PhD Candidate in Human Geography

Trondheim, Norway
23 Mar 2023
End of advertisement period
22 May 2023
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Geography
Contract Type
Full Time

About the job

The Department of Geography has an opening for a PhD candidate in human geography. This is a three year position. The candidate employed will research The language of biodiversity loss and ‘the nature crisis’, and be located in the ‘Geographies of community, politics and place research group’.

The candidate will be closely affiliated with Gjærevollsenteret: The Gjærevoll Centre - A Centre for Foresight Analyses of Biodiversity - NTNU.

Thematic focus of the position: The language of biodiversity loss and ‘the nature crisis’

‘The nature crisis‘ is claimed to be one of the most important challenges of our time, and commonly refers to an alarming loss of biodiversity due human activities. The UN Nature Panel and the Climate Panel, among several others, are hence calling for critical efforts to be made to halt the loss of nature. The conceptualization and communication of a ‘nature crisis’, cannot be isolated to communicating natural science only, for example the decline in species numbers or the extent of land use changes. There is an equally important need to understand how and why ‘the crisis’ is mobilized through the language of loss of nature and species more broadly.  

This project will trace the notion of a ‘nature crisis’, both temporally and spatially, in order to

  • investigate how and to what extent ‘the nature crisis’ has managed to establish itself as another discursive tool in the environmental area
  • understand what the notion is set to refer to
  • scrutinize within which contexts the notion is mobilized, by whom, in what ways and for what ends.

The project will also investigate how ‘the nature crisis’ is mobilized in a specific empirical context in Norway where land use decision making takes place. 

Your immediate leader is Head of department.

Duties of the position

  • Complete the doctoral education up to an obtained doctoral degree.
  • Undertake high quality research
  • Academic publishing and popular science dissemination
  • Contribute to the development of transdisciplinary knowledge

Required selection criteria

  • You must have a professionally relevant background in human geography. Background in a related social science may be considered.
  • Your education must correspond to a five-year Norwegian degree program, where 120 credits are obtained at master's level
  • You must have a strong academic background from your previous studies and an average grade from the master's degree program, or equivalent education, which is equal to B or better compared with NTNU's grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic basis. If you have a weaker grade background, you may be assessed if you can document that you are particularly suitable for a PhD education.
  • Excellent written and oral Norwegian (or any other Scandinavian) and English language skills
  • You must demonstrate advanced skills in qualitative methods, including experience from undertaking qualitative interviews
  • You must demonstrate advanced skills in document analysis
  • You must demonstrate very good skills in communication and dissemination of research
  • You must meet the requirements for admission to the PhD program in social sciences, specialising in geography: Social Sciences - PhD programme - Trondheim - NTNU

The appointment is to be made in accordance with Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, Phd candidate, research assistant and specialist candidate and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosodophiae Doctor (PhD) in artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant 

Preferred selection criteria

  • Very good analytical skills
  • Very good cooperative skills
  • Ability to undertake transdisciplinary research

Personal characteristics

Qualities such as a willingness to learn independently and with others, curiosity and enthusiasm, motivation to contribute to a positive working environment, and ability to adapt to changing conditions and situations are important characteristics for success.

Emphasis will be placed on personal and interpersonal qualities.

We offer

Salary and conditions

As a PhD candidate (code 1017) you are normally paid from gross NOK 501 200 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. 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 that you are admitted to the PhD programme in Social Sciences - PhD programme - Trondheim -NTNU with specialization in Geography within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.

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 criteria 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.

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment can in one of the Scandinavian languages or in English.

Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Please note that your application will be considered based solely on information submitted by the application deadline. You must therefore ensure that your application clearly demonstrates how your skills and experience fulfil the criteria specified above.

The application must include: 

  • CV and certificates
  • transcripts and diplomas for bachelor's and master's degrees. If you have not completed the master's degree, you must submit a confirmation that the master's thesis has been submitted.
  • A copy of the master's thesis. If you recently have submitted your master's thesis, you can attach a draft of the thesis. Documentation of a completed master's degree must be presented before taking up the position.
  • Project proposal (maximum 2500 words) which describes how the research is planned to be undertaken
  • Name and contact information of three referees
  • If you have any publications or other relevant research work, please attache these

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both bachelor's and master's education, in addition to other higher education. Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well.

We will take joint work into account. If it is difficult to identify your efforts in the joint work, you must enclose a short description of your participation.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

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

General information

Working at NTNU

Inclusion and diversity is our strength. We want to recruit people with different competencies, educational backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to solving our social responsibilities within education and research. We will facilitate for our employees’ needs.

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

A public list of applicants with name, age, job title and municipality of residence is prepared after the application deadline. If you want to reserve yourself from entry on the public applicant list, this must be justified. Assessment will be made in accordance with current legislation. You will be notified if the reservation is not accepted.

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Professor Gunhild Setten, email If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact HR by Renate Lillian Johansen, e-mail:

If you think this looks interesting and in line with your qualifications, please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates attached. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Upon request, you must be able to obtain certified copies of your documentation.  

Application deadline: 22.05.2023

Dragvoll oversiktsbilde Foto: Erik Børseth/NTNU

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 22nd May 2023
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Project
Place of service Dragvoll

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