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PhD Candidate

Oslo, Østlandet (NO)
Closing date
Feb 27, 2024

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Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

About the University of Oslo 

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.

The Museum of Cultural History, part of the University of Oslo, is one of Norway's largest museums of cultural history. The museum is research-intensive, and is a university department of equal status to a UiO Faculty. It houses the largest archaeological, ethnographic and numismatic collections in Norway. The museum includes the Viking ships on Bygdøy, an important collection of medieval ecclesiastical art, classical and Egyptological collections from the Mediterranean and an archive of runic inscriptions.

KHM's ethos: Open, exploratory, genuine.

Job description

Applications are invited for a 3 year position as a PhD Candidate in archaeology to be based at the Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo. Expected start date is August 19, 2024.

The position is part of the HORIZON Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (MSCA) Doctoral Network ArCHe “Archaeological Coastal Heritage: Past, present and future of a hidden prehistoric legacy”. The fellowship is devoted to carry out the project DC9 (DC=Doctoral Candidate) "The management of Stone age coastal sites in different environments across Europe: Status, challenges, prospects".

About the Doctoral Network

The Doctoral Network ArCHe ( will train 10 PhD fellows for increasing the scientific and public value of Europe’s archaeological coastal heritage, focusing on the legacy of Stone Age hunter-fisher-gatherers (c. 12,000–2000 calBC). Including some of the earliest remains of human activity, this fragile and very heterogeneous legacy is crucial for understanding human engagement with the coast. Today, it is embedded in a variety of geographic settings across Europe, differing in environmental development, which face massive environmental and human threats, and is approached in various ways in cultural heritage management. ArCHe addresses the challenges of this fractured field with an innovative past–present–future approach focused on connecting the legacy from the past, its present status as archaeological heritage and prospects for its future protection and integration into lived landscapes.

With six beneficiaries and nine associated partners, ArCHe unites academic research centres and non-academic organizations (cultural heritage sector, specialist organisations, museums and media). Within this joint platform for research and training, customized PhD projects will allow for cross-fertilization of knowledge among researchers and partners through scientific courses, workshops, conferences, applied secondments and transferable skills tuition. Training in archaeology, anthropology, critical heritage studies, heritage management, bioarchaeology, geology, oceanography, coastal engineering/preservation and communication relevant to coastal heritage and environment will equip the ArCHe PhDs with advanced interdisciplinary and cross-regional knowledge and skills applicable to various academic and non-academic fields across Europe. Through best practices, the PhD projects will contribute to the visibility, preservation and sustainable integration of the vulnerable cultural heritage in coastal areas facing global environmental and development challenges.

More about the project DC9: "The management of Stone age coastal sites in different environments across Europe: Status, challenges, prospects"

DC9 will deal with the status, challenges and prospects of the heritage management of Stone Age (STA) coastal sites in today’s coastal areas across different geographical regions and national borders of Europe, in the light of infrastructure development and environmental and climatic challenges, which threaten these sites. Cases from SE-Norway, W-France, N-Spain and W-Latvia will be compared. The scope and modes of threats through current development, ways of preservation as well as the extent and methods of archaeological documentation (through e.g. rescue excavation, research excavation, citizen science etc.) will be analysed and compared in the light of the different national heritage management systems. DC9 will thus critically reflect the impact but also limits of cultural heritage management in different STA coastal landscapes in different countries and will thus both gain from and contribute in an innovative way to critical heritage studies.

In terms of method, DC9 will 1) compare different cultural landscapes and environments (case-studies) in which these sites are embedded today, including aspects of their modern development (synergy with DC1), 2) compile a catalogue of STA coastal sites in these areas, documented in national and regional databases, reports and literature (synergy with DC3), and 3) compare how the heritage management systems in the different countries deal with these sites, with regard to preservation, integration into modern landscapes, or archaeological excavation (synergy with DC8). This will be undertaken through study of literature and study-visits in the respective areas. This innovative comparative approach will be a pilot-study and will allow to address the international current state of affairs of managing the STA coastal sites in a cross-regional perspective, identify challenges and to formulate best practices. Expected results: 1) To give an overview over different systems of management and administration of STA coastal sites in different European countries and environments. 2) To assess their strength and weaknesses, and how they could learn from each other and cross-fertilize. 3) To provide important prospects of how to optimize administration and management of coastal sites in a sustainable way to make them known and visible in their cultural environments, which will lead to a better protection of these sites.

The project provides training for a career within international archaeological, cultural and environmental heritage management (preservation/administration) and policy-making, Green European heritage management and landscape protection.

Academic secondments: University of Latvia (1 month), University of Cantabria (1 month), FIHAC (1 month) and CNRS (UMR 6566)/University of Rennes (2 months), to study management practices in different regions.

Non-academic secondments: ADRAMAR (1 month) to get insights into association work and underwater-archaeology survey.

Main supervisor: Professor Almut Schülke (Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo).

Co-supervisors: Professor Thora Petursdottir (University of Oslo, IAKH), Professor Pablo Arias (University of Cantabria, International Institute of Prehistoric Research of Cantabria).

Appropriate academic knowledge and skills to apply for this position: Archaeology, Cultural heritage studies, Cultural heritage management, Critical heritage studies, Stone Age archaeology.

More about the position

The research fellow will be enrolled in the PhD programme at the Department of Archaeology, Conservation and History at the University of Oslo and is expected to complete the project within the three-year period. The main purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree.

Doctoral research fellows at the Museum of Cultural History must take part in the PhD program at the Department of Archaeology, Conservation and History (IAKH) at the Faculty of Humanities, and is responsible for applying for admission within given deadlines. The applicant must, in collaboration with her/his supervisor, within 3 months after employment, have worked out a complete project description to be attached to the application for admission to the doctoral program.

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Oslo, applicants must, as a minimum, have completed a five-year graduation course (Master’s degree or equivalent), including a Master’s thesis of at least 30 ECTS. In special cases, the Faculty may grant admission on the basis of a one-year Master course following an assessment of the study programme’s scope and quality.

At the Museum of Cultural History, all PhD candidates who submit their doctoral dissertation for assessment with a written recommendation from their supervisor within 3 years after the start of their PhD position, will be offered a 12-month completion grant.

The recruitment process for all Doctoral candidates in the HORIZON-MSCA-2022-DN ArCHe follows a common recruitment strategy, which is based on the European Commission’s Code of Conduct of Recruitment

Qualification requirements

  •  A Master’s degree in archaeology or equivalent
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English as the project operates in English language. Merit: A Scandinavian Language, French or Spanish.
  • Scientific excellence to fit the PhD project including the comparative ArCHe-perspective: International, interdisciplinary, intersectoral and with a past-present-future perspective
  • Interdisciplinary knowledge

In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on:  

  • Originality, independent thinking
  • Knowledge of the state of the art and how the applicant goes beyond this
  • Theoretical and methodological foundation
  • Scientific ambition and innovativeness
  • Feasibility
  • Suitability of the proposal not least in terms of the Doctoral network thought, and specifically regarding to ArCHe
  • Ethics implications

All of the above is assessed based on submitted documentation. In addition, the following soft skills are assessed during the interview:

Personal skills

  • High motivation for doing their PhD in a MSCA-Doctoral network, and specifically ArCHe
  • Flexibility
  • Team-mindedness


The eligibility criteria for MSCA Doctoral Candidates are the following:

  • MSCA Mobility Requirement: Researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of the recruiting beneficiary for more than 12 months in the 36 months immediately before their date of recruitment.
  • All researchers recruited in a Doctoral Network must be doctoral candidates (i.e. not already in possession of a doctoral degree at the date of the recruitment).

We offer

  • Salary NOK 532 200 – 575 490 per annum depending on qualifications in a position as PhD Research fellow (position code 1017).
  • All MSCA DCs are entitled to receive mobility allowance: EUR 600 per month. Family allowance (EUR 495 per month) is only eligible to these conditions: "Family" means persons linked to the researcher by marriage (or a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the legislation of the country where this relationship was formalized) or dependent children who are actually maintained by the researcher.
  • 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

For an application to be valid, the applicant must submit a complete set of documents, consisting of

  • Letter of motivation
  • Project proposal (approximately 14,000 characters including spaces, references in addition) describing how the candidate would approach the given PhD-topic, including substantial reflections (not more than 4,200 characters including spaces) on how the specific PhD-project topic will contribute to achieving the general aims of the Doctoral network ArCHe as described on the ArCHe homepage ( A progress plan should be included.
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work)
  • Complete list of publications and academic works
  • Proof of language proficiencies
  • List of two reference persons to be contacted by the selection committee (name, relation to candidate, e-mail address and phone number)
  • Copy of MA degree diploma(s) and academic transcripts

Applicants may be asked to submit their Master's thesis or further information later.

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).

Please save and upload all attachments with your surname in the file name, e.g. SURNAME-Att-1. Please note that only documents submitted through the portal will be considered. Do not send any documents by email and do not upload any extra attachments (e.g. articles, thesis). The application portal “JobbNorge” has a field for “application text” and a standard CV that is entered in the portal. Please do not use these online forms, but instead attach a CV and a Letter of Motivation. It is only these attachments that will form the basis for the evaluation. You can submit the application at any date until the Call closes at 23:59, Central European Time, on the deadline date. Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted.

When evaluating the application, emphasis will be given to the 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.

No one can be appointed for more than one PhD Research Fellowship period at the University of Oslo.

According to the Norwegian Freedom of 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 etc.

Inclusion and diversity are a strength. The University of Oslo has a personnel policy objective of achieving a balanced gender composition. Furthermore, we want employees with diverse professional expertise, life experience and perspectives.

If there are qualified applicants with disabilities, employment gaps or immigrant background, we will invite at least one applicant from each of these categories to an interview.

Contact information

Professor Almut Schülke, e-mail: mobile: +47 968 82 161

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