PhD Fellow on the impacts of climate change on the marine ecosystem and aquaculture industry in northern Norway

Changing Arctic Research School

UiT the Arctic University of Norway started the transdisciplinary research school “Changing Arctic” in August 2022, with PhD candidates and supervisors from all seven university faculties. The research school has a focus on renewable energy, food security, health, and welfare. “Changing Arctic” will collaborate with actors in the private and public sector. The research outcomes will contribute to resilience and transformation in the Arctic and will thus operationalize Sustainable Development Goals.

The training will provide PhD candidates with knowledge, professional and transferable skills, and general competences that enables them to contribute to innovative and sustainable solutions for the Arctic. The research school will arrange courses, seminars, workshops, and excursions, and will organise secondments in private enterprises, NGOs, and public institutions. This is to ensure the relevance of project outcomes and enhance the employability of the PhD graduates. Read more about the research school Changing Arctic | UiT.

The position

The position is a fixed term position for a duration of four years. One year is distributed as 25 % each year and will consist of teaching (10 %) and other duties such as secondments and interactions with the industry or the public sector. The objective of the position is to complete research training to the level of a doctoral degree. Admission to the PhD programme is a prerequisite for employment, and the programme period starts on commencement of the position.

The workplace is at UiT Campus Harstad. You must be able to start in the position within a reasonable time after receiving the offer. The Research School starts on the 1st of September 2023.

The position’s affiliation and field of research

Despite the candidate is a member of the research school, they will be employed at the Department of Technology and Safety, at the Faculty of Science and Technology.

Climate change is affecting our natural and built environment in a multitude of different ways. In terms of ecosystem impacts, climate change can result in positive or negative feedback effects in ecosystems, with the potential to fundamentally change the way ecosystems are structured or function. Oceans and consequently their marine environments are but one example of ecosystems experiencing large, unprecedented changes due to climate change. The Arctic is a critical area of focus for ocean ecosystem research, due to it being the fastest warming area globally under climate change. Northern Norway’s ocean ecosystems are one of the most vulnerable to climate change, given the extensive aquaculture industry in the region among other reasons. Aquaculture in Northern Norway accounts for 40% of the overall Norwegian fishing industry and is one of the main local economy sources in the region, providing both jobs and food to the local community. The Harstad / Narvik area is one of the top aquaculture areas in Northern Norway, with several large-scale fish farms and more to be developed in the years to come. However, despite the importance of this industry in both the local and national, and international scale, there is little in-depth research on how future ocean temperatures will affect local aquaculture in Northern Norway (sea-based aquaculture). Decisions taken by industry require knowledge and persuasion, but an eventual shift towards climate adaptive practices takes time. New knowledge in the form of climate adaptive practices can help to address future challenges in this industry. Various risks climate change presents to the aquaculture industry in Northern Norway in the years to come will be treated in this project, also work along with industry partners will be emphasized to develop clear risk treatment and climate change adaptation strategies that can support the aquaculture industry to adapt to our changing oceans in the decades to come.

Therefore, this research thereby helps addressing Changing Arctic’s focus areas on safeguarding food security and welfare. Part of the PhD student’s task will be to help develop a series of ocean temperature models, based on different climate change scenarios, that can be used to develop a robust and comprehensive risk analysis as well as proper industry-, local- and farm-level risk treatment and adaptation options regarding the aquaculture industry in Northern Norway, looking specifically at the Harstad /Narvik region as a case study region.

The supervisory team for the candidate will be interdisciplinary and integration into the Climate Change Research Group will facilitate the generation of climate change scenarios, risk analysis and stakeholder engagement for the aquaculture industry in Northern Norway.

It is expected that the PhD-candidate participates in field experiments or/and collection of necessary field data. The PhD-candidate is encouraged to work transdisciplinary and collaborate with PhD-candidates/projects within topics such as natural hazards, decision and risk analysis, and stakeholder management, for example.

Contact

For further information about the position, please contact:

The project

Associate Professor Dina Abdel-Fattah:

The Changing Arctic Research School

Professor Michaela Aschan and Hanne Risan Johnsen:

Qualifications

This position requires:

  • A master’s degree in Climatology, Oceanography, Fisheries / Fisheries Management, or a related field
  • A master’s thesis (see specifications below)
  • Fluency in English

It is considered an advantage if you have:

  • Working experience in the field in question
  • Experience from working in a team
  • Experience with research administration / project management
  • A national and/or international research network that you can refer to
  • Publications and/or reports
  • Working knowledge of Norwegian or a Scandinavian language

In the assessment, the emphasis is on the applicant’s potential to complete a research education based on the master’s thesis or equivalent, and any other scientific work. The project description will also be considered. In addition, other experience of significance for the completion of the doctoral programme may be given consideration.

We will also emphasize motivation and personal suitability for the position.

As many as possible should have the opportunity to undertake organized research training. If you already hold a PhD or have equivalent competence, we will not appoint you to this position.

Admission to the PhD programme

For employment in the PhD position, you must be qualified for admission to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Science and Technology and participate in organized doctoral studies within the employment period.

Admission normally requires:

  • A bachelor’s degree of 180 ECTS and a master’s degree of 120 ECTS, or an integrated master’s degree of 300 ECTS.
  • A master’s thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 30 ECTS for a master’s degree of 120 ECTS.
  • A master’s thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 20 ECTS for an integrated master’s degree of 300 ECTS.

In order to gain admission to the programme, the applicant must have a grade point average of C or better for the master’s degree and for relevant subjects of the bachelor’s degree. A more detailed description of admission requirements can be found here.

Applicants with a foreign education will be subjected to an evaluation of whether the educational background is equal to Norwegian higher education, following national guidelines from NOKUT. Depending on which country the education is from, one or two additional years of university education may be required to fulfil admission requirements, e.g. a 4-year bachelor’s degree and a 2-year master’s degree.

If you are employed in the position, you will be provisionally admitted to the PhD programme. Application for final admission must be submitted no later than two months after taking up the position.

Inclusion and diversity

UiT The Arctic University of Norway is working actively to promote equality, gender balance and diversity among employees and students, and to create an inclusive and safe working environment. We believe that inclusion and diversity are a strength and we want employees with different competencies, professional experience, life experience and perspectives.

If you have a disability, a gap in your CV or immigrant background, we encourage you to tick the box for this in your application. If there are qualified applicants, we invite at least one in each group for an interview. If you get the job, we will adapt the working conditions if you need it. Apart from selecting the right candidates, we will only use the information for anonymous statistics.

We offer

  • Involvement in an interesting research project in a transdisciplinary research school
  • A good and interdisciplinary academic environment with dedicated colleagues
  • Good career opportunities, and high employability after successful graduation
  • Flexible working hours and a state collective pay agreement
  • Remuneration normally starts at 501 200 NOK/year
  • Pension scheme through the state pension fund
  • More practical information for working and living in Norway can be found here: https://uit.no/staffmobility

Application

Your application must include:

  • Cover letter explaining your motivation and research interests
  • CV
  • Diploma for bachelor’s and master’s degree
  • Transcript of grades/academic record for bachelor’s and master’s degree
  • Explanation of the grading system for foreign education (Diploma Supplement if available)
  • Documentation of English proficiency
  • 2-3 references with contact information
  • Master’s thesis, and any other academic works
  • Project description (max. 4 pages)

The applicants must present a description outlining the academic basis of the PhD project. The project description shall not exceed 4 pages, literature references included. It must include a description of the theme, research question(s), and a reasoning of the choices. It should also indicate the methodologies to be used, and what actors outside the academia to involve. The final project description will be developed in cooperation with the supervision team after employment.

All documentation to be considered must be in a Scandinavian language or English. Diplomas and transcripts must also be submitted in the original language, if not in English or Scandinavian. We only accept applications and documentation sent via Jobbnorge within the application deadline.

General information

The appointment is made in accordance with State regulations and guidelines at UiT. At our website, you will find more information for applicants.

A shorter period of appointment may be decided when the PhD Fellow has already completed parts of their research training programme or when the appointment is based on a previous qualifying position PhD Fellow, research assistant, or the like in such a way that the total time used for research training amounts to three years.

Remuneration for the position of PhD Fellow is in accordance with the State salary scale code 1017.  A compulsory contribution of 2 % to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund will be deducted.

We process personal data given in an application or CV in accordance with the Personal Data Act (Offentleglova). According to the Personal Data Act information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure. You will receive advance notification in the event of such publication, if you have requested non-disclosure.

UiT – Developing the High North

UiT is a multi-campus research university in Norway and the northernmost university of the world. Our central location in the High North, our broad and diverse research and study portfolio, and our interdisciplinary qualities make us uniquely suited to meet the challenges of the future. At UiT you can explore global issues from a close-up perspective.

Credibility, academic freedom, closeness, creativity and commitment shall be hallmarks of the relationship between our employees, between our employees and our students and between UiT and our partners.

Find information about taking a PhD at UiT The Arctic University of Norway here and a PhD-guide from Tromsø Doctoral Students (TODOS) here, as well as information about travelling to and working in Norway here.