Doctoral Research Fellow (PhD) "The Digital Society"

May 30, 2023 21:59:00 GMT+00:00
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Job description

A Doctoral Research Fellowship is available at the Faculty of Computer Science, Engineering and Economics at Østfold University College. This PhD candidate will play a central part in the institutional research area of priority The Digital Society. Perhaps you are the one we are looking for?

The Digital Society aims to promote interdisciplinary research on how digitalization transforms and affects society. It has a broad focus ranging, for example, from the development of digital solutions that may change and influence societal functions, to consequences of digital solutions on aspects such as health, learning, politics and organisational issues.

The PhD candidate will work on a project focusing on the role of digital technologies and skills in the green transition, and will contribute to the development of unique knowledge about a key area of the future digital society. The PhD candidate will also participate in joint seminars and meetings to discuss and reflect upon academic issues, exchange experiences, and in so doing play a key role in building a strong and vibrant research culture in this area.

About the position 

The PhD position is a full time (100%) fixed term position for 3 years and fully funded by Østfold University College.

Starting date: August 15th 2023.

Project description: The candidate will be a part of a research team investigating the relationship between digital technologies and sustainable development, with a particular focus on developing a better understanding of the interplay between the digital transition and the green transition (now often referred to as the “twin transition”). The project is based on future studies and scenario development, and the student will be working on a) the analysis of how and which digital skills will be required for a successful green transition and b) future new digital skills needs and changes as a result of the same transition.

The applicant must describe his/her experience and interests as these relate to the analysis of the twin transition, and in particular how their disciplinary background, methodological competencies, and other experience will allow them to complement an existing team of political scientists, engineers, organizational theorists and macoeconomists working on the topics described in the previous paragraph.

As the project is a part of the strategic R&D area of priority The Digital Society, the successful applicant will have a strong interest in interdisciplinary research, and must be able to demonstrate a willingness and ability to cross disciplinary boundaries. The research belongs to the activities of the research group Technological Change, Sustainbility, and Society (TCSS).

Contact details

For further information about the project, please contact the project leader. For other information, please contact Human Resources or the Research Director.

  • Supervisor: Associate Professor and Head of The Digital Society Henrik Skaug Sætra, +47 696 08 118,
  • Vice-Dean of Research: Tore Gimse, +47 696 08 058,
  • Human resources senior advisor: Camilla Bakker, +47 696 08 067,

Essential Criteria

  • Completed a Master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) within the field of Social Science, Engineering, Computer Science or adjacent fields with relevance to the sustainability related implications of technology
  • The grade of the Master thesis must be B or better in terms of the Norwegian grading scale
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English

Emphasis will be placed on the following:

  • Prior academic and/or research performance
  • Prior relevant work experience
  • Experience with futures studies and scenarios, particularly related to a) sustainability, b) digital transformation or c) skills and competency mapping and policy
  • The applicant’s complementarity to the rest of the research team


Depending on qualifications and relevant experience, PhD candidates will be placed in the Norwegian government pay scale position code “1017 PhD student” (from kr 501 200,- a year) and follow ordinary meriting regulations.

The appointment process and the conditions of employment will follow national guidelines for University and University College PhD scholars.


In order to apply, please click on the ‘Apply for this job’ button. You will need to create an account, if you do not have one already, in order to log on.

Application must include the following:

  • a short (ca. 1 000 words) description of the candidates relevant experience, interests, and ideas related to the role of digital technology and skills in the green transition. This should include some comments on the motivation for applying for a positition at Østfold University College under the supervision of reserachers from the instition.
  • curriculum vitae.
  • list of publications (if applicable). Include a short description of your contribution in multi-authored publications.
  • copies of degree certificates and transcripts of academic records (all certified and translated to English if not awarded in the Scandinavian region).

All attachments should be included electronically within the application deadline. The relevant ØUC faculty may require further documentation, e.g. proof of claimed English proficiency.

Admission and appointment

The candidate is planned to apply for admission to the PhD programme Digitalisation and Society at Østfold University College, which is expected to launch during 2023. The successful candidate will receive assistance in the application process to the Doctoral Programme.

About us

Østfold University College is a state university college with around 7500 students and 625 employees. The University College’s academic communities are organised into three major faculties: The Faculty of Health, Welfare and Organisation, the Faculty of Teacher Education and Languages, and the Faculty of Computer Science, Engineering and Economics. We are located in Fredrikstad and Halden and have a broad portfolio of studies ranging from vocational programmes of study to arts programmes, both at bachelor’s and master’s level.The University College is experiencing positive growth and has an ambitious strategy for the future, including the establishment of an interdisciplinary doctoral programme called ‘Digitalisation and Society’, delivering outstanding educational programmes that are socially relevant, and strengthening interaction with trade and industry and society – both in education and research.The main aim of the University College’s activities is to provide students with access to outstanding programmes of study that are socially relevant and professionally oriented. We will ensure that students have a great learning outcome and are ready for a working life with rapid restructuring, by focusing on quality, on technology, on infrastructure and on new teaching methods. The students will also experience a close relationship between theoretical knowledge, fields of profession and societal needs, and the college will therefore strengthen its strategic and binding cooperation with working life. 

Although we have a strong regional foundation, our education programmes are increasingly characterized by an international commitment. Østfold University College also works to strengthen its partnerships with selected national and international educational institutions.We are looking for applicants who are passionate about developing Østfold University College and want to build an attractive, competent and development-oriented university college.

For more information about Østfold University College, visit our website at