Two PhD positions in the project "Contested frontiers of settler states"

Deadline: 05.08.2024

University of Bergen

The University of Bergen is a renowned educational and research institution, organised into seven faculties and approximately 54 institutes and academic centres. Campus is located in the centre of Bergen with university areas at Nygårdshøyden, Haukeland, Marineholmen, Møllendalsveien and Årstad. 

There are seven departments at Faculty of Social Sciences. Read more about the faculty and departments

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PhD positions

There are vacancies for two PhD positions at the Department of Comparative Politics.

Each position is for a fixed-term period of 4 years. Of that period, at least 75% will be devoted to PhD training and research as an integral member of the exciting ERC project “Contested Frontiers: Understanding the constitutional politics of settler-state peripheries” (ConFront). The other 25% may involve teaching, supervision, and administrative tasks at the department.

The project combines political theory, constitutional law, and comparative politics to understand efforts – usually by Indigenous peoples versus settlers/states – to (re)constitute frontier jurisdictions, especially in the North American Arctic, Fennoscandic north, U.S. Pacific, and Australian tropics. ConFront consists of five team members led by the department’s associate professor of Arctic governance, Aaron Spitzer.

The successful candidates will be based in Bergen, ideally beginning autumn 2024. They will actively collaborate with other team members (including co-writing academic articles); will help conduct fieldwork and research dissemination in frontier regions; will assist with administrative responsibilities related to the project (including organization of workshops, writing deliverables, and data management); and will participate in the department’s Indigenous Peoples and Governance in the Arctic research group.

Candidates are expected to propose and execute a PhD research plan contributing to ConFront’s objectives. A general overview of ConFront can be found here. More specific project details are available from the project leader.

Qualifications and personal qualities:

  • Applicants must hold a master's degree or the equivalent in Political Science, Comparative Politics, Political Philosophy, Constitutional Law, or a related discipline relevant to the project. The degree must be completed by the application deadline.
  • The requirements are generally a grade B or better on the master’s thesis and for the master's degree in total.
  • Applicants must be able to work independently and in a structured manner and demonstrate good collaborative skills.
  • Applicants must be proficient in both written and oral English.
  • Applicant will ideally have experience in – and commitment to – the study of Indigenous, Arctic, or related issues and challenges.
  • Personal and relational qualities will be emphasized. Ambitions and potential will also count when evaluating the candidates.

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to the department for an interview.

About the PhD positions

The duration of the PhD position is 4 years, of which 25 per cent of the time comprises required duties associated with research, teaching and dissemination of results. The employment period may be reduced if you have previously been employed in a recruitment position.

About the PhD training:

As a PhD research fellow, you will take part in the PhD programme at the Faculty of Social Sciences, UiB. The programme corresponds to a period of three years and leads to the PhD degree. To be eligible for admission you must normally have an educational background corresponding to a master’s degree with a scope of 120 ECTS credits, which builds on a bachelor’s degree with a scope of 180 ECTS credits (normally 2 + 3 years), or an integrated master’s degree with a scope of 300 ECTS credits (5 years). Master’s degrees must normally include an independent work of a minimum of 30 ECTS credits. It is expected that the topic of the master’s degree is connected to the academic field to which you are seeking admission.

We can offer:

  • Salary as PhD (code 1017) NOK 532 200, - per year (pay grade 54 according to the state salary scale). Automatic salary increases for up to 4 years with a 3% annual increase
  • A good and professionally challenging working environment
  • Enrolment in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • Good welfare benefits

Project proposal:

A research proposal contributing to ConFront’s objectives must accompany the application. The proposal should be of approximately 4 pages, presenting the topic, the research problem(s), and choice of theory and methods. The proposal should also include a progress plan for the different parts of the project. Admittance to the PhD programme will be based on the research proposal. The faculty has prepared a guide for writing project descriptions.

Your application must include:

  • A cover letter including a brief account of your research interests and motivation for applying for the position
  • The names and contact information for two reference persons. One of them must be the main advisor for the master's thesis or equivalent thesis
  • Project proposal
  • CV
  • Transcripts and diplomas showing completion of the bachelor's and master's degrees
  • Relevant certificates/references
  • A list of academic publications
  • Academic publications that you want to submit for assessment (including your master’s thesis or equivalent)

The application and appendices with certified translations into English or a Scandinavian language must be uploaded at Jobbnorge following the link on this page marked “Apply for this job”.

Closing date: August 5th, 2024. 

The application must be marked: 2024/4689.

Applications submitted without a project description, or applications sent as e-mails will not be considered. Only submitted documents will be subjected to an expert assessment.

General information:

Additional information about the position, and about the ConFront research project, is obtainable by contacting project leader Aaron Spitzer (aaron.spitzer@uib.no).

Practical questions regarding the application procedures should be directed to Gudrun Horvei, HR (gudrun.horvei@uib.no)

Appointed research fellows will be admitted to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Social Sciences. Questions about the programme may be directed to Senior Adviser: Hanne.Gravermoen@uib.no.

The state labour force shall reflect the diversity of Norwegian society to the greatest extent possible. . Age and gender balance among employees is therefore a goal. It is also a goal to recruit people with immigrant backgrounds. People with immigrant backgrounds and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply for the position.

We encourage women to apply. If multiple applicants have approximately equivalent qualifications, the rules pertaining to moderate gender quotas shall apply.

The University of Bergen applies the principle of public access to information when recruiting staff for academic positions.

Information about applicants may be made public even if the applicant has asked not to be named on the list of persons who have applied. The applicant must be notified if the request to be omitted is not met.

The successful applicant must comply with the guidelines that apply to the position at all times.

For further information about the recruitment process, click here.

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