Lund University, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Technology and Society

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top universities. The University has around 47 000 students and more than 8 800 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset.

The department of technology and society employs around 80 senior lecturers, PhD students and administrative staff. The department is currently developing a multidisciplinary research environment around the adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) in society at large, including ethical, social and legal issues. Current PhD position is to focus on adaptive technologies in socio-legal robotics, in part funded within the research project AI Transparency and Consumer Trust, and thereby the WASP-HS program.  

Research subject: Technology and society

Technology and society is a third-cycle subject that encompasses multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary studies of technology’s role, interplay and importance in different sectors of society.

Project description

The position is linked to a highly interdisciplinary research project that explores how AI transparency relates to consumer trust. However, this doctoral position will specifically focus on the interplay between social structures (society) and learning technologies (AI) in general, and as embedded in social robotics or virtual assistants in particular. 

Specifically, we are looking for a doctoral student to study issues related to “socio-legal” robotics. This is located in the intersection between technical aspects of adaptive technologies and the human – primarily social – context that these technologies interact, adapts, and learns from. This will enable a holistic research into governance, transparency and accountability questions, specific to robotics.

Work duties

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in mentioned research project and third cycle courses. This will mean a close collaboration with the PI and the research team, in conducting empirical research, scientific writing and collaboration in international and national research networks. The work duties will also include teaching and other departmental duties (no more than 20%).

Admission requirements 

A person meets the general admission requirements for third-cycle courses and study programmes if the applicant: 

  • 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 Technology and Society if the applicant has: 

  • at least 30 credits awarded in the second cycle relevant to the subject area.

Additional requirements:

  • Very good oral and written proficiency in English.
  • Proven experience of socio-legal and social-scientific studies in relation to social robotics, for example HRI and fairness. 

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: 

  1. Knowledge and skills relevant to the thesis project and the subject of study.
  2. An assessment of ability to work independently and to formulate and tackle research problems.
  3. Written and oral communication skills.
  4. Other experience relevant to the third-cycle studies, e.g. professional experience.

Other assessment criteria:

  • Proven critical understanding of the technologies and methods within the AI and ADM domain from a socio-legal perspective, for example indicated by scientific publications or master thesis.
  • Multiple degrees at Masters level, indicating interdisciplinary abilities, for example with regards to societal or legal concerns of AI-systems or robotics.
  • Work experience of academic relevance, such as proof-reading of academic texts, close involvement in the carrying out of scientific studies, or the planning of workshops. 

Consideration will 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 or Swedish 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.).

To your application you must also attach a proposal for a research plan of a maximum of 2 pages, outlining main theoretical and methodological approaches to a study that could be performed under the frames of the project description described above.


This PhD position is in part funded by, and therefore part of the Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program on Humanities and Society (WASP-HS). WASP-HS aims to realize excellent research and develop competence on the consequences and challenges of artificial intelligence and autonomous systems for the individual person and society. This 10-year program is initiated and generously funded by the Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation (MMW) with 660 million SEK. In addition to this, the program receives support from collaborating industry and from participating universities. For more information about the research and other activities conducted within WASP-HS, please visit

The WASP-HS graduate school provides foundations, perspectives, and state-of-the-art knowledge in the different disciplines taught by leading researchers in the field. Through an ambitious program with research visits, partner universities, and visiting lecturers, the graduate school actively supports forming a strong multi-disciplinary and international professional network between PhD students, researchers and practitioners in the field. It thus provides added value on top of the existing PhD programs at the partner universities, providing unique opportunities for students who are dedicated to achieving international research excellence with societal relevance.

Type of employment Temporary position
First day of employment As soon as possible
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2022/511
  • Stefan Larsson, Senior lecturer,
Union representative
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-222 93 62
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet, 046-222 93 64
  • SEKO: Seko Civil, 046-222 93 66
Published 21.Feb.2022
Last application date 14.Mar.2022 11:59 PM CET

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