The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest rated institution of research and education with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. Its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally esteemed research communities make UiO an important contributor to society. 

The geosciences are the studies of planet Earth; the atmosphere, the hydrosphere and cryosphere, the earth's surface and it’s interior. The Department of Geosciences is Norway’s widest ranging academic geoscience research environment, encompassing four sections (Meteorology and Oceanography, Geography and Hydrology, Geology and Geophysics, Physics of Geological Processes) and one Centre of Excellence (Centre of Earth Evolution and Dynamics). In addition we participate in other centres and hold several ERC grants. The staff consists of 40 professors and associate professors, in addition to postdoctoral fellows, PhD students, researchers, technical staff and administrative personnel, to a total number of 240.

PhD Research Fellowship in Geomechanics and Rock Physics

A position as PhD Research Fellow is available at The Department of Geosciences.

The fellowship is for a period of 3 years. Preferred starting data no later than 30.08.2017.

Project description

We invite applications for a challenging doctoral position (PhD) in geomechanics and rock physics. The objectives of this project are to unravel the formation of microfractures in organic-rich shales to better understand the migration of hydrocarbons from source to reservoir rocks. This position is part of the project “Microfractures in black shales and their transport properties” funded by the Norwegian Research Council, where the main goal is to create novel structural and mechanical knowledge and geological understanding of microfracturing and dynamic permeability in black shales. This project will provide a strong scientific foundation for considerably increasing hydrocarbon exploration success on the Norwegian continental shelf that contains Upper Jurassic black shales acting both as source and cap rocks for Middle Jurassic sandstone reservoirs.

The specific goal of this position is to combine geological observations of shale samples and laboratory experiments to reproduce the maturation of organic matter, the expulsion of hydrocarbon, the formation of microfractures, and the migration/transport of the formation fluids. The candidate will have access to unique black shale samples extracted from the Norwegian Continental Shelf. The petrophysical, rock physical and geochemical data are available on these samples. The PhD candidate will use several laboratory techniques (3D using X-ray tomography, microscopic imaging) to characterize the microfractures. In addition, through a collaboration with the European Synchrotron Radiation Facility in Grenoble (France), the candidate will perform in-situ experiments of shale maturation and analyze the data. The candidate will also participate to the development of a novel experiment to reproduce shale maturation using a gel as an analogue material.

The candidate will be part of a lively research environment in deformation of rocks in the presence of fluids, involving six other young scientists, with expertise spanning from field work, X-ray tomography, laboratory modeling, numerical and theoretical modeling. The position involves field work, laboratory experiments, analysis, modeling and interpretation of data and includes collaboration between the University of Oslo (Pr. Nazmul Haque Mondol, Pr. François Renard, Dr. M. Kobchenko) and the British Geological Survey (Dr. Audrey Ougier-Simonin). The successful candidate will have the opportunity to participate in international research networks.

The position is affiliated with the sections “Geology and Geophysics” (G&G) and “Physics of Geological Processes” (PGP) and the successful applicant will evolve in the multidisciplinary environments of G&G and PGP, between geosciences and physics.

Requirements and qualifications

The Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences has a strategic ambition of being a leading research faculty. Candidates for this fellowship will be selected in accordance with this, and expected to be in the upper segment of their class with respect to academic credentials.

The fellowship requires admission to the PhD programme at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. The application to the PhD programme must be submitted to the department no later than two months after taking up the position. For more information see:

Doctoral degree and PhD

A good command of English is required.

Doctoral degree: PhD in Mathematics and Natural Sciences

The applicant must fulfil the requirements for admission to the faculty’s PhD programme at UiO. Applicants must hold a Master degree or equivalent in Earth Sciences, Geology, Geophysics, Rock physics or Geomechanics with experience on topics, such as:

  • Rock physics and geology of shale rocks;
  • Link of observed maturation, expulsion, migration and microfracturing of black shales with the geological evolution of the area;
  • Quantify shale rock petrophysical properties based on wireline and core samples;
  • Multiphase flow in rocks;
  • Upscale the effect of microfracturing by using trap and seal (both top and lateral seal) analysis to identify impacts of seal breaching in different scenarios (e.g., preferential leakage of hydrocarbon phase, effects of multiple charge episodes).

The position requires a strong background and interest on:

  • Laboratory experiments;
  • Analytical techniques;
  • Data analysis using Matlab or Python programming;
  • Demonstrate an ability to work independently and in a structured manner. In addition, the applicant must have the capability of cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Priority will be given to candidates with multidisciplinary experience, including fieldwork, laboratory, and data analysis and modeling.

In assessing the applications, special emphasis will be given to:

  • The applicant’s academic and personal qualifications in order to execute the project
  • The applicant’s ability to complete research training
  • The applicant’s mobility
  • Good communication and collaboration skills and an ability to join interdisciplinary academic communities

For more information please see:

Alternatively, for information in Norwegian:

UiO has an agreement for all employees, aiming to secure rights to research results.

In accordance with the University of Oslo’s equal opportunities policy, we invite applications from all interested individuals regardless of gender or ethnicity. The University of Oslo seeks in particular to increase its number of female scientists. Women are therefore particularly encouraged to apply.


Pay grade position code 1017, Salary: NOK 430 500 – 489 300 per year, depending on qualifications.

The application must include:

  • Application letter
  • CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work - scientific publications)
  • Copies of educational certificates, transcript of records and letters of recommendation
  • Documentation of English proficiency
  • Copy of master thesis
  • List of publications and academic work that the applicant wishes to be considered by the evaluation committee
  • Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number)

Please remember that all documents should be in English or a Scandinavian language.

Contact information:

Nazmul Haque Mondol

François Renard

For information about the recruitment system, please contact HR-Officer Helene Jansen, +47 22857196,

Apply for this job

About this job

  • Deadline
    Wednesday, May 31, 2017
  • Employer
    University of Oslo
  • Website
  • Municipality
  • Jobbnorge ID
  • Internal ID
    2017/3567 - 1017
  • Scope
  • Duration

About applications

  • Applications on this job are registered in an electronic form on
  • You must complete: Standard CV
  • Please refer to where you first saw this job advertised!

See more

Find more jobs