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Third-cycle (doctoral) programme in forestry industry production systems

Curious to do research in the subject of forestry and wood? We offer opportunities for research for both doctoral students and industrial doctoral students.

What is a third-cycle programme?

The word research usually means systematically studying something partially unknown, with accuracy and theoretical awareness. A third-cycle, or postgraduate, education programme aims at educating researchers, that is, it's mainly about learning methodology.

This is done by working in a research project with practical research and then writing a thesis on the project. The work is largely independent and you work at your own dissertation under the guidance of a supervisor. Part of the education period is devoted to courses, mostly within your own research domain but also general courses on research methodology and academic writing.

However, it is important to realize that being a scientist not only involves doing research in a particular domain. There are many other important skills as well, such as applying for research funding, project management and presentation techniques. A third-cycle programme in Sweden usually involves four years of full-time studies in order to obtain a doctoral degree, or two years of full-time studies to obtain a licentiate degree.

What are the prerequisites?

In order to become a doctoral student in the subject, you must have at least a Master Degree, i.e. four years of study (240 higher education credits) with at least one year (60 credits) at second-cycle, in a relevant domain.

A doctoral student is normally employed by the university in the form of a doctoral studentship. A doctoral studentship is an employment where 80-100 % of the working hours is devoted to own research studies. The remaining 0-20 per cent may be used for other assignments at the university, most often taking part in the first-cycle education.

There is also an opportunity to become a so-called industrial doctoral student. An industrial doctoral student is normally employed by a company that has decided to have a strong link to research and thus invests in educating an employee at the third-cycle level. The most common form of agreement for an industrial doctoral student implies that the student dedicates him- or herself to 80 % own research studies, usually at the university, while spending the remaining 20 per cent working at the company with some type of project.

What does the third-cycle subject area forestry industry production systems comprise?

At Linnaeus University, the field and course of study referred to as forestry industry production systems covers the entire forest sector supply chain from the acquisition raw material through processing to finished products where wood is included in any form. This means that the subject contains several different areas, such as forest management, forestry production, bioenergy, forest engineering, logistics and forest product technology, as well as finance and marketing. These constitute the basic areas within the subject for these graduate studies.

Forestry industry production systems therefore addresses various alternative ways of managing forests, which take into account the various benefits to be derived from forests (production of forestry raw materials, nature values and conservation, recreation, benefit to the climate, etc.) and the adaptations which will be required for the future. In order to produce wood products with good characteristics, studies of how different management regimes would affect the quality of the timber and final product are required. The research study subject therefore also deals with the following of forest products after felling to final product with a focus on the wood, which means focusing on the characteristics of the timber, types of timber, the timber's storage and protection, as well as the timber's processing and usage.

The subject also deals with the development of technology and systems for the production of energy raw materials from the forest and how biofuels may be produced. In parallel with the materials perspective, the graduate studies subject included the development of technologies and systems for the processing operations.

Doctoral students normally choose a specialisation for their studies in conjunction with the commencement of their graduate programme and they are linked to a research group that exists within the general subject area of the graduate studies.

How do I become a doctoral student in forestry industry production systems?

When the Department of Forestry and Wood Technology has the possibility to admit a doctoral student, the post is announced at the web and in papers. Normally there is a specific project that the prospective doctoral student will work with, as well as appointed supervisors.

More information

  • Read more about entry requirements, content and objectives of the programme in the study plan below
  • General information about third-cycle studies at Linnaeus University
  • The university library's subject guide for forestry and wood technology
  • Read more about our research at the Forestry and Wood research group's web page. There, you'll also find information about our projects, which can give you tips on areas that you as a doctoral student could do research within.
  • Vacancies at Linnaeus University