PhD position in Marine Plastic pollution

Updated: 3 days ago
Deadline: 01 Feb 2022

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The Department of Ocean Operations and Civil Engineering has a vacancy for a PhD position in the topic “Uncertainty management in operations and stakeholder networks to handle marine litter”. The phd-position is connected to an interdisciplinary project at NTNU Sustainability.

The Department of Ocean Operations and Civil Engineering is located in Ålesund and is known as one of Norway’s most industry interactive campus. The department conducts education and research in technology areas such as civil engineering, water and environmental engineering, ship design and product and system design, as well as nautical, shipping and shipping management and maritime logistics. About 90 people are currently employed at the department.


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About the position

The position is one of five PhD positions connected to the NTNU Sustainability project Combining skills to identify the "Sweet Spot" to solve marine plastic pollution in Norway,  an interdisciplinary initiative led by NTNU Ålesund. The objective of the project is to bring forward outstanding research to build on current activities at different departments at NTNU to investigate transformative solutions to the marine plastic problem through circular economy. The terminology “sweet spots” reflects the idea of using mutually complementing knowledge systems to build a comprehensive picture of marine plastic pollution in Norway and use this as a springboard for co-developing interventions that are eco-effective.

Uncertainty management is increasingly critical as global challenges, like marine plastic pollution in oceans, necessitate the emergence of new stakeholder constellations and the restructuring of the operating environment of many firms. This PhD research seeks to build empirically grounded new knowledge that captures how theories from operations risk management, decisions under uncertainty, and novel methodologies and data gathering strategies, such as organizational network analysis, can aid organizations to address new sources of uncertainties (risks and opportunities). The aim is to stop marine plastic waste entering the ocean, and to increase the circularity of marine plastics through reuse and reproduction. Both objectives are best achieved when firms and external stakeholders (such as universities, governmental bodies and the public) collaborate and share resources. The characteristics of these relations can, for example, explain cooperation, knowledge transfer, facilitating innovative ideas, risk behavior, support with decision-making and cooperation. The PhD work builds on current activities at NTNU to develop clusters and innovation networks for marine plastic waste reuse and recycling, and will examine industry and stakeholder contexts on both individual and network level.

For a position as a PhD Candidate, the goal is a completed doctoral education up to an obtained doctoral degree.


The PhD will report to Head of department, project manager and supervisor.

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