PhD and post-doctoral grants

Each year, CNES allocates around a hundred doctoral and postdoctoral research grants to young students interested in space activities.

Strong support for young researchers:

  • Train young researchers and engineers in the space field
  • Ensure a scientific environment of excellence and a strong capacity for innovation
  • Support space research in the fields of user sciences (space transport systems, orbital systems, user sciences of space resources, human and social sciences).
  • Strength the links between young researchers, CNES and industry (Young Researchers Days – JC1-JC2; Paris Air Show, etc.)

Call for thesis topics

In the autumn of each year, via the dedicated site : Appels-sciences,

CNES invites laboratories to submit their subject proposals (in english):

  • of thesis subjects (doctorate)
  • of postdoctoral study subjects in the field of space transport system technologies (rockets, propulsion, fluids, etc.), postdoctoral study subjects are not free, they are subject to pre-selection via this call about CNES.
  • Postdoctoral study subjects in other fields are not subject to pre-selection via this call. Candidates interested in a postdoctoral position must apply to the call for applications on generic offers by field 

We remind you that theses must be co-financed by industrial or institutional partners.

Only complete subjects will be submitted for evaluation by the CNES Committees in connection with the areas concerned.


In the first quarter of each year, CNES invites candidates to submit their application via the dedicated site: see the offers and apply

To consult the doctorate and postdoctorate offers, filter on "CONTRACT" then "FIELD".

The application must be completed with the following documents: 

  • Doctoral students: CV, recent transcripts, letter of recommendation from the director of the Master 2 / engineering school.
  • Post-doctoral students :  CV, complete list of publications/communications, letter of reference from the thesis director, letter of support from the future director of the host laboratory, details of thesis work and research project.
(In the field of space transportation systems technologies (rockets, propulsion, fluids, etc.), the subjects of postdoctoral studies are not free, they are subject to a preselection via the call for subjects of the CNES taking place each year in the fall. In this field only, the candidate does not propose a research project but chooses among the proposed offers)

Please note that only applications linked to an offer will be analyzed, unsolicited applications will not be considered.


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