NINA news

Research Scientist Renewable energy and the natural environment

Published on: 29. June 2022
Author: Siri A. Svendsen

The Department of Terrestrial Ecology at Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) announces a vacant permanent position as a Research Scientist. The position is connected to NINA’s focal research area Renewable energy and the natural environment, but other tasks may also be relevant. It is desirable to strengthen the department's competence and capacity in this field.

Research Scientist Renewable energy and the natural environment
Photo: Jørn Fremstad/NINA

Information about NINA and the Department of Terrestrial Ecology

The Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) is Norway’s leading institution for applied ecological research, emphasizing the interaction between human society, natural resources and biodiversity. NINA is among Norway’s largest applied ecology research institutes with c. 300 employees. NINA seeks to conduct research of very high quality which is directly relevant for real world application. NINA’s expertise include the genetic, population, species, ecosystem and landscape level, in terrestrial, freshwater and coastal marine environments. It is an independent foundation established in 1988. The main office is in Trondheim, in the immediate proximity to the Norwegian University for Science and Technology (NTNU) on the Gløshaugen campus, with branch offices in Tromsø, Lillehammer, Bergen and Oslo. NINA's activities include both research and assessment, environmental monitoring, consulting and evaluation.  Our overall goal is that we will contribute to sustainable societal development by delivering research-based and current knowledge about biodiversity, climate and society.

NINA's research within the department of terrestrial ecology, including 40 employees, is funded by a wide range of sources, including governmental environmental management agencies (at local, regional and national levels), the Research Council of Norway, industry, and international organizations (including various EU research funding schemes).  The department conducts research within Norway and internationally.

About the position

Interest in the development of renewable energy is increasing in Norway. The development of both onshore and offshore wind energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Norway, however, also negatively impacts the natural environment. The upscaling of wind energy and associated energy transmission will affect biodiversity including birds as well as the landscape with its ecosystem services. To achieve sustainable development there is a pressing need for increased knowledge both on project-specific but also cumulative impacts on birdlife as well as the natural environment at large. This includes also developing appropriate assessment tools and solutions to mitigate such impacts.

NINA is looking to strengthen their research staff in the field of renewable energy and the natural environment at the department of Terrestrial Ecology in Trondheim. The position will support on-going research on onshore and offshore wind energy as well as power lines and their effects on the natural environment.  We are looking for a researcher with experience in working in an interdisciplinary team of researchers focusing to renewable energy effects on wildlife and ecosystem services. The tasks of the position will be to partake in all aspects of the renewable portfolio, from project acquisition, data collection, analyses, statistical modelling and writing of scientific papers as well as communication to stakeholders. The research can include compilation of knowledge, in-depth analysis of avian radar data to study avoidance behaviour and collision risk in birds, mapping of biodiversity and ecosystem services for multi-criteria siting of wind energy and life cycle assessment approaches to quantify impacts on these. The research outcomes are expected to be visualized and communicated to relevant stakeholders in the wind energy industry, energy and environmental authorities and the general public.

The person employed in the position must be able to work in the entire spectrum from impact assessments, contract research and national and international research projects. The person must actively contribute to the development, implementation, reporting and dissemination of projects. This involves application writing, acquisition, marketing work, applications and tenders. The work also includes contact with clients and stakeholders.

Competence at PhD level in ecology is required. Good analytical skills, broad field of interest, ability for strategic thinking and ability to work in multidisciplinary teams are highly desirable. In addition to research experience, experience from administration, contract research and the consulting industry is given weight. Good linguistic ability in English is a requirement and in Norwegian is a pre, and good communicative skills are emphasized.


Required selection criteria

We seek a highly motivated candidate to work with us on the topics outlined above. The successful candidate will have the following qualifications:

  • You must have completed a Norwegian doctoral degree or corresponding foreign doctoral degree recognized as equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree with direct relevance to the position (e.g. biological or environmental sciences). If, for any reason, you have taken a career break or have had an atypical career and wish to disclose this in your application, the selection committee will take this into account, recognizing that the quantity of your research may be reduced as a result.
  • The applicant should have strong analytical and quantitative skills, including spatial modelling
  • Proven experience in dissemination and communication with stakeholders, including industry and authorities
  • Familiarity/experience with working on interactions between wildlife, such as birds, and human activities
  • Demonstrated competence in the statistical program R is a prerequisite
  • A demonstrated ability to publish scientific papers and communicate results to a wider public.
  • You must demonstrate good written and oral English language skills
  • An ability to work well in teams is a prerequisite.

Preferred selection criteria

  • Proven experience in renewable energy issues, especially onshore and/or offshore wind energy, and/or power lines
  • Competence in geographical information systems (e.g., ArcGIS, QGIS) and tool building
  • Experience in mapping ecosystem services
  • Experience in modelling movement behaviour
  • Experience in life cycle assessments for biodiversity
  • Ornithological skills, preferably on seabirds
  • Knowledge of Norwegian is a pre

Terms of employment

We offer a permanent full-time contract as a Research Scientist.

  • Salary on Norwegian pay scale relevant for your qualifications
  • Flexible working hours
  • Good pension and collective life insurance
  • Good opportunities for professional development

The position will be based in the Trondheim office; short exchange visits to other NINA offices are expected. NINA has a personnel policy objective that the staff must reflect the composition of the population to the greatest possible extent. NINA would like to increase the percentage of female scientists within the institute and therefore encourages female candidates to apply. Non-Norwegians are required to learn Norwegian within 2 years of employment.

The starting date may depend on the candidate’s notice period, but the employment is expected to start sometime in autumn/winter 2022, but 01.01.2023 at the latest. This will be agreed upon with the chosen candidate and NINA.

About the application

The application

The application should contain:

  • A 1-2 page letter where the candidate explains their motivation for applying for this position, answers to the defined qualifications and details a brief description of the scientific relevance of the candidate’s research experience.
  • A CV with list of education, work experience and a list of publications with bibliographical references
  • The 2-3 most relevant publications (including manuscripts that are not yet published) that have relevance for the evaluation of the applicant’s qualifications. Add a link to the publications instead of pdfs if possible
  • Contact details (affiliation and position, telephone and e-mail) for three references

The application should be submitted by e-mail to
The reference code for the position is “Researcher Renewable energy”.

For further information, please contact:

Senior Research Scientist Roel May
Phone: +47 957 85 995

Research Director Svein-Håkon Lorentsen
Phone: +47 934 66 770

Application deadline: 31.08.2022


The evaluation

The application and supporting documentation to be used as the basis for the assessment must be submitted in English. Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above. 

Publications and other scientific work must follow the application. Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation.

In the evaluation of which candidate is best qualified, emphasis will be placed on education, experience and personal suitability, such as:

  • Self-motivated, enthusiastic, and dedicated
  • Motivated to solve environmental problems and advance sustainability
  • Ambitious and goal-oriented
  • Team player
  • Excellent communication skills

Evaluation of the applicants will be based on the application and attached materials, including presentation of academic work, previous experience and publications. Applicants short-listed for the position will normally be invited for an interview. Then also prominence will be given for personal traits which are deemed relevant for the execution of the role.






Norwegian Institute for Nature Research

NINA is an independent foundation for nature research and research on the interaction between human society, natural resources and biodiversity.
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