forms
Critical philosophy of culture
Logic of cultural sciences
History of cultural sciences
Philosophy of art (iconology) of Erwin Panofsky
Critical philosophy of myth
Logic of political myth
Philosophical aspects of Gestalt psychology
History of Medieval Philosophy Unit
(Zakład Historii Filozofii Średniowiecznej)
Greek philosophy, especially Greek ethics and political theory.
Identifying roots of Western culture, social, economic, moral, religious, medical and educational institutions.
Analyzing philosophical ideas and tools with the help of medieval texts.
Comparing modern and contemporary theories with their medieval predecessors.
Applying medieval philosophical tools to bioethics and neuroethics.
Editing medieval texts.
Unit for Theory of Knowledge and Philosophy of Science
(Zakład Teorii Poznania i Filozofii Nauki)
Philosophy of mathematics
Philosophy of science (except formalized theories of science)
Philosophy about science beyond philosophy of science (e.g. criticisms of science; the problem of the place, roles and status of science in the human world)
Philosophy of nature
Philosophy of biology
Projects in Sociology
Civil Society Unit
(Zakład Społeczeństwa Obywatelskiego)
The idea and practice of civil society in Poland and Asian countries
Social development of contemporary mainland China and Taiwan
East Asian culture and contemporary Confucianism,
Chinese liberalism and other ideological trends in China and Taiwan,
Issues of social trust and civil dialogue
Theory of Culture Unit
(Zakład Teorii Kultury)
Culture, media, and society
Sociology of art, social and cultural changes rooted in technology,
The history as reflected in media (television and the internet).
Consumer culture studies
Media shift of 21st century, convergence culture, social changes portrayed in the media discourse, and changes in fine arts
Unit for Social and Cultural Anthropology
(Zespół Socjologii i Antropologii Kultury)
Theoretical sociology: sociology and history of ideas;, historical sociology; sociology of culture, sociology of the nation, theory of culture, including the social thought of Zygmunt Bauman; ways of conceptualizing of time and analysis of temporal transformations in the contemporary world (prof. J. Kurczewska, dr D. Brzeziński)
Qualitative methodology in sociology and anthropology: field work methodology, biographical research, grounded theory; (prof. H. Palska, dr P. Filipkowski, dr P. Binder, J. Straczuk, dr M. Karkowska)
Qualitative Data Archive IFiS PAN: archiving of new qualitative data collections; conferences on archiving qualitative data; courses and workshops on data archiving and reinterpretation of qualitative data through incorporating them into new research projects. (prof. H. Palska, dr P. Filipkowski, dr P. Binder, J. Straczuk, dr M. Karkowska)
Collective memory: studies on individual memory and collective memory in different historical, spatial and political contexts; peculiarities of collective memory in Central and Eastern Europe; biographical and collective memory and their interaction, studies of oral history (prof. J. Kurczewska, dr P. Filipkowski, dr A. Wylegała, dr M. Karkowska)
Community studies: diagnoses of local and regional cultures from the perspective of tradition and innovation; interpretation of local and regional foundations of social identities, especially on national and European context; local community on borders and borderlines, especially between Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, and Lithuania; research on national minorities and immigrants in local context (prof. J. Kurczewska, prof. H. Bojar, dr J. Straczuk)
Cultural dimension of social differences and lifestyles: reflection on the changes of cultural patterns of modern societies (especially post-communist) in context of processes of European integration and globalization; the processes of formation of new lifestyles; cultural patterns of family life, anthropology of food (prof. H. Palska, prof. H. Bojar, dr J. Straczuk)
“COURAGE. Cultural Opposition – Understanding the CultuRal HeritAGE of Dissent in the Former Socialist Countries”. The international project COURAGE, aims to analyse the heritage of cultural opposition in post-socialist countries. A description of the project can be found on the website: http://cultural-opposition.eu/ The project would be more than happy to welcome PhD students. It can offer research experience in doing interviews, analysing historical materials and participating in EU funded projects. Contact: Barbara Tołłoczko
Unit for Comparative Analysis of Social Inequalities
(Zespół Porównawczych Analiz Nierówności Społecznych)
The strategic long-term aim of ZPANS is to develop comparative studies – in terms of time and geographic coverage – on social inequality and the adaptation of individuals to social change. Social inequality is considered in a broad perspective, taking into account macroeconomic conditions as well as the transformation of political system. Research of members of ZPANS focus on the correlates of individuals in the social structure as well as the determinants of individual adaptation to social change.
Comparative analyses in time dimension: The survey panel study (POLPAN 1988-2013, polpan.org). In the nearest future ZPANS will concentrate on the following:
methodological problems: response rate in panel studies, inter-wave harmonization of panel studies, panel regression and dynamic modeling, and biographical interviewing in panel studies.
substantive problems: effects of psychological functioning on status attainment, subjective evaluation of health, subjective evaluation of social position, democratic values, and egalitarian attitudes.
II: Comparative analyses in geographic-coverage dimension: International survey programs: (HARMONIZACJA, dataharmonization.org). In the nearest future ZPANS will work on the following:
methodological problems: quality assessment of survey data, harmonization of data from international survey projects, and survey data management.
substantive problems: trust in people and public institutions, democratic values, protest behavior, and voting.
Unit for Sociology of Politics, Economy and Education
(Zespół Socjologii Polityki, Gospodarki i Edukacji)
Sociology of Institutions,
Sociology of Money,
Sociology of Tax
European Studies Unit
(Zespół Studiów Europejskich)
Political, social and legal aspects of European integration
European Union, its development and future
Global challenges to European integration
Sociology of law
The problems of democracy in multi-national political framework
The problems of migration in Europe
Problems of national and ethnic minorities in Europe
Political and social problems in the EU neighborhood
Unit for studies of religion
(Zakład Badań nad Religią)
Sociology of religion
Assisted death in the context of biopower and bioeconomy