Ledig stilling på Universitetet i Oslo

Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)
Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)

PhD Research Fellowship in Evolutionary Biology

Deadline: 14.05.2021

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.


The Natural History Museum at the University of Oslo is Norway’s most comprehensive natural history collection. For almost 200 years, specimens of animals, fungi, plants, rocks, minerals and fossils have been collected, studied and preserved here. The museum is located at Økern and in the beautiful Botanical Garden, which is not only popular for recreation, but is a scientific collection in itself.

Job description

Applications are invited for a position as PhD Research Fellow in evolutionary biology available at the Natural History Museum, University of Oslo.

The fellowship will be for a period of 4 years with 25 % compulsory work (e.g., teaching responsibilities and curator work at the museum). The purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree. The fellowship requires admission to the PhD program at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. Appointment to a research fellowship is conditional upon admission to the Faculty’s research training program.

Starting date as soon as possible.

More about the position

The candidate will work in association with the ERC Starting Grant project Dissecting the paradox of stasis in evolutionary biology (ROCKS- PARADOX) awarded to Kjetil Lysne Voje in 2020. This is an extensively collaborative project that includes both national and international partners.

The Voje lab seeks to understand the processes that govern phenotypic evolution along the timescale continuum. Research in the lab is on a wide variety of taxa and we combine empirical work and methods development to obtain a deeper understanding of the connection between microevolutionary processes and evolutionary change on longer timescales.

The paradox of stasis refers to the contrasting observations of phenotypic evolution on short and long timescales; rapid evolution is commonly observed across a few generations in living populations while the fossil record often indicates that species remain more or less unchanged for millions of years. Why do we observe so little evolution on long timescales when we observe so much evolution on shorter timescales? The overarching goal of the ROCKS-PARADOX project is to provide a deeper understanding of evolutionary trait dynamics on timescales in between micro- and macroevolution.

The PhD project is at the intersection between evolutionary biology and paleontology and the student will analyze sequences of evolutionary changes – data on phenotypic changes within lineages – spanning generational to million-year timescales. Such data are ideal for studying questions related to tempo and mode of phenotypic trait dynamics within lineages.

Voje will act as main supervisor, in addition to 2-3 co-supervisors.

Qualification requirements

We seek a highly motivated, enthusiastic, hard-working and competent candidate with good collaborative skills. The candidate needs the following formal qualifications:

  • Master’s degree (or equivalent) in Biology with a specialization or clear profile in evolutionary biology/paleobiology.
  • Good communication skills (including written and spoken English)
  • Foreign completed degrees (M.Sc.-level) must correspond to a minimum of four years in the Norwegian educational system

The candidate should have broad knowledge about evolutionary theory. It is an advantage – but not a requirement – to have experience in the following areas:

  • Statistics and statistical data analysis (experience in using the R programming language is appreciated).
  • Evolutionary modelling (e.g. use of phylogenetic comparative methods)
  • Knowledge about the nature of the fossil record

We offer

  • Salary NOK 482 200 – 526 000 per year depending on qualification and seniority as PhD Research Fellow (position code 1017)
  • Challenging research questions and a friendly working environment
  • A beautiful campus located in the Botanical Gardens, which is close to the city center of Oslo, but also not far from the fjord and the woodlands surrounding the city
  • Full funding of the project research-related activities, including field work, lab work and presentation of results at international conferences
  • Membership in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • Attractive welfare benefits

How to apply

The application must include

  • Application letter
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work, scientific publications and other relevant experience)
  • Copies of educational certificates
  • List of publications and academic work that the applicant wishes to be considered by the evaluating committee
  • A one-page statement explaining how a PhD in the actual research field will fit into the applicant’s career plan
  • Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, affiliation, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number). The references will be contacted if necessary. Letters of recommendation are therefore not required for the initial application.

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.

In the assessment of applications, particular emphasis will be placed upon the academic merits and personal ability of the candidate to complete the project successfully within the given timeframe and write a PhD thesis under supervision. Interviews with selected candidates will be arranged.

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. We also want to have employees with diverse expertise, combinations of subjects, life experience and perspectives. We will make adjustments for employees who require this.

If there are qualified applicants with special needs, gaps in their CVs or immigrant backgrounds, we will invite at least one applicant in each of these groups to an interview.

Contact information

Questions regarding the position:

Questions regarding the recruiting system and the application procedure: HR-adviser Anita Marie Hansen: [email protected]

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