PhD scholarship in economics at the University of Copenhagen

Updated: 3 months ago
Deadline: 28 Nov 2023

The Department of Economics invites applications for a PhD scholarship at the intersection of macroeconomics and behavioral household finance. The PhD scholarship is tied to the research project “Household Behavior below the Zero Bound” funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark.

The broad aim of the project is to understand how household decisions about spending, saving and investment are shaped by developments in the macro-economy. A salient example is the recent episode of negative interest rates on retail deposits, which may have induced households to increase spending and restructure their balance sheets. The analysis will employ large administrative datasets combined with online surveys designed to investigate behavioral mechanisms underlying the household responses.

The project involves the following team of senior researchers: Niels Johannesen (professor), Asger Lau Andersen (associate professor) and Johannes Wohlfart (associate professor).

The successful candidate will be collaborating with the senior researchers on the team on at least one research project, but is also expected to conduct at least one other research project independently, either alone or with junior colleagues. We ask you to include an outline of a possible independent research project in the application. The outline should state and motivate a research question and discuss data sources and empirical designs that may allow you to address it.

The deadline for submitting application is November 28, 2023. The expected starting date of the PhD position is February 1, 2024. Scholarships can be either 5+3 or 4+4 (see below).

How to apply
Please submit your application at our online portal. The application must contain the following documents (in Adobe PDF or Word formats):

  • Cover letter
  • Outline of research project (1-2 pages)
  • Curriculum Vitae 
  • Diploma and transcripts of records (BSc and MSc)   

Duties and Responsibilities
General information about the PhD study programme is available on the website of Copenhagen Graduate School of Social Sciences: 

https://samf.ku.dk/phd-skolen/english/

https://samf.ku.dk/phd-skolen/

Under "Legal basis" on the website you will find information about the rules and guidelines for the PhD programme and the Danish Ministerial Order on the PhD programme at the Universities. 

Information about the PhD study programme is also available on the PhD website of the Department of Economics, see here .

Applications 

  • The University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding society, and invites all qualified applicants, regardless of personal background, to apply for the position.  
  • In order to be awarded a PhD scholarship the applicant has to enroll as a PhD student at the Faculty of Social Sciences, cf. the rules of the Danish Ministerial order No 1039 of 27 August 2013.  

Scholarship in the 5+3 or in the 4+4 PhD study programme 

The 5+3 PhD study programme 
In order to be eligible for a scholarship in the 5+3 PhD study programme the applicant must have completed a two year MSc degree programme, or have earned 120 ECTS credits at an equivalent academic level before starting his or her employment. Applicants should check the study programmes for more detailed descriptions of the entry requirements. PhD students are paid a salary in accordance with the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The PhD student has a work obligation of up to 840 hours over the 3 year period of time without additional pay. The work obligation can include for instance teaching.  

The 4+4 PhD study programme
Students who have completed a BSc plus 60 ECTS of an MSc degree programme would enrol as PhD students simultaneously with their enrolment in the MSc degree programme. Applicants should check the study programmes for more detailed descriptions of the entry requirements. Until an MSc degree is obtained, the grant is paid partly in the form of up to 48 state education grant portions (in Danish: SU-klip). More specifically the PhD student will be paid two grant portions per month plus salary for work (teaching, presentations etc.) which totals a workload of at least 280 hours. Payment and conditions of employment are carried out in accordance with the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). Upon completion of the MSc degree the student is transferred to the salary-earning part of the PhD studies. 

Application process
On the website of Copenhagen Graduate School of Social Sciences you will find information about the application process, and enclosures to include with your electronic application: 

https://samf.ku.dk/phd-skolen/english/applicants/application/current_advertisement/
https://samf.ku.dk/phd-skolen/til_ansogere/ansoegning/aktuelle_opslag/

The recruitment process
Further information on the recruitment process at University of Copenhagen can be found here:  https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/

The following criteria are used when shortlisting candidates for assessment: 

1. Research qualifications as reflected in the project proposal.

2. Quality and feasibility of the proposed project.  

3. Qualifications and knowledge in relevant Economics disciplines. 

4. Performance (grades obtained) in graduate and post-graduate studies. 

5. Department of Economics can offer adequate supervision for the research topic in question. 

Selected applicants are notified of the composition of the assessment committee, and each applicant has the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that relates to the applicant him/herself. You can read about the recruitment process here . 

An Equal Opportunity Workplace
The University of Copenhagen is committed in its pursuit of academic excellence to equality of opportunity and to creating an inclusive working environment and therefore encourages all qualified candidates to apply, regardless of personal background, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, ethnicity etc. For more on the diverse working place environment at the University and the University’s participation in the HRS4R HR Excellence in Research, see https://employment.ku.dk/working-at-ucph/eu-charter-for-researchers/

International applicant?
The University of Copenhagen offers a broad variety of services for international researchers and accompanying families, including support before and during your relocation and career counselling to expat partners. Please find more information about these services as well as information on entering and working in Denmark here: https://ism.ku.dk/

Contact information
Information about the recruitment process is available from HR, e-mail: [email protected], please refer to ID number: 211-1621/23-2H #1

Additional information about the position can be obtained from Niels Johannesen, e-mail: [email protected].

The closing date for applications is 23:59 [CET] November 28, 2023.

Applications received after the deadline will not be taken into account


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.



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