Doctoral position in adaptation of urban sewerage network to a changing climate

Sweden Water Research in collaboration with Faculty of Engineering at Lund University (LTH) and Nordvästra Skånes Vatten och Avlopp AB (NSVA) is looking for you who are willing to pursue a PhD degree and are interested in stormwater and cloudburst management. You will research future methodologies to design and plan the urban sewer network in a changing climate.

Doctoral student in water and environmental engineering


Sweden Water Research is a research and development company that researches water and develops new effective solutions to meet the water services industry’s future challenges. We both initiate and lead projects, networks, and collaborate and provide active support for innovations in the water sector. Sweden Water Research is owned by NSVA, Sydvatten AB and VA SYD and is financed through each organization allocating at least one percent of their revenue to the R&D company. Via the owners, the company is anchored in 18 municipalities in Skåne, Sweden. The head office is located at Ideon in the city of Lund.

Workplace description

This industrial doctoral student position is affiliated with Sweden Water Research, NSVA and LTH. The accepted doctoral student will have access to a workplace at all organizations.

Project description & tasks:

The focus of this employment is stormwater and cloudburst management in a changing climate. The aim is to develop and demonstrate a methodology in which the combined effects of climate change and the city’s future expansion at different time horizons are part of climate adaptation plans for stormwater and flood management.

Two demarcated urban catchment areas, one in Helsingborg and one in Landskrona will function as pilot areas. The project’s goals will be achieved through both hydrodynamic and sea level/GIS simulations and measurements. This means that the doctoral student will work with measured time series of rain, sea levels, and any rivers that flow through the pilot areas. In addition to projecting the future climate, future development plans for the areas must also be projected to be able to estimate which vulnerabilities and damage costs may occur and at what time horizon. Existing master plans, expansion plans and damage cost models (in the scientific literature) can be used to predict damage costs from the water utility company’s perspective.

The doctoral student is expected to develop a planning methodology for climate adaptation in a systematic analysis of the developed predictive models [i.e., climate, urban expansion, and their consequences / damage costs]. This planning methodology must facilitate the full implementation of chosen climate adaptation measures before future needs are relevant.

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in research projects and third cycle courses. The work duties will also be teaching and other departmental duties (no more than 20%).


A person meets the general admission requirements for third-cycle courses and study programmes if he or she:

  1. has graduated at advanced level,
  2. has completed course requirements of at least 240 higher education credits, of which at least 60 higher education credits at advanced level, or
  3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

Additional requirements:

  • very good oral and written proficiency in English.
  • Driving license (B) required.

Assessment criteria:

Selection of candidates is based on the assessed ability to carry out the postgraduate education. The assessment of ability is mainly based on the study results at the undergraduate and advanced level.

The following are taken into account:

  • Knowledge and skills relevant to the dissertation and the subject.
  • Assessed ability to work independently and ability to formulate and tackle scientific problems.
  • Ability for written and oral communication in both Swedish and English.
  • Other experiences relevant to the education at postgraduate level, e.g., professional experience.

An ideal candidate for this project has…

  • hands-on experience in working with sewerage networks, preferably with regard to adaptation to changing climate.
  • good knowledge of programming in Matlab or Python is important and an advantage.
  • documented experience of qualified work or other relevant competence regarding hydrodynamic modelling of sewerage networks, rivers, and other water systems.
  • has good oral and written proficiency in Swedish language.

Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive, motivation, and independence, and how the applicant, through his or her experience and skills, is deemed to have the abilities necessary for successfully completing the third cycle programme.


Only those admitted to third cycle studies may be appointed to a doctoral studentship. Third cycle studies at the Faculty of Engineering consist of full-time studies for 4 years. A doctoral studentship is a fixed-term employment of a maximum of 5 years (including 20% departmental duties). Doctoral studentships are regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), chapter 5, 1-7 §§.

Safety talks and health control will take place when you visit civilian protected objects.

Instructions for application

Applications shall be written in English or in Swedish and include a cover letter stating the reasons why you are interested in the position and in what way the research project corresponds to your interests and educational background. The application must also contain a CV, degree certificate or equivalent, and other documents you wish to be considered (transcripts of records, contact information for your references, letters of recommendation, etc.).

Sweden Water Research, NSVA and LTH welcome applicants with different backgrounds and experiences. We see equality and diversity as a strength and an asset. Welcome with your application!

Questions & application

Questions about the position are answered by Henrik Aspegren, CEO Sweden Water Research 073-03 23 056 or Åsa Peetz NSVA 010-490 98 09,

Send your application to no later than 17 April 2022. Ongoing selection takes place.

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