4 PhD Candidates in Social Anthropology University of Oslo, Department of Social Anthropology Norway

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.


Since its establishment in 1964, the Department of Social Anthropology has been a leading international Department as well as an exponent for the Norwegian anthropological tradition. The Department is one of the largest university environments for social anthropology in Europe, and the largest in the Nordic countries. Approximately 400 students are currently enrolled in the Department, including the doctoral programme with approximately 30 students.


PhD Candidates in Social Anthropology - 4 positions


Applications are invited for four Research Fellowship as PhD Candidate in Social Anthropology to be based at the Department of Social Anthropology, University of Oslo.


Job description


We are looking for 4 PhDs to work on issues related to electronic waste and resulting toxicants and exposure in Tanzania, to work as part of AnthroTox, a new cross-disciplinary platform under the University of Oslo’s Life Science initiative, linking Social Anthropology and the Institutes of Bioscience, of Health and Society and the Center for Technology, Innovation and Culture. It engages social anthropology, STS, history, environmental chemistry and ecotoxicology to understand and manage global human-made toxicants and their origins, trajectories and effects - biological, social, cultural, economic, political, ethical. AnthroTox focuses initially on electronic waste and associated persistent organic pollutants in Tanzania, East Africa. Other world regions and pollution problems will become subjects for new projects, broadening AnthroTox’ scope.


The four social anthropology PhD projects will be developed with the project team, focusing on the following nodes and connections between them:

  • industry, waste import, disposal and recycling, informal waste economies, exposure and risk
  • national regulation, local monitoring and mitigation, local toxicology capacity, international policy
  • local and global activisms, political controversies, North-South and South-South activist and regulatory collaboration
  • food production, trade and export, food consumption, and related public debates,


Please see the project’s webpages for further details.


The subject areas above are indicative of our interest only, and we invite potential applicants to contact the AnthroTox team and discuss their own ideas before submitting their applications. While overall coherence of the project group is a key consideration for the project’s interdisciplinary potential, so is the project’s grounding in independent and creative anthropological inquiry, combined with historical and STS approaches. We therefore hope for an interactive pre-application process. The PhD candidates will form part of a research group and will collaborate in research preparation, fieldwork and writing-up, and jointly organise workshops and conferences. The proposed projects should commence in late autumn 2017 or early 2018.


The positions are either for a period of three years (with no compulsory work), or for a period of four years including compulsory work (primarily teaching). A decision regarding the duration of employment will be made by the Department Board upon appointment to the position and in light of the Department's teaching needs.


The research fellow must take part in the Faculty’s approved PhD program and is expected to complete the project within the set fellowship period. The main purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree.


The applicant must, in collaboration with her/his supervisor, within three months after employment, have worked out a complete project description to be attached to the application for admission to the doctoral program. For more information, please see our web site.


Qualification requirements

  • Applicants should hold a 2-year Master’s degree or equivalent, in social anthropology; other degrees in related disciplines can be considered.
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English


We offer

  • salary NOK 436 900 – 490 900 per annum depending on qualifications
  • academically stimulating working environment as part of a cohort of anthropology PhDs
  • opportunities to work interdisciplinary with colleagues in the natural sciences and STS
  • funds for research, travel, conference participation and dissemination, books and equipment
  • attractive welfare benefits and a generous pension agreement, in addition to Oslo’s family-friendly environment with its rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities


How to apply


The application must include:

  • cover letter (statement of motivation and research interests)
  • CV (including a complete list of education with grades, positions, pedagogical and administrative experience, publications and other qualifying activities)
  • preliminary project description including the theme of the project, issues to be examined, theoretical and methodological approach and a progress plan (max. 4 pages, excluding references)
  • writing sample of 10-20 pages (publication, masters chapter, seminar paper)
  • copies of educational certificates (academic transcripts only)
  • list of publications and academic work (if applicable)
  • Names and contact details of 3 academic referees


The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “apply for this job”. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an explanation of their University's grading system. Please note that all documents should be in English (or a Scandinavian language).


When evaluating the application, emphasis will be given to the eventuelt “project description” and the applicant’s academic and personal prerequisites to carry out the project. Applicants may be called in for an interview.


Formal regulations


Please see the guidelines and regulations for appointments to Research Fellowships at the University of Oslo.


According to the Norwegian Freedom and Information Act (Offentleglova) information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.


The appointment may be shortened/given a more limited scope within the framework of the applicable guidelines on account of any previous employment in academic positions.


The University of Oslo has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results a.o.


The University of Oslo aims to achieve a balanced gender composition in the workforce and to recruit people with ethnic minority backgrounds.


Deadline: 30 August 2017


Contact persons:

  • About AnthroTox and project development: Professor Wenzel Geissler
  • About the application process and employment questions: Head of Department Knut Gunnar Nustad or Head of Administration Nina Rundgren

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Socioloxy


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