The Human Resources Strategy for Researchers

PhD Candidate: Advancing Methods for Climate Change and Air Quality Impacts in LCA

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    NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology
    Environmental scienceGlobal change
    Environmental scienceNatural resources management
    TechnologyEnvironmental technology
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    16/05/2021 23:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Norway › Trondheim


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At NTNU, creating knowledge for a better world is the vision that unites our 7 400 employees and 42 000 students.

We are looking for dedicated employees to join us.

You will find more information about working at NTNU and the application process here.


About the position

We have a vacancy for a PhD candidate at the Industrial Ecology Programme. The position is 4 years in duration.

The announced position gives the opportunity to perform a PhD study at the Industrial Ecology Programme (IndEcol) at NTNU. IndEcol is a well-known research group with an international leading role in the field of environmental sustainability analysis and climate change mitigation strategies. IndEcol currently consists of about 60 employees in scientific positions and features publications of scientific articles in top-ranked journals, direct contributions to assessment reports from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), and leading roles in several large-scale projects and initiatives at national and European levels. 

In order to achieve ambitious targets of climate change mitigation, there is an evident need for a better quantification of the environmental implications of novel technologies that can lead to more sustainable systems in terms of resource supply, energy efficiency and climate-friendly solutions.  Biomass supply through sustainable land management and circular economy offers opportunities for a sustainable energy transition, but holistic approaches are essential to discern the interlinkages of the land-climate-energy nexus and guide future societal and technological developments.  

We seek a candidate that is strongly motivated to study the interactions across space and time between climate change and emissions of greenhouse gases and other climate forcing agents (e.g., aerosols and ozone precursors), with a particular focus on emissions from biomass combustion. The main objective is to improve methods of environmental sustainability analysis (mostly for climate change, air pollution, and human and ecosystem health) through applications based on biomass-to-energy value chains. The candidate will perform both methodological and applied research, and will have the opportunity to attend a PhD program with access to the most up-to-date approaches in Life-Cycle Assessment (LCA), interact with the major global experts, and collaborate with national industries in the field. Given the interdisciplinary nature of the topic, we deem interest and ability to explore new fields and sub-fields important. 

You will report to Professor Francesco Cherubini. The Head of Department is Professor Terese Løvås.

Duties of the position

  • Perform and advance climate impact analysis with up-to-date methods and metrics, and devise optimal climate change mitigation strategies for biomass-to-energy systems 
  • Integrate the climate analysis of emissions of GHGs and other climate forcing agents with a life-cycle assessment approach, and apply/develop methods to assess co-benefits and trade-offs for air quality, human and ecosystem health impacts 
  • Data processing, compilation of datasets, emission inventories, scenario analysis and impact assessment models 
  • Publishing in peer-reviewed journals 
  • Presentation of results at international conferences 
  • Teaching duties in support of specific master-level courses at Indecol 

Required selection criteria

The PhD-position's main objective is to qualify for work in research positions. The qualification requirement is that you have completed a master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic background in Industrial Ecology, Environmental Sciences, Natural Science, Climate Science or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic foundation. If you are unable to meet these criteria you may be considered only if you can document that you are particularly suitable for education leading to a PhD degree.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant.

  • Master degree in Industrial Ecology, Environmental Sciences, Natural Science, Climate Science or equivalent education 
  • Previous experience with LCA and/or other environmental sustainability analysis methods 
  • Good understanding of fundamentals in mathematics and physics  
  • In addition to the cover letter, candidates are required to submit a one-page sketch on how their education and work experience match the required and preferred criteria, as well as the main objectives of this PhD position 
  • Excellent written and oral English language skills  


Preferred selection criteria

  • Previous experience with the LCA softwares (e.g., SimaPro, Brightway) or climate/ecosystem models is an advantage
  • Good programming skills in one or several languages (e.g., Python, Matlab) 
  • As the position involve duties as teaching assistant, previous experience as student assistant or similar is an advantage

Personal characteristics

  • Strongly motivated to advance our and his own current knowledge on the topic of this position. 
  • Strong analytical capabilities 
  • Be a good team player while also being able to work independently 
  • Open to interact in a multidisciplinary and multi-cultural environment 
  • Soft skills 

We offer

Salary and conditions

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017, and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 482 200 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 4 years.

Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD programme in Engineering within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

The position is subject to external funding.

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English.

Publications and other scientific work must accompany the application. Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available by the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above. 

The application must include:

  • CV, certificates and diplomas (originals and English language translations)
  • In addition to the cover letter, candidates are required to submit a one-page sketch on how their education and work experience match the required criteria and duties of the position 
  • Academic works - published or unpublished - that you would like to be considered in the assessment (up to 5 works)
  • Name and address of three referees

Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability.

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA.

General information

Working at NTNU

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background. 

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

In accordance with The Public Information Act (Offentleglova), your name, age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested not to have your name entered on the list of applicants.

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Francesco Cherubini francesco.cherubini@ntnu.no and Otavio Cavalett otavio.cavalett@ntnu.no. If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Megan Norris (megan.norris@ntnu.no).

Please submit your application electronically via jobbnorge.no with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Applicants with European Masters` qualifications from outside Norway are required to include a Diploma Supplement. Applicants with Masters` qualifications from China are required to include confirmation of Masters` Diplomas from China Credentials Verification (CHSI): http://www.chsi.com.cn/en/

If you are invited for interview you must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. Please refer to the application number IV-129/21 when applying.

Application deadline: 16.05.2021

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Energy and Process Engineering

We conduct research and teaching covering the entire energy chain, from resources to the end-user. We look at how energy is produced and used by humans and machines in a sustainable way with regard to health, climate change and the resource base. The Department of Energy and Process Engineering is one of eight departments in the Faculty of Engineering.

More Information

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NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology
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EURAXESS offer ID: 630700


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