PhD Admission and Funding
Thanks for your interest in pursuing a PhD in Sustainability Science at LUCSUS. Here we answer some commonly asked questions.
How do I find current PhD vacancies at LUCSUS?
All PhD positions are also announced through the Lund University website: Vacancies at Lund University
How does funding a PhD at LUCSUS work?
Pursuing a PhD at LUCSUS requires funding for the PhD student. PhD students are considered employees in Sweden, so this funding requirement includes covering salary for the PhD student, as well as required social benefits (e.g., employer contributions to pension and health care systems), and University overhead (paying for the use of LUCSUS premises, administrative staff, etc).
Funding for PhDs at LUCSUS is generally done in one of two ways. These positions are always openly announced and competitively selected based on qualifications for the stated job requirements.
- Funding is provided by a large institutional grant, e.g., to LUCSUS or another department or center. This was the case with the LUCID Program (finished in 2018) and is the case for the Lund University Agenda 2030 research school (recruitment has closed, first students to start September 2019).
- Funding is provided directly by competitively allocated research project money, generally won by the person who will be the PhD’s main supervisor. Funding may come from a variety of sources, particularly Swedish research agencies such as Formas or the Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet). This is the case with many of the current PhD students at LUCSUS. Applications are generally due in April, with decisions reached in November, and the positions starting sometime the following year.
Due to high administrative requirements, LUCSUS generally does not accept self-financed PhD students.
What if there is no currently advertised PhD position in my area of interest?
It is always possible to directly contact a LUCSUS staff member who is qualified to serve as a PhD supervisor whose research is closely aligned with your interests, to explore possibilities to develop research projects or funding proposals together, or ask them if they have or anticipate having funding available for a project of mutual interest. Note that PhD supervisors must be a permanent employee, e.g., a lektor/assistant Professor may be an assistant PhD supervisor, and a docent/Associate Professor or full Professor may be a main PhD supervisor.
If you contact a potential supervisor directly, it is important to first familiarize yourself with their work, and follow best practices when contacting them. Here are some tips to do so, from an ecologist blog by Dr Jacquelyn Gill, and a blog Kimberly Nicholas wrote several years ago.
Do I need to speak Swedish to work at LUCSUS?
English is the working language of LUCSUS. Unless otherwise stated for a specific position, Swedish knowledge is not required (although you are encouraged to learn Swedish while you are here!).