Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology

Umeå University is one of Sweden’s largest institutions of higher education with over 37,000 students and 4,800 faculty and staff. We are characterised by world-leading research in several scientific fields and a multitude of educations ranked highly in international comparison. Umeå University is also the site of the pioneering discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic scissors - a revolution in genetic engineering that has been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

At Umeå University, everything is nearby. Our cohesive campus environment makes it easy to meet, collaborate and exchange knowledge, which promotes a dynamic and open culture where we rejoice in each other's successes.

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Umeå University Industrial Doctoral School and the Department of Chemistry are recruiting a doctoral student in chemistry within a collaboration project with the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA). Last day to apply is December 17, 2018.

Removal of pollutants by photosynthetic microorganisms and their biomass valorization for biofuel production

Project description
The project is based on a collaboration between Umeå University (UmU) and the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA). The successful applicant will work within an international consortium investigating sustainable energy resources, a work connected to the project NordAqua, a Nordic Center of Excellence (NCoE) financed by NordForsk. NordAqua has the aim to advance the transition to Bioeconomy in the Scandinavian region (

We address this problem by recycling CO2 for fuel- or energy-production using photosynthetic microorganisms (microalgae and cyanobacteria) and analyze their potential in wastewater reclamation and biomass generation in Nordic climate. Research devoted to this area is of high importance for a sustainable future; we aim to use sunlight to clean wastewater and at the same time to replace fossil resources with renewables.

During your Ph.D. work you will select efficient aquatic photoautotrophs (microalgae and cyanobacteria) from the Nordic culture collection at NIVA and analyze their potential in cleaning wastewater from contaminants, nitrogen and phosphorous. You further will investigate the valorization of this algal biomass for biofuels, biofertilizers and/or energy.

Umeå University Industrial Doctoral School for research and innovation
The Industrial Doctoral School (IDS) is a multidisciplinary research school where the projects are based on collaborations between Umeå University and external organizations. The PhD students in IDS form an interdisciplinary group that, in addition to each scientific specialization, is given a tailor-made course package providing a strong platform for future work within research and development. A PhD position in IDS also includes an internship at one of the external organizations for each doctoral student.

Terms for the employment
The aim of this employment is a successful completion of the doctoral degree program at the Department of Chemistry and the main assignment is the research education of the department, which includes participation in the described research project but also successful completion of relevant courses. Teaching and other departmental work can be assigned up to a maximum of 20%. The employment is limited to four years at full time or up to five years if 20% departmental work is assigned. The salary is fixed according to the established level for doctoral students. The PhD student will perform short term internships at NIVA in Oslo, Norway.

To be admitted for studies at third-cycle level you are required to have completed a second-cycle level degree, or completed course requirements of at least 240 ECTS credits, of which at least 60 ECTS credits are at second-cycle level or have an equivalent education from abroad, or equivalent qualifications.

To fulfil the specific entry requirements to be admitted for studies at third-cycle level in chemistry, you are required to have completed first-cycle courses of at least 90 ECTS credits within the field of chemistry or another subject considered to be directly relevant to the specialization in question. Of those 90 ECTS credits, at least 15 ECTS credits shall have been acquired at second-cycle level within the specialization or an equivalent subject.

The applicant should have a higher education in chemical engineering, biochemistry, or technical microbiology and enthusiasm for the scientific topic described above. Experience with microalgal cultivation in lab- or pilot-scale is a merit as is prior knowledge of analytical techniques and procedures employed for the determination of heavy metals or N and P species (NO3-, NH4+ and PO43-). As an applicant you should have the capacity to take the initiative, be creative and to administer own progress with accuracy. Good communication skills and a good command of written and spoken English is required, additionally good knowledge of expressing yourself in speech and writing in Swedish and / or Norwegian is a merit. It is important to have a good ability to work independently as well as in a group in a cross disciplinary environment.

A complete application consists of:

  • a curriculum vitae,
  • a cover letter motivating your application,
  • certified copies of degree certificates or equivalent, including documentation of completed academic courses and obtained grades and other relevant certificates
  • names and contact details of at least two references.

The application must be submitted through our e-recruitment system. Log in and apply at the bottom of the page. Last day to apply is December 17 2018. The starting date is as soon as possible or by agreement.

For further information please contact Professor Christiane Funk. E-mail: Phone: +46(0)90 7867633.

About us
The Department of Chemistry is one of the largest departments within the Faculty of Science and Technology with approximately 200 employees, of which approximately 40 graduate students, and a strong and expanding research. Information about the postgraduate education can be found on the Faculty of Science and Technology website: For more information about working at Umeå University, see:

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
First day of employment As soon as possible or by agreement
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-1691-18
  • Christiane Funk, 090-7867633
Union representative
  • SACO, 090-786 53 65
  • SEKO, 090-786 52 96
  • ST, 090-786 54 31
Published 22.Oct.2018
Last application date 17.Dec.2018 11:59 PM CET

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