University of Oslo PhD Candidate in EU Post-crisis Legitimacy, Norway

University of Oslo, Norway


January 31, 2017


Opportunity Cover Image - University of Oslo PhD Candidate in EU Post-crisis Legitimacy, Norway

PhD Candidate in EU post-crisis legitimacy

ARENA Centre for European Studies at the University of Oslo (UiO) invites applications for a PhD fellowship (SKO 1017) on ‘democratic state failure’ as part of the PhD network ‘The Post-Crisis Legitimacy of the European Union’ (PLATO).

Applicants should hold a master degree in political science, political economy, or a related social science discipline.

The position is announced for a period of 3 years with no teaching obligations (pliktarbeid). The starting date for the fellowship is 1 September 2017.

ARENA is a multidisciplinary research centre under the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Oslo. The centre promotes theoretically oriented, empirically informed studies seeking to describe, analyse or explain the dynamics of the evolving European systems of governance. It is highly renowned for its research on the transformation of Europe, and coordinates and participates in numerous international research projects and networks. Its international staff contributes to upholding a vibrant and integrated research community conducting cutting-edge research.

PLATO PhD network

PLATO is an EU-funded PhD network coordinated by Prof. Chris Lord at ARENA Centre for European Studies, University of Oslo. It unites nine university partners across Europe in recruiting a group of 15 excellent young researchers to do a common multi-disciplinary investigation of the EU’s post-crisis legitimacy, together with leading senior researchers.

PLATO will be a fully integrated, thematic research school with its own research question. The aim is to go beyond the state-of-the-art by building a theory of legitimacy crisis in the EU from a uniquely interdisciplinary understanding of how democracy, power, law, economies and societies all fit together with institutions within and beyond the state to affect the legitimacy of contemporary political order.

PLATO will offer state-of-the-art academic training as well as training in core professional skills, research leadership and entrepreneurship, and dissemination; a quality framework of supervision; work experience from the policy-advice, consulting or civil society sectors at European level; and professional individual career development.


PhD project: ‘Legitimacy crisis and democratic state failure’ (ESR9)

It is often argued that democracy was partially suspended in some member states during the crisis: that the terms of bailouts (Greece, Ireland and Portugal) amounted to ‘economic guardianship’, whilst some crisis measures were enacted by unelected/technocratic governments (Greece and Italy). This research will use democratic theory to evaluate the legitimacy of the adjustments that the Union required of member states during the crisis. It will use focus groups in at least three countries to test how far citizens believe the Union has been justified in seeking changes to the economic and social policies of member states. For this project, a possible primary discipline is political philosophy/political theory; a secondary discipline could be political economy.


The PhD fellow will be part of a research group led by PLATO Coordinator Chris Lord at ARENA, which also includes two other ESRs working on different sub-projects of PLATO. The successful candidate will be supervised by a senior scholar at ARENA, depending on the proposal.

Mandatory secondments

  • Four-week internship at Bruegel, Brussels, to gain practical experience from the policy advise sector (February 2020)
  • Co-supervision will be offered by a senior scholar at another PLATO partner university, to be selected by the network based on the submitted proposal. A three-month academic secondment will be undertaken at this university to cooperate with co-supervisor and other PLATO ESRs (in the period September 2018 to February 2019) 

Phd Programme

The successful candidate will be enrolled in the PhD programme of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Oslo and the work will result in a doctorate in political science. The recruited candidate will be automatically admitted to the PhD programme. If the person who is hired has a disciplinary background other than political science, additional courses may be required.


Two important eligibility conditions apply to Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action (MSCA) Innovative Training Networks (ITN): 

  • Candidates cannot have resided nor carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Norway for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to 1 September 2017. If it is not evident from the application that this criterion is met, please include an explanation as part of your application. 
  • Candidates must be in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of her/his research career and not already be in the possession of a doctoral degree.

Further qualifications for the position: 

  • Master’s degreein political science, public administration or equivalent social science degree which includes 120 ECTS credits at MA level and an MA thesis worth at least 30 credits. The master’s thesis must have been submitted before the application deadline. A prerequisite for taking up the position is the successful completion of a master’s degree.  
  • Strong academic record   
  • English language proficiency. If you are a non-native English speaker, or if the language of instruction at your previous university was not English, we will ask you to provide evidence of strong English language skills. Please include English language test results in your application if this applies to you. Such tests should not be older than two years at the time of application.

We offer

In addition to the benefits of taking a team PhD as part of PLATO, ARENA offers:

  • Salary in pay grade NOK 432,700–489,300, depending on level of competence
  • Academically stimulating working environment
  • Vibrant, integrated and international research community
  • Good pension benefits under the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund scheme
  • Good welfare benefits


In assessing the candidates, particular emphasis will be placed on the quality and originality of the project proposal as well as the individual project’s fit within the overall research programme. Academic qualifications, writing skills, language proficiency and other qualifying experience will also be of key importance. 

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews in the period 6–17 March 2017. Job offers will be made by the end of April 2017.

To APPLY click "LINK TO ORIGINAL" below.

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Publish Date
November 18, 2016