PhD - contemporary environmental humanities for architectural pedagogy

Arkitektur- og designhøgskolen i Oslo (AHO)
Environmental humanities

The environmental humanities are a developing field of research that incorporate a range of disciplines, themes, and methodologies in relation to environmental problems. A major and ongoing concern of the environmental humanities is the de-centring of human beings in relation to the natural world to overcome the traditional nature-culture divide. As awareness of the on-going ecological crisis has infiltrated humanistic disciplines, subdisciplines such as environmental philosophy and history, and eco-criticism have emerged to challenge existing frameworks with new modes of environmental thinking. Research within the environmental humanities increasingly draws on discussion developed in other disciplinary contexts including art, architecture, literature, and social and natural sciences.

Our call for a PhD position on contemporary environmental humanities for architectural pedagogy draws on an increased interest in educational methods in architectural education. At the Oslo School of Architecture, an architecture education has been formed characterized by a pedagogy that emphasized architecture's relationship to the Norwegian landscape, climate and local building traditions.

Through their respective roles as practising architects and pedagogues, leading figures such as Knut Knudsen (1903-1969), Wenche Selmer (1920-1998), Sverre Fehn (1924-2009) and Christian Norberg-Schulz (1926-2000) all sought new fundamental approaches to architecture's mediating role between humans and nature. Through their teaching, they implemented ecological thinking into the Oslo School of Architecture, which has been carried forward in pedagogical experiments by teachers at AHO over the past thirty years. 

We invite studies of the contemporary pedagogy practiced at AHO seen in relation to late Norwegian modernist architectural education, to explore the role of environmental humanism in architectural education at AHO and its pedagogical potential. The research aims to create knowledge and awareness of the influence of environmental humanism on architectural pedagogy at AHO and to suggest new paths of architecture pedagogic towards a future sustainable architecture.

Based on studies of contemporary pedagogy practiced in architectural education, the project will be to explore the role of environmental humanism in architectural education and its pedagogical potential. The research aims to create knowledge and awareness of the influence of environmental humanism on architectural pedagogy and to suggest new paths of architecture pedagogic towards a future sustainable architecture. The academic research can be supplemented by studies in different media such as architectural drawings, photos, model studies etc. Potentially, the research findings can contribute to teaching connected to master studios in the form of lectures, workshops, and supervision of students.

The position

An awareness of the ongoing ecological crisis is increasing and requires educational approaches that meet these new conditions. The candidate will investigate the role of environmental humanities in current pedagogical practices related to architectural education. We aim for contributions towards new approaches to pedagogy in architecture education that recognize architecture's ability to act as a mediator between humans and all other living beings, as well as non-humans.

We are looking for candidates committed to the topic who can integrate theoretical knowledge of environmental humanities within pedagogy and architecture education. Applications with well-defined proposed projects are a prerequisite.


The application must include:

  • An application letter describing relevant background, motivation, research experience and network (two A4 pages maximum).
  • A tentative project outline of maximum 5 pages, formulating and discussing research tasks, types of problems, methodology.
  • CV
  • Certified copies of educational certificates, transcript of records, diplomas
  • Examples of work written by the applicant, and/or examples of architecture projects by the applicant, with relevance to the research project. Five works maximum.
  • Documented teaching experience from architecture education, including planning and implementation of teaching programs and workshops.
  • Two written lectures with relevance to the research project.
  • 2 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail address and telephone number)

The application should include:

  • Completed PDT (professional development for teachers) is seen as beneficial.
  • Contact with a national/international network within the environmental humanities is an advantage. Through this, we seek to establish a network for environmental humanities researchers across disciplines and thus further develop an innovative critical and conceptual approach in teaching and research.

Please note that all documentation must be in English or a Scandinavian language. The candidate must be fluent in Norwegian or another Scandinavian language. Applications who do not fulfil the formal requirements will not be considered. Attachments beyond the required documents will not be taken into consideration.

What we assess
  • The quality and suitability of the project description (outline)
  • The applicant's suitability for the research tasks, based on previous practical and academic work.
  • The academic competence of the applicant

We offer

The PhD scholarship is fully funded (3 years + a potential 4th year dedicated to teaching) and there is no tuition fee. The salary is NOK 501 200 for a full position, with 3 % increase of the salary each year. From the salary, there will be a mandatory deduction of 2 % as a contribution to the State Pension fund (SPK). Standard employment conditions for state employees in Norway apply for the position.

An annual allowance of 20 000 NOK for literature and other necessary academic activities. Office space in a professionally stimulating working environment.

Attractive welfare benefits and generous pension agreement, in addition to Oslo's family-friendly environment with its rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities.

Formal relugations

The educational component in the AHO PhD Program is mandatory and requires fulltime attendance. Residency in Oslo for the employment period is mandatory. Research stay at a relevant international academic institution is encouraged. The PhD fellowship will start September 1, 2023.

Information meeting

The PhD Program at The Oslo School of Architecture and Design (AHO) will arrange an online information meeting about the AHO PhD Program on 8 February at 15:00 CET. See (

Questions about the position can be directed to:

  • Jessica Hemmings (
  • Lisbeth Funck (

Om arbeidsgiveren

The Oslo School of Architecture and Design (AHO) is a specialized university and a leading international architecture and design school that provides education within architecture, landscape architecture, urbanism and design. AHOs fields of knowledge focus on design in all scales; objects, buildings, urban areas and landscaping. AHO is organized into three institutes, and has approx. 800 students and 260 employees.

The Institute of Architecture teaches and researches architectural design through a series of focal areas including sustainability, computation, housing and local building. The Institute sees architecture in an artistic, explorative and critical sense that includes but also exceeds the technologies of design and building. Through numerous master studios and a research-based approach to teaching, the Institute provides core architectural competence. 

Maridalsveien 29, 0175 Oslo
Forskning, utdanning og vitenskap
Undervisning og pedagogikk / Professor/Førsteamanuensis,
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Sist endret 25. jan. 2023 13:05

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