Several PhD positions - Interdisciplinary Project on Geophysics and Mathematical Statistics

PhD positions

About the positions

NTNU has vacancy for up to 5 PhD fellowships in a multidisciplinary project funded by the Research Council of Norway and industry, to deliver strong PhDs in the enabling sciences of mathematical statistics, electronic systems and geophysics. Key research topics include methods for large-scale geophysical modelling and computation, spatial and spatio-temporal statistics, assimilation of different data sources, improved monitoring methods, machine learning and artificial intelligence in this context. Applications are related to the characterization of subsurface natural resources, building on important competence areas in Norwegian industry, while at the same time sparking directions for new domains of the changing economy.

The PhD fellowships will be at one of the following departments at NTNU: Mathematical Sciences, Electronic Systems, or Geosciences and Petroleum, NTNU. Successful candidates will be offered a three-year position. The departments may offer a twelve-month extension as a teaching assistant. The workplace is Trondheim.

Main duties and responsibilities

The positions are part of the project "Geophysics and Applied Mathematics for Exploration and Safe Production". All positions will have joint supervisors at two of the departments involved.

PhD candidates at the Department of Mathematical Science will be working on spatial and spatio-temporal statistical models, methods for data assimilation and AI-based approaches for efficient monitoring in geosciences applications. PhD candidates at the Department of Electronic Systems will be working on the analysis of seismic waveform data and methods for geophysical data monitoring. PhD candidates at the Department of Geosciences and Petroleum will be working on geological and geophysical modeling, and imaging and inversion of seismic data.

Qualification requirements

We are looking for highly motivated candidates with strong background in quantitative modeling and methodologies having interests in multidisciplinary scientific work.

  • PhD students enrolled in the Department of Mathematical Sciences must have a solid background in multivariate modeling and computational statistics. Experience with spatial statistics or other large-scale uncertain systems is helpful.
  • PhD students enrolled in the Department of Electronic Systems must have a solid background in physics, geophysics or signal processing. Knowledge and experience with processing large datasets is an advantage.
  • PhD students enrolled in the Department of Geoscience and Petroleum must have a solid background in geophysics, physics/applied mathematics, numerical methods and programming. Knowledge and experience with high performance computing is an advantage.

The PhD-position's main objective is to qualify for work in research positions. The qualification requirement is completion of a master’s degree or second degree (equivalent to 120 credits) with a strong academic background in statistics or equivalent education with a grade of B or better in terms of NTNU’s grading scale. Applicants with no letter grades from previous studies must have an equally good academic foundation. Applicants who are unable to meet these criteria may be considered only if they can document that they are particularly suitable candidates for education leading to a PhD degree.

MSc students who expect to complete their master’s degree studies by summer 2020 are encouraged to apply. Employment will then start when the MSc degree is finished.

The applicants who do not master a Scandinavian language must document a thorough knowledge of English (equivalent to a TOEFL score of 600 or more).

The appointments are 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.

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

Personal characteristics

  • intrinsic curiosity and motivation for multidisciplinary research
  • good communication skills
  • high work capacity and self-motivation

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, as well as motivation, in terms of the qualification requirements specified in the advertisement.

We offer

  • exciting and stimulating tasks in a strong international academic environment
  • contacts with relevant international industry partners
  • an open and inclusive work environment with dedicated colleagues
  • favourable terms in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • employee benefits

Salary and conditions

PhD candidates are remunerated in code 1017 and are normally remunerated at gross from NOK 479 600 per annum before tax. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 3 years with no teaching, but the Department may offer a 4th year with teaching and other duties for approximately 25% of the entire 4-year period.

Appointment to a PhD position requires admission to the PhD programme in the respective department. Please see for information about the PhD programme at the Department of Mathematical Sciences and at the Department of Electronic Systems. Please see for information about the PhD programme at the Department of Geoscience and Petroleum.

As a PhD candidate, one undertakes participation in an organized PhD programme during the employment period. A condition of appointment is that you are in fact qualified for admission to the PhD programme within three months.

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 criterias 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.

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. Under the Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova), information about the applicant may be made public even if the applicant has requested not to have their name entered on the list of applicants.

The national labour force must reflect the composition of the population to the greatest possible extent, NTNU wants to increase the proportion of women in its scientific posts. Women are encouraged to apply. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life ( Having a population of 200 000, Trondheim is a small city by international standards with low crime rates and little pollution. It also has easy access to a beautiful countryside with mountains and a dramatic coastline.


Questions about the position can be directed to Jo Eidsvik (, Martin Landrø ( or Børge Arntsen (

About the application:

The application must include the following:

  • CV which includes information about education background and work experience.
  • Indication of primary field (department) of interest in PhD study according to topics mentioned in job description and the profile of applicant.
  • Certified copies of relevant transcripts and diplomas. Candidates from universities outside Norway are kindly requested to send a Diploma Supplement or similar documentation, which describes in detail the program of study, the grading system, and the rights to further studies associated with the degree obtained.
  • Contact information for two references.
  • Documentation of fluency in the English language.

Please submit your application electronically via Preferably, the attachments should be submitted as a single file. Please refer to the application number 2019/35944 when applying.

Applicants who have been short-listed will be invited for interviews.

Application deadline: 29.11.2019.

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