Doctoral student in Analytical chemistry (PA2022/1535)

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 25 May 2022

Subject description 

Analytical chemistry, which is one of the basic chemistry subjects, is about the characterisation of samples, i.e., to determine how samples are composed, what chemical compounds they contain and how much of each compound they contain. Research in analytical chemistry aims to develop new analytical techniques and methods. Important application areas are in food, environmental science, biotechnology, bioenergy, medical and pharmaceutical science.

The research project "Antibiotic resistance: The role of chemical pollutants in urban wastewater" aims to describe how resistance transmission is affected by pollutants in water sources. We will collect a large number of water samples from highly polluted wastewater and relatively clean environmental water in three different countries: Bangladesh, South Africa and Sweden (in collaboration with our partners in Dhaka and Johannesburg). The water samples will be analysed by supercritical fluid chromatography with diode array, charged aerosol, and ion mobility high-resolution mass spectrometry (SFC/DAD/CAD/IM-HRMS) to provide a detailed description of the aquatic environment and its pollutants. We will also examine resistance transfer in these water samples in collaboration with the Faculty of Medicine in Lund. By correlating the chemical signature of the water with the results of our resistance transfer experiments, we hope to be able to identify chemical substances that stimulate the transfer of resistance genes. This research is of great importance to characterize mechanisms for the transmission of antibiotic resistance and to identify the compounds that trigger this process. This knowledge can then be used to create powerful tools to prevent the spread of antibiotic resistance, and thus tackles one of our current biggest medical challenges.


Work duties

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in research projects and third cycle courses. The work duties will also include teaching and other departmental duties (no more than 20%).


Admission requirements
A person meets the general admission requirements for third-cycle courses and study programmes if he or she:
  • has been awarded a second-cycle qualification, or
  • has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second cycle, or
  • has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

A person meets the specific admission requirements for third cycle studies in Analytical chemistry if he or she has:

  • A minimum of 120 credits are to derive from chemistry courses, of which at least 30 credits from a second-cycle degree project in the chosen specialisation or a closely related specialisation.
  • The specific admission requirement can also be fulfilled through another equivalent programme, which is assessed in each specific case.

Additional requirements:
  • Very good oral and written proficiency in English.

Assessment criteria

Selection for third-cycle studies is based on the student’s potential to profit from such studies. The assessment of potential is made primarily on the basis of academic results from the first and second cycle. Special attention is paid to the following:

  • Knowledge and skills relevant to the thesis project and the subject of study.
  • An assessment of ability to work independently and to formulate and tackle research problems.
  • Written and oral communication skills
  • Other experience relevant to the third-cycle studies, e.g. professional experience.

Other assessment criteria (desired but not mandatory qualifications):
  • Approved course in chromatography at advanced level
  • Approved course in mass spectrometry at advanced level
  • Experience of practical work with different chromatographic techniques and mass spectrometry
  • Experience of multivariate analysis
  • Experience in troubleshooting and modifying/repairing analytical instruments
  • Good ability to work independently and to formulate and solve scientific questions
  • Good ability to collaborate, endurance and personal maturity, and ability to organize and structure the work
  • Numerical and linguistic analytical ability
  • Has a curiosity to learn new things and increase own knowledge
  • Answer to the assessment question below

Consideration will also be given to good collaboration skills, drive and independence, as well as how the applicant, through his or her experience and skills, is deemed to have the abilities necessary for successfully completing the third cycle programme.


Terms of employment

Only those admitted to third cycle studies may be appointed to a doctoral studentship. Doctoral studentships are regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), chapter 5, 1-7 §§.


Instructions on how to apply

Applications shall be written in English. The application must contain a letter (1/2 - 1 page) in which the applicant briefly describes him/her self and motivates why the applicant wants to start the doctoral program in analytical chemistry at Lund University, and in what way the research project matches his/her own interests and scientific background. There is also an assessment question that must be answered in the application. The application must also contain a CV, degree certificate or equivalent, grade transcripts, and other documents you wish to be considered (contact information for your references, letters of recommendation, etc.).


Assessment question

Briefly describe the challenge of performing quantitative analysis using high-resolution mass spectrometry (max 150 words). Write your answer in the personal letter, together with a short explanation.


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