Two PhD Candidates in Modern European Migration History at Norwegian University of Science and Technology

July 9, 2024

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Job Description

The Department of Modern History and Society has vacancies for Two PhD Candidates in Modern European Migration History

This is NTNU

NTNU is a broad-based university with a technical-scientific profile and a focus in professional education. The university is located in three cities with headquarters in Trondheim.

At NTNU, 9,000 employees and 43,000 students work to create knowledge for a better world.

You will find more information about working at NTNU and the application process here.

About the job

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU, Trondheim) is offering two PhD positions within the Department of Modern History and Society. These positions are part of the ERC project “InternalFortress: Regulating European Freedom of Movement within the Nation-State, 1950-1980,” which will trace the history of migration as part of the early process of European integration. Each PhD position will focus on one national case study in either France or West Germany, and applicants should specify which case they would like to examine in the research statement. 

For a position as a PhD Fellow, the goal is a completed doctoral education and the attainment of a doctoral degree. You will report to the project leader, Madeleine Dungy. You are welcome to contact her at if you have any questions about the project or would like to receive a more detailed description. More information can also be found on the project website

Your immediate leader will be the head of department. 

Project description

Migrants’ uneven access to social welfare is one of the most pressing concerns in today’s European Union. InternalFortress will uncover the role that this issue played in the early history of regional integration in the European Economic Community (EEC), focusing on social security, union participation, and skill development.

European rules on ‘freedom of movement’ allowed migrant workers from an EEC member state to claim social protection anywhere in the bloc. The PhD case studies will hone-in on one specific national context – either France or West Germany – to trace how these general rules that were set in Brussels were carried out or contested in practice. What steps were taken in national and local institutions to help European migrants gain access to social services on the ground or to block them from doing so?  Who participated in that process, for example, state administrators, employers, unions, NGOs, churches, or migrant-led mutual aid organizations? Did these actors differentiate between different groups of European and non-European migrants?  

The PhD fellows are encouraged to develop their own approach to these questions, for example by focusing on a particular group of migrants, a locality, an economic sector, or an organization. These in-depth national case studies will complement work by the PI on European and international migration policy and work by the project’s postdoc on Europe’s place in global NGO networks. The team members will work together to build a rich source base that will combine official documents with material from private associations such as Caritas or International Social Service. 

At NTNU’s Department of Modern History and Society, the project team will be housed within a rewarding professional environment with an active community of PhD candidates and postdocs. 

Duties of the position

As a PhD fellow, you will be expected to:

  • Develop your own approach to the project, i.e. through selection of actors and issues to be studied in more detail
  • Identify knowledge gaps in the relevant literature 
  • Adopt appropriate methodology
  • Gather information from a variety of sources
  • Work closely with the other members of the project team
  • Participate in conferences and workshops 

Required selection criteria

  • You must have a professionally relevant background in history or another relevant field
  • Your education must correspond to a five-year Norwegian degree program, where 120 credits are obtained at master’s level
  • You must have a strong academic background from your previous studies and an average grade from the master’s degree program, or equivalent education, which is equal to B or better compared with NTNU’s grading scale. If you do not have letter grades from previous studies, you must have an equally good academic basis. If you have a weaker grade background, you may be assessed if you can document that you are particularly suitable for a PhD education.
  • You must meet the requirements for admission to the faculty’s doctoral program
  • Good written and oral English language skills
  • You must have good reading skills in French or German (corresponding roughly to B1), as appropriate to the selected case. 

The appointment is to be made in accordance with Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, Phd candidate, research assistant and specialist candidate and Regulations concerning the degrees of Philosophiae Doctor (PhD) and Philosodophiae Doctor (PhD) in artistic research national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant 

Preferred selection criteria

  • Experience working with historical sources

Personal characteristics

  • Self-motivated and enthusiastic
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Goal-oriented
  • Team player
  • Intellectual independence and creativity
  • Committed to understanding migration policy from multiple different perspectives

Emphasis will be placed on personal and interpersonal qualities.

We offer

Salary and conditions

As a PhD candidate (code 1017) you are normally paid from gross NOK 532 200 (Ltr. 54) per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The position also includes funding of NOK 50 000 per annum to support research, conference participation, and professional development.

The period of employment is 3 years.

Appointment to a PhD position requires that you are admitted to the PhD programme in Historical and Cultural Studies at the Faculty of Humanities within three months of employment, and that you participate in an organized PhD programme during the employment period.

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work.

It is a prerequisite that you can be present in-person and accessible to the institution on a daily basis.

About the application

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English (except the master’s thesis)

Publications and other scientific work must be attached to the application. Please note that your application will be considered based solely on information submitted by the application deadline. You must therefore ensure that your application clearly demonstrates how your skills and experience fulfil the criteria specified above.

The application must include: 

  • CV and certificates
  • transcripts and diplomas for bachelor’s and master’s degrees. If you have not completed the master’s degree, you must submit a confirmation that the master’s thesis has been submitted.
  • A copy of the master’s thesis. If you recently have submitted your master’s thesis, you can attach a draft of the thesis. Documentation of a completed master’s degree must be presented before taking up the position.
  • A research statement (maximum five pages) specifying which case you would like to study, explaining the relevance of your academic background, your interest in the project, and how you would approach your selected case 
  • Name and contact information of three referees
  • Electronic copies of any other relevant research papers or publications 

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education, both bachelor’s and master’s education, in addition to other higher education. Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already have a statement from Norwegian Directorate for Higher Education and Skills, please attach this as well.

We will take joint work into account. If it is difficult to identify your efforts in the joint work, you must enclose a short description of your participation.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment – DORA.

General information

Working at NTNU

NTNU believes that inclusion and diversity is our strength. We want to recruit people with different competencies, educational backgrounds, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to solving our social responsibilities within education and research. We will facilitate for our employees’ needs.

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted.

A public list of applicants with name, age, job title and municipality of residence is prepared after the application deadline. If you want to reserve yourself from entry on the public applicant list, this must be justified. Assessment will be made in accordance with current legislation. You will be notified if the reservation is not accepted.

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Madeleine Dungy, If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Martin Jakobsen,

If you think this looks interesting and in line with your qualifications, please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates attached. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Upon request, you must be able to obtain certified copies of your documentation.  

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