PhD position in sustainability science

Norsk institutt for vannforskning
PhD position in sustainability science

PhD position in sustainability science at the Norwegian Institute for Water Research: "Analysis and modelling of plastic waste value networks in Asian developing countries".

The 2020-2025 Asian Scientific Alliance for Plastic Pollution (ASAP) is a 5 years research programme funded by the Norwegian Research Council and hosted by the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA).
The mission of NIVA is to advance research for environmental stewardship and innovation. NIVA is a multidisciplinary research institute oriented to world-class science on topics related to sustainability, biodiversity protection, environmental quality assessment and management.
The ASAP programme addresses the socioeconomic drivers and environmental implications of plastic pollution and strives to find solutions to curb environmental releases with a core focus on Asian developing countries. Asia accounts for a predominant fraction of plastic pollution released to the global oceans, a problem that generates sever environmental and economic impacts at the global scale. ASAP is also home of an international knowledge-hub gathering international and local expertise and interests on circular economy, plastic waste management and pollution controls. Several research and capacity building projects currently on going in several Asian countries and managed by NIVA and partners are core initiatives within the knowledge hub. Research within ASAP applies a social-ecological perspective to generate knowledge and understanding to enable social transformations towards sustainable use and management of plastics. The programme relies on transdisciplinary collaboration with international leading researchers and environmental actors in both the governmental and non-governmental sectors.
As part of ASAP we are now hiring a PhD student to work on modelling plastic waste value networks in Asian developing countries, with a core focus on value chains involving the informal waste management sector as a key player in plastic circularity in these countries. The PhD will be hosted at NIVA and the candidate will have a formal affiliation in a Norwegian or international University. 

The PhD project

In ASAP we adopt a value networks modelling approach which is anchored in agent-based/system dynamics to describe waste flows in Asian scenarios, capture the value creation/exchange and material flows within the recycling loop through both formal and informal networks and describe the link between waste management processes and environmental releases of plastic.  The aim of this modelling work is to enable exploring policies, actions or economic triggers that can reduce plastic pollution on land and the oceans and support national and international environmental policies.
The PhD student is expected to join this exciting endeavour and be involved in tasks concerning both the conceptual model development, data processing, and the model implementation phase.
A team of scientists leading the research stream on environmental assessments, environmental economics, modelling and sustainability science from NIVA and Stockholm Resilience Centre, will function as the supervisory team for the PhD candidate. As part of the PhD curriculum the student will undertake courses in relevant fields in the hosting University. She/he will be encouraged to develop new approaches that integrate methods and concepts from the social, natural and applied sciences. The technical development of the computational model will be facilitated by the collaboration with experienced programmers. Emphasis is placed on developing student ability to define a problem, develop research methods, and communicate research findings within international scientific and science-policy discussions.

Qualification requirements

To be admitted as a PhD student the applicant must hold a master's degree at grade B or above.
The candidate's background should primarily be in sustainability science, economics, quantitative social science or related fields. Candidates with a background in computer sciences or mathematics and with a strong motivation to continue their career in the area of sustainability and social-ecological systems will be considered. Proficiency in oral and written English is a requirement.

Selection criteria

  •  Experience and /or strong interest in conducting interdisciplinary research bridging the fields of economics, social and environmental sciences
  • Experience with C++, R or other programming languages.
  • Experience/core interest in working with mathematical social-ecological models
  • Knowledge of scientific theory and methodology including, statistical analysis and modelling
  • Analytical ability as demonstrated by scientific reports, papers or degree of the project theses
  • The applicants personal references
  • Willingness and ability to work as part of a transdisciplinary team in a multicultural environment
  • Written and oral communication and presentation skills

The successful candidate needs to be proactive, independent, creative and cooperative, and wishes to work in a broad scientific group in an international research environment. The ability to conduct good teamwork and share resources with other researchers will be important. 

NIVA offers

  • Exciting and stimulating tasks in a leading national water science research institute with great social significance
  • To be part of a network of national and international researchers
  • An opportunity for professional and personal development
  • A multicultural, social and creative work environment
  • Good pension, welfare and insurance schemes, and competitive wages

Om arbeidsgiveren

The Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) is Norway's leading research institute for the aquatic environment, working across a wide range of environmental, climate and resource issues. Our high quality research is characterised by its relevance, and its holistic and interdisciplinary approach, combining research with monitoring, assessment, problem solving and consulting. The NIVA group has approximately 400 employees and is headquartered in Oslo, with branches in Bergen, Grimstad, Hamar and Copenhagen, together with a marine research station in Drøbak, and subsidiaries in Tromsø, Chile and China

Gaustadalléen 21, 0349 Oslo

Spørsmål om stillingen

Malcolm Reid
Research Manager
948 89 545
Luca Nizzetto
Reseracher Scientist
982 15 393
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Gaustadalléen 21, 0349 Oslo

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FINN-kode 180846394
Sist endret 3. jun. 2020 08:02

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