Shaping European Research Leaders for Marine Sustainability (SEAS)


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SEAS guide for applicants

Guide for applicants for SEAS fellowships

This page contains information on eligibility rules, application requirements, submissions procedures, evaluation procedure and employment conditions.

SEAS graphics


SEAS (Shaping European Research Leaders for Marine Sustainability) is a career and mobility fellowship programme for 37 postdoctoral research fellows within marine sustainability, managed by the University of Bergen (UiB). 

SEAS will facilitate international mobility of experienced researchers, and provide exposure to world-class international working environments, networks, supervision, and training. The postdoctoral research fellows will be part of a support and training scheme that will allow them to build highly valued competencies in the competitive international academic and non-academic job markets. All SEAS fellows will be employed in 3-year fixed-term full-time postdoctoral research fellow positions at UiB. Individual contracts may, under certain conditions, be extended by up to one year if funded from other sources than the SEAS programme.

In the first call, open August 1 – October 31 (2021), we invite talented experienced researchers to apply for 18 fellowships. There will be a second call for a further 19 positions in August 2022.

Who can apply - eligibility requirements

To be considered eligible for academic review, applicants must adhere to the following programme requirements:

  • Applications must be submitted through the Jobbnorge portal and include all mandatory elements (see below - How to apply).
  • Applicants must hold a PhD degree (or an equivalent degree) in a relevant field prior to the application deadline (if you have not yet received your PhD diploma, you must document that you have defended your thesis successfully)*.
  • Applicants cannot previously have been employed as a postdoctoral fellow at UiB.
  • The research proposal must be relevant to marine sustainability.
  • Applicants must have a high degree of proficiency in English (self-assessed in the CV and demonstrated in the application).
  • SEAS mobility rules (if the successful candidate is an outgoing fellow, there is a mandatory return period of 12-18 months at UiB).
  • The application and relevant documents must be in English.

*) For applicants for the Law faculty position only: Applicants must hold a PhD degree within Law prior to the application deadline. Alternatively, you must document that the thesis has been defended successfully, or that the dissertation is currently being evaluated by the PhD evaluation body of your academic institution

All eligible applicants will be evaluated on transparent evaluation criteria by international experts. No restrictions by nationality, age, gender, ethnicity, disability/special needs, or social status will apply.

How to apply - application requirements

  1. Read the Jobbnorge.no advert carefully and familiarise yourself with the application process and requirements
  2. MSCA mobility rules are strict – please check carefully and contact us early on if there are any questions
  3. Get in touch with the proposed supervisor or contact person for your position of interest and create a dialogue regarding your project proposal – one of the required elements of the application is a confirmation of a match between you and the UiB host (– and external host for outgoing fellows) – so this contact is essential.
  4. Download and complete all the SEAS application templates – including your name in all attachment file names. Read the evaluation criteria carefully and use them as a guide for points and aspects to cover in your application.
  5. Complete the application (with templates attached) in the Jobbnorge portal and submit before the deadline date. Applications received after this date will not be considered.*
  6. The Evaluation procedure is expected to take approximately 4 months from call deadline (31 October 2021).

*) It is essential that all required attachments are uploaded via our electronic recruiting system Jobbnorge. Before uploading any documents in the portal (to minimise repetition of information):

  • In the ‘Jobbnorge-application field’: Only write your name.
  • In the ‘Jobbnorge-CV form’: Only fill in your 1) personal details, 2) information about your PhD-degree (in the field ‘Academic qualifications’) and 3) recent relevant work experience.

You do not need to fill in any other sections in the Jobbnorge form, as all the information we need will be provided by you in the attachments.

What happens after you have applied - evaluation procedure

The Evaluation procedure is expected to take approximately 4 months from call deadline (31 October 2021).

Eligibility check

The SEAS office will check all applications regarding eligibility (see above). The SEAS office will inform applicants via email of the outcome of these checks within approx. 10 working days. Applicants not fulfilling the criteria will be informed as to why and given an opportunity for rebuttal. If deemed valid, the SEAS office will re-evaluate and inform the applicant within approx. 5 working days.

Academic review by an expert committee

The SEAS office will assign a minimum of 3 independent international expert reviewers to each eligible application. We expect this step to take approx. 4 weeks.

The evaluation will consist of:

  • Individual evaluations: The 3 experts will perform individual assessment reports following the evaluation guidelines, criteria, and score chart, as described here. The experts will work remotely and be blind to one another’s reviews until the individual assessment reports are finished. The reviewers will assess the applications based on the criteria, with each criterion being scored from 0 – 5.0. The experts will also screen the proposals for ethical issues and describe any unresolved issues in their assessment reports.
  • Consensus: The experts will read and discuss their individual evaluations to reach consensus and will produce an agreed Evaluation Summary Report for each application, including a final score. The final scores will be the basis for ranking and selection of the fellows.
  • Quality control: The SEAS office will read all Evaluation Summary Reports to ensure fair and equal treatment of all applications.
  • Ranking: Proposals are ranked after all Evaluation Summary Reports have been checked by the SEAS office. After the rankings are finalised, all applicants will be informed of their results (i.e. selected/reserve list/not selected) by email. All applicants will receive their final Evaluation Summary Report.

Offer and acceptance

Selected candidates will receive a fellowship offer (acceptance letter) and must accept or reject the offer within 5 working days by sending an email stating their decision to the SEAS office. Should a candidate decline the offer or neglect to respond within the indicated timeframe, the position will be offered to the next qualified candidate on the ranking list. The confirmed applicant will then receive a letter of employment which can be used for immigration, work permit or visa purposes, as necessary. When all positions of the call have been filled, rejection letters will be sent to the remaining applicants on the reserve list. Unsuccessful candidates in the first call are eligible to apply again in the second call, with no association to the previous one.

If selected, you must be able to take up the position within four months after receiving the offer unless another concrete start date is approved by the SEAS-administration. Before applying we recommend you familiarise yourself with current visa and work permit regulations for Norway (incoming candidates) or other host country (for outgoing candidates). Employment (work permit) is subject to approval under national export control legislation.

Employment conditions for SEAS fellows

The primary objective of the postdoctoral position is to qualify the appointee for work in top academic positions. Teaching and/or other qualifying duties might be included if the appointee lacks such experience. 

All fellows will have a primary UiB-supervisor (or supervisor team) and a co-supervisor from another UiB-discipline or unit. In addition a mentor from another sector is recommended. The co-supervisor and mentor can be assigned after employment. For outgoing candidates there will in addition be an external (secondary) supervisor from the host institution.

For all SEAS fellows, a Personal Career Development Plan (PCDP) is to be developed jointly by the fellow, supervisor(s), and co-supervisor by the end of Month 2 of the fellowship, including a plan for the individual research budget, and information on additional funding where applicable.

Employment conditions

  • Fixed-term 3-year contract as a postdoctoral research fellow at UiB. The UiB-contract may, under certain conditions, be extended by up to one year if a fellow acquires sufficient funding from other sources than SEAS.
  • Competetive salary (see the jobbnorge announcement - may vary according to different faculty policies).
  • Welfare benefits* and social benefits including pension-saving, occupational injury insurance, full salary during sick leave for 52 weeks, and paid parental leave**.
  • Extension of the position term (work contract) due to sick leave and parental leave.
  • Norwegian language courses free of charge.
  • High standards for working hours, holidays, place of work, health, and safety.
  • Access to specific training activities exclusively provided within the framework of the SEAS programme.
  • An individual research budget of minimum € 300 per month for 3 years is guaranteed, and an additional € 300 per month can be applied for, for activities such as secondment, travels, joint events, etc.
  • Outgoing fellows will receive full coverage of travel costs for attending the mandatory gatherings (in compliance with UiB-routines for travel procurement and reimbursement).

*) Subject to membership in the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme. For non-EU outgoing fellows, individual benefit agreement must be considered.

**) Right to paid parental leave requires 6 months paid work before first day of leave. See full requirements.


Goals and commitments of the SEAS programme


  • SEAS aims to recruit and bring together a group of 37 highly talented experienced researchers who will provide knowledge crucial for a more sustainable marine future. Humanity’s well-being is deeply intertwined with the health of the ocean. It sustains us, stabilizes the climate and leads to greater prosperity. With expertise in a broad range of fields, this group will strengthen and facilitate UiB’s strong commitment to marine science and ocean sustainability, aligned with the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable DevelopmentThe United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and The European Green Deal.
  • SEAS aims to devise a flagship programme at UiB of world-class training and support that will guide and support the SEAS fellows to reach professional maturity as successful leaders in both academic and non-academic sectors, equipped with transferable skills in inter- and trans-disciplinary research and intersectoral collaboration. 
  • SEAS aims to strengthen the institutional culture at UiB - in close cooperation with our SEAS-partners and other collaborators - into one of innovation, collaboration and transdisciplinary research, at the forefront of the global drive for sustainability.


The SEAS fellows will be provided with: 

  • high-quality inter- and trans-disciplinary research and training opportunities in the area of marine sustainability, supported by a supervision and inter-sectoral mentoring scheme
  • opportunity to transfer knowledge and skills between disciplines, organisations and sectors
  • a regional ecosystem of marine actors
  • structured skill-based training
  • high-quality working conditions
  • personal career support
  • academic freedom
  • equal opportunities