9 October 2019

Ius promovendi for all associate professors with a PhD

As of 1 January 2020, all associate professors (with UHD profiles 1 and 2) who hold a PhD degree and hold a UM employment contract will be granted ius promovendi for an indefinite period of time. Consequently, these associate professors can be assigned as supervisors of PhD projects starting as of 1 January 2020. This new UM policy deviates from the VSNU guidelines and follows the policy adopted by a number of other Dutch universities as well as a call from The Young Academy in favour of a generous implementation of ius promovendi.

The main arguments in favour of this policy change are:

  • More transparency and uniformity.
  • Larger number of supervisors to draw from, offering a potential reduction in workload for current PhD supervisors (professors).
  • More opportunities for female academics to act as supervisors, given the fact that the percentage of female associate professors is higher than the percentage of female professors.
  • More opportunities for talented young academics to act as supervisors.
  • Alignment with the policy of several other Dutch universities, who are more flexible with regard to VSNU guidelines (see the publication by De Jonge Akademie).

PhD projects which started before 1 January 2020

In principle, there will be no changes to the composition of the supervising team for current PhD projects, if the supervisor(s) and co-supervisor(s) have already been assigned. Associate professors may, however, be assigned as supervisors of PhD projects which started before 1 January 2020 provided that the appointed supervisors and co-supervisors agree to this (see policy) and the composition of the supervising team meets the guidelines of the Regulations for obtaining the doctoral degree at Maastricht University.

The quality of PhD projects

In order to improve the quality of PhD projects, a number of additional policy measures have been drawn up. These include the requirement of proven experience in supervising PhD students for the promotion of assistant professors to associate professors and that proper attention be given to supervising PhD students.

This policy was adopted by the Board of Deans on 4 September 2019 and approved by the Executive Board on 30 September 2019. The changes will take effect on 1 January 2020.

View the new policy. Your manager will be able to provide you with more details.

The Regulations for obtaining the doctoral degree at Maastricht University will be changed at a later date. More information to follow in due course.

"This policy change will create more opportunities for talented young academics to act as supervisors and there will be more recognition and credit for those who are actually responsible for supervising PhDs."
Rianne Letschert, Rector Magnificus Maastricht University