Doctoral student in Geotechnical Engineering (PA2021/522)

Updated: 19 days ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 23 Mar 2021

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top 100 universities. The University has 40 000 students and more than 8 000 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

LTH forms the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University, with approximately 9 000 students. The research carried out at LTH is of a high international standard and we are continuously developing our teaching methods and adapting our courses to current needs.


Description of the subject
Geotechnical Engineering deals with mechanics of soils and rocks with technical applications. Examples of applications are analysis of bearing capacity, settlement, and vibrations as well as studies of issues concerning foundations, soil stabilisation, retaining structures, soil/structure interaction, excavations,  and extraction of natural resources. Research in the subject includes experimental characterization of geomaterials and numerical methods.

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%).

This project will investigate the mechanical properties of clay till in drained condition. In particular an experimental characterization of clay till from different sites in the region of Skåne in south Sweden will be performed. The aim is to carry out a systematic laboratory test campaign to provide quality results, in terms of internal friction angle and effective cohesion, to be used as benchmark for the empirical relations used to derive these quantities from most common field tests. Based on the results of the experimental campaign, improvements to the existing relations or new relations will be suggested. Furthermore, to fully understand the role of stiff inclusions, typical of clay till, advanced experimental techniques such as x-ray computed tomography, will be used.

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 Geotechnical Engineering if he or she has:

  • at least 90 higher education credits with relevance to the subject area, of which at least 75 higher education credits at advanced level including an advanced degree of at least 30 higher education higher education credits in the subject field, or
  • Master of Science in a field of relevance.

Finally, it is required that the student is judged to have the ability needed to complete the education.

Additional requirements

  • Good knowledge in geomechanics or structural/solid mechanics and physics.
  • 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.
  • 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 qualifications

    • Applicants should have an interest in experimental methods, computer-based data/image analysis and (geo)material mechanics;
    • good abilities in computer programming, e.g., in Matlab, Python, C, Fortran or equivalent;
    • Good oral and written proficiency in Swedish.

    Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive and independence, and 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. Third cycle studies at LTH consist of full-time studies for 4 years. A doctoral studentship is a fixed-term employment of a maximum of 5 years (including 20 % departmental duties). 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 and include a cover letter stating the reasons why you are interested in the position and in what way the research project corresponds to your interests and educational background. The application must also contain a CV, degree certificate or equivalent, and other documents you wish to be considered (grade transcripts, contact information for your references, letters of recommendation, etc.).


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