Doctoral Programme in Labour Relations, Social Inequalities and Trade Unionism

General Objectives of the Course

The Doctoral Program in Labour Relations, Social Inequalities and Trade Unionism is an in-depth academic training Program in Sociology, whose main goal is to provide advanced training in social areas directly linked to social and employment policies, as well as in the field of social interchange and resolution of labour disputes, and in the field of sexual equality, trade unionism and social movement issues. Organized in collaboration between the Faculty of Economics of the University of Coimbra and the Centre for Social Studies (CES) as a host institution for doctoral students, this doctoral Program intends to contribute to widen scientific knowledge in social sciences regarding key areas for understanding ongoing social transformations in current national and global contexts, as well as to develop qualifications and professional or organizational competences by furthering analysis and critical diagnosis on these subjects.

Admission Requirements

As defined in Article 64 of the Academic Regulation of the University of Coimbra and in the Act creating this doctoral programme:

a) holders of a master's degree or legal equivalent;

b) lecturers which have been approved in educational aptitude and scientific capacity tests;

c) holders of a bachelor's degree with a particularly relevant academic or scientific curriculum acknowledged by the doctoral programme coordination and by FEUC's Scientific Council as providing the skills for attending the current study cycle.

d) holders of a school, scientific or professional curriculum recognized as providing the skills for attending the current study cycle by FEUC's Scientific Council.

The recognition mentioned in points c) and d) only allows access to a study cycle conducting to a doctoral degree, and does not entitle its holder any equivalence to a bachelor's or master's degree or a recognition thereof.

Candidates should check the admission requirements available on this site, in addition to the information provided here.

Professional Goals

Doctoral graduates in Labour Relations, Social Inequalities and Trade Unionism have qualifications for exercising multiple, different functions within the scope of public administration, companies, associations and non-governmental organizations, as well as teaching and research institutions, in the field of Sociology, namely on subjects related to labour, social inequalities and trade unionism.

Mode of Study

Full-time attendance, presence required in daytime schedule. Teaching sessions will take place on Friday and Saturday.

Teaching / Evaluation language(s)


Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading

The regulations of the University of Coimbra on 3rd cycles are applied here. Where appropriate, particularly for the taught part of 1st year, and mutatis mutandis, the FEUC Pedagogical Regulation and the FEUC General Standards and Assessment are also applied.
The attendance to the curricular units of the 1st year is considered mandatory, except in very specific situations but only (in these cases) under the authorization of the coordinators of the Program.

Learning Objectives and Intended Skills

This third cycle aims, firstly, the acquisition of generic skills, in accordance with the provisions of Article 28 of Decree-Law 74/2006, of March 24, which are required and considered indispensable at this level of academic training. Among these skills, the following can be highlighted: the cognitive domain, comprehensive and detailed, of a particular scientific area; thorough and systematic understanding of an area of specialization; the methodological sophistication in the design, development and implementation of research work, respecting the requirements imposed by the standards of academic quality and integrity; the capacity for critical analysis and evaluation of new theoretical proposals and complex realities; and the ability to construct and defend consistent and original arguments. Moreover, this PhD Program seeks to provide a set of specific skills – both in the field of Industrial Relations and in the struggle against social and sexual inequalities - to be activated by the economic and institutional actors linked to labour and trade union fields.

Course Coordinator(s)

Elísio Guerreiro do Estanque

Hermes Augusto Tadeu Moreira da Costa

Recognition of Prior Learning

Recognition of prior learning is carried out in accordance with the Academic Regulation of the University of Coimbra.

Qualification Requirements and Regulations

The qualification is framed by the Decree-Law No. 74/2006, of 24 March, as amended by the Decree-Law No. 107/2008, of 25 June, and by the Decree-Law No. 230/2009, of 14 September. Order 7459/2007 (Official Gazette, 2nd series, no. 77, 19 April 2007).

Graduation Requirements

The doctoral programme lasts for 3 years (6 semesters) and includes a taught component in the first year. Attendance and approval in first-year seminars are required to present a dissertation project, whose successful defence is required for subsequent dissertation development. The dissertation will then be defended in a public examination. This programme leads to a doctoral degree in Sociology by the University of Coimbra.

Access to Further Studies

Doctoral graduates will be able to access post-doctoral programmes, namely in the field of Sociology.

Study Programme

Sociology - Labour Relations, Social Inequalities and Trade Unionism

Academic year

Course Type
3rd Cycle Studies

DGES Code: 5283

Qualification Awarded: Doutor

Duration: 3 Year(s)

ECTS Credits: 180.0

Annual Fee: 2000.0


Call for Applications


1st Semester
Start date: 12-09-2022
End date: 17-12-2022
2nd Semester
Start date: 06-02-2023
End date: 20-05-2023


Agência de Avaliação e Acreditação do Ensino Superior
2020-07-31 a 2026-07-30
Direcção Geral de Ensino Superior