PhD student in Geochemistry (Cryosphere driven submarine groundwater inflows in the Arctic)

Stockholm University

Stockholm, Sweden 🇸🇪

Stockholm University is a leading European university in one of the world’s most dynamic capitals. The University has more than 33 000 students, 1600 doctoral students and 5500 staff members active within natural science and human science.

The Department of Geological Sciences is a department within the Faculty of Science with about 70 employees and 1000 students. The department supports a broad range of basic research within marine geology, geochemistry and classical geology.

Project description
This PhD project aims to investigate the submarine discharge of groundwater from northern Norwegian margin, Svalbard archipelago, and other continental slope/shelf regions in the Siberian Arctic Ocean. Submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) delivers trace elements, nutrients, and dissolved carbon components from land to the ocean with potent consequences on productivity and carbon cycling. It has been proposed that the SGD occurred at great water depths (e.g., continental shelf and slope) from the polar regions is driven by the dynamics of cryosphere (e.g., ice sheets, ice caps, glaciers, and permafrost). Such a hypothesis is however not being sufficiently examined with its impacts on ocean chemistry poorly investigated.

Through several international collaborative projects, we will survey a large area from the Arctic region where high SGD has been inferred from previous studies. A wide array of geochemical tools will be adopted to confirm the occurrence of SGD (e.g., d18O, dD, dissolved chloride concentrations), investigate the consequence of SGD (e.g., d138/134Ba, d34S, etc), and determine the ages of SGD (e.g., C-14, U-Th). A state-of-the-art geochemical model will be applied to quantitatively interpret the obtained results.

The successful candidate will attend several (2-3) cruises to the Arctic region over the coming years and perform geochemical analyses on pore fluid and sediment samples in collaborations with a group of international experts. It is also expected for the selected candidate to present the results from international/national conferences as well as peer-reviewed scientific journals.

Qualification requirements
In order to meet the general entry requirements, the applicant must have completed a second-cycle degree, completed courses equivalent to at least 240 higher education credits, of which 60 credits must be in the second cycle, or have otherwise acquired equivalent knowledge in Sweden or elsewhere.

The academic area board may permit an exemption from the general entry requirements for an individual applicant under special circumstances.

In order to meet the specific entry requirements, the general syllabus for doctoral studies in the field of Geochemistry stipulates that applicants must have:

  • At least 90 credits in geosciences
  • At least 30 credits in mathematics, physics, chemistry and / or biology depending on the chosen subject area in geology
  • In addition, at least 60 credits at the advanced level, including 30 credits of independent work in geosciences.

Special qualification may also be fulfilled by a person who has acquired essentially equivalent knowledge in a different order within or outside the country.

For some specializations within the geological education at the postgraduate level, students who have undergone their main level education in related scientific subjects such as physics, chemistry, mathematics or biology may also be accepted.

Eligibility must be met in order to be accepted as a PhD student for the doctoral program at the department.

The selection among the eligible candidates will be based on their capacity to benefit from the training. The successful applicant will be selected based on documented academic ability and experience in geochemical analyses and numerical modeling, written and oral proficiency in English, the capacity for analytical thinking and the ability to collaborate, as well as creativity, initiative, and independence.

The assessment will be based on the candidate´s previous studies and grades, quality of independent work, references, relevant experience, the applicant´s written motivation for the position, as well as in oral and written interviews. 

Admission Regulations for Doctoral Studies at Stockholm University are available at: and regulations.

Terms of employment
Only a person who will be or has already been admitted to a third-cycle programme may be appointed to a doctoral studentship.

The term of the initial contract may not exceed one year. The employment may be extended for a maximum of two years at a time. However, the total period of employment may not exceed the equivalent of four years of full-time study. 

Doctoral students should primarily devote themselves to their education, but may engage in teaching, research, and administration corresponding to a maximum of 20% of a full-time position.

Please note that admission decisions cannot be appealed. 

Stockholm University strives to be a workplace free from discrimination and with equal opportunities for all.

For more information, please contact Dr. Wei-Li Hong, [email protected].

Union representatives
Ingrid Lander (Saco-S), telephone: +46 708 16 26 64, [email protected], Alejandra Pizarro Carrasco (Fackförbundet ST/Lärarförbundet), telephone: +46 8 16 34 89, [email protected][email protected] (SEKO), and PhD student representative, [email protected].

Apply for the PhD student position at Stockholm University’s recruitment system. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the job advertisement, and that it is submitted before the deadline.

Please include the following information with your application:

  • Your contact details and personal data
  • Your highest degree
  • Your language skills
  • Contact details for 2 references

and, in addition, please include the following documents

  • Cover letter describing:
    – why you are interested in this project
    – how your experience to date has prepared you to successfully complete this project
    – what do you hope to get out of this project in the longer term 
  • CV including:
    – degrees completed
    – completed courses
    – a list of degree projects/theses
    – a list of work experience
    – relevant publications (if any)
  • Degree certificates and grades confirming that you meet the general and specific entry requirements (no more than 6 files)
  • Degree projects/theses (no more than 6 files).

The instructions for applicants are available at: How to apply for a position.

You are welcome to apply!

Stockholm University contributes to the development of sustainable democratic society through knowledge, enlightenment and the pursuit of truth.

Closing date: 24/05/2021