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Institute for International Law and Comparative Constitutional Law Prof. Dr. Johannes Reich

Doctorate/Dr. iur. (Ph.D.)

Supervision of dissertation projects (PhD-theses)

Fields of Research
Professor Dr Johannes Reich supervises dissertations in German or English in his fields of expertise:
•    Climate Change Law
•    Comparative Constitutional Law
•    Comparative Administrative Law
•    Swiss Constitutional Law
•    Swiss Administrative Law
•    Swiss Environmental Law

The number of Ph.D-students not working in my team is to provide for excellent supervision. Successful applicants are expected to have outstanding academic credentials (MLaw, Lizentiat, JD etc.) and must demonstrate a proven interest in legal scholarship, intellectual curiosity, and personal integrity.

When applying as a Ph.D-student you are expected to have read and understood all relevant regulations and information on dissertation projects provided by the Faculty of Law of the University of Zurich (general admission requirements, administrative questions, application procedure)

It is strongly recommended to check whether dissertations on the same or similar topics have been published recently or are in progress. Link

Application Procedure
Should you wish to a preliminary request for supervision of your dissertation project, please e-mail the following documents in pdf format to Professor Reich (

  1. Short letter of motivation (reasons for the doctoral project, time frame, funding etc.).
  2. Clear, tabular curriculum vitae
  3. University track record (at least BLaw and MLaw or equivalent degrees) and relevant employment reference letters
  4. Writing samples (Master's thesis, Bachelor's thesis, if possible academic publications)
  5. Outline of one to three possible dissertation topics (approx. 1-2 A4 pages), arranged according to your preferences, including formulated research questions
  6. Graduates of foreign law schools: Proof of eligibility for doctoral studies at your home university and, if possible, at least one letter of recommendation from a professor teaching at the respective university (please note: the ultimate decision on the admission of graduates of law faculties outside of Switzerland to the doctorate rests with the Dean; cf. § 12 para. 3 Ordinance for obtaining a Doctoral degree)

After an initial review of your documents, Professor Reich will get in touch with you and will, should your application look promising, discuss your dissertation project in more detail in a personal interview. On this basis, Professor Reich will decide on the preliminary support of your project. In case of a positive decision, you are expected to prepare a comprehensive project outline within (usually) 3-4 months. On this basis, Professor Reich will make his final decision on whether to take on the supervision of your dissertation project.

For further information, please get in touch with Professor Johannes Reich by e-mail