Doctor of Philosophy Program


The program will consist of a rigorous study of the theoretical side of Peace Studies combined with experiential fieldwork in the area of conflict transformation and resolution. The objective of this program is to develop ways in which theory and practice can be combined in ways that provide a better and more cohesive grounding for both theoretical Peace Studies and actual Peace Studies.

Rather than being “study for study’s sake”, it will be “study for practice’s sake”. Thus, it is analogous to advanced academic programs provided by schools of medicine, social work, music, and architecture. Reflective study resulting in a thorough knowledge of theories of Peace Studies is the starting point of the program; this is then followed by and combined with critical evaluation and the development of new improved theories.

An important and distinguishing aspect of this program which differs from many other programs in the field of Peace Studies is the attention given to the relationship between “religiousness” and Peace Studies. One of the assumptions underlying the program’s emphasis on religious diversity and relationships is that religious and cultural dialogue can contribute to peaceful relations among different communities. Human “religiousness” can thus become a positive force for peace.


The worldwide increase in recent decades of violent and potentially violent conflicts has given rise to a number of programs in the field of Peace Studies at several major universities. These programs research and study the various causes of violence as well as the means by which many have attempted to resolve them. In addition to research and study centers, organizations devoted to the specific purpose of mediating conflicts through dialogue and other means have also been established.

Ideally, these theoretical and practical aspects of peace work should complement each other and thereby increase the chance of success in bringing peace in the world. Unfortunately this is often not the case. There seems to be a disconnect between theory and practice that has resulted in fewer successes than there should be considering the resources and energy that has been put into this work. What is now needed is a rethinking and a joining together of the theoretical and practical aspects of Peacemaking/Peace Studies.

The PhD Peacebuilding program of the Department of Peace Studies accepts applications at any time. However classes begin in August, and all application materials should be submitted by June 15 of each year in order to be considered for first semester admission.

  • Master’s Degree
  • 3 years of work experience
  • 550 TOEFL score (or equivalent) and English certificate. This is normally waived for students who have written their Master’s Thesis in English.


Applications and supporting references should be submitted online. Please make arrangements for admission by emailing and sending a copy to Dr. Le Ngoc Bich Ly ( Students needing faculty to submit letters to support scholarships, and other financial support should submit their materials earlier—please consult with us and the scholarship program. The International PhD application form will begin the application process.

Aj. Dr. Le Ngoc Bich Ly (

Monday - Friday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
Office: 053-851478 ext. 7883
Fax: 053-241983

Study Plan

Year 1
Semester 1
Semester 2
PB 804 Foundation of Peace Studies
PB 811 Cultural Dimensions of Peacebuilding
PB 821 “Religiousness” and Peacebuilding
PB 812 Peacebuilding as a Philosophical Enterprise
PB 839 Human Rights and Peacebuilding
PB 834 Research Methodology in Peacebuilding
Year 2
Semester 1
Semester 2
PB 834 Research Methodology in Peacebuilding
PB 852 Individual Research
PB 837 Seminar on Gender Issues in Peacebuilding
(Students will have a qualifying examination at the end of this semester)
Year 3
Semester 1
Semester 2
Develop dissertation topic
PB 992 Dissertation (Begin writing dissertation)
Present detailed dissertation proposal for approval
Begin writing dissertation
Year 4
Semester 1
Semester 2
PB 992 Dissertation (Write, Submit, and Defend)