PhD Scholarship in Atmospheric Science and Oceanography with A Focus on Climate Modeling

Applicants are invited to apply for a PhD position in atmospheric sciences at Stockholm University, Sweden. The funding allows successful candidate to work for four years. The deadline to apply is April 23, 2019.

For more information about PhD studies at MISU:

Project description

The interplay between clouds and climate constitutes one of the greatest uncertainties in current climate models, and the future climate projections made with them. A better understanding of clouds and their relations with climate and climate change, and an improved representation of cloud processes in climate models are essential to our ability to describe future climate evolution and influence of human activity on climate.

In this project cloud feedbacks on climate change will be studied from the perspective of the observed symmetry the reflectivity of solar radiation (albedo) between the northern and southern hemispheres. Approximately one third of the incoming solar radiation is reflected back to space by Earth's surface, clouds and aerosols (particles) in the atmosphere. In the northern hemisphere, the land fraction is much larger than in the southern hemisphere, where a greater surface area is covered by ocean. Since land is more reflective than ocean, this distribution makes the surface reflection larger in the northern hemisphere. The amount of atmospheric aerosol is also larger in the northern hemisphere, contributing to greater reflection here. In spite of this, satellite observations show a close hemispheric symmetry in albedo, i.e. that the northern and southern hemispheres reflect the same amount of solar radiation. The explanation is that cloud properties compensate nearly perfectly for the asymmetry in land/ocean distribution and aerosol amount. Hence, the climate system has one or several ways to adjust itself to maintain the inter-hemispheric albedo symmetry.

The mechanisms behind this cloud compensation are not known, and this will be explored in this project, using global models and observations. This will provide a basis for improved understanding of cloud feedbacks, climate stability and climate sensitivity to human influence.

Qualification requirements

In order to meet the general entry requirements, the applicant must have completed a second-cycle degree, completed courses equivalent to at least 240 higher education credits, of which 60 credits must be in the second cycle, or have otherwise acquired equivalent knowledge in Sweden or elsewhere.

In order to meet the specific entry requirements, the general syllabus for doctoral studies in the field of Atmospheric Science and Oceanography stipulates that applicants must have completed at least 90 credits in either Meteorology, Oceanography, Physics or Chemistry, at least 15 credits in Mathematics and an independent project of at least 15 credits. Of this at least 60 credits must be in the second cycle.

The qualification requirements must be met by the application deadline.


The selection among the eligible candidates will be based on their capacity to benefit from the training. The following criteria will be used to assess this capacity: the candidates' documented knowledge in a relevant field of research, written and oral proficiency in English, the capacity for analytical thinking, the ability to collaborate, as well as creativity, initiative, and independence. The assessment will be based on previous experience and grades, the quality of the degree project, references, relevant experience, interviews, and the candidate's written motivation for seeking the position.

Admission Regulations for Doctoral Studies at Stockholm University are available at: and regulations.

Only a person who will be or has already been admitted to a third-cycle programme may be appointed to a doctoral studentship.

The term of the initial contract may not exceed one year. The employment may be extended for a maximum of two years at a time. However, the total period of employment may not exceed the equivalent of four years of full-time study.

Doctoral students should primarily devote themselves to their own education, but may engage in teaching, research, and administration corresponding to a maximum of 20 % of a full-time position.

Please note that admission decisions cannot be appealed.

Stockholm University strives to be a workplace free from discrimination and with equal opportunities for all.


For more information on the PhD-project, please contact Frida Bender, telephone: +46 8 16 10 82,

For information on the PhD-program, contact Professor Michael Tjernstrm, telephone: +46 8 16 31 10,


Apply for the PhD student position at Stockholm University’s recruitment system. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the job advertisement, and that it is submitted before the deadline.

Please include the following information with your application

and, in addition, please include the following documents

Deadline: April 23, 2019
Apply Link:

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