Do you want to contribute to improving human health?

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 Global Public Health is an interdisciplinary institution that aims to advance knowledge on how to improve population health at local, national and global level. Research at the department aims to identify the determinants of health, develop and evaluate individual and structural interventions, and provide evidence for guidelines and policy documents. Many of the department's researchers are scientific advisors to authorities and other decision-makers at regional, national and international level. The department has 12 research groups, about 120 research students and about 140 employees.

The position is placed in the PRIME health research group (Prevention, Intervention and Mechanisms in Public Health).  The group collaborates broadly with international experts in public health, with a particular focus on epidemiology. Our research themes include mental health, parental health and support, reproductive health, cardiovascular health, physical activity and health impacts of climate extremes.

The doctoral student project and the duties of the doctoral student

Hydroclimate extremes (e.g. floods, droughts and heatwaves) negatively affect both human and natural systems, having led to over 2 million deaths worldwide over the last 50 years. Climate change increases the frequency and severity of such events, notably of floods and heatwaves. For instance, in 2022, amid a drought, Italy's river Misa overflowed, devastating agriculture, while Europe faced simultaneous heatwaves and droughts. In the spring of 2023, the Po Valley in Italy experienced flooding following a prolonged drought, concurrently with Spain undergoing a heatwave-drought. This points to the urgency of reducing the impacts on the most vulnerable societal groups by developing new recommendations and long-term mitigation strategies.

The goal of this PhD project is to develop a novel modelling framework to quantify the societal and health impacts of hydroclimate extremes also considering adaptation actions. The specific aims are to:

  • quantify the societal and health impacts of hydroclimate extremes;
  • develop system dynamic models of the societal and health impacts of hydroclimate extremes to inform sustainable development pathways.

The PhD student will contribute to study design and data analyses using a data science approach, and the interpretation and presentation of results (through scientific publications and conference presentations).

This PhD project is part of the DATE project, in collaboration with University of Uppsala, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, University of Manchester and include a visiting period at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and Uppsala University. The PhD student will be a fellow of climes (Swedish Center of Impacts from climate extremes,

You will work with experts in climate and health data science, hydrology, public health.

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

The candidate must hold a degree in computer science, statistics, mathematics, health data science or related disciplines. Documented experience of data science is required.

Experience in analysis of large-scale data and advanced skills in programming in R and/or Python (or other programming languages) are required.

Proficiency in written and spoken English is mandatory.

We put great importance on personal qualities in this recruitment. As a person, you are curious, highly motivated and persistent. You demonstrate a degree of independence and problem-solving skills. You are collaborative and have good communication skills.

Terms and conditions

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

Location: Solna.

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 (max 1 page, please summarize how your previous training and work makes you suitable for the position) and a curriculum vitae (Swedish or English)
- Degree projects and previous publications, if any (Swedish or English)
- Any other documentation showing the desirable skills and personal qualities described above (Swedish or English)
- 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.

Read more about the Department of Global Public Health (GPH)

Read more about PRIME research group


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

Type of employment PhD placement
Contract type Full time
First day of employment As agreed
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Stockholm
County Stockholms län
Country Sweden
Reference number STÖD 2-2202/2024
  • Elena Raffetti,
Union representative
  • Henry Wölling, SEKO,
  • Magnus Anå, OFR,,
  • Saco styrelse,
Published 28.May.2024
Last application date 02.Jul.2024 11:59 PM CEST

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