University of Bergen

Department of Archaeology, History, Cultural Studies and Religion

The University of Bergen (UiB) is an internationally recognised research university with more than 14,000 students and close to 3,500 employees at six faculties. The university is located in the heart of Bergen. Our main contribution to society is excellent basic research and education across a wide range of disciplines.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow within Archaeology at Centre of Excellence: Centre for Early Sapiens Behaviour (SapienCE)

The Centre for Early Sapiens Behaviour (SapienCE), funded by the Centre of Excellence Schemes (CoE), and based at the Department of Archaeology, History, Cultural Studies and Religion (AHKR), University of Bergen (UiB), invites applications for a position as postdoctoral research fellow in the field of southern African archaeological micromammal analysis. The position is for a period of three (3) years.


About CoE schemes and SapienCE:

The SFF programme, funded by the Research Council of Norway, gives Norway’s best scientists the opportunity to establish research centres in order to reach ambitious scientific goals within a defined period. The emphasis of these centres is on excellence and long-term research goals that meet the highest international criteria.

The SapienCE Centre of Excellence (CoE), directed by Professor Christopher Henshilwood, ( will focus on the behavioural origins of Homo sapiens in southern Africa between 100,000-50,000 years ago. The core research within the CoE is led by the Leader Group comprising five Principal Investigators and the Director. Our inter-disciplinary team of scientists, at UiB and at the facilities of our international partners, will integrate high-resolution records of early human cultural, social, technological and subsistence behaviours with innovative geo-archaeological, climate and cognitive data models. This holistic approach will provide ground-breaking insight into the diverse aspects of what it means to be human.

About the position as postdoctoral research fellow:

The main objectives for the position:

  • To engage in independent scientific research that will result in high-quality publications addressing core themes of the SapienCE research project, namely the origins of early Homo sapiens behaviour

  • To participate in the excavation of our Middle Stone Age archaeological sites in South Africa

  • To collect and analyse the required micromammal data in the field or in our museum collections with specific emphasis on reconstructing past climates and to interpret the results within the frameworks of the SapienCE project aims and goals.

  • To demonstrate innovative approaches to micromammal analyses to address key issues related to the environment inhabited by Homo sapiens during the Middle Stone Age in southern Africa

  • To support and work with the CoE Director and the SapienCE Leader Group in carrying out the research project

  • To actively contribute to the academic life of the SapienCE research group that is based in Bergen.

The research will be done at the SapienCE offices located at the University of Bergen, Norway, and at our laboratories in South Africa under the supervision of Professor Henshilwood. SapienCE offers excellent facilities for advanced analysis of the micromammals recovered from our Middle Stone Age archaeological sites situated in the southern Cape, South Africa. The incumbent will work closely with our leading climatologists in the SapienCE in Bergen in the reconstruction of palaeoenvironmental conditions in southern African during the Late Pleistocene.

The position as postdoctoral research fellow is a fixed-term appointment for three years with the primary objective of qualifying the appointee for work in top academic positions. Individuals may not be hired for more than one fixed-term period as a postdoctoral research fellow at the same institution. The successful applicant will be expected to conform to the regulations that apply to the position.


Qualifications and personal qualities:

The candidate must hold a PhD-degree within the field of Archaeology with a specialization corresponding to the given tasks above and clearly related to the core themes of the SapienCE research project. An extensive knowledge of southern African Middle Stone Age archaeology is a requirement with wide-ranging field and excavation involvement. Extensive experience with identification, taphonomic analysis and palaeoenvironmental interpretation of micromammal assemblages recovered from archaeological sites in South Africa is essential.


Excellent communication skills and fluency in both written and spoken English are required.

The candidate must demonstrate a strong commitment for scientific research, be able to work independently, in a structured manner, and interactively in a team setting, be responsible and have a high working capacity. A prior publication record is required.



We can offer:

  • A good and professionally challenging working environment

  • Salary at pay grade 57 (code 1352/pay framework 24.1), on the government salary scale (equivalent to NOK 485 200 per year. Further promotions are made according to length of service.

  • A good pension scheme in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

  • A position in an inclusive workplace (IW)

  • Good welfare benefits.


How to apply for the job:

Please apply electronically via the link «APPLY FOR THIS JOB». The application must include:


  • A presentation of the applicant's qualifications, research interests and motivation for applying for the position (max 3 pages).

  • CV

  • The names and contact information for two reference persons. One of these must be a supervisor from the PhD programme.

  • List of publications.

  • An electronic version of the PhD thesis

  • Scanned versions of original or certified copies of all academic diplomas and transcripts.

  • Relevant certificates/references.


The application and appendices with certified translations into English must be uploaded at Jobbnorge. The enclosures can be submitted as Word- or pdf-files.



General information:

Further information about the position can be obtained by contacting the Director of Centre for Early Sapiens Behaviour, Professor Christopher Stuart Henshilwood, tel. +47 55 58 90 99, e-mail:, or the Head of Department, Professor Jan Heiret, by e-mail, or telephone + 47 55 58 97 62.


The state labour force shall reflect the diversity of Norwegian society to the greatest extent possible. Age and gender balance among employees is therefore a goal. People with immigrant backgrounds are encouraged to apply for the position.


The University of Bergen applies the principle of public access to information when recruiting staff for academic positions. Information about applicants may be made public even if the applicant has asked not to be named on the list of persons who have applied. The applicant mustbe notified if the request to be omitted is not met. Any queries or problems concerning the electronical application procedure should be directed to The Faculty of Humanities by email:


The best qualified applicants will be invited to an interview before the final recommendation.



Application deadline: 22 October 2017

Reference no.: 17/11772

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About this job

  • Deadline
    Sunday, October 22, 2017
  • Employer
    University of Bergen
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