PhD position in Chronobiology

Deadline: September 12, 2018

UiT The Arctic University of Norway

The Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics (BFE) consists of Department of Arctic and Marine Biology, Norwegian College of Fishery Science (NFH) and School of Business and Economics. The main task of BFE is to conduct teaching and research dissemination at a high national and international level within all relevant fields. Prioritized research areas are aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, climate, life in the arctic, marine bioprospecting, fish health, seafood products, business and macroeconomics, resources and environment, markets and management of marine resources. The interdisciplinary profile of the faculty provides good opportunity to develop research projects involving several research groups at the faculty according to its strategy.

UiT the Arctic University of Norway, The Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics (BFE), has a PhD position vacant in the field of Chronobiology. The position is attached to the Department of Arctic and Marine Biology (AMB) and the research group of Arctic Chronobiology and Physiology (ACP) and will be in collaboration with the University of Strasbourg, Insitut des Neurosciences Celluaires et Integratives (INCI), Neurobiology of rhythms group.

The appointment is for a period of three years.

The PhD position is for a fixed term, with the objective of completion of research training to the level of a doctoral degree. Admission to a PhD programme is a prerequisite for employment, and the programme period starts on commencement of the position. The PhD Candidate shall participate in the faculty’s organized research training, and the PhD project shall be completed during the period of employment. Information about the application process for admission to the PhD programme and regulations for the degree of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) are available at the following address Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics PhD web pages.

Department of Arctic and Marine Biology includes 6 research groups. Research and teaching at AMB has a broad span, from molecular mechanisms at cellular/subcellular levels via studies of adaptations at the organismal level, to ecological interactions in aquatic and terrestrial environments. The staff counts 52 permanent scientists, 23 technicians, 9 administrative positions and 65 temporary employees (researchers, postdocs, PhD research fellows, technicians).

For further information, please contact Dr. Shona Wood [email protected] or phone +47 776 44784.

The Research Group Arctic Chronobiology and Physiology, studies physiological adaptations to life at high latitudes in Arctic / subarctic fish, birds and mammals, and their tolerance to climatic and other changes to their environment.

The research area

This is an international PhD project to focus on the hypothesis that epigenetic timing mechanisms in hypothalamic tanycytes generate internal calendar time in mammals. The project will bring together complementary skills in developmental chronobiology (Simonneaux, INCI – see Saenz de Miera et al, 2017 PNAS), and in epigenetic regulation (Wood, UiT, Norway – see Wood et al, 2015 Current Biology, and Genome Biology). We will focus on our recently established rodent models for seasonal time-keeping and two seasonal adaptive programmes; maternal photoperiodic programming (MPP) and hibernation. We will define how MPP affects the development of the hypothalamo-pituitary axis and how this subsequently programs through epigenetic modifications somatic and reproductive development of the offspring. We are particularly interested in the hypothesis that tanycytes are epigenetic calendar cells timing torpor and arousal in hibernation. Therefore, by contrasting these two seasonal adaptive programmes we aim to define the role of tanycytes in these programmes and test the hypothesis of an epigenetic calendar in hypothalamic tanycytes. The candidate will be expected to travel and work in Strasbourg, France for extended periods.

Qualifications required

The candidate must have a master’s degree or equivalent, ideally in chronobiology. The successful candidate must also be able to demonstrate a strong interest in chronobiology and neurobiology. A willingness to learn molecular techniques and bioinformatics is essential. The approach taken will combine modern methods in molecular physiology and genomics, and favourable consideration will be given to knowledge or practical experience in one or more of the following areas: chronobiology, bioinformatics, molecular biology, genomics, neurobiology, physiology, epigenetics.

Applicants must have a good command of English, both written and verbal. How to document languages proficiency.

Admission to a PhD programme is a prerequisite for employment in a PhD position; cf. Section 6 of the Regulations for the degree of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) at the UiT The Arctic University of Norway. The PhD programme must be approved and the contract signed no later than six week, after the starting date. In connection with this, the person who is appointed can receive a period of up to two month in which to submit a draft of their project description/reworked project description and a proposal of courses for the instruction component. In the event that the PhD contract is not completed within the stipulated deadline, the employer may annul the contract; cf. Section 1-3(8) of the Regulations relating to conditions of employment for positions of Postdoctoral Fellows, PhD Candidate, Research Assistant (only in Norwegian).

Working conditions

The nominal length of the PhD programme is three years and the normal period of employment is three years. Shorter periods of employment may be approved if the PhD Candidate has already implemented parts of the PhD programme or when the appointment is based on previous appointments in teaching positions (PhD candidate, Research Assistant or the equivalent), such that the total time of the PhD programme is three years.

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


The applicants will be assessed by an expert committee. During this assessment process, emphasis will be attached to the applicant’s potential for research as shown by:

  • Master’s thesis or equivalent
  • any other academic works

In addition, consideration may be given to work experience or other activities of significance for the implementation of the PhD studies, and to any teaching qualifications. This includes teaching education, teaching experience, from popularization and experience/education from other types of dissemination. The best qualified assessed applicants will be called to an interview. The interview shall among other things aim to clarify the applicant’s personal suitability for the position.

Applicants who invites for interview should bring original certificates, diplomas and reference letters.

Submit your application in

The application documents (mentioned below) must be enclosed in Jobbnorge within the expiration of the application deadline. Documents to be considered must be certified and translated into Scandinavian or English.

Attachment to application letter must include:

  • CV (containing a complete overview of education, supervised professional training and professional work)
  • diploma and transcript from your Bachelor’s degree or equivalent
  • diploma and transcript from your Master’s degree or equivalent
  • Master’s thesis or equivalent
  • diploma supplement for completed degrees
  • Documentation of English language proficiency
  • Reference letter and contact information
  • List of works and description of these
    • The list of works shall contain the following information:
      • author(s), the work’s title
      • for articles: the journal’s name and volume, the first and last page of the article, year of publication
      • for publications: publisher, printer, year of publication, number of pages

Works - The applicant have to attach the published or unpublished work he/she wish the Committee be take into consideration during the assessment process.

Application and attachment in e-mail can not be approved.


Information and guidelines referenced in our announcement are available here.

Questions concerning the organization of the working environment, such as the physical state of the place of employment, health service, possibility for flexible working hours, part time, etc. may be directed to the telephone reference in this announcement.

UiT the Arctic University of Norway has HR policy objectives that emphasize diversity, and therefore encourages qualified applicants to apply regardless of gender, functional ability and national or ethnic background.

UiT the Arctic University of Norway is an IW (Inclusive Workplace) enterprise, and will therefore emphasize making the necessary adaptations to the working conditions for employees with reduced functional ability.

Personal data given in an application or CV will be processed in accordance with the Act relating to the processing of personal data (the Personal Data Act). In accordance with Section 25 subsection 2 of the Freedom of Information Act, the applicant may request not to be registered on the public list of applicants. However, the University may nevertheless decide that the name of the applicant will be made public. The applicant will receive advance notification in the event of such publication.

We are looking forward to receive your application!

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