PhD Position Within Fire Safety Engineering on the Topic of Fire Safety in Dwellings

Trondheim, Norway
Monday, 4 November 2019
End of advertisement period
Thursday, 28 November 2019
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

The PhD candidate will work in close connection with the project Fire Safety in Dwellings in the Fire Research and Innovation Centre (FRIC), in Trondheim. FRIC is funded by the Research Council of Norway and project partners, and is a collaboration between NTNU, RISE Fire Research and SINTEF. It has several industrial and public partners and cooperates with several universities and research institutes in Europe and North-America. The main objective of FRIC is to increase knowledge within the field of fire science in order to support decisions and develop better solutions providing increased fire safety in buildings. FRIC shall strengthen cooperation and lead to a long-term increase of competence and dissemination of knowledge within the fire safety field.

More information about this centre can be found at

The head of the department is Professor Vikas Thakur.

The position reports to Professor Anne Steen-Hansen.

Main duties and responsibilities

  • A sufficient level of fire safety should be taken for granted in modern homes. However, fire statistics show that most fatal fires take place in dwellings, and that there is an over-representation of people belonging to vulnerable groups among the victims, such as the elderly, people with physical or psychological disabilities or people under the influence of drugs or alcohol. There is a shift towards higher shares of elderly people in the populations in developed countries and this implies an increased number of people in at-risk groups that will be living in their own homes. An improvement of fire safety in homes will avoid an increase in future fatalities, injuries and material damages caused by fires.
  • The topic of fire safety in dwellings is of a multidisciplinary nature, and the PhD-candidate is expected to collaborate with different groups of expertise, including social science and humanities, as well as different stakeholders and relevant authorities. The aim of the PhD-project is to study the possibilities to increase fire safety in dwellings by implementation of technical and organisational measures. One topic will be how new technology could be applied in this connection, e.g. with regard to new materials in construction and inventory applications, innovative systems for early detection and alarm, equipment for mitigation etc. This part of the work could include experimental work, and would also include a study of factors like cost-benefit, sustainability, and environmental effects. Another part of the project would be to study how the responsibility for fire safety in dwellings is distributed on different parties and propose an efficient organisation of fire preventive work in the municipalities. Possible methods for these topics would be surveys, interviews and case studies. The Fire Research and Innovation Centre will provide a good network for the PhD project.

Qualification requirements

PhD candidate:

The PhD-position's main objective is to qualify for work in research positions. The qualification requirement is completion of a master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic background in fire safety engineering, civil- or mechanical engineering or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. Applicants with no letter grades from previous studies must have an equally good academic foundation. Applicants who are unable to meet these criteria may be considered only if they can document that they are particularly suitable candidates for education leading to a PhD degree.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and national guidelines for appointment as PhD, postdoctor and research assistant

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA.

Other qualifications

  • The position requires a Master’s degree in Fire Safety Engineering or from another relevant technological area.
  • Experience from multidisciplinary work and/or fire safety research or engineering is regarded as an advantage.
  • Good written and oral English are required. Good Norwegian/Scandinavian language skills and knowledge of the Norwegian/Scandinavian social system will be regarded as a great benefit.

Personal characteristics

The successful candidate should be:

  • creative and innovative
  • enthusiastic and highly motivated
  • willing and able to work both independently and in team with other researchers
  • interested in interdisciplinary and applied research

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, as well as motivation, in terms of the qualification requirements specified in the advertisement

We offer

Salary and conditions

PhD candidate:

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 479 600 before tax per year. From the salary, 2 % is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years . Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in Civil Engineering.

As a PhD candidate, you undertake to participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period. A condition of appointment is that you are in fact qualified for admission to the PhD programme within three months.

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criterias in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

General information

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background. Under the Freedom of Information Act (offentleglova), information about the applicant may be made public even if the applicant has requested not to have their name entered on the list of applicants.

The national labour force must reflect the composition of the population to the greatest possible extent, NTNU wants to increase the proportion of women in its scientific posts. Women are encouraged to apply. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life ( Having a population of 200 000, Trondheim is a small city by international standards with low crime rates and little pollution. It also has easy access to a beautiful countryside with mountains and a dramatic coastline.

Questions about the position can be directed to Professor Anne Steen-Hansen, phone number +47 48110107, e-mail

About the application:

Publications and other academic works that the applicant would like to be considered in the evaluation must accompany the application. Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify the individual applicant's contribution to joint works, the applicant must include a brief description of his or her contribution.

Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Diploma Supplement is required to attach for European Master Diplomas outside Norway. Chinese applicants are required to provide confirmation of Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI): Applicants invited for interview must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters.

Please refer to the application number IV-261/19 when applying.

Application deadline: 28.11.2019

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

We conduct research and teaching in civil and transportation engineering, technical planning, structural engineering, water and wastewater engineering and hydraulic engineering. Graduates from our programmes become employees – in both the public and private sectors – with a sustainability mindset combined with competitive knowledge and skills. The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

Deadline 28th November 2019
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Place of service Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

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