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PhD Stipend in Living well in Care Systems (23-19061)

At the Faculty of Medicine – Department of Clinical Medicine – Aalborg University – a PhD position is available within the doctoral programme Health Care, Education, Organizations and Ethics. The scholarship is in the frame of the Marie Skłodowska Curie INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN. The PhD position is available from 1 September 2019 or soon hereafter.

Job description

The position

The PhD project will be part of the multidisciplinary Marie-Sklodowska Curie INNOVATEDIGNITY. The purpose of INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN is to develop a shared research and training agenda in order to educate the next generation of interdisciplinary health care researchers and care leaders across Europe. The project is a response to the Europe wide need to provide sustainable and dignified care for older people at home and in residential, municipal and hospital settings. The network will look in detail at how older people currently experience care, how they can be supported to live well and how technology, gender, workforce pressures and institutional factors can impact experiences of dignity and well-being.

INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN hosts 15 PhD/ESR positions and will research new ways of engaging with older people to shape digital developments, will examine new kinds of care delivery, including long term residential care and rapid transitions from acute hospital care to home, gender imbalances and workforce sustainability to create new forms of care activities that include, participatory models and co-design with old people in response to the growing lack of sustainability in older person care and evidence of current care failings. Through co-supervision by academics and non academic partners INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN ESRs will engage in critical, practical, and policy impact exploration of the contribution and the reach of their individual doctoral study projects to respond to three interconnecting research themes:

  • Dignity within digital innovation.
  • Living well in care systems.
  • Gender and sustainable care.

In addition to undertaking a doctoral research degree, the ESRs will engage in a series of collaborative research and training events to develop advanced skills and expertise in tackling challenges linked to innovations in dignified, sustainable care systems for old people. They will also participate in collaborative project groups to provide for example, analyses of national level statistical data, and to make full use of old peoples’ insights to lead care innovation.

The concrete PhD project

The PhD will be carried out in the Clinical Nursing Unit, Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University – an innovative cluster of nursing-based environments for education and research within the fields of clinical nursing. The title is ‘Living well in supported care: A focus on the oldest 85+ years living in residential care’. The PhD candidate will:

  1. Investigate how staff use existing care systems to keep older people in their own home for as long as possible and assess if the best treatment is possible in this situation.
  2. Examine how staff talk to, refer and inform the older citizen 85 years+ about possible choices to be made.
  3. Assess how staff achieve aims of older person/conversely fail to meet aims of older person with specific reference to dignity in care.
  4. What kinds of staff and staff competencies are needed to meet the needs of the very old 85+ years in daily care in nursing homes or older person residential housing.

The methodology will combine observational studies and interviews with older people in residential care in an urban and rural setting, and focus groups with staff in residential care. Ethnographic perspectives will guide the analysis of data.


The candidate holds a Master of Science degree and:

  • good verbal and writing skills in English and where applicable be proficient in the relevant language for the PhD project (Danish)
  • be highly motivated and have a personal commitment to the success of research project as a whole
  • a proven ability to work in a network and an aptitude to meet challenges
  • demonstrate an excellent understanding of the challenges in sustainable dignified care
  • demonstrate awareness and ability in an appropriate range of research methods
  • demonstrate an excellent understanding of ethical requirements in research with old people
  • demonstrate experience of working/studying in the field(s) of caring science, older person advocacy, policy development, nursing, allied health, digital product development, public engagement, participatory methods/ co-design or lifeworld research
  • be an early career researcher with less than four years of research since graduation.
  • willingness and ability to undertake international and/or industrial placements as and when appropriate.
  • willingness and ability to travel flexibly to attend INNOVATEDIGNITY’s Programme of Training activities placement and events when required
  • The researchers may be a national of a member State of an associated country or of any other third country.

How to apply

Applicants should submit all documents in English:

  1. A proposal of between 1500 and 2000 words that elaborates your research motivation and interest, how you plan to undertake the research project.
  2. A CV indicating clearly that the applicant has not undertaken 4 or more years of research. Please note, the INNOVATEDIGNITY Network is particularly interested in early stage researchers who are currently engaged in caring and leadership activities. Your CV should therefore also indicate any engagement in communities, non-government organisations, and participatory approaches you see as relevant for the research, public engagement and advocacy relevant aspects of the INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN.
  3. Specify Master's Degree qualifications. Applicants should have obtained a Master's Degree with a minimum grade of B+/ 2.1.
  4. Following shortlisting, candidates will be required to provide a copy of their Masters Degree in the English language.
  5. The names of two referees. The referees of successful candidates only will be contacted.
  6. Specify residency of the last three years (1 September 2016 to 1 September 2019). Applicants cannot have spent more than 12 months in the country (work/study/living) of the hosting institute in the 3 years immediately prior to the recruitment date of 1 September 2019. If an applicant had more places of residence in this period, please indicate the periods and countries. The researchers may be a national of a member State of an associated country or of any other third country.
  7. Applications should be made via the University of Brighton’s e-recruitment system - https://jobs.brighton.ac.uk/Vacancy.aspx?id=4796&forced=2 - and should be submitted by 11:59 CET (10:59 GMT) on 25 July 2019.
  8. For any further inquiries about the projects, or any other queries, please email supervisor, Associate Professor Mette Grønkjær, mette.groenkjaer@rn.dk. For any further inquiries about the doctoral program Health Care, Education, Organizations and Ethics, please email Professor Erik Elgaard Sørensen, ees@rn.dk 
  9. General information on INNOVATEDIGNITY-ITN https://innovatedignity.eu/
  10. Full information on recruitment: https://euraxess.ec.europa.eu/
  11. General information about the Marie Sklodowska Curie (MSCA) Innovative Training Network program. https://ec.europa.eu/research/mariecurieactions/actions/get-funding/innovative-training-networks_en)
  12. For more information of The Doctoral School in Medicine at Aalborg University https://www.medicine.aau.dk/doctoral-school/phd/

General procedure for PhD stipends at Aalborg University
PhD stipends are allocated to individuals who hold a Master's degree. PhD stipends are normally for a period of 3 years. It is a prerequisite for allocation of the stipend that the candidate will be enrolled as a PhD student at the Doctoral School in Medicine, Biomedical Science and Technology in accordance with the regulations of Ministerial Order No. 1039 of August 27, 2013 on the PhD Programme at the Universities and Certain Higher Artistic Educational Institutions. According to the Ministerial Order, the progress of the PhD student shall be assessed at regular points in time. It is a prerequisite for continuation of salary payment that the previous progress is approved at the time of the evaluation. 
The qualifications of the applicant will be assessed by an assessment committee. On the basis of the recommendation of the assessment committee, the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine will make a decision for allocating the stipend.

Please apply through the University of Brighton's e-recruitment website: https://jobs.brighton.ac.uk/Vacancy.aspx?id=5214&forced=1

DO NOT USE the "Apply Online" link!


Appointment and salary as a PhD fellow are according to the Ministry of Finance Circular of November 10, 2015, on the Collective Agreement for Academics in Denmark, Appendix 5, regarding PhD fellows, and with the Ministry of Finance current Circular on the employment structure at Danish Universities.     

Vacancy number



Wed Jul 24 00:00:00 CEST 2019

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