Grenoble, France

Cotutelle Thesis (Joint Ph.D. Degree)

We detail here the process to create a cotutelle thesis agreement between the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), in Brazil, and the Grenoble Institut of Technology (INPG), in France. The idea behind the agreement is to improve and continue the relationship between the two laboratories involved. The student benefits from such situation by developing research in an international environment, with different points-of-view, and at the end receiving two doctoral degrees, one from each university.

We detail here the details about our specific agreement. Some of the steps might be generalized to other cotutelle agreements between UFRGS and other universities.


At August 2005, I started the Ph.D program at PPGC (the Computer Science Ph.D Program of UFRGS). The first year of the Ph.D program was basically used to define a thesis subject (within the parallel processing area) and to follow some courses to obtain the necessary credits demanded by the Ph.D program. During this first year, nothing was done to establish a cotutelle thesis.

In the first semester of 2006, the opportunity to establish a cotutelle agreement appeared as an effort from my advisor at PPGC, Prof. Philippe O. A. Navaux, within an already existing cooperation between his research group at UFRGS and the Computing Laboratory in Grenoble (LIG). In July 2006, we received at UFRGS the visit of Guillaume Huard, my future french scientific advisor. After that moment, it was defined that a cotutelle agreement was going to be established between UFRGS and INPG. Denis Trystram kindly accepted to be the administrative advisor in INPG.


In October 2006, I spent one month in Grenoble to register myself in INPG. The registration occurred after the recognition of my masters diploma by the french Ph.D program, and with an expected cotutelle agreement to be set up in the first year of the french Ph.D program.

The terms to be used in the agreement were obtained from a template provided by the administration of INPG. The discussion of the terms started during my french scientific advisor stay in Brazil, in July 2006, and ended during my stay in France in October 2006.

After the terms definition, we started the process to get all the signatures from the involved parts: myself, both advisors, the INPG director and the UFRGS rector. This process started in November 2006 and finished on 18 June 2007. The agreement itself is composed by a three-page portuguese version, and a three-page french translation version. The signature process implicated five copies of each (each member, of the five, gets one copy of each version).

Portuguese version (click for PDF)

French Version (click for PDF)


The thesis writing started in the first semester of 2009, in march. By the end of July 2009, it was finished. Following the agreement, the thesis was written in english, with an extended abstract in portuguese and french. Here are the reference for the complete text:

The final version of the manuscript was sent to the jury in the beggining of august, 2009 with a defense date scheduled to october 26th, 2009.


About a year before the defense (in the middle of 2008), the discussions started to set up a date and the jury for the thesis defense. According to the agreement between the two universities, half of the jury must be from Grenoble INP, the other half from UFRGS. At the same time, the french and brazilian advisors worked to define the rapporteurs. At least two members of the jury, named as rapporteurs, have to write a report about the thesis, indicating if the thesis fulfills all the requirements necessary for the defense. The rapporteurs of my thesis were:

Eddy's Report (click for PDF)

Siang's Report (click for PDF)

The complete jury was composed of the following members:

The photo after the defense:

From left to right: Nicolas Maillard, Guillaume Huard, Lucas M. Schnorr, Jean-François Méhaut, Philippe Navaux and Siang Song.

INP Grenoble also demands that a report has to be written after the defense, detailing how was the thesis presentation and the overall contribution of the Phd candidate. The report was written by Jean-François Méhaut, indicated as president of the jury by INP Grenoble.

Phd Defense Report, written
by Jean-François Méhaut (click for PDF)


2005/08: start in PhD program in Brazil
2006/10: start in PhD program in France
2007/06: cotutelle agreement fully signed
2009/10: Phd defense