PhD Position in Environmental Microbiology

Trondheim, Norway
08 Apr 2019
End of advertisement period
15 May 2019
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Full Time

About the position

We have a vacancy for a PhD position in Environmental Microbiology

The appointment has a duration of 3 years. The position is part of the researcher project “Field-based oil depletion processes in temperate and Arctic seawater” (OilDeplete). This project aims at comparing field data for degradation of oil pollution and microbial communities associated with the degradation. The project is a collaboration between NTNU and Sintef Ocean. The project in which the PhD candidate will work on is managed by SINTEF Ocean, and the candidate will located both at SINTEF Ocean Department of Environment and New Resources, and at NTNU Department of Biotechnology and Food Science.  

Information of the Department can be found online at https:\\\ibt

The position reports to Ingrid Bakke (IBT) and Odd Gunnar Brakstad (Sintef Ocean AS).

Job description

After accidental oil spills to marine environments, several oil weathering processes will appear, including degradation processes like biodegradation and photo-oxidation. In this project, the PhD candidate will perform field studies in seawater with oil immobilized to hydrophobic adsorbents in seawater to investigate microbial communities and genes involved in biodegradation of different oil compounds, as well as impacts of combined photo-oxidation and biodegradation on the communities and functional genes. The candidate will use established field systems, which will be deployed at locations along the Norwegian coast, as well as in the Arctic (Svalbard).  Modern biotechnological methods, such as high-throughput DNA sequencing, will be used to examine microbial communities, while degradation will be determined by state-of-the art gas and liquid chromatography methods. The studies will be performed in collaboration with the Arctic Research Centre at the University of Århus in Denmark and McGill University in Montreal, Canada.

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 biotechnology, microbiology, or a closely related field, 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

The ideal candidate will have strong knowledge of basic biology, including microbiology, molecular biology and ecology. Some experience with organic chemical analyses, preferably crude oil analyses will be valuable. Experiences from field work will be also an advantage, but not required.

Personal characteristics

The successful candidate should be creative, with a strong ability to work problem oriented. She/he should also enjoy interdisciplinary research and take keen interest in learning and working in teams.

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 candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 449 400 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 Biotechnology (

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.

Questions about the position can be directed to Associate Professor Ingrid Bakke at Department of Biotechnology and Food Science (+47 93247872; or senior Scientist Odd Gunnar Brakstad at SINTEF Ocean (+47 98243447;

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, motivation letter, and certificates. Applicants invited for interview must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters.

Please refer to the application number NV-32/19 when applying.

Application deadline: 15.05.2019

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 Biotechnology and Food Science

Our activities contribute to increased exploitation of existing and new ingredients for sustainable food production as well as next-generation energy solutions and medical technology. We educate graduates for a wide range of careers in industry, public administration and academia. The Department of Biotechnology and Food Science is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Natural Sciences.

Deadline 15.05.2019
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Temporary
Jobbnorge ID 168609