School of Electrical Engineering

Become a doctoral researcher at the School of Electrical Engineering

Doctoral education will prepare you for the most demanding expert positions in your field in the academia, companies and public administration or as an entrepreneur. Start here if you’re interested in doctoral studies!
Woman Elec Aki-Pekka Sinikoski

The doctoral programme at the School of Electrical Engineering will make you an expert in your field. During the studies, you’ll explore a research topic of your choice in detail and select courses that develop your competence. Full-time students can complete the doctoral programme in four years. Doctoral studies can also be completed as part-time studies. In this case, the schedule is planned individually with the supervising professor.

What does doctoral education at the School of Electrical Engineering offer you?

  • A respected degree that prepares you to work in demanding research and expert positions, for example, at universities and other research organisations, companies, in public administration or as an entrepreneur.
  • The opportunity to develop diverse competencies via studies tailored specifically for you.
  • The support of an experienced research team and supervisor, which allows you to conduct high-quality research and contribute to advancement in your field.
  • State-of-the-art research facilities and a multidisciplinary environment.
  • International experience through conferences, researcher exchanges and visits, and working in an international research group.
  • Networks with the academic community, companies and organisations in your field.
  • Excellent employment opportunities as well as support and mentoring for career planning.

Read stories about our doctoral graduates

Doctoral student Anastasiia Kravtcova: “Doctoral studies can be a combination of a job, hobby and lifestyle”

The chance of making a societal impact motivated Anastasiia Kravtcova to pursue her doctoral studies and to dive into a groundbreaking topic in medical engineering at the School of Electrical Engineering.

Aalto ELEC's doctoral student Anastasiia Kravtcova

A doctorate prepares you for a career in industry, too

For Antti Alahäivälä, doctoral studies were a day job that allowed him to focus on interesting research and self-development. His doctoral research provided a strong foundation for his current work at Wärtsilä.

Aalto university school of electrical engineering alumnus antti alahäivälä

Doctoral studies taught Osman Yilmaz the value of trial and error

Senior Researcher and Research Project Manager Osman Yilmaz, whose doctoral degree will be conferred in the ceremonial conferment in June, is now working on 5G at Ericsson.

Osman Yilmaz

Aini Putkonen: 'The life of a doctoral student is very versatile'

Doctoral student Aini Putkonen thinks that the doctoral degree prepares students well for both academia and industry.

Doctoral student Aini Putkonen

Alumnus Asad Awan awarded for the best doctoral thesis in the field of technology

Awan’s doctoral research deals with the control methods for more efficient electric motors, which could replace traditional induction motors in industrial applications and help reduce the carbon footprint of motor driven systems

Aalto University alumnus Asad Awan.

F. M. Mahafugur Rahman receives TEK’s and TFiF’s best dissertation award

In his dissertation, Aalto University alumnus presented real-time control algorithms for next-generation renewable energy production

Mahafugur Rahman. Picture: Jari Härkönene

Leonardo Fierro: Sharing experiences for a better doctoral student life

'Now I’m less fearful of failing. I know how to put things into perspective. It was a good lesson to learn that failing is part of the process of succeeding.'

Photo: Leonardo Fierro.

Juha Heinonen receives TEK’s and TFiF’s best dissertation award

In his doctoral thesis, an Aalto University alum developed a loss-free radiation sensor which is already on the way to the global market with mass production just getting started.

Juha Heinoselle parhaan väitöskirjan palkinto. Kuva: Jari Härkönen

Kalle Spoof's doctoral research for Saab opened the door to the company's product development

In his doctoral thesis, Kalle Spoof developed beamforming of radar systems

Kalle Spoof

What do doctoral research in the School of Electrical Engineering include?

A doctorate in the School of Electrical Engineering is not just fours more years of studies, but actual research work.As a doctoral researcher, your main task is to conduct research in your field and present the results in high-quality publications and at conferences. You’ll select and complete 40 credits of studies that support your research and give you valuable skills for your future work life. You have the opportunity to participate in an exchange or a visit to one of our many partner universities around the world.

You will compile your research into a doctoral thesis, which in most cases consists of peer-reviewed articles and a summary section. Doctoral research culminate in a traditional public defence and post-doctoral party, which is always a memorable experience.

Our doctoral students work in international and multidisciplinary research groups and cooperate with other researchers. You’ll be assigned an experienced researcher as your personal thesis advisor, who will support you throughout your doctoral studies. You’ll become part of the international academic community and also have opportunities to network with companies and organisations in your field.

More information on doctoral studies at Aalto UniversityWhat are doctoral studies like?

Surveys show that doctoral graduates from our school are very satisfied with their degree

Aalto University / Aalto students studying / photo: Aino Huovio

Hundred per cent of doctors from the School of Electrical Engineering are satisfied with their degree

Last winter, Aarresaari, a career services network of Finnish universities, conducted a survey on how doctoral graduates from 2014 were employed. A hundred per cent of doctors from the School of Electrical Engineering were satisfied with their degree from the career point of view.

Aalto-yliopisto / tohtoreiden hatut

Doctoral graduates from the School of Electrical Engineering satisfied with their degrees and careers

In their responses to the career monitoring survey doctoral graduates also emphasised the importance of networking and project management skills.

Rows of doctors sitting with their doctoral hats on, photographed from behind

Results of the doctoral graduate survey 2022

The majority of doctoral graduates in 2022 were satisfied with the education they received and were employed at the time of their graduation. Each doctoral student is asked to answer the survey when they graduate.


Where are doctors of science in technology employed?

Our doctoral programme trains experts for academic careers and jobs in business and public administration. The majority of doctoral graduates in electrical engineering work for companies. After graduation, you’ll be qualified to work in demanding scientific research and teaching positions as well as expert, development and management tasks. The employment rate for doctoral graduates in technology is excellent.

Companies need doctors

    Honorary Doctor Matti Kauhanen

    "Companies are pleased to hire doctors on account of their strong conceptual and theoretical competence, as doctors also rapidly develop into top experts in their field of speciality at the company and are able to see the big picture of the subject matter" – Matti Kauhanen, Business Unit Technology Manager, ABB

    heikki holmberg okmetic oy

    "Companies need experts with broader and deeper expertise. Doctors are needed in product development, project management, technical customer support, and production quality assurance." –  Heikki Holmberg, Senior Development Manager, Okmetic Oy

    We see doctoral education as an investment in the future, says Tuomas Nurmi, senior HR manager at Murata Finland.

    How can you prepare yourself for doctoral studies?

    To apply for doctoral studies, you must hold a relevant master's degree completed with good academic success. You also need the ability to conduct research and good oral and written skills in English. You have the motivation to complete your degree within the four-year target period.

    Summer jobs and thesis worker positions offered by research groups are a good way to get acquainted with research and gain useful experience for doctoral studies.

    Before applying, you should discuss your research topic and the supervision of doctoral studies with the supervising professor responsible for your field of study. The doctoral programme in electrical engineering consists of 13 research fields. Applications are accepted monthly, except for July.

    The research fields and supervising professors

    Application requirements and instructions

    How are the studies funded?

    Many of our doctoral students are employed as researchers in different research projects. The Doctoral Programme in Electrical Engineering also offers some funded positions, for which the calls are announced on our web page and by e-mail. In addition, various grants are available for doctoral studies.

    Open positions on the Aalto website

    More information on funding

    Where can I find more information?

    We're happy to answer any questions that you may have! You can reach us at: [email protected]

    Application requirements and instructionsContact information to the doctoral programme

    Next public defences at the School of Electrical Engineering

    Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone
    Public defences

    Public defence in Acoustics and Speech Technology, M.Sc. Taeho Kim

    Median plane localisation - psychoacoustics and spatial audio effects (title of the thesis)
    Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone
    Public defences

    Public defence in Electronics integration and reliability, M.Sc.(Tech.) Samuel Rantataro

    Carbon nanotube -based sensors fulfill all the requirements of brain-on-a-chip devices, paving way for broader adoption of the technology.
    A millimeter-sized water droplet hangs from a glass cantilever. The droplet touches the rough surface of a sample. A microscope
    Public defences

    Public defence in Automation, Systems and Control Engineering, M.Sc. Arthur Vieira

    Wetting Characterization of Hydrophobic Opaque Surfaces and Micro Fibers (title of the thesis)
    Doctoral hat floating above a speaker's podium with a microphone
    Public defences

    Public defence in Speech and Language Technology, M.Sc. Ragheb Al-Ghezi

    Use of Self-Supervised Learning in Automated Speaking Scoring for Low-Resource Languages (title of the thesis)
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