Ledig stilling ved NMBU

PhD scholarship within Animal Science

Deadline: 01.08.2020

Norwegian University of Life Sciences

NMBU has a special responsibility for research and education that ensures the basis of life for future generations.

Sustainability is rooted in everything we do and we provide knowledge for life.

NMBU has 1700 employees and 5200 students and is organized in seven faculties. NMBU has a campus in Ås and in Oslo. In 2021 we are co-located on Ås. Further information on NMBU is available at www.nmbu.no.

About The Faculty of Biosciences

The Faculty of Biosciences (Biovit) contributes to the development of sustainable agriculture and food production systems through basic and applied research in plants, animals and fish (aquaculture).

The research groups are organized in the following sections: Systems Genetics and Bioinformatics, Animal Breeding and Quantitative Genetics, Nutrition, Ethology and Animal Welfare, Agroecology, Genetics and Plant Breeding, Food Crops, Plant Biology and Biotechnology, and Plant Protection.

There are currently 480 bachelor and master students, and 90 PhD students, enrolled in these programmes.The faculty has approxi-mately 220 employees.

Are you interested in management systems in which cow and calf are kept together in dairy production?

About the position

The Department of Animal and Aquaculture Sciences, Faculty of Biosciences at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) has a vacant three-year PhD–position related to management of cow and calf in a cow-calf contact system. The position is jointly funded by the FFL/JA project SUCCEED and the Faculty of Biosciences. The SUCCEED project is led by the Norwegian Veterinary Institute and involves national as well as international partners within the academic and private sector.

The position is intended to start in August 2020.

Public acceptance is pivotal for a sustainable dairy production, and the tradition of taking the calf away from the cow shortly after birth has been questioned. Many farmers express interest for keeping the two together for an extended period, which has the potential to improve animal health and welfare and to meet consumer expectations. However, there is a lack of knowledge on how to do this in a feasible and economically viable way in different housing systems, and the short and long-term effects.

In this project, you will have the possibility to study short- and long-term effects on the cows in the system, as well as short term effects on the calf. You will work with a large national and international network, which will give you an excellent opportunity to build your own network within academic and industry environments.

Your work will include:

  • Developing functional technical solutions for cow-calf contact in loose housing systems
  • Studying long-term effects of cow-calf contact on production in the dairy cow
  • Investigating the effects of different separation strategies on cow and calf

Main tasks

You will conduct animal experiments and surveys in order to investigate short- and long-term effects of the system on production. You will work with both experimental and recorded data.

Specific tasks include:

  • Planning and conducting animal experiments
  • Take part in a cohort study on farms practicing cow-calf care
  • Scientific communication at conferences and in publications

The successful candidate is expected to enter a plan for the progress of the work towards a PhD degree during the first months of the appointment, with a view to completing a doctorate within the PhD scholarship period.

Qualification requirements, desired experiences, knowledge and personal qualities

The successful applicant must meet the conditions defined for admission to a PhD programme at NMBU. The applicant must have an academically relevant education corresponding to a five-year Norwegian degree programme, where 120 credits are at master's degree level. The applicant must have a documented strong academic background from previous studies and be able to document proficiency in both written and oral English. For more detailed information on the admission criteria please see the PhD Regulations and the relevant PhD programme description. The applicant must document expertise and interest in the research subject.

Required Academic qualifications

  • A master’s degree or equivalent in a relevant field, such as animal science, animal husbandry or veterinary science

The following experiences and skills will be emphasized:

  • Interest in and motivation for the topic as well as for scientific work
  • Experience of scientific work and publication
  • Experience of practical work with cattle
  • Good communication and collaborative skills
  • Good analytical skills
  • Independence, resourcefulness and critical thinking
  • Ability to communicate in a Scandinavian language
  • Driver’s license

You need to:

  • Have good English skills (written and spoken)

Remuneration and further information

The position is placed in government pay scale position code 1017 PhD. Fellow. PhD. Fellows are normally placed in pay grade 54 (NOK 479.600,-) on the Norwegian Government salary scale upon employment and follow ordinary meriting regulations.

Employment is conducted according to national guidelines for University and Technical College PhD scholars.

For further information, please contact:

Information for PhD applicants and general information to applicants


To apply online for this vacancy, please click on the 'Apply for this job' button above. This will route you to the University's Web Recruitment System, where you will need to register an account (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

Application deadline: 1st August 2020

Applications should include (electronically) a letter of intent, curriculum vitae, full publication list, copies of degree certificates and transcripts of academic records (all certified), and a list of two persons who may act as references (with phone numbers and e-mail addresses).

Publications should be included electronically within the application deadline. The relevant NMBU Department may require further documentation, e.g. proof of English proficiency.

Printed material which cannot be sent electronically should be sent by surface mail to the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Biosciences, P.O. Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, within 1st August 2020. Please quote reference number 20/02378.

If it is difficult to judge the applicant’s contribution for publications with multiple authors, a short description of the applicant’s contribution must be included.

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