PhD position: Global change and animal movements – Towards a socio-ecological predictive framework

August 12th, 2016

Department of Wildlife, Fish and Environmental Studies at SLU in Umeå is adverstising a PhD position in Biology. The focus is on Global change and Animal movements – Towards a
socio-ecological predictive framework. The PhD student will work closely with REXSAC Research Task 2. Impacts of multiple pressures on Arctic landscapes and societies.


Project Background

Global change encompasses environmental, social, economic and demographic changes on planet earth. Animals are an important component of the natural world due to their crucial ecological, social, and economic role in ecosystems. Global changes driven by resource extraction, energy and infrastructure development, climate change and urbanization are dramatically affecting animal populations and their movements resulting in challenges for management, driving human wildlife conflicts as well as hindering the sustainable development and use of natural resources. In such transformed landscapes, the vital questions are, ‘how’, ‘where’, ‘when’ and ‘why’ do animals move and how do these altered movements transform the landscapes as well as human societies (ecologically, socially and economically) that depend upon these animals? Moreover, how can we better predict animal movements under ‘multiuse-landscape’ and ‘climate change’ scenarios? Using case studies of two large mammal species (reindeer and moose) that are ecologically, socially and economically important in the northern/arctic ecosystem, the project aims to answer these questions. The goal is to develop a socio-ecological movement modelling approach that goes beyond correlative or species distribution models and provides a predictive tool that can be used in developing diverse future land use scenarios, developed with and for community users and geared toward adaptation strategies in a changing world.

The PhD position will be part of the Research Centre of Excellence Resources, Extractive Industries and Sustainable Arctic Communities (REXSAC), financed by NORDFORSK (the Nordic research board).

We seek a candidate with a strong quantitative and modelling background in ecology, advanced skills in statistics and data analyses are almost essential as vast amount of data is already collected. A master degree in quantitative ecology or biology is desirable, or otherwise, those with a master in general ecology or biology may also apply and demonstrate their quantitative abilities. The candidate should be able to work in a multicultural and multidisciplinary environment, and have a good level of autonomy and creativity. A good knowledge of spoken English and writing skills are essential. Knowledge of Swedish and/or Sami is a plus. The expected start of the position is 1st October 2016. The place of work will be the Department of Wildlife, Fish and Environmental Studies at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, with occasional trips to the field site in northern Sweden.

Forms for funding or employment
Employment as PhD student 4 years

SLU is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

A person has basic eligibility for third cycle education if he or she has taken a second cycle qualification or has completed course requirements of at least 240 higher education credits, including at least 60 higher education credits at second cycle education.

Selection among applicants meeting the requirements is made with reference to written application including curriculum vitae, copies of degrees and transcripts of academic records, one copy of the dissertation for masters or undergraduate degree, a list of at least two references familiar with the applicant’s qualifications, certified knowledge of the English language and an interview.

Read about the PhD education at SLU at


Further information:

  • Navinder Singh,, +46(0)706760103
  • Göran Ericsson +46(0)706765012Ninis Rosqvist

Academic union representatives

  • SACO Saco-S föreningen SLU +46 (0)18 671085
  • SEKO Inga-Lis Johansson +46 (0)90 786 82 10
  • ST Hans Åkesson +46 (0)90 786 83 42

Applications, marked with ref no SLU ua 1265/2016, must have arrived at the Registrar of SLU, P.O. Box 7070, SE-750 07 Uppsala or no later than 2016-08-31.