Elite research fellow with a taste for Norway
This autumn Lori Groven has enjoyed a three-month research stay at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) funded under the Nordic Research Opportunity scheme. "My stay has been short but sweet, and I`ve learned a lot," she says.
For the first time Norway is hosting 13 US doctoral research fellows under the Nordic Research Opportunity scheme, a grant scheme established by the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Research Council of Norway.
The Nordic Research Opportunity scheme gives fellowship-holders under the NSF’s prestigious Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) the opportunity to spend 3-12 months as a visiting researcher in Norway or Finland. The aim is for graduate research fellows to gain international research experience and establish contacts with Norwegian and Finnish research groups.
Lori Groven has had what she calls a short visit at NTNU. “I’ll be defending my dissertation in November, so I’m afraid I can’t stay longer.
But I’ve learned a tremendous amount during the months I’ve been here.” She explains, “I’m a chemical engineer, while my colleagues at NTNU are experts in material science and engineering.
With my experience in the chemical synthesis of materials with carbon nanotubes and theirs in solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) we have supplemented each other’s expertise. The aim is to improve the electrical conductivity of the materials, making it possible to operate at lower temperatures with higher efficiency.”
“Nordic Research Opportunity gave me a great chance to establish contacts in Norway,” says Lori, enthusiastically. She has already received an offer of a post-doctoral research fellowship at NTNU, and is holding the door open for returning to Norway. Lori’s husband is Norwegian, which provides an added incentive to move back. But before anything else, she will complete her doctoral degree at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.
Good conditions for researchers in Norway
“Career opportunities in research are good in Norway,” Lori points out. “I particularly like the way Norwegians try to find a balance between work, leisure and family life,” she says. “Compared to their American counterparts, a lot more Norwegian women have children during the course of their doctoral studies, and there seems to be a lot more women in research in general.”
Lori has also found that there is a greater variety of opportunities for researchers on the Norwegian job market and a greater number of positions available here than in the USA. “Links between industry, research and innovation seem to be very close in Norway, which speeds up the pace of development. It’s exciting to work in that kind of environment.”
- Last updated: