Norwegian version of this page

Why choose this PhD programme?

Our researcher training in social science holds high international standards and qualifies you for an career within academia or other professions with high demands for skills and expertise.

The Faculty of Social Sciences houses about 5000 students and 500 employees. It consists of five Departments within the disciplines of psychology, economics, social anthropology, political science, sociology, and human geography. The Faculty is also home to two research centres, and one Norwegian Centre of Excellence in research: ARENA Centre for European Studies; TIK, Centre for Technology, Innovation, and Culture, and ESOP Centre for the study of equality, social organization, and performance.

The core strengths of the Faculty are its base research within the social sciences, academic breadth, and solid foundation in the various disciplines.

Read more about our research

The PhD programme

The PhD programme consists of an independent research project, including a doctoral thesis and an educational component. The programme is completed over 3 years, and the educational component amounts to 6-9 months of work.

The educational component consists of mandatory and elective courses, along with active participation in seminars and conferences.

Completion of the programme requires integration into, and participation in, an active research community, collaboration with other researchers, and affiliation with relevant research networks, both nationally and internationally.

The candidates are closely followed and receive academic guidance throughout the programme, but are themselves responsible for the planning and completion of the doctoral thesis.

Researcher's training at the Faculty of Social Sciences is organized as a single PhD programme, where the seven Departments are responsible for the academic content and following up the PhD candidates.

Choose one of our seven programme options:


We offer:

The researcher training in psychology holds a high international standard and qualifies you for leading roles in the private sector, public administration, education, and research institutions. Our candidates has the ability to critically reflect, analyze complex and challenging questions, communicate well, as well as having experience in teamwork.

The Department of Psychology is home to outstanding research at a high international level.

If you are ambitious, curious, and interested in new knowledge, not afraid of hard work, and enjoy working in team with others you should consider pursuing a PhD at the Department of Psychology.

The Doctoral programm will enable you to challenge yourself, to explore, and discover new knowledge with your colleagues.

With a PhD you will be highly qualified for work requiring independence, analytical skills, and productivity. Through the programme you will be trained in approaching problems from different perspective and to undertake and complete complex projects and processes.

We require:

Read more under application and admission.

Human geography

We offer:

  • Highly skilled researchers
  • Supervisors with extensive experience
  • Specialization in a field underdeveloped within other social sciences
  • An excellent social community among the PhD students
  • Cooperation with sociology at the Department as well as our partners in the Norwegian researchers school for geography gives access to external competence, including PhD courses.

We require:


We offer:

  • The leading academic community within the field of Economics in Norway, with world class researchers in macroeconomics, microeconomics, and econometrics.
  • A large, close-knit, and academically active PhD community
  • Experienced supervisors
  • Large portfolio of PhD courses

We require:

Social anthropology

We offer:

The Department of Social Anthropology has since its creation in 1964 evolved to one of Europe's leading institutions for anthropology. We are the largest community for anthropological research in Norway, and our researchers possess extensive international networks. As a PhD student at the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Oslo you will be part of a highly active research community active in shaping the future of the field. Several of the Department's researchers use the unique approach to societal study found in anthropology in order to create new understanding of challenges with respect to climate, technology, conflicts, and culture.

We require:

Read more under application and admission.


We offer:

  • Affiliation to a high-level sociological academic community with researchers in the international forefront within a range of topics
  • A research community with great thematic and methodological breadth
  • An excellent PhD community, both academically and socially
  • Supervision and seminars ensuring solid guidance on the thesis work
  • Internal courses in theory and research methods, along with opportunities to fit external (for example international) courses into the programme

We require:

Political science

We offer:

  • The foremost academic community in political science in Norway, with leading researchers and experienced supervisors within all topics on the subject field – international relations, comparative politics, political theory, and public policy
  • Good opportunities to balance specialization with the ability to relate your research to fundamental research questions within political science
  • The extensive educational activity on all levels, Bachelor, Master, PhD, and Post-doc (totaling around 1100 students) creates a vibrant community and offers good possibilities for gaining relevant experience in teaching
  • A large, close-knit, and active PhD community
  • PhD courses in theory and research methods, skills-oriented courses and seminars, as well as research seminars/conferences with opportunities for feedback on own work
  • The opportunity to attend all academic and academic-social activities at Norway's largest university

We require:

Technology, Innovation and Culture

We offer:

  • An interdisciplinary and growing academic community
  • A dynamic centre with a high level of project activity
  • National and international networks within both innovation and technology and science studies.

We require:


Apply for admission

If you wish to apply for a vacant PhD position or to apply with external funding, you must:

  • have a relevant Master's degree showing good results and ability to complete
  • create a description of your project based on prevalent norms
  • ensure your PhD project are relevant to the research activity undertaken at the Faculty of Social Sciences

Most PhD candidates are employed in a 3-4-year PhD position. Half of the candidates work at the respective departments/centres, and half work at an external institution or a university college.

Application and admission

Network and academic community

There are about 300 PhD candidates at the Faculty of Social Sciences. All candidates are affiliated with active research communities and participate at internal and international PhD courses.

All PhD candidates are encouraged to travel abroad, either as a part of the data collection process, field work tied to the doctoral thesis, or for supervision and other academic direction at another university.

Participation in external courses and conferences is also a central part of the researcher's education, where candidates get the opportunity to establish contacts and build networks.

Support and funding of travel/stay abroad

Job opportunities after the PhD

A PhD degree from the Faculty of Social Sciences enables a career as a researchers or other careers with high demands for knowledge and competences. The majority of our graduated PhD candidates work within R&D in the public sector. Work might include: reserach, academic direction, analysis, project work, counseling, clinical practice (psychologists), advisory roles, lecturing, or other educational-related work.

    Through the PhD degree you will acquire competences such as:

    • the ability to articulate academic research questions and to plan research and development work
    • written and oral academic presentation
    • the ability for analytical thinking and to think with an eye for results and solutions
    • project planning and the ability to work under time-pressure
    • the ability to see new possibilities and perspectives
    • the ability to work with complex academic questions

    Where can I work?

    Graduated PhD candidates from the Faculty of Social Sciences are among other places employed at:

    • The Institute for Social Research
    • The Work Research Institute
    • Statistics Norway
    • Norwegian central bank
    • South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority
    • PRIO (Peace Research Institute Oslo)
    • NOVA (Norwegian Social Research)
    • OsloMet
    Published Nov. 10, 2016 2:05 PM - Last modified Mar. 21, 2019 8:19 AM