PhD Research Fellow in Medical Anthropology and/or Global Health 54 views

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Job description

Applications are invited for a 3 year position as PhD Research Fellow in Medical Anthropology and/or Global Health to be based at the Department of Community Medicine and Global Health, Institute of Health and Society, University of Oslo.

The position is funded by the Norwegian Research Council’s SAMKUL program and is dedicated to a new research project entitled From Asia to Africa: Antibiotic Trajectories across the India Ocean. The project follows the production, regulation and export of antibiotics from China and India, across the ocean, to its circulation and consumption in Tanzania. The PhD Research Fellow will conduct long-term ethnographic research, exploring how people in the Kilimanjaro region in Tanzania adapt to disease, disease risk and the threat of antimicrobial resistance. During fieldwork, the PhD Research Fellow will be living and interacting with members of the local communities in the area, including small and large-scale farmers, clinicians, pharmacists and dispensary staff, and others who come in contact with antibiotics. The main objective of the PhD study is to analyze the social, cultural, economic and material dynamics that influence the use of antibiotics both by humans and animals, in this area of Tanzania. The applicant is expected to develop a PhD proposal and to conduct part of the fieldwork in collaboration with one postdoctoral fellow and one medical student working on the Tanzanian part of the larger project (see project description for more details).

The PhD fellow will be part of a research team consisting of two Postdoctoral Research Fellows and two PhD research fellows, two medical students, as well as six senior staff (Heidi Fjeld (PI), Anne Kveim Lie, Ruth Prince, Muhammad Zaman, Christoph Gradmann, Heidi Østbø Haugen).  Residence in Oslo is a requirement.

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More about the position

The fellowship period is 3 years.

The research fellow must take part in the Faculty’s approved PhD program and is expected to complete the project within the set fellowship period. The main purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the successful completion of a PhD degree.

The applicant must, in collaboration with her/his supervisor, within 3 months after employment, have worked out a complete project description to be attached to the application for admission to the doctoral program. For more information, please see our web site:

Qualification requirements

  • A Master’s degree (120 ECTS) or an equivalent qualification in social, cultural or medical anthropology, history, human geography, sociology or other relevant disciplines, minimum grade B (ECTS grading scale) or equivalent. The Master’s degree must include a thesis of at least 30 ECTS
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English is required
  • Familiarity with Swahili and previous experiences from East Africa is an advantage
  • Fieldwork experience is an advantage
  • Willingness to contribute part of your time to the overall project, including project meetings, workshops as well as co-writing projects

Personal skills

  • be able to work independently and collaboratively
  • be able to engage with diverse multidisciplinary group of colleagues and students, and contribute to a positive working environment
  • be highly motivated
  • be able to engage creatively with relevant theoretical and conceptual frameworks
  • be able to develop strong social connections and networks during fieldwork

We offer

  • salary NOK 496 100 –  542 400 per annum depending on qualifications in a position as PhD Research fellow, (position code 1017)
  • generous funds for research, travel, conference participation and dissemination, books and equipment
  • attractive welfare benefits and a generous pension agreement, in addition to Oslo’s family-friendly environment with its rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities

How to apply

The application must include

  • cover letter statement of motivation and research interests
  • project proposal, (max. 3000 words), detailing methodological design, possible theoretical development and relevant literature for a study in accordance with work package 3 of the From Asia to Africa: Antibiotic trajectories across the Indian Ocean (FAR) project.
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work)
  • copies of educational certificates (academic transcripts only)
  • documentation of english proficiency
  • a digital copy of your MA thesis
  • list of reference persons: 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and phone number)

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “apply for this job”. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an explanation of their University’s grading system. Please note that all documents should be in English (or a Scandinavian language).

When evaluating the application, emphasis will be given to the eventuelt “project description” and the applicant’s academic and personal prerequisites to carry out the project. Applicants may be called in for an interview.

Formal regulations

Please see the guidelines and regulations for appointments to Research Fellowships at the University of Oslo.

No one can be appointed for more than one PhD Research Fellowship period at the University of Oslo.

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.

The appointment may be shortened/given a more limited scope within the framework of the applicable guidelines on account of any previous employment in academic positions.

The University of Oslo has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results etc.

Contact information

For questions regarding the project: Associate Professor Heidi Fjeld, email:

For questions regarding application process: HR Advisor Marie Cecilie Bakken, email:

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About the University of Oslo

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.

The Institute of Health and Society is one of three institutes at the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Oslo. The Institute covers various disciplines and consists of six departments: General Practice, Health Sciences, Health Management and Health Economics, Medical Ethics, Community Medicine and Global Health and Nursing Science.

The Institute of Health and Society bases its work on a complex understanding of disease, health and health systems. Culture, environment, economics, society and biology play direct and indirect roles. Our teaching responsibilities include seven Master’s programs, one Bachelor program and part of the Faculty’s medical school and PhD-program. We employ about 220 FTE and have almost 700 Bachelor and Master students. Annual income is about 200 mill NOK, half of which is external funding. Our researchers play an active part of public policy and disseminate new knowledge through many channels.


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