Top PhD Programs in Economics


Top PhD Programs in Economics

If you're looking to choose an economics PhD program, it's important to consider options that match your research interests and personal style. We list a selection of the best PhD programs in economics that are offered by European universities, to help you find the right postgraduate program for you.

Check out our selection below:

University of Rome Tor Vergata

University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy

Programs available:


The Ph.D. program in Economics and Finance is a 4-year full-time program aiming at providing an advanced specialization in Economics, Finance and Econometrics to highly qualified and motivated students, whose goal is a successful career in academia or in institutions that require advanced financial, economic and statistical skills.

During the first-year students acquire a broad set of theoretical and methodological skills required in both economics and finance (mathematics and statistics, econometrics, microeconomics, macroeconomics, finance). After choosing their field of specialization students to dedicate the second, third, and fourth year to research, and are expected to attend seminars held by internationally renowned internal and external faculty, as well as to present the progress of their research.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

University of Surrey

University of Surrey, Guildford, UK

Programs available:

Doctoral programme in Economics (MRes+PhD)

The University of Surrey’s MRes Economics programme is designed to prepare you for a research career in academia or in international organisations around the world. The course is your first step towards doctoral research, leading typically to our three-year PhD, or it may lead to a stand-alone MRes degree. The MRes provides cutting-edge training in micro, macro, econometrics and research methods and is, on successful completion, followed by the PhD programme lasting three to four years during which students take advanced PhD field courses and work on their research. 

In our vibrant research-focused department, you’ll learn from academics at the frontier of their research fields in a UK top 10 economics department (THE 2020). We offer generous studentships for the duration of the MRes/PhD course for those with strong research potential, covering international fees, a yearly stipend and a yearly research allowance. 

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

Ruhr Graduate School in Economics

Ruhr Graduate School in Economics (RGS Econ), Essen, Germany

Programs available:

Fully Funded PhD program in Economics

RGS Econ offers a structured doctoral program in Economics, building on the combined expertise in theoretical, empirical, and applied research of four university economics departments in the Ruhr Valley area of Germany – (Bochum, Dortmund, Essen and Duisburg) – and one of Germany’s leading economic research institutes (RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research). Advanced coursework, a cooperative learning environment, and an extensive research network and infrastructure are geared to support our students in conducting first-rate research and our graduates in obtaining excellent positions in academia, public institutions, and in the private sector.

RGS Econ charges no tuition fees. Accepted students are offered financing for a minimum of three years, which may be in the form of a scholarship or in the form of research and teaching assistant positions.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

Graduate School of Economic & Social Sciences (GESS), University of Mannheim

Graduate School of Economic & Social Sciences (GESS), University of Mannheim, Mannheim, Germany

Programs available:

Doctoral Program in Economics – 25 Scholarships available

The Graduate School of Economic and Social Sciences (GESS) at the University of Mannheim offers excellent opportunities for academically talented and highly motivated students with a quantitative orientation to pursue their doctoral degree in Economics.

The internationally competitive doctoral program enrolls up to 25 students each year with 40% international students in the student body. The faculty is dedicated to anchoring all teaching and research firmly in the core disciplines of Microeconomics, Macroeconomics and Econometrics. The first year of the program ensures that all doctoral researchers have the requisite knowledge when they start conducting research on their own and in collaboration with our dynamic and outstanding faculty.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

Doctoral Programs in Accounting, Finance and Taxation – 12 Scholarships available

Profit from an internationally recognized teaching and unique interdisciplinary training across the boundaries of the economic and social sciences according to your interests. Engage with the outstanding faculties of our triple accredited Business School (AACSB, EQUIS, AMBA). 

Our program in Accounting provides students with core competencies in methods of analytical, empirical, and data-analytics research as well as a profound knowledge of the relevant institutional details in the fields of Financial Accounting, Managerial Accounting, and Auditing.

Our program in Finance covers research fields such as Asset Pricing and Asset Management, Corporate Finance and Corporate Governance, Behavioral Finance, Market Microstructure and others. It provides students with core competencies in analytical and empirical research methods as well as a profound knowledge of the relevant institutional details in their field while offering links to other academic disciplines. The focus of the program is on empirical research.

Our program in Taxation is integrated with the newly established Leibniz Science Campus Mannheim Taxation bundling the expertise in tax research across the disciplines of economics, business administration, law, and political science. The program covers the fields of Business Taxation and Public Economics while allowing to incorporate neighboring subjects from Accounting, Finance, or Economics into the curriculum.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

University of St. Gallen

University of St. Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland

Programs available:

Graduate Program in Economics and Finance (GPEF)

The GPEF offers a structured Ph.D. programme tailored towards a high-quality and internationally oriented education in economics, econometrics and financial research. It prepares students for an academic career or for applied research positions in policy and industry. Graduates are regularly selected for very reputable academic and non-academic positions. The University of St. Gallen is one of the most renowned universities in the fields of finance, economics, and business in Europe. Successful candidates have acquired (or are about to complete) a Master's degree in Economics, Econometrics, Finance or a related field with excellent grades, and have a strong motivation to conduct own research. They can choose to enrol either in the specialisations Economics / Econometrics (PhD programme in Economics & Econometrics, PEcon) or Finance (PhD Programme in Finance, PiF), starting fall semester 2021.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

University of Torino

Collegio Carlo Alberto, University of Torino, Turin, Italy

Programs available:

PhD in Economics (4-year)

The Vilfredo Pareto Doctorate in Economics allows you to structure your coursework and write your doctoral dissertation in a number of different areas of economics. After a common set of core courses that take place in the first term of the program (including review courses in mathematics and statistics and advanced courses in microeconomics, macroeconomics and econometrics), you can further prepare for your dissertation work by choosing from a list of elective courses. The latter are organized in three curricula: 1) Economics 2) Economics and Complexity 3) Theoretical Economics, Finance, and Statistics. All activities take place in the brand new building of the Collegio Carlo Alberto in downtown Torino. You can benefit from a vibrant and international academic environment and participate in all scientific events. You will receive yearly research funds and have the possibility to spend part of your third or fourth year abroad as a visiting student. There is also the possibility to sign cotutelle agreements with other academic institutions and thus obtain a double doctoral degree.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry


CEMFI, Madrid, Spain

Programs available:

PhD in Economics

The CEMFI PhD Program will prepare you for successful career in universities and academic centers as well as in central banks and public and private sector institutions. You will enjoy a stimulating academic environment with accessible and supportive faculty. The program comprises two stages: stage one, coursework; and stage two, research. The coursework stage will provide you with state of the art tools to successfully conduct research in an ample range of areas in Economics. The research stage fosters an international academic environment in which you will grow to develop an independent and productive career. The typical duration of studies is five to six years.

Application deadline: Closed for 2022/23 Entry

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INOMICS PhD in economics guide