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Assistant Professor in Geohydrology

Uppsala Universitet
Uppsala (Sweden)
Fixed salary
Closing date
Sep 25, 2022

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Global Environmental Change
Career Level
Education Level
Relocation Cost
Sector Type

Uppsala University is a comprehensive research-intensive university with a strong international standing. Our ultimate goal is to conduct education and research of the highest quality and relevance to make a long-term difference in society. Our most important assets are all the individuals whose curiosity and dedication make Uppsala University one of Sweden’s most exciting workplaces. Uppsala University has over 54,000 students, more than 7,500 employees and a turnover of around SEK 8 billion.

The Department of Earth Sciences at Uppsala University is Sweden"s largest and most versatile department of its kind with approximately 250 employees. Our activities are interdisciplinary and combine natural science and technology with social science. We have research programs in air, water and landscape science (LUVAL); geophysics; natural resources and sustainable development; (NRHU); petrology, mineralogy and tectonics (MPT); paleobiology, and wind energy. By investigating the history of Earth, we understand how our planet has developed over time and how sustainable development benefits from this knowledge.

The appointment has been enabled by the new Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation (KAW) research program (2022-2023) named Wallenberg Initiative Material Science for Sustainability (WISE), which has the aim to create conditions for a sustainable society by researching the next generation of eco-friendly materials and manufacturing processes. This initiative will also facilitate better technologies for future energy systems, and materials to combat pollution and toxic emissions.  Each WISE Fellow will receive a recruitment package covering 4 years of his/her own salary, two PhD students and two postdoc positions, as well as running costs. The Fellow positions are tenure-track, and the university will assume the long-term responsibility of their support as tenured faculty. Read more about WISE at

The Department of Earth Sciences has a long tradition of research on contaminant transport, transport phenomena and remediation studies related to soil, groundwater and sediments, including close collaboration with partners in industry and society. The Department of Materials Science and Engineering has a strong scientific base built around designing, synthesizing and characterizing advanced materials for environmental and Clean Tech applications.

The recruited Assistant professor will be placed in the Department of Earth Sciences and broadly collaborate with research groups in Earth Sciences, Materials Sciences and Engineering, and within the KAW-WISE initiative.

Description of subject area of the employment
Research will focus on development of sustainable hybrid nanocomposite materials and their methods of application in the mitigation of pollution caused by emerging and legacy contaminants in soil, groundwater and sediments. The spread of persistent organic and metallic contaminants is a threat to the global natural environment, including water resources, soils and aquatic sediment. Thus, the research will focus on (i) the mitigation and remediation of emerging contaminants (e.g. PFAS) using both laboratory experiments and field trials, and/or (ii) the mitigation and limitation of the dispersal of legacy contaminants from sediments. For these needs, novel materials such as nanostructured sorbent materials will be developed and the research will utilize materials that can be synthesized in sustainable and up-scalable processes and be recoverable and/or recyclable to ensure environmentally benign life cycles. Mechanically strong and flexible hybrid materials of cellulose and metal-organic frameworks, covalent organic frameworks and porous carbons are some materials should be developed in this work and include collaboration with the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. In order to be effectively applied at real contaminated sites, new functional materials and methods for contaminant mitigation must also be combined with new knowledge about contaminant transport mechanisms coupled to the new mitigation technologies, as well as state-of-the-art characterization methods for relevant environmental parameters. The development of the new materials and testing their efficiency prior to industrial-scale use will, therefore, be closely linked to development of fundamental knowledge as well as modelling tools to predict contaminant fate and transport and perform risk assessments (including field-trials) of the new mitigation techniques.


  • Teaching, research and administration. Teaching duties include course responsibility and course administration and supervision of second- and third-cycle students.
  • At the Department of Earth Sciences, the Assistant professor will initially work closely with the existing leaders of groups with the LUVAL research program that are tackling aspects of environmental pollution. In the longer term the Assistant professor will, through an established mentoring program for early career teachers, lead their own research environment, but be expected to collaborate with other research programs. The Assistant professor will work together with the team of researchers at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, which is developing nanostructured materials for wastewater treatment and for tailor-made adsorption of both inorganic and organic chemical pollutants. The position as WISE-Fellow also includes activities within WISE nationally.
  • The research area to be developed by the Assistant professor will initially be integrated with teaching within the Master’s programme in Water Engineering, the Master’s programme in Hydrology, the civil engineering programme in Environmental and Water Engineering, and the Master’s programme in Materials Science. Hence, teaching in one or more of these programmes is included.
  • Follow developments within the subject area and the development of society in general that is important for the work at the university.

Appointment Period
The position can be held for a maximum of six years. An Assistant Professor can apply for promotion to Associate Professor. If the Assistant Professor is deemed suitable and fulfills the criteria for promotion established by the Faculty Board he/she shall be promoted to and employed as Associate Professor.

Qualifications Required

  • PhD in a relevant discipline (e.g. geohydrology, environmental science, environmental chemistry or materials science related to environmental pollution mitigation). Applicants who have obtained a PhD degree or achieved the equivalent competence in five years or less prior to the end of the application period will be given priority.
  • Research Expertise and Teaching Expertise. It is necessary that the pedagogical skills, the research expertise and the professional skills are relevant to the content of the employment and the tasks that will be included in the employment.
  • Applicants should have completed teacher training of relevance to operations at the University, comprising five weeks, or have acquired the equivalent knowledge. If special circumstances apply, this training for teachers in higher education may be completed during the first two years of employment.
  • Documented ability to teach in Swedish or Englishis a requirement unless special reasons prevail.
  • Personal capabilities necessary to carry out fully the duties of the appointment.

Assessment Criteria/Ranking of applicants that fulfil the above-mentioned qualifications required

The ranking of eligible applicants will be based primarily on research and teaching expertise, of which weight will be primarily given to research expertise.

Research Expertise comprises research merits as well as the applicant´s potential to contribute to the future development of both research and teaching. In assessing research expertise research quality must be the prime consideration. The scope of research, primarily in regard to depth and breadth, must also be afforded consideration.

In assessing research expertise special weight will be attached to research merits in in-situ technologies applied to contaminated sites characterized by levels of emerging and/or legacy pollutants that require remediation. Experience of (or supervision of) research into the development of novel in-situ remediation methods, which can include the design, synthesis and characterization of materials (e.g. adsorbents), laboratory-scale and field-scale tests of these materials’ efficiency to reduce contaminant dispersal to acceptable levels and modelling contaminant transport through porous media.

Teaching Expertise comprises educational and teaching qualifications. In assessing teaching expertise teaching quality must be the prime consideration. The scope of teaching experience, in terms of both breadth and depth, must also be afforded consideration.

In assessing teaching expertise, weight will be given to merits in subject areas relevant to the position, such as water and/or environmental engineering, geohydrology as well as materials science relevant for environmental sustainability or pollution mitigation.

Administrative Expertise is important for the employment and will be given consideration. Administrative expertise is demonstrated, for example, through the capacity to plan, organise, and prioritise work in an efficient and task-related manner as well as through the ability to assign and observe time frames. Expertise includes overall operational planning and the capacity to manage resources in a way that reflects operational priorities as well as the ability to work in a structured manner based on an awareness of goals and quality.

Management Expertise is important and will be afforded consideration. Management expertise is demonstrated through the capacity to lead operations and personnel, make decisions, take responsibility, and motivate others, providing them with what is needed for the efficient achievement of common goals. The abilities to coordinate a group and help create a sense of involvement, participation, and enjoyment in work and to deal with conflicts constitute further examples of demonstrated expertise.

Collaboration Expertise is important and will be afforded high consideration. Collaborative expertise is demonstrated by the ability and skill of planning, organizing and implementing interaction with the surrounding community. Popular publications, public debate and lectures are examples of forms of interaction with the surrounding community. Other examples of collaboration are patent applications, commercialization and industrial cooperation. The ability to translate knowledge sharing with the surrounding community into activities of importance to the education"s development and quality is part of the collaboration expertise.

All merits must be documented in a manner that makes it possible to assess both quality and scope.

In filling this position the university aims to appoint the applicant who, following a qualitative holistic assessment of her/his competence and expertise, is judged to have the best potential to carry out and develop the relevant duties and to help advance operations.

Further information
In an overall assessment of the applicant’s qualifications, parental leave, part-time work relating to care of children, union assignments, military service, or the like are to be regarded as work experience.

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