Umeå University: Advancing Science through 5 strong research environments
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Umeå University: Advancing Science through 5 strong research environments

Umeå University: Advancing Science through 5 strong research environments

As Sweden’s fifth-oldest university, founded in 1965, Umeå has come to represent a beacon of passion, enthusiasm, innovation, creativity and ground-breaking ideas.

Situated in the largest urban settlement in the Northern Swedish region, the university offers the very best of student life and stands as a recognised cultural centre that also promises a world-class, globally-recognised education. As a rugged and untouched natural setting, the town itself is rife with potential, surrounded by panoramic landscapes that call for reflection and adventure, while also hosting an abundance of shopping, restaurant and arts facilities that means Umeå truly embodies the best of both the natural and human world.

The Faculty of Science and Technology only serves as testament to the quality that surrounds Umeå’s name. Here, 11 diverse departments deliver sterling education and cutting-edge research in the fields of Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Computer Science, Mathematics, Technology, Teacher Training, Design and Architecture. With a community of 3,300 undergraduate and graduate students, plus 250 dedicated Doctoral-level candidates, all from a rich array of social and cultural backgrounds, life here is always vibrant and engaging.

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“In order to compete and excel in both the national and international arena, a great deal of focus and priority is being laid on seven strong research environments: ecosystem dynamics, light in science and technology, environmental chemistry – from molecule to ecosystem, modelling living systems, dynamics, structure and function in proteins, solar fuels and plant- and forest-biotechnology,” the faculty website notes.

“Proximity to research, good pedagogics and a relaxed atmosphere are the hallmarks of the faculty’s education,” it adds.

Offered alongside a one-year preparatory course in science are 23 comprehensive Bachelor’s (BA) degrees that seek to hone future engineers, industrial designers, scientists, architects and pharmacists. Successful undergraduates have the unique option to follow up their undergraduate exam with one at the Master’s (MA)-level, where a further 14 advanced postgraduate programmes are also offered.

Students are actively encouraged to gain real-world insight of their future profession, bolstering their chances of finding employment soon after graduation. While some courses are constructed in collaboration with various institutes and organisations, others are steeped with guest lectures from world-renowned experts, and every student benefits from career-focused research projects conducted alongside notable industry partners.

Consistently advancing Science through five strong research environments…

The modern world has brought a wealth of problems to the fields of Science and Technology.

“Cod are disappearing from the Baltic Sea, bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics and energy issues urgently need to be solved,” the university implores. “The list can be made long and knowledge is the key to facing and solving the many important problems surrounding us.”

Research and education at the state-of-the-art Climate Impacts Research Centre (CIRC) in Abisko, for example, addresses the damaging effects of climate and environmental change within the Earth’s Northern ecosystems. Here, research activity covers detailed process studies to all-encompassing studies on a landscape level. This innovative centre represents an internationally-respected platform for research, teaching and community outreach, also standing as the driving force behind Umeå’s Arctic development.

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On the other hand, the Umeå Plant Science Centre (UPSC) – a conglomerate formed by Umeå and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) – is Europe’s premier research environment for experimental plant biology. As scientists delve into complex disciplines like ecology, genetics, physiology, biochemistry, cell biology and molecular biology, they are unified by a common goal: to understand the mechanisms driving plant development and adaptation to environmental change.

The Chemical Biological Centre is one the strongest research centres in the country in life sciences. The incredibly broad faculty – which includes over 220 scientists and teachers, 200 PhD students and 200 postdoctoral fellows – conduct world class research about the complex interplay between molecules in living organisms and nature. The research is interdisciplinary and conducted in a stimulation social and scientific environment, with staff and students representing more than 50 countries.

Also helping Umeå shape a better world is the Wallenberg Centre for Molecular Medicine (WCMM). Here, scientists tackle some of the most pressing matters of our time, including cancer, infectious disease, metabolic disorders, and diseases of the nervous system. On top of gaining access to unparalleled research facilities – including highly-advanced imaging technologies, a national metabolomics infrastructure, and a biobank – representatives of the WCMM join a world-respected network of health and science professionals.

A unique and internationally renowned addition to the Faculty of Science and Technology is Umeå’s Institute of Design. Considered the best design school in the world, students and faculty work closely with international design research networks – such as the Swedish Faculty for Design Research and Research Education and the Design Research Society – on issues that impact people’s daily lives. Tying design and the life sciences, the school’s Master’s projects generate graduates who go on to work in a broad range of fields, taking on highly prominent positions.

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“Research at Umeå University is innovative and extends over many disciplines and scientific fields,” the institution concludes. “We carry out groundbreaking, top-level international research…[and many] of our more than 2,000 researchers and teachers are among the elite in Sweden and throughout the world.”

If you’re looking for unique opportunities for young, ambitious researchers; and you’re keen to forge your own impactful line of research and build a competitive research group, the Faculty of Science and Technology at Umeå University will check all those boxes and more.

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