Lund University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physics

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.

Astronomy in Lund has a long history of famous astronomers working on understanding the dynamics and the constituents of the Milky Way. Today we honour this legacy by actively pursuing questions at the cutting edge of astronomical research, namely the formation and evolution of galaxies, stars and exoplanets.

Research at the Division of Astrophysics is driven by the curiosity of individual researchers with their own local, national and international networks. Our current research aims at exploring the constituents of the Milky Way, from an evolutionary, chemical, and dynamical point of view, and embedding our understanding of them in a cosmological context. Leading the development of concepts for world class space astronomy missions, e.g. Gaia, is of fundamental importance and the study of exoplanets is an emerging and new dimension of this enterprise.

The formation of galaxies is a very active field in astrophysics. Thanks to telescopes such as JWST and ALMA, we can now observe distant galaxies with increasing precision. Along with spectroscopic and astrometric studies of the Milky Way, where Lund is a world leader, this opens up the potential for a better understanding of how galaxies evolve. To achieve this, observations must be compared with theoretical models. At the division of astrophysics, we use supercomputer simulations to study the physical processes that shape the life of galaxies, from the Big Bang to today.

Work duties

The doctoral student will work in research areas focused on computer simulations of galaxy formation. The work will involve already available simulations, as well as new ones designed and performed by the student. A special focus will be on how changes in a galaxy's life, such as galaxy collisions and the way cosmic gas accretes affects its development, as well as how basic properties such as galaxy sizes, masses, and rotational velocities are established.

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in research projects and third cycle courses. The work duties can 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 he or she:
•    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.

Specific admission requirements for third-cycle studies in Astronomy and Astrophysics:

To be admitted to the third-cycle programme in Astronomy and Astrophysics the student must have earned credits in first and second-cycle programmes in which physics, mathematics and/or corresponding engineering subjects have been substantial elements. In addition to 60 credits in basic physics, there is a requirement for at least 60 credits in subjects of relevance to Astronomy and Astrophysics, e.g., courses in astronomy or other physics subjects, or engineering subjects such as space technology and automatic control. The 120 credits must include at least 60 second-cycle credits. The first and second-cycle
courses must include a degree project comprising 30 credits. 

Equivalent knowledge acquired through corresponding programmes will be assessed individually. 

In order to enable interdisciplinary initiatives and important specialisations in certain areas, students with qualifications in subjects other than Astronomy and Astrophysics may be considered for admission.

Finally, the student must be judged to have the potential to complete the programme.

Additional requirements:
•    Very good oral and written proficiency in English.

Other assessment criteria 
•    A background in astronomy and programming skills are advantageous.

Basis of assessment
Selection to postgraduate studies is based on the expected ability to perform well in the studies. The evaluation of the ability to perform well is based primarily on the results of studies at the basic and advanced levels, in particular:
1.    Knowledge and skills relevant to the thesis project and the subject of the 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 postgraduate studies, such as professional experience.

Consideration will also 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 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.).


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 PA2023/355
  • Oscar Agertz, Senior lecturer,
Union representative
  • OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, +46-46-2229362
  • SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet,
Published 10.Mar.2023
Last application date 21.Apr.2023 11:59 PM CEST

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