Two Doctoral Student Positions (Geography Research Unit) on Resilient Mobilities, Digitalization and Sustainable Lifestyles

Updated: about 1 month ago
Deadline: 21 Sep 2020

The University of Oulu is an international science university creating new knowledge, well-being and innovation for the future through multidisciplinary research and education. Close cooperation with research institutes, companies and the public sector has created an internationally significant research and innovation hub that has changed the world. Every day 2.6 billion people use technology developed in Oulu. The University of Oulu is an international scientific community, with 15 000 students and approximately 3000 employees. The strengths of the University are wide multidisciplinary study/research interests and modern research and study environment. More information

The doctoral positions are located within the Geography Research Unit, Faculty of Science, and they are based on the Generation Z and Beyond (GenZ) Research Programme in the area of Resilience studies ( The Geography Research Unit offers a progressive, stimulating, and international working environment. The Unit has five key focus areas in education: Regional Development and Regional Policy, Geoinformatics, Physical Geography, Regional and Political Geography, and Tourism Geographies ( The Unit has six professorships, six post-doctoral positions and four doctoral student positions based on the Research Unit funding. Further, several post docs and PhD students with external research funding work at the Unit. Totally, the Research Unit has approximately 40 faculty members and 150 BSc, 200 MSc and 25 PhD students.

Generation Z and Beyond (GenZ) is a program and hub designed to do world-class interdisciplinary research on strengthening human capabilities in the new digital era ( ). The GenZ Hub includes researchers in the following faculties: Faculty of Education, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Science (Human geography) and Oulu Business School. The program’s focus is important as new technologies and technological solutions (e.g. artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, virtual/augmented/mixed reality, robotics, 5G/6G) are becoming more intelligent, invisible and ubiquitous. New discoveries in the program will build on interdisciplinary collaboration. They will provide transformative knowledge aiming to strengthen human skills and competences in all walks of life as digital technologies continue to develop. The GenZ community in Oulu includes 24 Principal Investigators linked to three research areas: Co-evolution, Co-creation and Resilience (see These two doctoral student positions are opened to strengthen the cluster with specific focus on the resilience research area and links with the Geography Research Unit’s existing strong research profile in tourism geographies.

Job description and requirements

The Geography Research Unit seeks two PhD candidates. We are offering a four-year position for two Doctoral Students (including a trial period of up to 6 months). We are looking for a talented and highly motivated research-oriented persons who are interested in resilience, tourism related mobilities and their connections to new technologies and sustainable lifestyles, in general. More specifically, candidates can have a research interest e.g. on digital technologies and tourism, mobilities and smart border management, promoting cross-border cooperation and security, the digital technologies and online behavioral interventions nexus in tourism mobilities and related experiences, practices and implications for resilience and sustainability. A demonstrable knowledge of qualitative, quantitative, and/or mixed research methods is an advantage.  

The research profile of the successful candidate should complement the focus of the Tourism Geographies Research Group (TGs) at the Unit and the GenZ Research Programme’s area of Resilience studies. Research in the Tourism Geographies group focuses on the sustainable development and tourism, regional and local development issues in tourism, politics and political ecologies of tourism, community-based natural resource management, nature-based tourism, tourism and climate change adaptation and resilience.

The Doctoral Student will carry out research work within a research team, disseminate research results in the esteemed peer-reviewed international journals from the field as well as at international conferences, attend doctoral courses and complete doctoral thesis within 4 years. Other duties may include teaching on undergraduate courses (approximately 5% of the total 1612 working hours per year) and supervising theses. In addition, he/she may be obligated to participate in administrative task of the university and/or the unit. Please also read the detailed requirements of the University of Oulu Graduate School:

A successful candidate must possess an applicable Master of Science degree (or other applicable Master's degree) completed with very good/excellent grades in geography or related field in human sciences. In addition, we appreciate (i) strong knowledge in human/economic geography methodologies, (ii) capability to write scientific publications, (iii) high motivation and efficiency, iv) good communication skills and ability to work independently and in a group, and (v) readiness to travel (seminars, field work).


Depending on personal achievement and performance, the first-year salary of the Doctoral Student will be set at levels 2–3 of the national salary scale for the teaching and research staff of Finnish universities (€2200–€2500 gross).


The application should be written in English and include the following documents:

1. Curriculum vitae

-  including publications

-  please follow the template for researcher's curriculum vitae ( )

2. A research plan (max 4 pages), please provide clearly the following information

-  Research interests and expertise areas

-  Motivation for doctoral studies

-  Your availability (time frame)

-  Contact details of two (2) referees

3. Scanned copy of your degree certificate

4. Official English translation of your Master's degree

Send your application and the appendices using the electronic application form by 21 September 2020.

Potential candidates may be interviewed for the position. The starting time for the work is based on agreement but by January 2021 at the latest. The applications will not be returned.

Additional information

Professor Jarkko Saarinen, Geography Research Unit, Tel. +358 (0)40 4840 777; e-mail. ;

Assistant Professor Siamak Seyfi, Geography Research Unit, Tel. +358 (0) 50 5633 363; e-mail.

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