Norway PhD Fellowship in Political science, Sociology, Economics

University of Stavanger, UiS


The University of Stavanger invites applicants for a PhD Fellowship in Welfare State Politics at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Media and Social Sciences. The position is vacant from 01.02.2022.

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General Info

Position: PhD Fellowship
No. of Positions: 1
Research Field: , , ,
Deadline to Apply: Expired
Joining Date: Feb 01, 2022
Contract Period: 3 Years
Salary: 491 200 NOK/Year

Faculty of Social Sciences
Department of Media and Social Sciences
University of Stavanger, UiS

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Qualification Details

We are looking for applicants with a strong academic background who have completed a master’s degree in political science, sociology, economics, psychology, or a related discipline. You should preferably have acquired your degree recently, or possess corresponding qualifications that could provide a basis for successfully completing a doctorate.

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Stavanger both the grade for your master’s thesis and the weighted average grade of your master’s degree must individually be equivalent to or better than a B grade.

Applicants with an education from an institution with a different grade scale than A-F, and/or with other types of credits than sp/ECTS, must attach a confirmed conversion scale that shows how the grades can be compared with the Norwegian A-F scale and a Diploma Supplement or similar that explains the scope of the subject that are included in the education. You can use these conversion scales  to calculate your points for admission.

We place particular emphasis on:

  • Your familiarity with current research on welfare state attitudes, or more generally political behavior in the context of welfare state politics
  • Good skills in quantitative methods and experience using statistical programs (R, Stata, SAS, SPSS, or similar) are a considerable advantage
  • Your motivation and potential to contribute to international academic research and publish in scholarly journals
  • General professional and personal skills for completing the doctoral degree within the given timeframe
  • Ability to work independently and in a team, be innovative and creative
  • Ability to work in a structured and organized manner and handle a heavy workload
  • Ability to express yourself in English (written and oral)

Responsibilities/Job Description

This PhD position involves conducting a research project on welfare state attitudes, perceptions of welfare deservingness, and their political implications.

Perceptions of welfare deservingness have received much attention in political science and sociology in recent years. Scholars have made great advances in identifying the factors that make a person appear more or less “deserving” of help, establishing the underlying cognitive processes behind deservingness perceptions, and important intervening factors. Research has also shown how deservingness perceptions held by citizens structure policymaking by governments. In connection with the growing saliency of immigration in Europe and elsewhere, much research has also studied the phenomenon that immigrants are by default seen as less deserving (a.k.a. “welfare chauvinism”). The COVID-19 pandemic, as well as growing economic and political pressures, have produced new questions about deservingness and welfare programs that are of great normative importance for democracy and citizenship.

We seek applicants who want to contribute to this line of research and who want to advance our understanding of the causes and/or consequences of perceptions of welfare deservingness and welfare programs. Relevant research questions include (but are not limited to):

1. How do changing macro-economic circumstances affect welfare attitudes, and specifically perceptions of deservingness?

2. How are deservingness perceptions and welfare attitudes connected to party politics or political polarization?

3. What role does communication by politicians (or elites in general) play in shaping welfare attitudes and deservingness perceptions?

4. How do cognitive biases and processes (e.g., sensitivity to disgust) shape welfare attitudes?

5. What is the relationship between trust in institutions and perceptions of welfare programs and recipients?

6. What effects do the media’s portrayals of welfare programs and recipients have on deservingness perceptions?

7. How have attitudes toward welfare policies and receipents changed following the COVID-19 pandemic?

If hired, you would work under the supervision of Associate Professor Tevfik Murat Yildirim (, Associate Professor Carlo Knotz (, and Professor Gunnar Thesen ( You will also have the opportunity to receive training in quantitative and qualitative research methods (e.g., research design, experimental methods, econometrics) through the doctoral program in Stavanger or through external courses. In addition, you will have the opportunity to use the University's brand-new Cognitive Lab, which features monitoring equipment that can measure signal and image processing such as physiological expressions of emotions and stress.

How to Apply?

Online Application through "Apply Now" Button from this page or from advertisement webpage (URL below)

Reference Number: -
(If any, use it in the necessary place)

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Documents Required

The following documents must be uploaded as attachments to your application:

  • A project proposal. A project proposal template can be found here.
  • Your CV providing a full summary of your education and experience
  • Any references, certificates/diplomas and other documentation that you consider relevant
  • A Diploma Supplement or similar and a confirmed conversion scale if this is required
  • Any relevant publications or other relevant research work

Applications are evaluated based on the information available in Jobbnorge at the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above and that you have attached the necessary documentation.

The documentation must be available in either a Scandinavian language or in English. If the total size of the attachments exceeds 30 MB, they must be compressed before upload.

Please note that information on applicants may be published even if the applicant has requested not to be included in the official list of applicants - see Section 25 of the Freedom of Information Act. If your request is not granted, you will be notified.

Project proposal

As an applicant, you must submit a preliminary project proposal for a doctoral project within the subject area, which explains the problem, relevance, theoretical and methodological approach of your research. Your preliminary project proposal will be included in the application assessment.

During the first three months of the employment period, the project proposal and progress plan will be further developed in cooperation with your supervisors and completed for the final plan for the PhD-project. A project proposal template can be found here

About the Department

The Faculty of Social Sciences has about 2,400 students and 170 employees. The studies are based on a combination of theoretical and practical knowledge, on interdisciplinarity and cooperation with public and private sectors. New knowledge is generated from both practical experience and systematic research, or a combination of them. The educational offer is varied and includes Hospitality and Tourism, Media, Sociology, Social Work and Child Welfare, amongst others. The Faculty consists of: Department of Media and Social Sciences, Department of Social Studies and the Norwegian School of Hotel Management.

The Department of Media and Social Sciences offers study programs and carries out research within Change Management, Energy/Environment/Society, Sociology, Documentary production, Television and Media Production and Journalism. There are currently 45 employees including research fellows and postdocs, and around 900 students at the department.

About the Employer: University of Stavanger, UiS

Note or Other details

We offer

  • a PhD education in a large, exciting and socially important organisation
  • an ambitious work community which is developing rapidly. We strive to include employees at all levels in strategic decisions and promote an informal atmosphere with a flat organisational structure.
  • colleague-based guidance programme (NyTi) if teaching is a part of your position
  • salary in accordance with the State Salary Scale, 17.515, code 1017, NOK 491 200 gross per year with salary development according to seniority in the position. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.
  • automatic membership in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund, which provides favourable insurance- and retirement benefits
  • favourable membership terms at a gym and at the SIS sports club at campus
  • employment with an Inclusive Workplace organisation which is committed to reducing sick leave, increasing the proportion of employees with reduced working capacity, and increasing the number of professionally active seniors
  • "Hjem-jobb-hjem" discounted public transport to and from work
  • as an employee in Norway, you will have access to an optimal health service, as well as good pensions, generous maternity/paternity leave, and a competitive salary. Nursery places are guaranteed and reasonably priced
  • relocation programme
  • language courses: On this page you can see which language courses you may be entitled to (look up “language courses” under employment conditions)

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Contact details

More information on the position and project description can be obtained from Head of Department, Professor Oluf Langhelle tel: +47 51831508, e-mail:, or Associate Professor Tevfik Murat Yildirim, tel: +47 41387214, e-mail:

Information about the appointment procedure can be obtained from HR-adviser Annette Falch Lothe, tel: +47 51831361, e-mail:

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