Do you want to contribute to top quality medical research?

To be a doctoral student means to devote oneself to a research project under supervision of experienced researchers and following an individual study plan. For a doctoral degree, the equivalent of four years of full-time doctoral education is required.

The Institute of Environmental Medicine (IMM) is a department at Karolinska Institutet and an interdisciplinary research institution within the broad field of environmental medicine. IMM conducts cutting edge research within the areas of environmental and occupational medicine, toxicology, physiology, epidemiology, and biostatistics with the aim to clarify how environmental and lifestyle factors affect our health and which role genes have. IMM also serves as a scientific advisor to public authorities within the area of environmental medicine and IMM scientists participate in national and international expert groups.

The research group

The epidemiological research at IMM is focused on advancing knowledge about disease etiology and prognosis with an emphasis on environmental and lifestyle factors, and on methodological development and stringency. The unit of Environmental Epidemiology is focused on epidemiological research concerning the health effects of ambient air pollution, community noise and green structure as well as causes of cardiovascular diseases. Experience and knowledge exist within the research group regarding epidemiological designs and innovative statistical approaches. Many projects are conducted in international collaboration. We often participate in environmental health risk assessments for national as well as international organizations and authorities. These assessments are often based on research conducted within the unit.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

Understanding the determinants of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) has never been more urgent as it is the leading cause of deaths worldwide. It is increasingly recognized that air pollution and noise may affect CVD incidence, providing important opportunities for community interventions. However, most studies have evaluated the effects of air pollution and noise individually, not accounting for their mutual confounding, nor additive and synergistic effects between them, and have not accounted for other spatially correlated exposures within the urban environment. Further, limited quasi-experimental studies are available focusing on reducing the levels of air pollution and noise which will have a positive effect on CVD. The general aim of this project is to evaluate the effect of the complex mixture of air pollution and noise on CVDs across Europe. The student will use mega-sized administrative cohorts and large individual adult cohorts across Europe, and will apply innovative statistical approaches (e.g. multipollutant model, cumulative risk index, Bayesian Kernel Machine Regression,and hierarchical/k-means clustering, among others).

The doctoral student is expected to acquire broad knowledge and systematic understanding of the main research fields encompassed in the thesis work including air pollution and noise exposure and the related cardiovascular outcomes, epidemiological theory and principles. This will be accomplished through working on the project under supervision, taking relevant courses and participate in seminars and journal clubs. The student is also expected to acquire in-depth experience in the epidemiological methods applied, manage the data, perform the statistical modelling, interpret and present the results and in disease etiology; further, to develop excellent scientific writing and deliver high-quality publications in international peer-reviewed journals, as well as give presentations at scientific meetings.

What do we offer?

A creative and inspiring environment full of expertise and curiosity. Karolinska Institutet is one of the world's leading medical universities. Our vision is to pursue the development of knowledge about life and to promote a better health for all. At Karolinska Institutet, we conduct successful medical research and hold the largest range of medical education in Sweden. As a doctoral student you are offered an individual research project, a well-educated supervisor, a vast range of elective courses and the opportunity to work in a leading research group. Karolinska Institutet collaborates with prominent universities from all around the world, which ensures opportunities for international exchanges. You will be employed on a doctoral studentship which means that you receive a contractual salary. Employees also have access to our modern gym for free and receive reimbursements for medical care.

Eligibility requirements for doctoral education

In order to participate in the selection for a doctoral position, you must meet the following general (A) and specific (B) eligibility requirements at latest by the application deadline.

It is your responsibility to certify eligibility by following the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

A) General eligibility requirement

You meet the general eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

  1. have been awarded a second-cycle/advanced/master qualification (i.e. master degree), or
  2. have satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the advanced/second-cycle/master level, or
  3. have acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.*

Follow the instructions on the web page Entry requirements (eligibility) for doctoral education.

*If you claim equivalent knowledge, follow the instructions on the web page Assessing equivalent knowledge for general eligibility for doctoral education.


B) Specific eligibility requirement

You meet the specific eligibility requirement for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education if you:

- Show proficiency in English equivalent to the course English B/English 6 at Swedish upper secondary school.

Follow the instructions on the web page English language requirements for doctoral education.

Verification of your documents Karolinska Institutet checks the authenticity of your documents. Karolinska Institutet reserves the right to revoke admission if supporting documents are discovered to be fraudulent. Submission of false documents is a violation of Swedish law and is considered grounds for legal action.

(A) and (B) can only be certified by the documentation requirement for doctoral education.

Skills and personal qualities

We are looking for a dedicated and enthousiastic student with a solid background within the field of environmental factors and health. Applicants with a degree in environmental science, epidemiology, public health, biomedicine, medicine, or statistics are encouraged to apply. Documented knowledge in epidemiology, biostatistics, and experience from working with epidemiological studies (particularly in environmental medicine), as well as of quantitative methods, database management, and statistical analyses. Further, the student should have experience in common programming languages, with particular focus on R.

The student should be able to work independently and take responsibility for project progression. Other required personal skills are analytic ability, endurance and ability for structured work. The applicant will also need to feel comfortable with working in teams and demonstrate good interpersonal skills, and highly motivated students will be appreciated. Furthermore, it is a requirement that the applicant has a very high proficiency of English both in terms of speech and writing.

Terms and conditions

The doctoral student will be employed on a doctoral studentship maximum 4 years full-time.

Application process

Submit your application and supporting documents through the Varbi recruitment system. Use the button in the top right corner and follow the instructions. We prefer that your application is written in English, but you can also apply in Swedish.

Your application must contain the following documents:

- A personal letter and a curriculum vitae and two references
- Degree projects and previous publications, if any
- Any other documentation showing the desirable skills and personal qualities described above
- Documents certifying your general eligibility (see A above)
- Documents certifying your specific eligibility (see B above)


A selection will be made among eligible applicants on the basis of the ability to benefit from doctoral education. The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis.

Karolinska Institutet uses the following bases of assessment:

- Documented subject knowledge of relevance to the area of research
- Analytical skill
- Other documented knowledge or experience that may be relevant to doctoral studies in the subject.

All applicants will be informed when the recruitment is completed.

For more information:

Important: The start of the position is flexible. The start might be delayed until end of the year of 2023 because an internal research grant call. More information will be provided during the interview.

Want to make a difference? Join us and contribute to better health for all

Type of employment PhD placement
Contract type Full time
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Stockholm
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number STÖD 2-1512/2023
  • Jeroen de Bont, PhD, Postdoctoral researcher,
  • Petter Ljungman, MD PhD, Principal researcher,
Union representative
  • Anne Boström, SEKO , 08-52487579,
  • Niklas Andersson, OFR , 08-52487419,
  • Anda Gliga, Nanna Fyhrquist, Saco-S,,
Published 06.Apr.2023
Last application date 28.Apr.2023 11:59 PM CEST

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