Professorial and Research Chairs


Total is committed to supporting universities’ education or research priorities on topics linked to the challenges faced by the company and society at large. Through our Chairs programme we aim to build long-term relationships with innovative institutions and thought leaders in the countries where we operate.


We finance, or co-finance, around 30 professorships or research posts in institutions around the world, usually for three to five year terms.




Our criteria for selection of Chairs are clear:

  • Priority is given to ‘teaching and research’ chairs and partner Institutions that are strategic in terms of recruitment and Research and Development (R&D)
  • Research topics for Chairs must be clearly defined and in compliance with the Group’s objectives, and distinguished by their originality and excellence in both teaching and research
  • Chairs must be anchored in a pre-existing teaching and research environment.

Once established, the Chair is governed by a regular Steering Committee which includes representatives at senior management level from Total and the University, with additional input from Total’s subject leader for the Chair. The partners are expected to promote the communication and visibility of the Chair.



Our Chairs help share information about Total and potential careers within their university, which allows us to share our knowledge and expertise.

Total University Chairs

We fund around 30 chairs and research posts around the world. Here are examples of just a few of these positions, in the areas that we focus on:

Strategic partnerships with key schools and research institutions



  • Contemporary Africa, MIT, USA

This chair provides an intellectual foundation for enhancing understanding of contemporary Africa and its challenges, on the MIT campus. The world-renowned professor who holds the chair and his whole team offer students first-rate instruction. Their research furthers scientific knowledge of the African continent.

Research in fields with a strong impact on our core business



  • Sedimentology and Reservoir Characterization, IFP Energies Nouvelles, France

The goal of this chair is to support and develop teaching and research initiatives on topics that seek to improve understanding of the geometry and distribution of sedimentary bodies, to increase the success rate of reservoir exploration and production.

Corporate Social Responsibility



  • Business Intelligence and the Strategy of Business Organizations, Université Paris Dauphine, France

This chair aims to make business intelligence a cornerstone of management. It provides a platform to educate future managers about business intelligence issues, develop research on the strategic interactions between management and business intelligence, and help create a body of knowledge and methods applicable to business intelligence in organizations.

Development of research & educational programmes in strategic host countries



  • Chair in Corrosion and Materials, Department of Chemical Engineering, Petroleum Institute University and Research Center (PI), Abu Dhabi

This chair focuses on research related to corrosion mechanisms, electrochemistry, the interplay between surface topology and local kinetics.  This fundamental work contributes to our knowledge of pipeline and plant corrosion mechanisms leading to improved safety, integrity and management of our oil and gas infrastructure.

In this section

Get involved now


Sign up now to get to know Total! From grants and scholarships, news of our educational activities and student challenges, the Total Campus newsletter is a great way be first to hear about highlights of our campus activities, worldwide events and exciting careers.