Accreditation to supervise research (HDR)
Sciences Po awards accreditations to supervise research (HDR) in law, economics, history, political science and sociology.
The accreditation to supervise research “recognises the candidate’s high level of scholarship, original approach, mastery of research in a sufficiently broad field of science or technology, and the ability to oversee young researchers. It allows candidates to apply for university faculty positions” (decree of 23 November 1988, as amended by the decrees of 13 February 1992 and of 13 July 1995).
Around ten accreditations are pursued at the Graduate School each year, extending Ph.D. programmes in: Law, Economics, History, Political Science and Sociology.
There used to be two forms of doctorates in France: the third cycle doctorate and the higher-level state doctorate. The state doctorate has been replaced by the Accreditation to supervise research (HDR), which “by design is not and should not in any case be considered a second, higher-level Ph.D., as the state doctorate was previously considered in relation to the third cycle doctorate.” (circular n° 89-004 of 5 January 1989).