PhD Candidate in Geography

Dragvoll , Norway
09 Nov 2018
End of advertisement period
15 Dec 2018
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Geography
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

About the position

We seek a PhD candidate in GIS sciences who will develop machine learning strategies and/or object-oriented image analysis for automated segmentation of landscape elements, landforms and deposits in Norway. Society’s need for rapid, cost effective and accurate mapping of landscapes is increasing. Many landforms and deposits, for example in formerly glaciated Scandinavia, is unstable in a warmer and wetter changing climate. Traditionally these landforms and deposits have been mapped largely manually through expert’s use of remote sensing data and fieldwork.  

However, large areas remain unmapped, and the landscape is changing rapidly. Recent development in machine learning, image recognition and object-oriented segmentation makes automation of these mapping tasks feasible. The candidate for the advertised position will develop tools and protocols for automatic mapping of deposits and landforms relevant for societal safety in Norway and Scandinavia. Much of this work will be performed using high resolution remote sensing data and through software development (desktop or cloud computing), but also some fieldwork in Norway is necessary to validate segmentation practices.

Job description

  • Perform independent research in the fields described above, in collaboration with supervisors and colleagues
  • Participate in national and international network building in relevant fields
  • Help develop the research field at NTNU, and collaborate with colleagues at the faculty and university
  • The successful candidate must follow courses at the PhD level in relevant fields

Qualification requirements

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 Geographical Information Sciences or Physical Geography 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

Other qualifications

  • Good written and oral English language skills. Good written and oral Norwegian skills are also desirable.
  • Relevant experience in geomatics (GIS), computing, Physical Geography, or understanding of Scandinavian landforms and sediments are beneficial
  • Work experience in relevant fields from academia or business is highly desirable
  • Experience with scientific publication is an advantage

Personal characteristics

  • We seek an independent and highly motivated PhD-candidate, who is eager to tackle new problems
  • The candidate should be a critical thinker exhibiting a high degree of scientific integrity
  • The candidate should be sociable, with desire and skills to communicate with both science peers and society

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

We offer

Salary and conditions

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 449 400 per annum before tax. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years without required duties. Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in Social Science, specialising Geography.

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.

Appointment takes place on the terms that apply to State employees at any time, and after the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

General information

Working at NTNU

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.

Questions about the position can be directed to Adjunct Associate Professor Ola Fredin, phone number 40227859, e-mail
For information about processing of applications, please contact HR, Anette Urheim, e-mail:

About the application:

The application must contain information about the applicant’s education, exams and previous employment. The application must also include a five-page research project outline. Applications in English are welcome. Applicants that are shortlisted for the position will be asked for references and called in for an interview.

For more information on the overall research project of which the PhD position is part, please contact the project leader, Adjunct Associate Professor Ola Fredin, e-mail:

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. Applicants invited for interview must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. Please refer to the application number SU-267 when applying.

Application deadline: 15.12.2018

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 Geography

We conduct research and teach in subject areas related to the major societal challenges of our time: climate change, migration, urbanization, economic transition and environmental threats. We have a robust fieldwork tradition, and our teaching activities are closely linked to our research. The Department of Geography is one of seven departments at the Faculty of Social and Educational Sciences.

Deadline 15.12.2018
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Fixed Term
Place of service Dragvoll