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Vacant PhD scholarship at the Faculty of Law

The University of Copenhagen

The Faculty of Law at the University of Copenhagen hereby announces one fully funded PhD position in cooperation with the Faculty of Law at the University of Iceland. The University of Iceland is committed to the highest academic standards of excellence in teaching and research.

The cooperation entails the completion of the three-year PhD programme in close collaboration with both the University of Copenhagen and the University of Iceland. At the completion of the PhD programme, PhD candidates will be awarded a joint PhD degree from the two universities following a positive evaluation of their PhD thesis and defence.

The position is available from 1 February 2022 or as soon as possible by agreement.

Applicants are especially encouraged to submit applications for PhD studies in fields relating to resources and shipping in the increasingly accessible Arctic Area.

The benefits of the cooperation

  • Joint PhD degree which is recognised in Denmark and Iceland.
  • Active participation in the research community at both universities.
  • Increased international contact and research mobility.


  • You are enrolled at both the Faculty of Law at the University of Iceland and University of Copenhagen.
  • The programme is conducted in English and the PhD thesis is submitted in English.
  • You will generally work for 2 years at the University of Copenhagen and for 1 year at the University of Iceland, but other arrangements are possible pursuant to concrete agreement between the universities.

Additional information: Agreement on cooperation (pdf).

The PhD Programme
The PhD will be part of the wider PhD Programme offered by the Faculty of Law. The goal of the PhD Programme is threefold: to prepare candidates for a continuing career in teaching and research; to educate a new generation of scholars to produce high-quality independent research; and to equip them with the analytical and problem-solving skills required for a successful career in both the public and private sectors.

The Faculty of Law offers supervision by highly qualified academics and provides an excellent opportunity to research contemporary legal issues in an intellectually stimulating environment.

Successful PhD candidates are required to

  • Actively engage in the research environment at the University of Copenhagen and the University of Iceland; participate in international conferences, courses and meetings relevant to their research project;
  • Comply with the formal requirements of the PhD programme;
  • Contribute to teaching undergraduate and graduate level courses in Danish or English offered by the Faculty of Law;
  • Conduct independent and high quality research under the supervision of a senior member of academic staff at the Faculty.


  • Applicants must have obtained a degree that corresponds to the Danish Master of Laws degree which is a second cycle 120 ECTS degree (two years of full-time studies), that builds on a 180 ECTS bachelor’s degree (three years of full-time studies) or equivalent qualifications. Applicants with a non-Danish Master’s degree will have their degree assessed by the Ministry of Higher Education and Science in order to establish, if the Master’s degree is equivalent to a Danish Master’s degree.
  • Applicants must have obtained a minimum overall grade average of 8.2 or above at the Master’s level in accordance with the Danish grading scale (for Danish scale, see ).
  • Applicants may submit their application before they have completed their Master’s Degree. The Master’s degree must be obtained before the start date.
  • Applicants must document an aptitude for research through the meritorious assessment of their final thesis, publications or academic recommendations in order to show that they are capable of undertaking the demanding task of writing a PhD thesis.
  • Applicants must have excellent language skills in English and have excellent communications skills. Applicants must be able to teach at an academic level in Danish or English and to follow PhD courses in English.

Application procedure

Click ’Apply now’ below to be taken to the online application form.

We advise you to have the following documents ready before you begin your online application:

  • Research project proposal: This should include the following: (1) objective(s) of the research, (2) major research questions, (3) review of relevant literature, (4) methodology to be applied in the research, and (5) a timetable that plans for all course requirements to have been met within three years. The project description must elaborate on the value of the proposed research project in terms of its relevance to existing and future research in the field. It is recommended that the project proposal does not exceed 6 A4 pages (excluding bibliography). The document must be in Times New Roman, font size 12, spacing 1.5 with all margins (right, left, top and bottom) set to 2 cm
  • Curriculum vitae (maximum 2 pages).
  • Diplomas and transcripts: Certified copies of original diploma(s) and transcripts (both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree) in the original language and an authorized English translation if they are issued in other language than English or Danish.
  • Grading scale: A certified explanation of grading scale in the original language and an authorized English translation if it is available in another language than English or Danish.
  • Letter of motivation: Explain the choice of the Faculty of Law at the University of Copenhagen and Faculty of Law at the University of Iceland as a host institutions for the proposed project and outline how the project fits within the research priorities at the Faculty (maximum 1 page).
  • Documentation of English level: Documentation of English level can for instance be documented by an excellent IELTS or TOEFL test.

Submit your application electronically in English.

University of Copenhagen wishes to reflect the surrounding society and therefore encourages all interested parties regardless of personal background to apply for the position.

Recruitment process
Following the application deadline, the Associate Dean of Research will pre-select PhD applications that will proceed to the assessment stage upon the recommendation of the Selection Committee. Applicants are pre-selected for further assessment in line with the Faculty’s recruitment needs as described in this job advertisement. This is carried out based on the overall assessment of the applicant’s educational qualifications, the quality of the submitted research proposal and its relevance to the Faculty’s research agenda, and other relevant qualifications (e.g. relevant professional experience, any previous academic publications etc.). All applicants are then notified by the HR Centre as to whether their application has proceeded to the assessment stage. The assessment is carried out by an expert assessment committee. Selected applicants will be notified of the composition of the assessment committee. When the committee has completed its assessment, each applicant has the opportunity to comment on the assessment. A number of qualified applicants will be invited for an interview.

Terms of employment
You are paid by the institution of employment. While being employed by the Faculty of Law at the University of Copenhagen you will be employed in accordance with the agreement between the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations and the Ministry of Finance concerning the salary of PhD students. If you are offered a PhD position, you will receive a regular monthly salary in accordance with Danish law and you will be entitled to an annual research budget. The Faculty does not provide accommodation. For salary information while being employed at the Faculty of Law at the University of Iceland, contact: Guðrún Alda Elísdóttir, Human Resource Manager,

If you are offered the position a certificate of criminal record must be submitted.

Additional Information

Please find additional information about the joint PhD programme here:

Contact information
Information about the recruitment process is available from Lotte Strandberg HR South City, e-mail:, please refer to ID number: #1 211-0806/21-2H

Closing date for applications  

The closing date for applications is 17 October 2021, 23:59 GMT+1. Applications received after the deadline will not be considered. Likewise incomplete applications (i.e. without all required documents) will be rejected.


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Application deadline: 17-10-2021Employment start: 01-02-2022Department/Location: The Faculty of Law

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