Job description

A three-year Doctoral Research Fellowship (SKO 1352) in Philosophy is available at the Department of Philosophy, Classics, History of Art and Ideas.

The position is part of the project  Modeling Human Happiness (ModHap), which will run from 2022-2027. ModHap is an interdisciplinary project that integrates insights from ancient philosophy, philosophy of science and psychology in order to develop new empirically testable notions of well-being (or happiness). Our main objective is to develop new scientific models of happiness, which will provide vital knowledge about the sources of happiness, generate novel metrics for empirically measuring happiness, and lay the groundwork for innovative interventions aimed at improving and sustaining happiness. Our core hypothesis is that an integration of ancient conceptions and contemporary scientific investigations will generate novel models and understandings of human happiness. Four ancient theses about the nature of happiness structure the project: it is best understood (i) as fundamentally interpersonal or social, (ii) as inherently value-laden, (iii) as grounded in human nature and (iv) as a temporally extended dynamic activity. We will explore each thesis on three integrated levels: historically, conceptually and empirically. The candidate is expected to present a research project closely connected to the main project.

Foto: Colourbox

More about the position

The Doctoral Research Fellowship is jointly funded by the Norwegian Research Council and the University of Oslo, and is associated with the ModHap project (325898). For more information on the project, please visit the project website:

Applications are invited from candidates with interests in any of a range of disciplines relevant to the project such as ancient philosophy, ethics, philosophy of psychology, epistemology or philosophy of science. The application should contain a project description, which shows how the applicant´s project would contribute to the objectives of ModHap. 

The person appointed will be affiliated with the Faculty of Humanities’ organized research training. The academic work is to result in a doctoral thesis that will be defended at the Faculty with a view to obtaining the degree of PhD. The successful candidate is expected to join the existing research milieu or network and contribute to its development. Read more about the doctoral degree.

The appointment is for a duration of 3 years. All PhD Candidates who submit their doctoral dissertation for assessment with a written recommendation from their supervisor within 3 years or 3 ½ years after the start of their PhD position, will be offered, respectively, a 12 or 6 month Completion Grant.

Qualification requirements

  • A Master’s degree or equivalent in Philosophy or in other subject relevant to the project. The Master’s degree must normally have been obtained and the final evaluation must be available by the application deadline
  • The candidate is expected to develop a project description, which must be submitted as a part of the application. The candidate’s research project must be closely connected to ModHap
  • Fluent oral and written communication skills in English
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position

To be eligible for admission to the doctoral programmes at the University of Oslo, applicants must, as a minimum, have completed a five-year graduation course (Master’s degree or equivalent), including a Master’s thesis of at least 30 ECTS. In special cases, the Faculty may grant admission on the basis of a one-year Master course following an assessment of the study programme’s scope and quality.

In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be placed on:

  • The project’s scientific merit, research-related relevance and innovation
  • The applicant’s estimated academic and personal ability to complete the project within the time frame
  • The applicant’s ability to complete research training
  • Good collaboration skills and an ability to join interdisciplinary academic communities

Applicants who have recently graduated with excellent results may be given preference.

We offer

How to apply

The application must include:

  • Application letter describing the applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position
  • Curriculum Vitae (with a list of education, positions, teaching experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activities, including a complete list of publications)
  • Transcript of records of your Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Applicants with education from a foreign university must attach an explanation of their university’s grading system
  • Project description, including a detailed progress plan for the project (3 – 5 pages, see Template for project descriptions)

Please note that all documents must be in English or a Scandinavian language.

Educational certificates, master theses and the like are not to be submitted with the application, but applicants may be asked to submit such information or works later.

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system, please follow the link “apply for this job”.

Short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview.

Formal regulations

See also regulations as well as guidelines for the application assessment process and appointments to research fellowships.

Following the Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) § 25, Chapter 2, demographic information about the applicant may be used in the public list of applicants even if the applicant opts out from the entry in the public application list.

The University of Oslo has an Acquisition of Rights Agreement for the purpose of securing rights to intellectual property created by its employees, including research results.

The University of Oslo aims to achieve a balanced gender composition in the workforce and to recruit people with ethnic minority backgrounds.

Contact information

For questions about the position:

Professor and Project Leader Thomas Johansen

For questions about how to apply:

HR Officer Anders Rykke

About the University of Oslo 

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.

The Department embraces four disciplines: Philosophy, Classical Languages (Greek and Latin), History of Ideas and Art History. The Department is also responsible for the introductory philosophy courses, obligatory for all students attending study programmes at the University of Oslo. The Department has about 110 employees.

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