Doctoral Student In Natural Science, Specializing In Biology

Göteborg University
October 31, 2023
Offerd Salary:Negotiation
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
Working type:N/A
Ref info:N/A

The University of Gothenburg tackles society's challenges with diverse knowledge. 56 000 students and 6 600 employees make the university a large and inspiring place to work and study. Strong research and attractive study programmes attract researchers and students from around the world. With new knowledge and new perspectives, the University contributes to a better future.

Doctoral position in biology.

At the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences (BioEnv) we have teaching and research activities that span from the alpine ecosystem, through forests, cultivated land and streams, all the way into the marine environment. In these environments, we study different levels of biological organisation from genes, individuals and populations, to communities and ecosystems. We work within ecology, evolution, physiology, systematics and combinations of these fields in order to understand the impact of natural and anthropogenic changes of the environment.

The department is placed at two different localities: in Natrium at Medicinaregatan 7B in Gothenburg and at the Kristineberg marine research station operated by the Marine Infrastructure at the University of Gothenburg. The current employment is based in Natrium.

General information about being a doctoral student at the University of Gothenburg can be found on the university's doctoral student webpages.

Project description
  • The PhD will quantify forest change through time and across space
  • The project will focus on forest response to human impact
  • The project will consist of field and laboratory work, as well as data mining and statistical analysis
  • The successful candidate will have Christine Bacon as main supervisor and Matiu Prebble as co-supervisor
  • The successful candidate will be highly encouraged to join ClimBECCo, a research school associated with the Swedish strategic research area on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in a Changing Climate (BECC), where Christine Bacon is PI and part of the leadership. The successful candidate will also have ample opportunity to collaborate with other researchers at the Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Centre: (GGBC), where Christine Bacon is a member
  • Duties

    The main task is to conduct the PhD thesis work under supervision, which includes development of the PhD student's methodological experience, analytical skills, as well as theoretical depth and breadth. Techniques used within the project include Bayesian statistical analysis, phylogenomics, and population genetics. The work will be conducted as field, laboratory, and computational studies. Shorter periods may also be spent as field work in French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Hawaii (USA), Aotearoa (NZ) or another country. In addition to working in Gothenburg and in the field, time may also be spent working in the group of Matiu Prebble (University of Canterbury, Ōtautahi/Christchurch, New Zealand).

    The tasks envisioned will include some or all of the following:

  • Field work collecting palm and lake sediment material
  • DNA extraction of contemporary and sedimentary DNA
  • Bioinformatics and phylogeographical analyses
  • Data mining of fossil and human presence
  • Quantify forest change through time and space
  • Working with indigenous communities
  • Education at third-cycle level comprises four years of full-time study, and leads to a doctoral degree. As part of your employment as a doctoral student, you may have departmental duties corresponding to up to 20% of full-time employment, distributed throughout your study period. Departmental duties usually consist of teaching at first- and second-cycle levels, but may also include research and administration.


    Education at third-cycle level requires general eligibility and, where appropriate, specific eligibility as set out in the general syllabus for the subject.

    The general eligibility requirements for education at third-cycle level are:

  • having completed a degree at second-cycle level, or 2. the fulfilment of course requirements totalling at least 240 credits, of which at least 60 credits must be at second-cycle level, or

  • the acquisition of equivalent knowledge in some other way, either in Sweden or abroad.

  • To meet the specific entry requirements for third-cycle studies, applicants must:

  • have a second-cycle (advanced-level) degree in a relevant subject area in the natural sciences, or
  • have completed studies for at least 60 higher education credits at a second-cycle level in relevant subject areas in the natural sciences, or
  • have completed a corresponding programme of relevance to the planned third-cycle programme, in Sweden or in another country, or have equivalent qualifications.
  • Relevant subject for the planned third-cycle education is biology.

    Assessment criteria

    The selection of applicants who meet the basic and specific eligibility requirements will be based on the ability to assimilate the education at third-cycle level.

    Required qualifications:

  • A master degree in biology, genomics, bioinformatics, or related field
  • Documented capacity to work in groups and independently
  • Excellent written and spoken communication skills in English
  • Other desirable qualifications:

  • Skills in R, python or another analytical platform
  • Knowledge of the study group (tropical plants, palms)
  • Biological/ecological field work experience
  • Experience in genomic laboratory techniques
  • Experience with ancient or sedimentary DNA
  • Experience with data mining
  • Written and spoken skills in French
  • The application should preferably be written in English and must include:

  • A short cover letter with the applicant's justification for the application, i.e., that describes how the applicant meets the selection criteria (max. two A4 pages)
  • An attested list of qualifications (CV)
  • Complete list of publications, including submitted and accepted manuscripts
  • A copy of the Master thesis (or equivalent)
  • Examination certificates and a transcript of courses with grades
  • Contact information for at least two referees that are familiar with the applicant's qualifications
  • Employments certificates and other documents deemed important by the applicant
  • The top ranked candidates will be selected for an interview, which will be held in English and on Zoom.


    Once you have been admitted for education at third-cycle level, you will be employed as a doctoral student at the University of Gothenburg.

    The provisions for employment as a doctoral student can be found in ordinance SFS 1993:100.

    Initial employment as a doctoral student may apply for a maximum of one year, and may be renewed by a maximum of two years at a time.

    A doctoral student may be employed as a doctoral student for a maximum of eight years, but the total period of employment may not be longer than the equivalent of full-time education at third-cycle level for four years.

    Location: Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences. Extent: 100%. First day of employment: as soon as possible or upon agreement.

    The University applies a local agreement on salaries for doctoral students.

    Contact information

    For further information please contact:

    Christine D. Bacon, Associate Professor of Biodiversity Phone: +46 76 6185167 Email: [email protected] Website: Google Scholar

    Åsa Arrhenius, Head of Department tel. +46 31 786 26 25 e-post: [email protected]


    Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg can be found here: https: // www.


    You can apply to be admitted for education at third-cycle level via the University of Gothenburg's recruitment portal.

    It is your responsibility to ensure that the application is complete as per the vacancy notice, and that the University receives it by the final application deadline.

    The application must be received no later than: October 31, 2023

    Information for International Applicants

    Choosing a career in a foreign country is a big step. Thus, to give you a general idea of what we and Gothenburg have to offer in terms of benefits and life in general for you and your family/spouse/partner please visit:

    https: // www. https: // www.

    The University works actively to achieve a working environment with equal conditions, and values the qualities that diversity brings to its operations.

    Salaries are set individually at the University.

    In accordance with the National Archives of Sweden's regulations, the University must archive application documents for two years after the appointment is filled. If you request that your documents are returned, they will be returned to you once the two years have passed. Otherwise, they will be destroyed.

    In connection to this recruitment, we have already decided which recruitment channels we should use. We therefore decline further contact with vendors, recruitment and staffing companies.

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