I am doing a PhD with concentration on continental philosophy in Hong Kong (my MPhil also had the same concentration too), but I am really interested in political theory and political science and often audit relevant courses. I am wondering whether it is possible to get another PhD of political science in Germany, if I focus on empirical political science research or political theory, after finishing my current one, provided my German is fluent enough.

  • 2
    It may be possible, but perhaps not useful (see other questions on "second phd" on this site). Wouldn't you rather do a postdoc with a project on the crossroads of philosophy and political theory? Goethe University Frankfurt comes to mind, but there should be several institutions in this area.
    – henning
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:31
  • Thank you so much!! Philosophy is not so competitive in the professorship competition, and the pure philosophy is not something of my original intent... So I wanna change my path...
    – quintus159
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:43
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    @quintus159 Is there not any overlap between these two fields? How far through are you in your PhD? Is there no way to incorporate political science into your thesis?
    – MJeffryes
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:49
  • @quintus159 Incidentally, if your conclusion is that there is no overlap, and you are certain you want to do a PhD in political science, it would be better to abandon the first PhD (unless you are very close to finished) rather than waste any further time.
    – MJeffryes
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:50
  • @MJeffryes Thanks for your comment! It is not very possible to incorporate political science into my thesis. I will finish my first PhD soon, just within one year. Pure philosophy is not very stimulating, but I can completely handle it and it provides me some insights anyway...
    – quintus159
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:57

2 Answers 2


You should have a look at the "Promotionsordnung" (~Regulations for PhD courses) of the specific universities. As far as I know, it might not be possible to get the same PhD degree twice. They have to be from different fields. It should be possible to get two different PhDs as I know some people who achieved this in Germany.

  • Yes, this is something I have thought about. My current PhD is philosophy, having nothing to do with politics. I want to pursue the second one in political science (Politikwissenschaft).
    – quintus159
    Feb 19, 2018 at 12:41
  • I know of someone who did PhDs in history and philosophy in Germany, so I'm thinking political science and philosophy would work as well - it certainly depends on the institution's policies. Feb 20, 2018 at 8:38

If you already have a PhD and want to go through that process again in Germany, then you can instead try to get a PostDoc position that allows you to write your habilitation. Within the German context that would make more sense.

  • Thanks so much! I think it is also quite acceptable!
    – quintus159
    Feb 19, 2018 at 14:08

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