Two PhD positions in Antarctic Glaciology

Two 3-year PhD fellowship are available at the Department of Geosciences & Natural Resource Management (IGN), University of Copenhagen, Denmark, with an expected start 1 January 2021, or shortly thereafter.
The two PhD positions are part of the project ‘AIR – Antarctic Imagery Resurfaced’ funded by The Villum Foundation.

About the project
Recent discoveries of historical aerial and satellite imagery from Antarctica combined with advances in image processing techniques now allow us to extract valuable information on past states of the Ice Sheet. This project explores and develops new techniques for processing that old data on large spatial scales.

We seek two highly motivated PhD students to participate in this exciting, new research field of Historical Glaciolgy. As a PhD you will be part of a strong international research team with partners from University of Copenhagen (Dr. Anders Anker Bjørk, IGN), University of Tromsø, Norway (Prof. Anders Schomacker and University of Grenoble, France (Prof. Jeremie Mouginot). The project spans a total of five years, and the team also includes two postdocs and several Ba and Msc students. Your research will ultimately describe the role that Antarctic glaciers have had through historical time, and shed light on how this knowledge can be used to better predict future sea-level rise from Antarctica.

About the PhD position
The PhD position is highly interdisciplinary and involves the fields of image processing, remote sensing, glaciology, climatology and oceanography. Expect also to join the team on fieldwork during the summers.  

Your key responsibilities in the PhD project are

Plan and conduct state of the art science

  • Plan and execute field work in Greenland/Antarctica
  • Write scientific articles and your PhD thesis
  • Attend PhD courses (in total of 30 ECTS)
  • Disseminate your research at the institute and conferences
  • Research visit at a foreign research institution for up to six months
  • Work for the department (teaching and supervision of students)

Requirements for applying for the position and the candidate
Applicants must hold an MSc degree or equivalent. Priority is given to candidates with a background in one of the following areas: remote sensing, photogrammetry or glaciology.

Programming experience and ability to handle and process large datasets is an advantage. Applicants must be fluent in both written and spoken English to a level sufficiently high for communication and dissemination at an academic level.

About the host institute
University of Copenhagen (UCPH) is the largest research and education institution in Denmark. Internationally, the UCPH is highly competitive and is ranked as one of the leading universities globally with the most recent Shanghai rankings placed the University as No. 26 worldwide and No. 6 in Europe.

As a PhD student in the AIR-group, you will be enrolled at SCIENCE PhD school at University of Copenhagen and your main workplace will be at IGN. The department has strong experience in interdisciplinary collaboration within and beyond the department. IGN has over 400 employees and 25 full professors. UCPH has a strong commitment to its doctoral programme and IGN recruits over 35 new PhDs annually, about half being foreign students, which ensures a multicultural, international environment. IGN has a strong research profile in Polar science.

Dr. Anders Anker Bjørk will be your main supervisor. Anders is working with glacial history and glacial landscape morphology in Greenland and Antarctica.

Terms of employment
The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 331,125 (approx. €43,750) including annual supplement (+ pension at a minimum DKK 53,811). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

The deadline for applications is 15 October 2020, 23:59 GMT +2

More information
For further information about the position, applicants should contact principal supervisor Assistant Professor, Anders Anker Bjørk, Geography Section, University of Copenhagen,, +45 29921742.

Your application must be submitted electronically by clicking ‘Apply now’ below. The application must include the following documents in PDF format:

1. Motivated letter of application (max. one page) including references
2. CV incl. education, experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position
3. Master of Science diploma (or equivalent) and transcript of records. If the MSc degree has not been completed at the time of application, a written statement from your institution/supervisor assessing your academic level and expected graduation date, as well as a certified/signed copy of the most recent transcript of records will be acceptable.
4. Publication list (if relevant)

University of Copenhagen wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Application deadline: 15-10-2020
Employment start: 01-01-2021
Working hours: Full time
Department/Location: Institut for Geovidenskab og Naturforvaltning

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