How to apply

Next admission opportunity

See below for a special call for applications to the Research School of International Center for Water Cooperation. Next call for a regular round of applications will be announced on this webpage during the spring. Check for updates.


Three (3) PhD student positions at the Research School of International Center for Water Cooperation, Department of Peace and Conflict Research, UFV-PA 2014/2788

Deadline November 3, 2014.

The review of the applications will only begin after the deadline.

Please note that potential supervisors should not be contacted in advance.

The positions are fully funded and are intended to begin in January 2015. The PhD program lasts for 4 years, including compulsory course work corresponding to about 1 year of full time studies. PhD candidates are often involved in teaching or administration up to 20% of their time, so it may take up to 5 years to complete the PhD program.

The applicant is responsible for sending in a complete application. The Department is unable a) to point out to applicants that material is lacking; and b) to provide feedback to unsuccessful applicants. Applicants from previous rounds are requested to submit an entirely new and complete application.

Apply online here

What to submit

The application should be in English, except for writing samples which could be in either Swedish or English. The documents submitted should consist of the following: 

a) a completed application form

b) a short personal letter (1‒2 pages)

c) CV

d) certified transcripts of academic records  

e) a project plan relevant to the topic of international water cooperation (3‒5 pages)

f) letters of reference/recommendation (max 2 letters) or a list of references (max 2) which can be contacted.

g) writing samples, preferably on international water cooperation issues (1‒3 samples)

Application form

Download the application form from here.Print, sign, scan and submit.

Short personal letter

A personal letter (1‒2 pages) on your research interests, career plans, why you are choosing our institution, other relevant personal information, etc. If more than one writing sample is submitted, rank them in order of priority we should give them in the evaluation.


A Curriculum Vitae, including relevant academic background, work experience and a list of publications.

Certified transcripts of academic records

Authorized copies of academic documents, such as course records, diplomas, and certificates, which demonstrate basic or special eligibility for PhD studies in peace and conflict research. Include clear records of the grades obtained, and for courses taken outside the Swedish university system a certified explanation of the grading system used.

See more below under Eligibility and Admission Criteria.

A project plan 

A project plan, that is, a memo of some 3‒5 pages about the proposed dissertation on the research problem you want to address within the theme of international water cooperation, whatever you may have in mind in terms of theoretical grounding, dependent variable, empirical material, methodology to be used in addressing the problem, etc.

These three PhD positions are part of the Research School of the UNESCO Category II International Centre for Water Cooperation. The overarching purpose of the Research School, which aims to recruit more PhD positions in the future, is to develop knowledge on water cooperation in its broadest sense with a primary focus on water for peace and development. The Research School aims to critically analyse the linkage between water sharing and international conflict and cooperation, and thereby improve the understanding of the mechanisms by which water sharing can act as a catalyst for peace. The research objective necessitates an interdisciplinary approach and collaborative understanding of the water management and its contribution to peace and development. The UNESCO Category II Centre has been established in collaboration between the Stockholm International Water Institute, Gothenburg University, Uppsala University, Swedish Government and UNESCO. The Research School is a joint effort of the UNESCO Centre and Uppsala University. The candidates are expected to interact with colleagues and collaborators of the International Centre for Water Cooperation.

Letters of recommendation 

You can either a) submit letters from academic scholars that are familiar with your work (maximum two) or b) list references who can be contacted should you be shortlisted (maximum two). 

Writing samples 

Submit samples of prior research on or relevant to peace and conflict research and international water cooperation (1‒3), preferable in English and otherwise in Swedish. If more than one sample is sent in, mention in the personal letter which ones are to be given priority in the evaluation. If any of the samples submitted have multiple authors, they should be accompanied by a statement certifying and detailing the specific contribution made by the applicant.

Eligibility and Admission Criteria 

The evaluation of applications is done in two steps: first, it is determined if the applicant meets the basic and special eligibility for admission; second, for those fulfilling basic and special eligibility, additional criteria are used to rank the candidates. 

Step 1: Basic and Special Eligibility

Basic eligibility for admission to the PhD program, the applicant is required to have a degree at advanced level, fulfilled course requirements for at least 240 credit points, of which at least 60 credit points at advanced level, or otherwise acquired equivalent knowledge in Sweden or abroad.

Special eligibility for admission to the PhD program, the applicant is required to have satisfactory results on courses carrying 90 credit points in the social sciences, containing at least one semester (30 credit points) of peace and conflict studies, or a closely related subject.

Step 2: Basis of Evaluation

The main criterion is formulated thus: In order to be admitted, a prospective PhD candidate shall—through relevant and in writing documented scientific ability—be judged able to, within the given time frame (4 years), author a PhD dissertation that will, at a minimum, be classified as ‘good’ by international standards.

Applicants who meet the basic and special eligibility for admission are evaluated based on their expected ability to profit from advanced graduate training and to produce, with proper training, independent high-quality academic research. Consequently, the evaluation is primarily based on submitted samples of prior research production completed by the applicant in the course of undergraduate or graduate training, or other research activities, for example, a B.A. and/or a master thesis (“C-uppsats”, “D-uppsats” or “masteruppsats”), and academic publications.

The samples submitted are evaluated with the purpose of obtaining an informed judgment about the applicant’s research talents rather than his or her command of a given literature. Hence, the samples submitted should preferably demonstrate those talents in as clear a manner as possible rather than take the form of literature reviews. Ideally, the samples should be of such a quality that (with minor revisions) they would be publishable as research articles in scholarly journals (or already published).

Besides the evaluation of prior research production, the applicant’s performance in prior course work is taken into consideration. Applicants should therefore include clear records of what they have accomplished in this regard, the grades obtained, and (for courses taken outside the Swedish university system) a certified explanation of the grading system used.

Four additional criteria also apply. These are:

  • Documented knowledge (studies) or experience of the field of international water cooperation.
  • The centrality of the proposed PhD theme in relation to peace and conflict research in general and to the Research School of International Center for Water Cooperation in particular.
  • The pedagogical skills of the applicant, as documented in the application or otherwise.
  • An assessment of the contribution of the applicant as a resource to the department in terms of the three tasks of Swedish universities: teaching, research and societal interaction.

Who decides about admission?

The Head of the Department decides about admission for the PhD candidates. The Department’s PhD Candidate Admission Committee and the Collegium of Supervisors will advise the decision-making authority.

Downloadable documents

General syllabus

Application form (English)

Application form (Swedish)


Kristine Höglund (Director of Studies, PhD Programme)
Phone: +46 (0)18-471 63 87
Fax: +46 (0)18 69 51 02