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Syddansk Universitet

PhD Position in Socio-Technical Transition for a Circular Diaper System




ID: 2447850
Indrykket for 89 dage siden

Job Description

The Department of Green Technology at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU), invite applications for a 3-year position as PhD candidate in circular economy and sustainability assessment. This position is a part of a TRACE InnoMission 4 () project funded by Danish Innovation Fund. The specific PhD project is paired with a socio-cultural systems design PhD project at Design School Kolding.

The position is located at SDU Life Cycle Engineering, a section of the Department of Green Technology. Starting date is latest February 1st, 2024, in Odense.

About the Blesystem2030 project 

Around 500 million single-use diapers are used every year in Denmark, corresponding to 50-100.000 tons of diaper waste, of which 10-15.000 tons is plastic waste (including plastic fibers). Diaper consumption is responsible for around 100,000 tons CO2eq. emissions from production and disposal.

Despite the existence of technical solutions, such as hybrid diapers (which include a reusable chassis and single-use inserts), their use in both public/private care institution and households remains insignificant. Furthermore, their sustainability related advantages to single-use is largely unsubstantiated, and demonstration of viable circular systems, including supporting logistics and treatment, is mostly missing.

Taking a multidisciplinary and cross-sector approach, Blesystem2030 pairs technical innovation and circular system demonstration with a deep understanding of care practice, as well as socio-cultural barriers to adoption. The project will validate systemic environmental and socio-economic sustainability and develop and communicate the socio-technical framework for wider societal adoption. 


The successful candidate should have the following qualifications:

  • Two-year master degree (120 ECTS) or similar in a field relevant/close to the core topic of the PhD, e.g. environmental engineering or industrial ecology
  • Experience in interdisciplinary project work
  • Experience in life cycle assessment and techno-economic assessment
  • Written and spoken language proficiency in English
  • Knowledge on environmental system analysis, waste characterization methods, industrial ecology, or similar expertise.
  • Good command of analytical expertise and data science is regarded as beneficial.

    Ability to work in an international multidisciplinary environment is also an advantage. A collaborative mindset and proven track record is an advantage. Excellent communication skills and interpersonal skills as well as an excellent command of the English language (both written and spoken) are desired. 

    For further information please contact: Associate Professor Ciprian Cimpan e-mail: [email protected]

    About SDU Life Cycle Engineering

    SDU Life Cycle Engineering is focused on science and engineering research addressing resources, built environment and technology pathways to support sustainability transitions. The group employs quantitative systems analysis and industrial ecology methods, such as Life Cycle Assessment, Materials Flow Analysis, environmentally extended Input-Output Analysis, resource criticality assessment, Energy System Analysis, and socio-economic assessment.

    The Department of Green Technology is located in Odense, the main campus of the University of Southern Denmark. Odense is a fast-growing international community with an open Scandinavian culture, affordable housing and living costs.

    Conditions of employment

    Applicants are required to have a master’s degree (equivalent to a Danish master's degree) at the time of enrollment and employment. Employment as a PhD fellow is a 3-year salaried position. 

    Employment of a PhD fellow can only happen after the PhD School has approved the candidate for admission to the PhD school. Employment and enrollment will cease without further notice at the end of the period.

    A PhD fellow is not allowed to have any kind of sideline employment, while enrolled as PhD fellow at the faculty.

    Employment is governed by the Protocol on PhD Research Fellows signed by the Danish Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. Please check link for more information on salary and taxation. 
    The successful candidate will be enrolled at SDU in accordance with Faculty regulations and the Danish Ministerial Order on the PhD Programme at the Universities (PhD order), read more here. 

    The assessment process
    Read about the Assessment and selection process. Shortlisting may be used. 

    Application procedure
    The Faculty expects applicants to read the Faculty information for prospective PhD students.

    If you experience technical problems, you must contact [email protected]

    The application deadline is 25.12.2023.

    The application must be in English and must include the following - the required forms must be found at the Faculty website:

  • Completed TEK PhD application form for 5+3 applicants. Find the form at the Faculty website.
  • Motivation letter stating your specific interest, motivation and qualifications for the project in question (max. 2 pages). Upload in the field called “Project description”. 
  • Detailed Curriculum Vitae, describing research, publication and teaching experience, and including personal contact information.
  • Verified copies of the official bachelor diploma and master's diploma and transcripts of exams, both the original documents and in professional English translation.
  • Completed TEK PhD form for calculation grade point average. Find the form at the Faculty website. Upload in one of the fields called “Publication”. 
  • An official document describing the grading scheme of the awarding universities (if not Danish). Upload in one of the fields called “Publication”. 
  • An official and verified written assessment of the thesis or dissertation project from the grade giving institution, if the thesis/examination project is evaluated by approved/passed. The statement must clearly state that the candidate has been among the top 30 pct. in the graduation class for the study programme.
  • List of publications and maximum 2 examples of relevant publications, in case you have any publications. Please attach one pdf-file for each publication.
  • References (names and emails) and reference letters may also be included. You're welcome to use the form for reference letter at the Faculty website. 
  • The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

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