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 research group

The Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery (MMK) and the Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (CMR) Group is looking for a Ph.D. student to join Associate Professor Andreas Sigfridsson and his team to develop the next generation magnetic resonance imaging (CMR). Based in a clinically integrated, well-established cardiovascular imaging network, you will join a research team exploring and evaluating novel methods for cardiac imaging and improve our understanding of complex cardiac disease through a combination of experimental and clinical studies.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) provides uniquely comprehensive cardiac evaluations, serving as the reference standard for assessing the cause of heart failure by quantifying chamber volumes, ventricular function, and myocardial tissue characterization related to infarction and scarring. The biggest challenge for cardiovascular MRI (CMR) lies in the need for imaging during suspended respiration, limiting acquisition time, spatial resolution, and temporal resolution. Importantly, many cardiac patients suffer from shortness of breath and an inability to hold their breath, which makes them difficult or impossible to image using current CMR techniques. Nevertheless, the incorporation of advanced image acquisition techniques and machine learning is starting to fundamentally change what we can analyze and resolve. Specifically, our group recently introduced the sector-wise golden angle radial (SWIG) method, enabling high-quality images at high acceleration factors and unprecedented temporal resolutions in cardiac MRI, opening for novel diagnostic paradigms.

As a Ph.D. student, you will continue these advancements by exploring and implementing novel image acquisition and reconstruction methods that expand the capabilities of the sector-wise acquisition paradigm. Based in a highly translational research environment, the Ph.D. project specifically seeks to (1) enable motion-adaptive image acquisitions using multi-modal sensor input; (2) couple this to developments in image reconstruction and image analysis to form a framework for motion-adaptive imaging; and (3) investigate how motion-adaptive cardiac imaging expands our understanding of complex cardiac disease. You will have access to state-of-the-art MRI systems and will directly deploy and evaluate novel research developments in a clinical environment.

As part of an individual research project, you will be responsible for pulse sequence development, setting up and evaluating experiments, defining patient studies, and write scientific articles to review and report the results of these experiments.

What do we offer?

As part of the Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance Group, we offer a unique translational research environment with wide-ranging expertise spanning clinical science, biomedical engineering, and medical physics, all working together to improve cardiovascular disease diagnostics. This position is fully funded jointly through a Swedish Research Council project (the AdaptiveSWIG project), and a Karolinska Institutet block-grant (KID) for motion-adaptive cardiac imaging. Participation in international workshops and conferences, as well as potential research visits to collaborating sites will be included in the expected work. Further, being deeply integrated with the clinical activities at the Karolinska University Hospital, direct access to state-of-the-art imaging equipment, diverse patient cohorts, and relevant computational resources provide excellent opportunities for ground-breaking research.

On a larger scale, Karolinska Institutet is one of the world’s leading medical universities, with the vision to provide better health for all. As a doctoral student you will be offered an individual research project, a well-educated supervisor, a vast range of elective courses, the opportunity to work in a leading research group, and explore opportunities for international exchange. 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 highly motivated, independent, and analytical person, with a documented background in computer science, engineering physics, medical physics, or similar. Specific knowledge of biomedical engineering and machine learning for medical imaging is beneficial, but not mandatory. A solid and documented experience from scientific programming in Python and/or MATLAB is required, and proficiency in C++ is seen as a major advantage. Familiarity with Linux and version control is meritorious. Previous experience with MRI, scientific data analysis and scientific publications is advantageous, but not required.

Further, great emphasis will also be placed on personal competence, with an ambitious, systematic, and problem-solving attitude being central to the sought-after candidate. Excellent communication skills in both spoken and written English are a must, as is the ability to interact and work in a translational research team on national or international level. Dedication to open science is also central, as the research group is focused on open-source developments and reproducible research.

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
- 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.

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 2-4266/2023
  • Andreas Sigfridsson, Principal Investigator,
Union representative
  • Virpi Töhönen, SACO,
  • Taher Darreh-Shori, SACO,
  • Elisabeth Noren-Krog, OFR,
Published 02.Nov.2023
Last application date 01.Dec.2023 11:59 PM CET

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