PhD Research Fellowship in digitization and sustainability transitions
Type of Employment Full-time
Job position PhD Research Fellowship in digitization and sustainability transitions
Work model On location
Application due date 4 August 2024
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About the position

Center for Research on Digitalization and Sustainability (CREDS) , a part of Inland School of Business and Social Sciences , Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences (INN), invites candidates to apply for a three-year PhD research fellowship. Depending on the needs of the faculty, and the candidate's skills and preferences, the position can be converted into a four-year position with 25% teaching, project assistant, or other relevant duties. The candidate will contribute to the broad field of innovation studies, focusing specifically on digitalisation and/or sustainability transitions. The position is part of a joint double-degree PhD initiative with Rennes School of Business, France, and includes an exchange semester at RSB's campus.

Admission to INN's PhD programme, Innovation in Services in the Public and Private Sectors (INSEPP) , is a condition for employment as a research fellow. After completing the employment process as a research fellow, applicants apply for admission to the programme. The final research training plan must be approved and agreed upon within three months of joining the research centre.

As a PhD research fellow, you will be an integral part of CREDS and participate in one of its two research groups. In addition, the candidate will be employed at a department of the Business School. The position preferably begins in the early fall of 2024 and will conclude with the award of the Degree of Doctor upon successfully completing the program.

Project Overview

The PhD candidates will join an international team of researchers at CREDS, Inland School of Business and Social Science. We seek highly motivated candidates to research ecosystem transitions towards sustainability from a business viewpoint. The project must address the academic challenges identified by CREDS.

CREDS's overarching academic objective is accelerating research on the transitions enabling sustainable businesses and societies. The primary focus is to understand ecosystem-level transitions at the intersection between digitization and sustainability, for instance linked to new or changed business models and practices, where we have identified five transitions that will be prioritized:

  • Transitions in the conception of value: Toward sustainable value creation
  • Transitions in the adoption of circularity: Toward a circular economy
  • Transitions through technological advance: Toward digital transformation
  • Transitions in the use of information: Toward enabling artificial intelligence
  • Transitions in leadership: Toward future resilience

The specific PhD project should align with the following two transitions and topics:

Transitions in adoption of circularity: towards a circular economy , including, for example, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • Value (co-)creation in circular and regenerative economy models.
  • Dynamics in innovation and business ecosystems for more social and environmental sustainability.
  • The process of how organizations and ecosystems go about designing and implementing circular business models.
  • How interrelated organizations, or sets of organizations, impact or co-evolve with one another in the transition towards a more sustainable/circular/regenerative system paradigm?
  • Tensions over scarce resources across multiple uses and industries; to reuse for a new purpose or recycle?
  • Policy measures in promoting sustainable business practices and enabling the circular economy transition.
  • The use of digitalization for successful implementation of circular business models.

Transitions in technology advancement: towards digitalisation , including, for example, but not limited to, the following themes:

  • Sustainable-oriented innovation or business model innovation enabled by deep tech, such as AI and robotics.
  • Diffusion of such deep tech and/or digital technologies for alterations of innovation and business ecosystems.
  • Sociotechnical and environmental implications of digitization and the potential for digital technologies to contribute to the achievement of national and international sustainability targets, such as the UN's Sustainable Development Goals and the EU's Green Deal.
  • Role of digital technologies, ecosystems, and platforms for sustainability.
  • Strategies to ensure a just transition to a digital economy.

Candidates must integrate at least one of these transitions into their project proposal, describing a research topic within the field of digitalization and/or sustainability studies that is also important to the business study domain. Please note that the project may later be modified in accordance with the supervisors' advice and the academic research agenda of CREDS . The successful candidate will have a primary supervisor among CREDS' academic staff.

European Mobility: Rennes School of Business and Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences in a joint double degree PhD initiative

Rennes School of Business (RSB) and its research center ' Rethinking Tomorrow's Organization' (RTO) , are home to 47 full-time academics based in Rennes who are dedicated to exploring the future of organizations under the themes of the Responsible Organization, Interconnected Organization, and Adaptive Organization. RTO is a vibrant, interdisciplinary group of scholars working on various funded projects, with regular international guest speakers, research webinars, and paper development workshops. RSB is a triple-accredited (AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS) institution ranked among the Top 10 business schools in France for its international attractiveness and faculty quality. Starting this year, INN and RSB have a joint strategic agreement on shared research projects, international exchange, and mobility.

As a successful candidate, you will be part of a cohort of four PhD students (two based at RSB and two at INN) within a joint initiative, offering rich opportunities for collaboration and exchange with peers, local and international academic and business environments, and with research environments of both institutions.

At both RSB and INN, you will join dynamic and diverse research communities comprising PhD students, postdoctoral researchers, and internationally renowned academics. The employment will be mainly based at CREDS' new facilities in Kongsvinger under the co-supervision of research faculty from CREDS and RSB. You will also spend one semester at RSB's campus in Rennes, where you might attend seminars and short courses, providing an invaluable opportunity to broaden your academic experience and connections at the world-class institution.

On successful completion, the student will be awarded a PhD degree by both institutions.

Qualifications and personal skills

  • The person to be appointed must have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS) awarded from institutions in Norway, the EU/EES or Switzerland; or from an international institution accredited by AACSB, AMBA and/or EQUIS (please specify in the application); and in accordance with the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education's (NOKUT) requirements for admission to PhD education at Norwegian universities. It must be underlined that INN's PhD regulation requires that the master's education includes a master's thesis of 30 ECTS. As a rule, the average grade must be B.
  • Candidates who have not yet obtained the master's degree at the time of application may apply. In this case, candidates must have completed their master's thesis by the application deadline. The temporary transcripts and the master's thesis must be submitted to the application. The final diploma for the master's degree must be available by the time of employment.
  • Applicants with a master's degree from universities abroad have to attach “Recognition of foreign higher education”. Instructions on how to get this master's degree assessed and approved are given by the Norwegian Directorate for Higher Education and Skills, .
  • Master Thesis on a relevant topic (eg, Business administration, Management, Marketing, Innovation).
  • Expertise in using relevant ICT software in the PhD program and possibly in teaching.
  • Research experience acquired after completing the master's degree is considered favorable but not a requirement.
  • Oral and written English is required. In addition, having a command of a Scandinavian language is a merit.
  • Ability to work independently and purposefully but also have a command of co-operation on research tasks and publishing.

For information on PhD positions in general, see Regulations on terms of employment for positions such as postdoctoral fellow, research fellow, research assistant, and specialist candidate.

Evaluation of candidates for the position will be based on a total assessment of educational background, experience and personal suitability, as well as motivation and other eligibility requirements, as defined in the advertisement. In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on the project proposal's scientific merit, research-related relevance and innovation. In addition, the following will also be emphasized: documented independent research and development work, or experience relevant to the project.

The position and associated tasks must be carried out in accordance with the applicable laws and regulations for government employees, including also the Act on Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology, etc. Candidates who, after assessment of the application and attachments , come into conflict with the criteria in the latter act, will not be able to take up the position at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences. Necessary approvals must be maintained throughout the employment relationship.

How to apply

Relevant applications will be considered by an expert committee. The application and all attachments are to be submitted electronically and should include the following:

  • The applicant must submit a project proposal with a progress plan (in Norwegian or English, 5-7 pages) that explains how the research work will be carried out and addresses academic relevance, challenges and possibilities within the project. The PhD research fellow hired will, in collaboration with a supervisor, prepare a complete project proposal creating the basis for admission to the PhD programme. The project proposal plays an important part in evaluating applicants and must show how the project will lead to a successful completion of a doctoral degree within four years.
  • Application letter
  • CV (summarizing education, job positions, and academic work)
  • Other work that is relevant for the application
  • Certified copies of transcripts and diplomas for the entire bachelor's and master's degree. An English translation of all education documents is required unless the documents are in Norwegian/Scandinavian.
  • Names and contact information of at least 2 reference persons.
  • A copy of the master's thesis (in PDF)

Attachments must be uploaded as separate files. If the attachments exceed 30 MB, they must be compressed prior to uploading. It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all attachments are uploaded. Documents submitted after expiry of the deadline will not be considered in the evaluation of your application.

We offer

  • An academically stimulating and supportive work environment at a developing institution. Possibility of professional development in an exciting academic research environment.
  • Position is paid and placed in position code 1017, PhD candidate in the Government Salary Scale
  • Membership in the Norwegian Public Service Pension, with among other things, good pension and insurance schemes.

For more information about INN University as an employer, please see here .

General information

HINN believes that there is strength in inclusion and diversity. We desire employees with different competencies, professional combinations, life experiences and perspectives to contribute to an even better way of solving problems. We will facilitate for employees who need assistance to realize their goals. Relevant adaptations can be, for example, technical aids, adapting furniture or adjusting routines, work tasks and working hours.

If there are qualified applicants with disabilities, gaps in the CV or immigrant background, we shall call at least one applicant in each of these categories for an interview. In order to be considered as an applicant in these groups, the applicants must meet certain requirements. You can read more on this here: h ttps:// .

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