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19. April 2021
09. May 2021


About the position

The Faculty of Technology, Natural Sciences and Maritime Sciences has a vacancy for a temporary 100 % position as PhD Research Fellow in biological Lab-on-a-chip sensor and materials screening.

The position is located at the Department of Microsystems (IMS) and reports to the Head of Department. The place of employment is Vestfold.

The fellowship will be included in the project research group for RFF Oslofjordfondet KOLS (kronisk obstruktiv lungesykdom) project.

The employment period will be three years of full time with no teaching obligations, and there is a premise for employment that the PhD-fellow is enrolled in USN's PhD-program in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems within three months of accession in the position.

About the PhD-project

Approximately 65 million people worldwide suffer from Chronic Obstructive Deseases (COPD). It has been estimated that it will be the third most common cause of death globally from 2020. About 30000 - 40000 new cases are diagnosed each year in Norway. Research has shown that biomarkers in saliva can predict COPD exacerbations 2 - 3 days before they occur.

The goal of IMS is to develop a lab-on-a-chip (LOC) sensor that can detect biomarkers in real patient's saliva with high sensitivity. The LOC solution includes principles of biological microsystems-BioMEMS, molecular biology for bioreceptors, and inorganic electrochemestry for sensitive electrodes. The PhD candidate will conduct thesis under supervision of a mulitidiciplinary team of professors with experience on LOC technology, biological sensors, and on electrochemical characterization and materials.

The outcome of the PhD project is to achieve sensitive analysis of 3 salivary biomarkers that can predict worsening of COPD disease. The research work of the candidate may be integrated in a hand-held analyzer in the future. It is to be used by municipal health services for maintaining a stable phase for the COPD diagnosed patients.

Besides participating to the work of LOC sensor development, the PhD work also involve a set of biological tests with saliva samples from patients recruited in the municipalities. Statistical treatment of data would thus be required.

IMS is partner of a large-scale research project funded by RFF Oslofjordfondet that aims fo develop a novel sensing technology for salivary biomarkers. In the long term, the project attempts to contribute for the reduction of hospital admissions from COPD exacerbations by early-stage detection, but also by giving patients more control over their own health.


Applicants to the PhD position must have a Master's degree (120 ECTS) or equivalent higher education qualifications in microsystems engineering, biological engineering, chemical engineering or closely related subjects.The applicant must have gained the degree within commencement date.

It is a requirement that the successful applicant is granted admission to the university's doctoral programme in Applied Micro- and Nanosystems within three months of accession in the position, which require an average grade B from Master's degree, in addition to grade B at the final master project.

Applications from candidates that have completed the PhD degree will not be concidered.

Co-operation between staff members is an integrated part of the working atmosphere at the University of South-Eastern Norway. The candidate must be motivated and demonstrate a proven ability to work effectively within a team and in a collegiate manner to formulate and realise common objectives.

Personal suitabilty for the position will be emphasized.

We are seeking a PhD candidate with good understanding of lab-on-chips and electrochemical sensors. Ability and experience to perform experimental work using fundamentals of molecular biology and/or synthesis/use of inorganic materials is necessary. Experience with relevant CAD tools for prototyping and with statistics software is an advantage.

Candidates should be independent and responsible, have strong analytic and creative skills, posesses good communication capabilities including English writing skills, and be capable of working in a multidiciplinary research environment.

We offer
  • A professionally stimulating working environment
  • Good opportunities to develop your career and your academic skills
  • A good social environment
  • Attractive welfare benefits in the State Pension Plan (https://www.spk.no/en/)


PhD Research Fellow (code 1017): NOK 482 200 a year. Further promotion will be based on time served in the position.

In special cases, employment in code 1378 may be considered.

A statutory contribution to the state pension plan will be deducted from the employee's salary.

Other information

Appointment to the position will be carried out by The Academic Appointments Board for PhD Research Fellows. An expert assessment of applicants will be carried out. Short-listed candidates will be called in for interviews and must be prepared to present and discuss their projects.

The successful applicant must comply with the law, regulations and agreements that apply fo the position.

According to its human resources policy, the University of South-Eastern Norway targets a balanced gender composition and aims to recruit persons with a background as an immigrant.

As an equal opportunities employer we welcome applicants from all sections of the community regardless of gender, etnicity, disability, sexual orientation and transgender status. All appointments are made on merit.

The Department has few women appointed in scientific positions, and women are therefore particularly encouraged to apply.

Pursuant to section 25, 2nd paragraph of the Freedom of Information Act, information on the applicant may be disclosed even if the applicant has requested not be included on the list of applicants. Applicants will be notified if such requests are not allowed.

Contact information

For more information about the position, please contact:
Professor Tao Dong , email/phone: tao.dong@usn.no / +47 968 22 443

For questions regarding the recruitment process, please contact:
HR Advisor Kari L. Foss-Pedersen, email: kari.foss-pedersen@usn.no

How to apply

The University of South-Eastern Norway makes use of online application management. Applicants to the post must register their application and CV with enclosures online via the Jobbnorge recruitment portal by clicking on the link on the right-hand side - ?Søk stillingen" (Apply for the post).

The following documents shall be attached to the online application:

  • Motivation letter stating competences and experiences to the adverticed project
  • Certified diplomas and certificates from university college/university
  • Master thesis
  • Any scientific publications and a list of these
  • Three references (contact information)

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

The application will be assessed on the basis of the attached documentation as requested above. Each applicant is responsible for ensuring that the required documentation has been uploaded with the application deadline.

The University has been awarded a Charter & Code certificate by the European Commission, and is entitled to use the HR Excellence in Research (HRS4R) logo. The University is also a member of the EURAXESS network, which contributes to good working conditions for mobile researchers.

Welcome to USN

Welcome to USN

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBbD2GVElIY&list=PLpMvkOc4MPlYmz28LFGfdXsaQcq2yHsq9&index=4 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBbD2GVElIY&list=PLpMvkOc4MPlYmz28LFGfdXsaQcq2yHsq9&index=4)

Om arbeidsgiveren

The University of South-Eastern Norway, USN, is one of Norway?s largest higher education institutions, with around 18,000 students and 1,900 employees across eight different campuses.

We offer studies, research and knowledge dissemination, all targeting various professions and working life and with a high level of quality internationally. Our goal as a University is to create value both for the individual student and for business and commerce, the public sector and society in general. We achieve this by utilising the best tools we have: education and research.

USN is a University with a strong social commitment where studies and working life are integrated. At USN, we focus on practice-relevant, profession-oriented and applied research and education. The students shall benefit from innovative educational methods and challenging studies closely associated with society's requirements and needs. They will learn how to adapt to a society and working life that is constantly changing. The University shall meet major social challenges with knowledge and expertise, helping to promote practical solutions, structural changes and new ways of thinking. USN?s academic activities shall be embodied by a clear dedication to the UN?s sustainable development goals. The University aims to realise this main profile in close cooperation with society and working life.

For more information on USN, please go to www.usn.no

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19. apr. 2021 10:00

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