bfollinprm wrote:Most accelerated would be france. They have a hard 3 year cap (they're not allowed to fund you past 3 years, or so I've been told). Of course, you start after a masters.
Yes, that and it's VERY hard to get a PhD spot in France from what I hear as they start winnowing their academic populations far earlier. To be fair if you absolutely must finish in 3 years then you really can only have your best and brightest do so!
Here in the Netherlands it's also a hard cap in that I can't be funded past 4 years (but you must have an M.Sc. going into it, so it still comes out to 5-6 years after undergrad), and Dutch law dictates that they hand over your diploma after you defend your dissertation. So everyone's usually out the door in 4 years though sometimes people are around a few months more... the worst case I know of is a guy who spent a year extra where he just lived off generous Dutch employment, but that was a case of unmotivated student/awful adviser and certainly an exception.
Also btw one curious side note of the entire Dutch PhD system is the government awards 100k Euro to any department that graduates a PhD student (with a few year delay) which is then how people pay for administration and colloquia and all that. So there really is incentive to keep us on the graduation schedule for that too.