Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology

Umeå University is dedicated to providing creative environments for learning and work. We offer a wide variety of courses and programmes, world leading research, and excellent innovation and collaboration opportunities. More than 4 100 employees and 34 000 students have already chosen Umeå University. We welcome your application!

The Department of Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics conducts research in computational mathematics, discrete mathematics, mathematical modelling and analysis, and mathematical statistics. Our teaching is conducted at all levels and includes mathematics, mathematical statistics and computational science. Among our partners are international research groups, academic institutions, public organizations and companies.

The Department of Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics is opening a PhD position in mathematical modeling. The general aim is to provide its holder with a possibility to earn a PhD degree in computational science with specialisation in mathematics. Apply no later than November 23, 2019.

Project description
A pivotal event for the evolution of life on earth was the endosymbiotic event in which two previously independent cells merged to give rise to what we now call mitochondria and eukaryotes. This event is thought to have occurred only once and account for the evolution of all large, complex life. Despite its importance, we do not understand the general principles that govern the probability or fitness consequences of an endosymbiotic event. The aim of this Swedish Research Council-funded PhD position is to address this significant knowledge gap by developing a theoretical framework based on mathematical models that can identify these principles. Useful modeling techniques include differential equations, network approaches, agent-based simulations, evolutionary analyses, probabilistic models, and allometric scaling analyses. The proposed work will feature interdisciplinary projects done in collaboration with Chris Kempes at the Santa Fe Institute.

Admission requirements
Prerequisites includes 240 ECTS credits (swe. hogskolepoang) of higher education studies of which 60 ECTS credits should be on an advanced level (master level). In addition to these general requirements, the applicant is required to have completed at least 90 credits in computational science and engineering courses, of which at least 30 credits shall have been acquired at advanced level. Computational science and engineering courses refers to courses with major quantitative, statistical or computing science elements, such as courses in computing science, mathematics and mathematical statistics, and relevant courses in physics, biology, and chemistry. Applicants who in some other system either within Sweden or abroad have acquired largely equivalent skills are also eligible.

Candidates need to be highly skilled in both oral and written communication in English, and must be able to work independently as well as part of an interdisciplinary collaborative team. Applicants with a degree not from a Swedish university are encouraged to provide results obtained from GMAT (and/or GRE) and TOEFL tests if available. Candidates also need to have proficiency, but not necessarily documented, in working with computers and programming, e.g. in Matlab, Python, Julia, C++, etc. A good background in mathematics, modeling, differential equations, computer science, and/or programming is qualifying. Interest and knowledge of evolutionary biology, microbiology, and/or molecular biology is desirable but not necessary.

About the employment
The position is intended to result in a doctoral degree and the main task of the PhD student is to pursue their doctoral studies which include both participation in research and postgraduate courses. The duties can include teaching and other departmental work (up to a maximum of 20%). Employment is limited to four years of full-time (48 months) or up to five years for teaching part time. Salary is set in accordance with the established salary ladder for PhD position. The employment starts early 2020 or according to agreement.

A complete application, written in Swedish or English, should contain the following documents:

  • a personal letter with a brief description of qualifications, research interests, motivations specific to this project or research area, and contact information
  • a curriculum vitae
  • authenticated copies of degree certificates and copies of relevant work such as master’s thesis or articles that you have authored or co-authored
  • contact information for at least two reference persons.

You should apply via our online recruitment system by November 23, 2019 at the latest. You may log in and apply via the link at the bottom of this page.

Further information
Further information is provided by Associate Professor Eric Libby, +46 73 4454671, You can also contact Head of Department Åke Brännström for additional questions at

Research at the Department of Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics is conducted within mathematics, mathematical statistics and computational mathematics. Important cooperation partners include the Umeå Institute of Technology, the biological/forestry/medical departments, the Integrated Science Lab (Icelab), Umeå School of Business and Economics, the University Hospital, and industry. We provide education at all levels with a particular focus on engineering programs.

For more information see statistics/

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
First day of employment According to agreement.
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-1395-19
  • Eric Libby, Associate Professor, +46 73 4454671,
  • Åke Brännström, Head of Department, +46 90 7867862,
Union representative
  • SACO, +46 90 7865365
  • SEKO, +46 90 7865296
  • ST, +46 90 7865431
Published 26.Sep.2019
Last application date 23.Nov.2019 11:59 PM CET

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