For PhD students


If you are subjected to aggressive or threatening behavior (related to issues of personal safety), call +41 21 693 30 00 (or 115 from an EPFL land line). Staff from the EPFL Security and Safety department will come to your aid.

Procedure to follow

If you are being harassed, talk about it as soon as possible and ask for help. Silence does not solve anything. In fact, it can have a negative effect on self-esteem. It also allows the purported harassers to continue with impunity.

Initial action

If possible, try to gain a clear understanding of the situation and the behavior that makes you feel harassed.

Note down what happened, where, when and in what context the event took place, and who may have witnessed it. These notes will be important to substantiate the facts.

It is always advisable to talk to someone in your immediate circle that you trust as soon as possible: at the Student Affairs department, your laboratory colleagues, your doctor, your family, your friends. Don’t wait to ask for help.

Two types of approach are possible

To get the support you need and put an end to a situation of harassment, two types of approach are possible: an informal approach and a formal complaint. You will find more information on both types of approach under Report a case.

The contacts listed below are part of the EPFL Trust and Support Network. You will find more information on their roles and the actions they can take, as well as their confidentiality obligations below.

  • Trust and Support Network Lead:coordination, support and guidance  – [email protected]
  • Thesis supervisor/mentor
  • Doctoral program directors: support and intervention
  • Student Affairs department: support, advice, guidance and intervention – [email protected]
  • Doctoral school (EDOC): support and intervention – [email protected]
  • Your school’s HR manager: support, advice and intervention
  • Equal Opportunity Office: support, advice and guidance – [email protected]
  • Point Santé: consultations, support and advice in complete confidentiality – [email protected]
  • Person of Trust (external and independent body): mediation, support, advice and guidance in complete confidentiality – [email protected]


In principle, no information will be shared without the express consent of the person concerned. However, in certain circumstances, we may be required to act and share information, particularly in cases covered by criminal law. The Person of Trust is bound by official secrecy.

Conciliation Commission according to the GEA

EPFL PhD students and employees who consider themselves to be victims of discrimination under the Swiss Federal Act on Gender Equality (GEA) may submit a complaint to the Conciliation Commission of the ETH Board (The Board of the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology). The Equal Opportunities Office can provide information on the relevant procedures.