Doctoral student in Global Politics


Ref REK 2021/169

About Malmö University

Malmö University is an innovative, urban and international institute of higher education, located in the centre of Malmö. We have around 1,800 employees and 24,000 students. Our research and education are characterised by the role we believe a university should play in an open society — to contribute to sustainability and equality in a scientifically grounded way with external partners and stakeholders. Identifying and addressing the challenges of the future are of highest priority. Our researchers and students work collaboratively to create, share and spread knowledge in order to understand, explain and develop society — both locally and globally.


The Faculty of Culture and Society is a multidisciplinary faculty that includes the School of Arts and Communication, the Department of Global Political Studies and the Department of Urban Studies. The Faculty conducts postgraduate studies in the following subjects: Global Politics, Interaction Design, International Migration and Ethnic Relations, Media and Communication Studies and Urban Studies. The Faculty hosts two of the university’s five research centres as well as four research platforms. Read more about the Faculty of Culture and Society here.


The Department of Global Political Studies is a multidisciplinary research and educational environment with Bachelor programs in European Studies, Peace and Conflict Studies, International Migration and Ethnic Relations (IMER), Diversity Studies, International Relations, Human Rights, and Political Science. There are two Masters programs in IMER and Global Politics as well as two Ph.D. programmes in the same subjects. The Department’s educational programmes and research focus on global processes of change and their impact on societies and individuals. Our research environment also includes MIM (Malmö Institute for Studies of Migration, Diversity and Welfare) and the research platforms RUCARR (Russia and the Caucasus Regional Research), Collaborative Future-Making (CFM) and REDEM (Rethinking Democracy).  Read more about the Department of Global Political Studies here. 

Doctoral program in Global Politics

The study of Global Politics is multidisciplinary and includes approaches from the humanities as well as the social sciences. The scientific core of Global Politics is the study of transnational and international politics, both in terms of continuity and change, cooperation and conflict, power and protest, politics in and beyond the nation state, and the proliferation of actors in world politics. A key element in the research is to attempt to extend and deepen the understanding and study of the exercise of power at the global level. Global Politics includes analyses of political, social, economic and cultural relations and networks across national boundaries.

The goal of the programme is to develop the knowledge and skills required for the doctoral student to conduct research independently and contribute to the development of knowledge within the chosen subject area. The doctoral programme comprises 240 higher education credits (equivalent to four years of full-time studies), of which 60 credits are from courses. It is completed when the doctoral student publicly defends his/her printed doctoral dissertation (180 credits).

Research Project

We are seeking to fill 2 PhD positions as part of the project ‘AI and the everyday political-economy of global health’ financed by the Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program – Humanities and Society (WASP-HS) as part of their Graduate School alongside PhD training at Malmö University, with Dr Michael Strange as the principal investigator. The project is focused on the central question: How are governance structures emerging in response to the rapidly accelerating role of AI in global healthcare, and what are the implications for the distribution of power in global politics? The question includes two key issues.

First, we need to know how institutional actors (i.e. states and international governmental organisations), are responding, and their relationship to private actors currently leading these developments.

Second, to understand the role of society and the individual person within these developments, research needs to look at the wider social context in which civil society, professional medical associations, as well as everyday individuals, including marginalised groups, relate to, and experience, both the proliferation of AI and autonomous systems in global healthcare and emergent governance regimes.

The appointed PhDs are expected to concentrate on one of the two key issues identified. Applicants are advised to prepare a research plan relating closely to one of the above issues, but may also additionally explain how they would develop the other issue so that they can be considered for both positions.

Suitable candidates may come from a broad range of backgrounds, including but not limited to: International Relations, Public Health Sciences, Political Science, Sociology, IMER, Science and Technology Studies, and Participatory Design. Applicants able to demonstrate engagement in interdisciplinary research are preferred.

The project is connected to an existing project called ‘Precision Health and Everyday Democracy’ (PHED), as well as forthcoming initiatives building a rich and interdisciplinary environment spanning multiple faculties at Malmö University to advance research on the politics of healthcare. The PhDs will work in close collaboration with researchers from a diverse set of backgrounds.

Work duties

Those employed as doctoral students will mainly carry out their own postgraduate studies in the context of the above project (their work being located at Malmö University). Whilst required to ensure their work fits broadly within the overall project by working closely with the Principal Investigator Docent Dr Michael Strange, they will complete independent research. The doctoral student can accept additional departmental duties. These duties may not account for more than 20% of full-time. The regulations regarding employment as a doctoral student are found in the Higher Education Ordinance Ch. 5 Sections 1-7.

In addition to standard requirements of the PhD education at Malmö University, the PhDs will be expected to attend events organised by the WASP-HS Graduate School (see under ‘Further Information’).


Only those who are or have been admitted to third-cycle courses and study programmes at a higher education may be appointed to doctoral studentships (Chapter 5, Section 3 of the Higher Education Ordinance). Preparation of admission to postgraduate education and employment as a doctoral student take place in parallel. Those who have basic requirements for admission will have:

  • passed a degree at advanced level, or
  • completed course requirements of at least 240 ECTS, of which 60 ECTS at advanced level, or
  • in some other way, in- or outside Sweden, have acquired equivalent knowledge (HEO Chapter 7 section 39)

Specific requirements for this position:

  • Knowledge and skills corresponding to a social science or humanities second-cycle degree in a subject that is relevant to the field of Global Politics. For examples of relevant subjects, please see the above description of the department.
  • Ability to express oneself in written and spoken English is essential due to the working language of the project and WASP-HS Graduate School.

The following qualification/s would be of benefit:

Documented experience of studying any of the topics described in the above project description.

Assessment criteria

When selecting between applicants for vacant positions, the ability to complete postgraduate education is assessed (HEO Chapter 7 Section 5). The assessment is based on the basic and special eligibility requirements together with the additional qualifications that would be of benefit (see above).

Other important indicators of the ability to complete postgraduate education are the applicant's second-cycle (masters) thesis, scientific publications, other publications, and a research plan. The assessment of the research plan is based on its feasibility, originality and relevance to Global Politics. The research plan should have a clear, well expressed and motivated methodology. We encourage applicants with all kinds of theoretical and methodological approaches. The assessment is also based on the ability of the applicants to express themselves in English, in writing and orally. 

Further information

For questions related to the PhD project, contact Dr Michael Strange, Project Manager,

For questions regarding the PhD education, contact Professor Maja Povrzanović Frykman,

For other questions contact, Dr Magnus Ericson, Head of Department,

Information on the project ‘AI and the everyday political-economy of global health’ can be found here:

Information on WASP and its graduate school can be found here:

Information on the PHED project can be found here:

In our recruitment work, Malmö University has taken a stand regarding recruitment channels and marketing. We therefore decline all offers of advertising and recruitment assistance in connection with this advertisement.


You may apply for this position via Malmö University's recruitment system by clicking on the "Apply" button. As an applicant, you are responsible for ensuring that your application is completed in accordance with the advertisement, and that it is provided to the University no later than 2021-09-20. The applicant is responsible for ensuring that the University can read what is written in the application. If the application is not written in Swedish, English or any of the Nordic languages, the applicant is responsible for the application and its appendices being translated.

The application must include:

  • Completed application form for admission to Doctoral Education
  • Curriculum Vitae with up to three references (including title, affiliation, email address, phone number, and the relationship to the applicant)
  • Diplomas, transcript of records and other certificates relevant for the position
  • A brief research plan presenting the focus of research and a thesis concept, and how this relates to the specific post (max 4 pages). The research plan must contain an overall purpose, questions that the project intends to answer, an account of the methodological approach, a description of material collection and type of research material and an account of the theoretical framework
  • Independent work at advanced level (including master thesis or equivalent)


Upon admission to doctoral studies, the person will be offered the appointment of doctoral student (Higher Education Ordinance, Chap. 5, Sect. 3). The doctoral studentship is a fixed-term position comprising four years of full-time studies (Higher Education Ordinance Chapter 5 Section 7).

This position will only be filled provided that co-financing is secured.

Malmö University is a workplace and higher education institution that is characterised by an open and inclusive approach, where gender equality and equal terms add value to our activities.

Start date

The starting date is 1st February 2022.

Union representatives

SACO-S, Rebecka Johansson,   
OFR, Martin Reissner,  

PhD Student Union representative

Michel Anderlini,


We are looking forward to receiving your application!

You apply no later than 20/09/2021 by clicking the apply button.