Doctoral Research Fellowship in Musical Rhythm and Groove

Job description

A Doctoral Research Fellowship (SKO1017) in Musical Rhythm and Groove is available at RITMO Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Rhythm, Time and Motion at the University of Oslo. 

RITMO is a Centre of Excellence funded by the Research Council of Norway. This interdisciplinary centre focuses on rhythm as a structuring mechanism for the temporal dimensions of human life. Methods from musicology, psychology, neuroscience, and informatics are combined to study rhythm as a fundamental property that shapes and underpins human cognition, behaviour and cultural expressions.

All RITMO researchers are co-located and work in a unique interdisciplinary constellation, with world-leading competence in musicology, psychology and informatics. It is expected that all members of the centre contribute to the general activities and collaborations within RITMO. The researchers have access to state-of-the-art facilities in sound/video recording, motion capture, eye tracking, physiological measurements, various types of brain imaging (EEG, fMRI), and rapid prototyping and robotics laboratories. 

Applicants should upload a research outline, with research questions and theoretical and methodological approaches.

More about the position

The Doctoral Research Fellow is expected to investigate rhythm in groove-based musical genres. The project is expected to focus on the perception and production of micro (timing, sound shape) and/or macro (figures, syntax) rhythmic timescales, possibly with a focus on their interaction. The influence of one or more of the following contextual factors on this interaction should be taken into consideration: genre/style/repertoire, instrumentation/production, and music culture. Relevant methods are, for example, music analysis and perceptual/behavioral experiments. Projects with interdisciplinary approaches are highly encouraged.

The project will be part of an overall thematic area focused on timing, expectations, and attention in complex rhythmic contexts.

The candidate will be supervised by Anne Danielsen ( Co-supervisor will be decided at a later stage depending on the project.

The person appointed will be affiliated with the Faculty of Humanities’ organized research training. The academic work is to result in a doctoral thesis that will be defended at the Faculty of Humanities with a view to obtaining the degree of PhD. The successful candidate is expected to join RITMO’s existing research milieu on musical rhythm and groove and contribute to its development. Read more about the doctoral degree (

The appointment is for a duration of three years, starting 1 September 2023. All PhD Candidates at the Faculty of Humanities who submit their doctoral dissertation for assessment with a written recommendation from their supervisor within 3 years or 3 ½ years after the start of their PhD position, will be offered, respectively, a 12 or 6-month Completion Grant ( The candidate will be enrolled in RITMO’s Career Development Programme (


  • A Master’s degree or equivalent in musicology, music cognition/psychology, music technology, or another relevant field. The applicant is required to document that the degree corresponds to the profile for the post. The degree must have been obtained by the time of application.
  • Practical and/or academic knowledge of groove-based genres, competence in music analysis (auditory, transcription-based and/or computer-based).
  • Experience with one or more of the following is also advantageous: statistics, experimental design, music information retrieval
  • Excellent skills in written and oral English; see Language requirements (
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position.

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Oslo, applicants must, at minimum, have completed a five-year graduation course (Master’s degree or equivalent), including a Master’s thesis of at least 30 ECTS. In special cases, the Faculty may grant admission based on a one-year Master’s course following an assessment of the study programme’s scope and quality.

In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on the following:

  • The applicant’s academic qualifications, as well as the quality of the research outline ( and its relevance to the research objectives of RITMO.
  • The applicant’s estimated academic and personal ability to complete the project within the time frame.
  • The applicant’s ability to complete research training.
  • Collaboration skills and an ability to join interdisciplinary academic communities.

Applicants who have recently graduated with excellent results may be given preference.

We offer

How to apply

Applications must include:

  • Application letter describing the applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position.
  • Curriculum Vitae (complete list of education, positions, teaching experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activities, including a complete list of publications with links to full version of published papers).
  • Research outline, including relevant research questions and theoretical and methodological approaches (approximately 2-3 pages, see the template for research outline (
  • Transcript of records of your Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Applicants with education from a foreign university must attach an explanation of their university’s grading system.
  • Documentation of Language requirements (if applicable)
  • Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number).

Please note that all documents must be in English or a Scandinavian language.

Educational certificates, master theses and the like are not to be submitted with the application, but applicants may be asked to submit such information or works later.

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, The application must be submitted by the deadline August 15th 2023 (23:59 CEST).

Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview.

Formal regulations

Please see the guidelines for the application assessment process ( and appointments ( to research fellowships.

No one can be appointed for more than one PhD Research Fellowship period at the University of Oslo.

Following the Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) § 25, Chapter 2, demographic information about the applicant may be used in the public list of applicants even if the applicant opts out from the entry in the public application list.

The appointment may be shortened/given a more limited scope within the framework of the applicable guidelines on account of any previous employment in academic positions.

The University of Oslo has an Acquisition of Rights Agreement ( for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results etc.

Inclusion and diversity are a strength. The University of Oslo has a personnel policy objective of achieving a balanced gender composition. We also want to have employees with diverse expertise, combinations of subjects, life experience and perspectives. We will make adjustments for employees who require this. 

Contact information

Head of Administration Pia Søndergaard, e-mail:, phone number: +47 22 85 44 89.

For questions regarding the process:

HR Adviser Julie Tøllefsen


About the University of Oslo 

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7500 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.

RITMO Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Rhythm, Time and Motion is financed through the Research Council of Norway’s Centre of Excellence Scheme.

RITMO combines a broad spectrum of disciplines – from musicology, neuroscience and informatics – to study rhythm as a fundamental property of human cognition, behaviour and cultural expression. The Centre is organized under the Department of Musicology, in close collaboration with the Department of Psychology and the Department of Informatics.