Karolinska Institutet

The Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (MEB) is among the largest departments of epidemiology in Europe with special focus on increasing our knowledge of the aetiology of different diseases. Our department consists of researchers, doctoral students, biostatisticians, data collectors and database administrators as well as administrative personnel, in total some 250 staff. The department is situated at campus Solna. Further information can be found at ki.se/meb

A doctoral position is an available doctoral education project to which a PhD student is to be recruited. After the selection process the process for admission to doctoral education will commence. An admission decision will not be taken until an individual study plan has been approved by the departmental admission board.

For more information regarding doctoral (PhD) education, see: http://www.ki.se/doctoral

Research group
The student will join the research group of Professor Nancy Pedersen.

The research of Prof. Pedersen’s group focuses on epidemiology of aging and age-related diseases, using genetic, molecular, cognitive and register-based data, among others. We work in the fields of gerontology, neurology and genetics, and use methods such as genome-wide analyses, Mendelian Randomization, life-course trajectories, gene-environment interaction studies and twin modelling approaches. We use several cohorts based on sub-studies from the Swedish Twin Registry, and other resources such as UK Biobank and large genetic case-control datasets on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. In addition to Prof. Pedersen, the group currently consists of two Associate Professors, a clinical associate in neurology, 3 postdocs, 9 doctoral students, and master students.

The doctoral education project and the duties of the student
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is the second-most common neurodegenerative disorder, affecting perhaps 2% of older individuals worldwide. Much remains to be understood about its causes and underlying molecular pathology. Moreover, at present, therapeutics available for PD sufferers only offer symptomatic relief, and there are no known medications to prevent the disease’s onset, or slow or halt its progression.

We are conducting a research program with three major aims:

1) to clarify which environmental exposures cause PD;

2) to examine molecular pathways that underlie PD development;

3) to validate promising new therapeutic candidates for uses in PD prevention and/or treatment.

The student will design and conduct epidemiological studies across these three aims. The research projects will expose the student to a diversity of cutting-edge methods in conventional, genetic and pharmacological epidemiology. These may include statistical analysis of DNA methylation and genome-wide association data, the use of polygenic risk scores, and Mendelian randomization approaches. Research will combine large molecular and genetic datasets on PD cases with the use of Sweden’s world-leading health and prescribed drug registers, enabling truly unique epidemiological studies.

Entry requirements for doctoral education at KI
To be eligible for doctoral education following requirements has to be met:

General entry requirements
A person meets the general entry requirements for doctoral/third-cycle/PhD education (according to Higher Education Ordinance Chapt 7, section 39) if he/she:

  1. has been awarded advanced/second-cycle/master qualification (i.e. master degree) or
  2. has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second-cycle/master level, or
  3. has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

Specific entry requirements

  • We expect applicants to have an educational qualification in epidemiology, statistics, bioinformatics, public health, and/or medicine.
  • Proficiency in English equivalent to the course English B/English 6 at Swedish upper secondary school: Proficiency in the English language can be documented by an internationally recognized test such as TOEFL or IELTS, see web-link below for more information. Applicants who meet the general entry requirements (1 or 2 above) from a university in one of the Nordic countries fulfill the requirements in English. For more information regarding general and specific entry requirements: http://ki.se/en/education/entry-requirements-eligibility-for-doctoral-education
  • Experience of using statistical programs Stata or R, along with scripting in UNIX, are desirable.

Please note: the projects will be purely analytical and will not involve laboratory work – these expertise are not required, nor merited.

Personal characteristics:
We seek an ambitious and diligent student with enthusiasm for improving public health. The candidate should thrive working within a collaborative team, but also be motivated to advance his/her own projects independently.

Assessment criteria
A selection will be made among qualified applicants on the basis of the ability to benefit from doctoral education. Karolinska Institutet uses the following bases of assessment:
- Documented subject knowledge of relevance to the area of research
- Analytical skill
- Other documented knowledge or experience that may be relevant to doctoral studies in the subject

The qualifications of the applicants will be evaluated on an overall basis.

Terms and conditions
All doctoral students at KI receive financial support during their doctoral education and employment on a doctoral studentship is the most common sort of support. During the time between recruitment and admission a short-term employment can be offered for up to 6 months.

Application process
An application must contain the following documents in Swedish or English:

  • A personal letter and curriculum vitae
  • A copy of degree certificates and associated certificates
  • A copy of degree projects and any previous publications

The application is to be submitted through the MyNetwork recruitment system.

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
First day of employment According to agreement
Salary Monthly salary
Reference number 2-5404/2017
  • Lina Werner, HR-Officer., Email: lina.werner@ki.se
  • Dylan Williams, Postdoctoral Researcher., Email: dylan.williams@ki.se
  • Karin Wirdefeldt., karin.wirdefeldt@ki.se
Union representative
  • Ann Almqvist, OFR, 08-524 861 99
  • Ulrika Zagai, SACO, 08--524 871 84, ulrika.zagai@ki.se
  • Henry Wölling, SEKO, henry.wolling@ki.se
Published 29.Nov.2017
Last application date 10.Jan.2018 11:59 PM CET

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