Doctoral Student in Hybrid Modelling for Improved Permafrost Risk Assessments

University of Oulu Faculty of Science


Doctoral Student for Hybrid Modelling for Improved Permafrost Risk Assessments (HYPERISK)

The North changes the world – more sustainable, more intelligent, more humane. We at the University of Oulu work as part of the international science community to produce new scientific information and science-based solutions. We are committed to educate future pioneers to build a more sustainable, intelligent and humane world. Creating new, taking responsibility and succeeding together are values that build a strong foundation for all our actions. We offer a working environment where individuals can cultivate their skills, do meaningful work, and develop professionally. Our university's several specialized research and service units enable extensive and diverse development and career opportunities for experts in various fields.

Kvantum Institute is one of the four strategic focus institutes supporting high-quality research, coordinating multidisciplinary research activities and doctoral training. Kvantum’s science-based expertise meets global challenges in the focus areas Sustainable materials and systems and Changing climate and northern environment. The Institute promotes interdisciplinary networking of research groups as well as co-operation between groups and national and international partners.

We are now looking for

a Doctoral Student

for Hybrid modelling for improved permafrost risk assessments (HYPERISK)

Description of the position

We are looking for a talented and highly motivated research-oriented person to carry out PhD studies in the HYPERISK (Hybrid modelling for improved permafrost risk assessments) project. The objective of the HYPERISK project is to develop high-resolution permafrost projections, identify critical permafrost hazards, and quantify infrastructure risks across the circumpolar permafrost area. A successful applicant should have background in periglacial geomorphology and permafrost research. Methodological background should be in geospatial (GIS) data-based statistical analyses. Knowledge in permafrost hazards and/or physically-based numerical modelling is an advantage.

The Doctoral Student will conduct research in the HYPERISK project (a four-year position), publish research results in the most esteemed international journals, attend doctoral courses and complete doctoral thesis within 4 years. Other duties include teaching on undergraduate courses (up to 5% of the total 1612 working hours per year). In addition, s/he may be obligated to participate in administrative tasks of the university and/or the Geography Research Unit.

Description of the research group

The Doctoral Student position will be based in the Physical Geography Research Group (PGRG) led by Professor Jan Hjort ( PGRG contributes to cutting-edge global change research by focusing on a wide range of complementing study questions related to abiotic and biotic earth surface systems ( Studies are especially devoted to the Arctic and boreal environments.

Qualification requirements

Master of Science degree in Geography (or a related discipline) completed with very good/excellent grades.
Demonstrated experience in periglacial geomorphology (including permafrost).
Strong fundamental knowledge in geoinformatics (e.g. ArcGIS) and statistical analysis (especially using the R Statistical Software).
Knowledge in permafrost hazards and/or physically-based numerical modelling is an advantage.
Fluency in both written and spoken English.
Capability to write scientific publications and readiness for field work.
Good communication and teamwork skills.
The selected candidate will carry out her/his doctoral studies within the University of Oulu Graduate School (UniOGS) and must meet the requirements to receive doctoral study rights as defined in:

What we offer

You will become a part of a highly talented research group, that is working on strategically and globally significant research area
You will receive support from your team and supervisor, so that you can excel in your studies and research
In addition to modern research facilities, we offer you personnel benefits such as occupational healthcare and affordable sport services
4-year position, beginning on January 1, 2021 (or as soon as possible thereafter)
A salary in accordance with the Finnish universities salary system (for teaching and research personnel): A Doctoral Student will be based on level 2 – 4. In addition, a salary component based on personal work performance will be paid (maximum of 50% of the job-specific component). Typical starting salary for a Doctoral Student is approx. 2350€ per month (before taxes). A trial period of six months will be applied.

How to apply

Applications, together with all relevant enclosures, should be submitted using the electronic application form by November 1st, 2020 at 23:59 (Finnish local time). The application should be written in English and include the following:

1) A motivation letter (max. 2 pages) summarizing applicant’s professional experience and expertise and describing why applicant is interested in this position. Also, information on personal research interests, experience and career plans are valuable to provide here

2) Curriculum vitae (max. 4 pages) in accordance with the guidelines of the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity

3) List of publications based on the guidelines of the Academy of Finland

4) Certificates/Diplomas: Scanned copy of the original Master`s degree certificate and transcript of records and, when necessary, official translations to Finnish or English

5) Contact information of two senior/experienced researchers who may be asked to give a statement on the candidate

Only applications containing all relevant appendices and submitted through portal will be considered.
Top candidates will be invited to an on-site or remote interview.

Further information

Professor Jan Hjort (

City of Oulu

The Oulu region is home to over 200 000 people making it the largest urban centre in northern Scandinavia and one of the fastest growing regions in Finland. Oulu is a combination of beautiful, northern nature, vivid cultural life and modern technology. Oulu is also known for its highly-educated people and friendly, easy-going atmosphere. Find out more about Oulu:

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