PhD/ArtD — where to go?

Hi there

I am looking for exchange study options as a PhD/ArtD student.
I thought this might be an attractive topic for other PhD students or prospective students to map what are the World Wide options.

What kind of schools would you recommend?
Who would you recommend as a leader for PhD thesis?
Who is focusing more on technological research? 
Who is focusing more on theoretical or historical research?
Who is focusing more on intersections with other fields?

What is your experience as a lecturer/student/alumni/postdoc?


  • Andreas Stötzner
    I think it depends a good deal on what your subject / interests / field of study is. What you consider to be the theme of your thesis.
    Unfortunately, the academic world (in the ‘west’) has not yet recognized that typography is a science (besides being an art and a craft). So that narrows the options down drastically and the only place I know of where typography is dealt with (partly) in a scientific way is Reading (UK). Maybe The Hague, but presumably that will be it.

  • Thomas Phinney
    Andreas is broadly correct.

    If you speak French, there is also Atelier National de Recherche Typographique (ANRT) in Nancy.
  • jeremy tribby
    if you are looking at writing from the perspective of linguistics, there are some technical initiatives out there - e.g. - but that is still, at the end of the day, an entirely different discipline
  • Dan Reynolds
    Exactly this question was discussed at an ATypI working session in Amiens, about two years ago. I think that all of the videos from that event are online. I participated in something like a roundtable discussion about this on the second day. There are several voices from different parts of Europe in this long-ish video of it:

    While Reading may be your best bet, closer to home, UMPRUM could be an option.
  • Filip Paldia
    @Andreas Stötzner you have mentioned "western hemisphere" does it mean there is some opportunity elsewhere, e.g. Asia?
  • Filip Paldia
    @Andreas Stötzner @Thomas Phinney @jeremy tribby @Dan Reynolds

    Thank you for the brief overview. It makes sense to look at type design as craft rather than science. I know this is another discussion ;)

    I am focusing on the technological part of type design, let's say artistic tools, rather than the art itself. So part of the study should also cover engineering.

    Reading appears to be the best bet. However, it seems that most of the research is happening in their archives — archaeological research, rather than doing experiments with new technology, e.g. Machine Learning.

    What do you think about the programmes from a technological perspective? 
    Is, for instance, Reading suitable for engineering research?
  • Dan Reynolds
    Several Reading professors do/have done scientific experiments. Particularly legibility experiments. You should get in touch with David Březina, whose PhD in reading included machine learning (