Postdoctoral Fellow, Innovation in Building Processes job with NORWEGIAN UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY – NTNU

About the position 

The Department of Architecture and Planning (IAP) is looking for a postdoctoral fellow for research projects within the area of more optimal building processes, connected to zero emission neigbourhoods. The position is to be hired for a period of 2 years, starting as soon as possible in the spring of 2022.

About the ZEN Centre

The postdoctoral fellow will primarily work on research carried out as part of the ZEN research centre at NTNU and SINTEF. The Research Centre on Zero Energy Neighbourhoods in Smart Cities (ZEN Centre) is a Centre for Environment-friendly Energy Research (FME) funded by the Research Council of Norway and the consortium partners. The main objective of the ZEN Centre is to develop knowledge, competitive products and solutions that will lead to realization of sustainable neighbourhoods that have zero emissions of greenhouse gases related to their production, operation and transformation. The Research Centre is organized as a joint NTNU/SINTEF unit, hosted by the Faculty of Architecture and Design, NTNU. The Centre encompasses the value chain of market and public players needed in order to realize zero emission neighbourhoods, including municipalities, governmental organizations, Norwegian construction industry and energy companies. The post doc will be part of the research team under workpackage 2 “Innovation, Policy Measures and Business Models”. More information about the ZEN Centre is available at


Globally, goals and specific targets are set up to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and secure future supply of energy. At the Research Centre on Zero Emission Neighbourhoods (ZEN) in Smart Cities, we create solutions for the zero emission buildings and neighbourhoods of the future. This is our contribution to a low carbon society. A zero emission neighbourhood aims to reduce its direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions towards zero within its life cycle. To achieve zero emission targets, buildings and neighbourhoods must be planned, constructed and operated as optimal, and true to the ambition as possible. This implicate strengthening the focus on optimal building processes.

You will report to Head of Department

Duties of the position

Area of research

The main challenge is to ensure coherence between the planned result of a construction project, and the actual, built result. The postdoctoral position aims to explore innovative, including circular, solutions for Zero Emission Neighbourhoods, with a particular focus on identification of obstacles to a resource-optimal building process. Furthermore, innovative solutions will be explored in close collaboration with researchers and partners in ZEN. Partners in ZEN are active contributors to the project, and can provide cases and data, as well as professional experience that is useful in research.

The research should pursue one or more of the following tasks:

  • Identify and concretize obstacles to a resource-optimal building process, building upon the Norwegian phase norm ”Next step”.
  • Identify innovative solutions to the obstacles to a resource efficient building in collaboration with partners and researchers in ZEN.
  • Examine how to achieve coherence between ambitions in a project, the built result and possible effects in terms of sustainability in a life cycle perspective.
  • Examine how project frameworks, strategies, methods and tools can support the ambitions, vision and goals.
  • Contribute to work on regulatory challenges in ZEN-projects, related to building process.
  • Cooperate with researchers on related issues within ZEN, in particular in workpackage 2.

Required selection criteria

  • The requirement for the position is a completed Norwegian PhD degree in a relevant field, a completed foreign PhD approved as equivalent to a Norwegian PhD in a relevant field, or competence to an equivalent level documented with scientific work of the same amount and quality.
  • English language fluency (spoken and written) is required.

The appointment is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants and national guidelines for appointment as PhD, post doctor and research assistant  

Preferred selection criteria

Factors that will contribute positively to the evaluation and that should be documented in the application:

  • Experience with research and practice based work related to innovation or transition theory applied in a zero emission context, will be highly valued.
  • It will also be highly valued if the candidate has knowledge of or experience with applying or interpreting relevant areas of regulations or regulative systems.
  • Much of the data collection will be made in Norwegian companies, and proficiency in Norwegian or another Scandinavian language is an advantage.

Personal characteristics

Personal qualities such as academic team player, creative, analytical, self-driven, flexible and engaged scholar will be emphasised.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, in terms of the qualification requirements specified in the advertisement.

We offer 

Salary and conditions

As a Postdoctoral Fellow (code 1352) you are normally paid from gross NOK 545 300 per annum before tax, depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The period of employment is 2 years.  Professor Geir Karsten Hansen will be supervisor of the postdoctoral fellow. 

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates who by assessment of the application and attachment are seen to conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. After the appointment you must assume that there may be changes in the area of work. 

It is a prerequisite you can be present at and accessible to the institution on a daily basis. 

About the application 

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be in English

Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above.  Incomplete applications will not be considered.

If, for any reason, you have taken a career break or have had an atypical career and wish to disclose this in your application, the selection committee will take this into account, recognizing that the quantity of your research may be reduced as a result. 

The application must include: 

  • CV, certificates and diplomas 
  • transcripts and diplomas for bachelor’s-, master’s- and PhD degrees.  
  • Research plan: 2-3 page description of “Ideas for research approach” including preffered focus areas and methods suggested
  • Academic works – published or unpublished – that you would like to be considered in the assessment 
  • Name and address of three referees 

If all, or parts, of your education has been taken abroad, we also ask you to attach documentation of the scope and quality of your entire education. Description of the documentation required can be found here. If you already have a statement from NOKUT, please attach this as well. 

Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation. 

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal and interpersonal qualities. Motivation, ambitions, and potential will also count in the assessment of the candidates. 

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment – DORA. 

General information 

Working at NTNU 

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background.  

The city of Trondheim is a modern European city with a rich cultural scene. Trondheim is the innovation capital of Norway with a population of 200,000. The Norwegian welfare state, including healthcare, schools, kindergartens and overall equality, is probably the best of its kind in the world. Professional subsidized day-care for children is easily available. Furthermore, Trondheim offers great opportunities for education (including international schools) and possibilities to enjoy nature, culture and family life and has low crime rates and clean air quality.  

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted. 

Under the freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova), your name, age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested not to have your name entered on the list of applicants. 

If you have any questions about the position, please contact Professor Geir Karsten Hansen, email: [email protected] If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact Desiree Briggs, [email protected] 

Please submit your application electronically via with your CV, diplomas and certificates. Applications submitted elsewhere will not be considered. Diploma Supplement is required to attach for European Master Diplomas outside Norway. Chinese applicants are required to provide confirmation of Master Diploma from China Credentials Verification (CHSI).  

If you are invited for interview you must include certified copies of transcripts and reference letters. 

Application deadline: 01.05.2022 

NTNU – knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

Department of Architecture and Planning

Our fields of expertise are architecture, urban design, physical and urban ecological planning, Smart Cities as well as real estate development and facilities management. We also work with ambient aesthetics, land use and transport planning, urban renewal, densification and urban redevelopment, as well as urban ecological planning in lower income countries. The Department of Architecture and Planning is one of four departments in the Faculty of Architecture and Design

Deadline 1st May 2022

Employer NTNU – Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Municipality Trondheim

Scope Fulltime

Duration Temporary

Place of service Trondheim, Gløshaugen

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