Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History

The Department of Archaeology and Ancient History is a multidisciplinary institution dedicated to teaching and research in Archaeology, Osteology, Classical cultures and societies, Egyptology, and Global environmental history. With operations in both Uppsala at Campus Engelska Parken and Visby at Campus Gotland, the department offers two bachelor's programs, four international master's programs, and numerous standalone courses, supported by a team of approximately 60 staff members. Read more about the Department here: Institutionen för arkeologi och antik historia - Uppsala universitet (uu.se)

About the WIVA Centre
In June 2023, the Swedish Research Council established 15 national Centres of Excellence, each funded for an initial five years with a possible five-year extension as they become self-reliant. Our team at Uppsala University was fortunate to be awarded one of these generous grants to set up a Centre for The World in the Viking Age (WIVA) as a collaborative, interdisciplinary meeting place for the study and wider communication of a defining episode in global history. The core staff comprises Professor Neil Price (director) with Docents Charlotte Hedenstierna-Jonson and John Ljungkvist (co-directors), and Ms Rahaf Abu Shaer (coordinator). After a soft start in January this year, we are preparing for a full launch of WIVA in the coming months.

Our Mission
For centuries, the so-called Viking Age (c.750-1050 CE) has been subject to political misappropriation and projected, monochrome stereotype – making it all the more urgent to emphasise that the people of the time were individuals as varied and complicated, in every way, as ourselves. This spotlight on diversity, in all senses of the term, lies at the heart of the WIVA Centre: our objective is to recover a Viking Age that does not care what we think of it, a pluralistic past as it was (hard though that can be to access), not as anyone might wish it to have been. The notion of a Norse diaspora has now become commonplace in studies of the period, but also requires deconstruction. Our focus is the world in the Viking Age, an arena of mutual interactions, contacts and cultural feedback, subtly different from the more familiar ‘Viking world’. Moving past the Eurocentric notions of a ‘western’ and ‘eastern’ Viking Age, it is possible to perceive the finer grain of Scandinavian cultural encounters. We aim to explore the full span of the extended, Afro-Eurasian world of the Norse, looking primarily south and east along the so-called Silk Roads, tracing their activities in networks of early globalisation that connected the Baltic to the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean, Asia, and the eastern seas – places where the Scandinavians were as often in a minority, but also at a disadvantage.

We are now seeking to appoint eight International Visiting Researchers (IVRs), who will each spend three months of continuous residence in Uppsala in the period mid-September 2024 to December 2025, the exact dates to be determined individually after discussion.

In parallel with these International Visiting Researcher positions, we are also seeking a number of Early Career Researchers (advertised separately), and more posts of both kinds will be added over time. A new interdisciplinary, two-year MA degree programme will also be launched, again addressing the same theme of the world in the Viking Age. All these activities will be supplemented by seminars, workshops, informal contact events, and public outreach. Finally, WIVA is an invitation, not a fixed entity. The Centre is not a research project, but rather a home and a hub for them, as well as a base for teaching. We will populate WIVA with projects, programmes, and people, and we hope that others will wish to join us on this exciting journey.


  • The format for these research stays is flexible. Some IVRs may produce a paper; some may be working on a book; others may give a seminar or two, or some public lectures; still others may simply talk and think: the point being that longer-term contacts and productive exchanges of ideas are the priority for us.
  • The WIVA Centre is naturally concerned primarily with the Viking Age (defined c.750-1050 CE), but we also work in a longer time frame and are open to research covering any part of the Late Iron Age (c.400-1050). We seek scholars who will extend the frontiers of our knowledge concerning global interactions of ideas and material culture at this time, with ultimate connections to the Scandinavian peoples. In the first instance we are interested in those working with Norse contacts with the so-called Silk Roads, broadly defined. Our primary focus is on overland and maritime interactions with western, central and eastern Asia, and with both shores of the Mediterranean. At WIVA we wish to promote a genuinely global perspective and we encourage applications from scholars whose work emerges from these regions. We are also open to research on other areas of the Norse diaspora, not least in a comparative context.


  • Applicants will possess a PhD degree, or a foreign equivalent degree, in a relevant discipline (Archaeology, History, etc). As these positions are intended to expand our global contacts, it is of primary importance to have an established international profile and to be able to demonstrate academic achievements at universities outside Sweden.

Assessment criteria
When selecting among qualified applicants, an overall assessment will be made of academic research skills, the thematic focus and quality of the proposed research, and also the social fit and collaborative potential of the candidate. 

Further information
Although the WIVA Centre is located in the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, we are strongly interdisciplinary in outlook and encourage applications from any relevant subject area. The WIVA Centre operates in English and the Scandinavian languages. These positions are open to scholars at any level of career experience after the award of the PhD, who can demonstrate a track record of significant and relevant research achievement.

About the positions
The employments are temporary positions (SÄVA – Särskild visstidsanställning) of three months each. The positions are full-time. Starting date during the period of mid-September 2024 up to 1st October 2025, or as agreed. We will seek to ensure an even presence of guests over the course of this time. Placement: Uppsala.

The position includes

  • round-trip Economy travel expenses for one journey to Uppsala (please note that we cannot fund repeat trips, nor can we fund accompanying partners)
  • three months of fixed-rate salary
  • office space and access to all regular facilities at Uppsala University
  • assistance in finding accommodation, if possible in subsidised university researcher housing (please note that we cannot fund housing expenses).

Your application should include the following

  • A full CV of education and work experience, with a list of publications
  • A covering letter, including a detailed plan for what you would like to do while in Uppsala
  • A clear statement of which three-month period you would wish to spend in Uppsala – preferably with alternative choices of dates – starting earliest mid-September 2024 and ending latest 31st December 2025. Please note that the university is largely closed for the summer vacation in July and the first half of August every year.

For further details or to discuss the position, please contact:

Neil Price, neil.price@arkeologi.uu.se or Rahaf Abu Shaer, rahaf.abu_shaer@arkeologi.uu.se

Please submit your application by 31 July 2024, UFV-PA 2024/1147.

Type of employment Temporary position (shorter than 3 months)
Contract type Full time
Salary Fixed salary
Number of positions 8
Full-time equivalent 100%
City Uppsala
County Uppsala län
Country Sweden
Reference number UFV-PA 2024/1147
Union representative
  • Seko Universitetsklubben, seko@uadm.uu.se
  • ST/TCO, tco@fackorg.uu.se
  • Saco-rådet, saco@uadm.uu.se
Published 20.May.2024
Last application date 31.Jul.2024 11:59 PM CEST
Login and apply

Share links

Return to job vacancies