PhD Fellow in Solid Earth Sciences

Deadline: 12.02.2022

UiT The Arctic University of Norway

UiT is a multi-campus research university in Norway and the northernmost university of the world.
Our central location in the High North, our broad and diverse research and study portfolio, and our interdisciplinary qualities make us uniquely suited to meet the challenges of the future. At UiT you can explore global issues from a close-up perspective.

Credibility, academic freedom, closeness, creativity and commitment shall be hallmarks of the relationship between our employees, between our employees and our students and between UiT and our partners.

Faculty of Science and Technology

The position

A PhD position in Solid Earth sciences is available at the Department of Geosciences (IG), UiT The Arctic University of Norway. The PhD position is within the project: “Continental breakup and impact on climate change: the role of volatile-rich magmatism along the rifted North Atlantic margins”.

Background & Goals:

Continental breakup-related, vast volcanic sequences occur along the passive margins of the North Atlantic and preserve among the best natural laboratories to understand possible impacts of mantle melting on climate change. Of particular interest to this project are volatile-rich mantle-derived volcanic rocks (e.g., carbonatites and nephelinites/melilitites) in East Greenland that formed ca. 60 to 50 million years ago. Their origin – including the carbon inventory – played likely a key role in causing the Paleocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum, a climate event during which the global average temperature rose by more than 5°C over a short period of time.

The position is for a period of four years. The nominal length of the PhD programme is three years. The fourth year is distributed as 25 % each year and will consist of teaching and other duties. This may include teaching (e.g. supervision and evaluation of student exercises) at various levels, as well as performance of other duties relevant for the Department of Geosciences. UiT The Arctic University of Norway funds the position.

The objective of the position is to complete research training to the level of a doctoral degree. Admission to the PhD programme is a prerequisite for employment, and the programme period starts on commencement of the position.

The workplace is at UiT in Tromsø and you must be able to start in the position within a reasonable time period after receiving the offer.

The position’s field of research

The aim of the project is to integrate the volatile-rich volcanism into existing tectonomagmatic models for the North Atlantic Igneous Province to improve mass balance considerations for mantle-sourced CO2 and SO2 outgassing on thermal excursions in the climate record. To achieve this goal, a combined geochronology, petrology and isotope geochemistry program will be designed to (1) determine timing of volcanism at millennia-scale resolution, (2) to estimate the volatile contents of the mantle sources, and (3) to compute the extent to which carbon was released into the atmosphere. A further objective is (4) to constrain whether the volatile components were primordial in origin or recycled from the lithosphere including contributions from outer Earth reservoirs (e.g., the atmosphere), which has implications for deep carbon storage models. The project is thematically linked to the ongoing IODP-396 endeavor, offshore Norway. It will be conducted in close collaboration with the University of Münster and Heidelberg University in Germany, as well as the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland.


For further information about the position, please contact:


This position requires a master’s degree or equivalent in a relevant subject. The successful geosciences candidate must have advanced skills in magmatic petrology/geochemistry, such as optical microscopy and the operation of electron microprobe or mass spectrometry instruments. A further project requirement is the ability to spend prolonged periods of time at the above listed partner institutions for sampling, data collection and scientific interactions with the collaborating researchers. Knowledge of thermodynamic modeling techniques and the ability to conduct geological fieldwork in remote locations are additional assets.

Applicants must present a description outlining the academic basis of the PhD project. The project description shall not exceed 3 pages, literature references included. The final project description will be developed together with the PhD thesis supervisors.

The scientific results shall be presented to the project stakeholders at national and international conferences/workshops, as well as published in peer-reviewed international scientific journals. Therefore, a very good communication level in English, both written and oral, is required. A working knowledge of Norwegian or another Scandinavian language is desirable.

The assessment will emphasize motivation and personal suitability for the position. You must be willing to engage in the ongoing development of your discipline and the university as a whole. For this position, we are looking for a creative candidate with problem solving attitude. The successful candidate should be able to work in a team as well as independently in both office and field environments.

In the assessment, the emphasis is on the applicant's potential to complete a research education based on the Master's thesis or equivalent, and any other scientific work. The project description will also be considered. In addition, other experience of significance for the completion of the doctoral programme may be given consideration (e.g., prior work experience as a geoscientist/geologist).

As many as possible should have the opportunity to undertake organized research training. If you already hold a PhD degree or have equivalent competence, we will not appoint you to this scientific training position.

Admission to the PhD programme

For employment in the PhD position, you must be qualified for admission to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Science and Technology and participate in organized doctoral studies within the employment period.

Admission normally requires:

  • A bachelor's degree of 180 ECTS and a master's degree of 120 ECTS, or an integrated master's degree of 300 ECTS.
  • A master's thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 30 ECTS for a master's degree of 120 ECTS.
  • A master's thesis with a scope corresponding to at least 20 ECTS for an integrated master's degree of 300 ECTS.

In order to gain admission to the programme, the applicant must have a grade point average of C or better for the master’s degree and for relevant subjects of the bachelor’s degree. A more detailed description of admission requirements can be found here.

Applicants with a foreign education will be subjected to an evaluation of whether the educational background is equal to Norwegian higher education, following national guidelines from NOKUT.

If you are employed in the position, you will be provisionally admitted to the PhD programme. Application for final admission must be submitted no later than two months after taking up the position.

Inclusion and diversity

UiT The Arctic University of Norway is working actively to promote equality, gender balance and diversity among employees and students, and to create an inclusive and safe working environment. We believe that inclusion and diversity are a strength and we want employees with different competencies, professional experience, life experience and perspectives.

If you have a disability, a gap in your CV or immigrant background, we encourage you to tick the box for this in your application. If there are qualified applicants, we invite at least one in each group for an interview. If you get the job, we will adapt the working conditions if you need it. Apart from selecting the right candidates, we will only use the information for anonymous statistics.

We offer

  • Involvement in an interesting international research project
  • An excellent academic environment with dedicated colleagues
  • Good career opportunities
  • Pension scheme through the state pension fund 
  • More practical information for working and living in Norway can be found here.


Your application must include:

  • Cover letter explaining your motivation and research interests
  • CV
  • Diploma for Bachelor's and Master's degree
  • Transcript of grades/academic record for Bachelor's and Master's degree
  • Explanation of the grading system for foreign education (Diploma Supplement if available)
  • Documentation of English proficiency
  • At least two professional references with contact information
  • Master’s thesis or advanced thesis draft, and any other academic works
  • Project description (not to exceed 3 pages)

Qualification with a Master’s degree is required before commencement in the position. If you are near completion of your Master’s degree, you may apply and submit an advanced draft version of the thesis and a statement from your supervisor or institution indicating by when the degree will be obtained. You must document completion of your Master’s degree before commencement in the PhD position. You must still submit your transcripts for the Master’s degree with your application.

All documentation to be considered must be in a Scandinavian language or English. Diplomas and transcripts must also be submitted in the original language, if not in English or Scandinavian. We only accept applications and documentation sent via Jobbnorge within the application deadline.

General information

The appointment is made in accordance with State regulations and guidelines at UiT. At our website, you will find more information for applicants.

A shorter period of appointment may be decided when the PhD Fellow has already completed parts of their research training programme or when the appointment is based on a previous qualifying position PhD Fellow, research assistant, or the like in such a way that the total time used for research training amounts to three years.

Remuneration for the position of PhD Fellow is in accordance with the State salary scale code 1017. A compulsory contribution of 2 % to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund will be deducted.

We process personal data given in an application or CV in accordance with the Personal Data Act (Offentleglova). According to the Personal Data Act information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure. You will receive advance notification in the event of such publication, if you have requested non-disclosure.

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