Ledig stilling ved NMBU

PhD scholarship within Data Science and Computational Neuroscience

Deadline: 31.05.2019

About the position

The Faculty of Science and Technology (REALTEK) at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) has a vacant 3-year PhD–position related to Data Science and Computational Neuroscience.

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 the autumn of 2020 we are co-located on Ås.

Further information on NMBU is available at www.nmbu.no.


The Faculty of Science and Technology (REALTEK) has 130 employees, about 1,100 students and about 60 PhD students. The Faculty offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees in natural sciences and engineering in the fields of environmental physics and renewable energy, building and architecture, water and environmental technology, machine-, process and product development, robotics geomatics, data science and educational sciences. The workplace is in Ås, 30 km from Oslo.

Despite decades of intense research efforts investigating the brain at the molecular, cell, circuit and system levels, the operating principles of the human brain, or any brain, remain largely unknown. Likewise, effective treatments for prevalent serious psychiatric disorders and dementia are still lacking.

In broad terms we now have a fairly good understanding of how individual nerve cells operate and process information, but the behavior of networks of such cells is poorly understood. Unless we understand these networks our understanding of brain function, and likely also ability to treat major brain diseases, will have to be limited.

The Computational Neuroscience group at REALTEK has long experience with modelling nerve cell activity, and is e.g. part of the large EU ICT Flagship ‘Human Brain Project’ and involved in ‘Digital Life Norway’.

The successful applicant will work on the 3-year project “MetaBrain: Metamodelling of electrical signals from the brain”, funded by NMBU. The main purpose of the project is to apply and develop computational models of electrical signals from the brain.

You will investigate how to best apply powerful metamodelling methods co-developed by the Data Science group to efficiently predict electrical signals in the brain such as EEG, which can currently only be modelled using computationally demanding methods developed by the Computational Neuroscience group.

Using these metamodels, which are data-driven approximation models/surrogate models for the more computationally demanding (differential equation-based) models, will allow the dependence of brain dynamics on properties of the underlying nerve cell and network models to be revealed.

Main tasks

The main activities will be related to the following topics:

  • Metamodelling
  • Multivariate data analysis and machine learning
  • Computational modelling of brain signals (at both cell and network level)
  • Scientific software development
  • Dissemination of research results

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.

Qualifications and skills

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 (candidates submitting MSc thesis by August 15th 2019 may also be considered). 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 programmedescription.

The applicant must document expertise and interest in the research subject.

Required academic qualifications

  • A Master degree in Data Science, Statistics, Applied Mathematics, Physics or similar, with very good results
  • Proficiency in Data Science (multivariate analysis, machine learning and mathematical modelling
  • Programming skills in Python

Desired academic qualifications

  • Experience from data analysis within Life Sciences
  • Experience from Computational Neuroscience

Required personal skills

  • Excellent spoken and written English
  • Result-oriented and highly motivated
  • High work capacity
  • Ability to collaborate
  • Strong communication and cooperation skills

Desired personal skills

  • Ability to work independently under varying conditions
  • Ability to disseminate research results

Remuneration and information

The position is placed in government pay scale position code 1017 PhD Fellow, wage framework 20, salary grade 51 (equivalent currently to NOK 449 400) and follow ordinary meriting regulations.

Terms of employment are governed by Norwegian guidelines for PhD fellowships at Universities and University Colleges.

For further information, please contact:

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.

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.

Application deadline: May 31st 2019

Printed material which cannot be sent electronically should be sent by surface mail to Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, P.O. Box 5003, NO-1432 Ås, within May 31st 2019. Please quote reference number 19/01880

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.

The relevant NMBU department may require further documentation, e.g. proof of English proficiency.

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