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PhD-fellowship (Centre for Development and the Environment)

Deadline: 01.05.2024

Universitetet i Oslo

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.

At the Centre for Development and the Environment (SUM), we have research expertise in a number of fields, such as development policy, global health, global governance and international policy, rural change, energy justice and sustainable consumption. Our researchers work both nationally and internationally and have regional knowledge of Asia, Africa, Latin America and Europe.

SUM was established in 1990 as a response to the Brundtland Report, “Our common future”. Today, SUM is one of the few institutions in Scandinavia advancing interdisciplinary research on development and the environment, primarily by combining different social science and humanities disciplines.

The MSCA-DN ‘Understanding Latin American Challenges in the 21st Century

Job description

The Centre for Development and the Environment, University of Oslo (SUM-UiO) is seeking applications for one doctoral candidate position under the MSCA-DN: ‘Understanding Latin American Challenges in the 21st Century (LAC-EU)’. The selected candidates will be employed by SUM-UiO and will be required to enrol in one of the PhD training programmes at the University of Oslo.

LAC-EU is an integrated four-year PhD programme, providing world-class, interdisciplinary research and training in social and political sciences, law, and the humanities, as well as research exchanges and policy-relevant secondments in the EU and LAC. Research themes include the rise of populism, democracy, gender rights, trade, migration, health, global cities, sustainability and green finance, and cultural studies.

This PhD project analyses the mechanisms and resources the EU has deployed to partner with Latin America to encourage a green transformation. It seeks to assess the consequences of associated means to encourage democratic participation transparency. Moreover, it seeks to compare the approaches of the EU to those of China and the United States vis-à-vis Latin America. The overall goal is to provide knowledge that can strengthen the collaboration for a democratic green transition in Latin America and Europe.

Applications are invited for a 3 year position in a Research Fellowship as a PhD Candidate.

The research fellow will be enrolled in the PhD programme at one of the Departments at the University of Oslo, and is responsible for applying for admission within given deadlines.

The main purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree and is expected to complete the project within the three-year period.

The applicant must, in collaboration with her/his supervisor, within 3 months after employment, have worked out a complete project description to be attached to the application for admission to the doctoral program.

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Oslo, applicants must, as a minimum, have completed a five-year graduation course (Master’s degree or equivalent), including a Master’s thesis of at least 30 ECTS. In special cases, the University may grant admission on the basis of a one-year Master course following an assessment of the study programme’s scope and quality.

Main supervisors: Professor Benedicte Bull and Professor Mariel Støen

About the Doctoral network

Social, political, and cultural transformations, a fast-changing global economy, geopolitical tensions, and global uncertainties have created a markedly different context from the previous era of European Union (EU) policies towards Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC).

Funded under the European Union’s Horizon Europe - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions - Doctoral Networks, the LAC-EU doctoral network will establish a novel, comprehensive and interdisciplinary framework to understand LAC and its relationship with the EU, fostering respectful, non-Eurocentric research and engagement. It will enable a better understanding of current challenges in Latin American governance and support sustainable, equitable and successful relations between the EU and LAC.

The LAC-EU doctoral programme comprises an interdisciplinary, multi-sectoral network composed of seven leading higher education institutions: Institut Barcelona d’Estudis Internacionals (IBEI), Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Universitat de Barcelona, University of Oslo, FLACSO-Argentina, and key, highly relevant civil society organizations, and policy partners from a range of European and LAC countries. It offers an exceptional combination of academic and research-related training and transferable skills to deliver scientific excellence, occupational mobility, and preparation for lifelong, policy-relevant learning for a new generation of researchers within the set fellowship period. The main purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree.

Qualification requirements

  • applicants must hold a Master’s degree eventually. A Master’s degree (120 ECTS) , minimum grade B (ECTS grading scale) or equivalent. 
  • fluent oral and written communication skills in English and Spanish

We seek motivated researchers who hold a Master’s degree in International Relations, Political Science, Public Policy, Law, and Cultural and Linguistics studies or equivalent (early-stage researchers) and possess excellent empirical and theoretical skills, as well as good teamwork abilities. Proficiency in both English and Spanish is a requirement.

Doctoral candidates’ recruitment is subject to the mobility rule. Recruited researcher can be of any nationality. The applicant must not have lived or worked in Norway for more than 12 months in the 36 months prior to their date of recruitment, excluding short stays such as holidays.

Final candidates should ideally begin their PhD enrolment/employment in October 2024.

We offer

  • salary NOK 532 200 – 575 490 per annum depending on qualifications in a position as PhD Research fellow ( per annum depending on qualifications in a position as PhD Research fellow, (position code 1017)
  • attractive welfare benefits and a generous pension agreement, in addition to Oslo’s family-friendly environment with its rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellows are offered a full-time, three-year contract that includes full social security benefits, a highly competitive monthly living allowance, as well as mobility and family allowances.

The program offers students an exceptional opportunity to engage in network-wide training and acquire a broad range of research-focused and transferable skills at various locations across Europe and LAC. This includes working with leading scientists and experts in the field.

How to apply

The application must include

  • cover letter statement of motivation and research interests
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work)
  • copies of educational certificates (academic transcripts only)
  • evt. documentation of English and Spanish proficiency
  • if applicable, a complete list of publications and academic works
  • list of reference persons: 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and phone number)

A project description that fits with the following overall aim: Title: EU soft power and a democratic green transformation in Latin America: With its Green Deal, the EU seeks not only to transform its own economy to face up to climate change; it also seeks to assist Latin America. The EU is also dependent on Latin America for the access to rare minerals and other resources needed for an energy transformation. For the purpose of partnering with Latin America the EU has made available different forms of resources, including for green investments. However, the EU is not alone in investing in the green transformation. Latin America is for example the main recipient of Chinese investments in renewable energy. What distinguishes the EU from, for example China, is its insistence of encouraging democratic green transformations, not simply investments in reduction of climate emissions. This PhD will study whether the EU approach of including broad dialogue and involving civil society, may encourage a different form of transformation than that of other global forces, including China and the United States. It will do so through combining quantitative analysis of EU vs Chinese and other investments, and democracy indicators, and case studies of the mechanisms of dialogue and its impact.

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “Apply for this job”. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an explanation of their University's grading system. Please note that all documents should be in English (or a Scandinavian language).

When evaluating the application, emphasis will be given to the eventually “project description” and the applicant’s academic and personal prerequisites to carry out the project. Applicants may be called in for an interview.

Formal regulations

Please see the guidelines and regulations for appointments to Research Fellowships at the University of Oslo.

No one can be appointed for more than one PhD Research Fellowship period at the University of Oslo.

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.

The appointment may be shortened/given a more limited scope within the framework of the applicable guidelines on account of any previous employment in academic positions.

The University of Oslo has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results etc.

Inclusion and diversity are a strength. The University of Oslo has a personnel policy objective of achieving a balanced gender composition. Furthermore, we want employees with diverse professional expertise, life experience and perspectives.

If there are qualified applicants with disabilities, employment gaps or immigrant background, we will invite at least one applicant from each of these categories to an interview.

Contact information

  • Professor Benedicte Bull (benedicte.bull@sum.uio.no)

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