Water research school

Lund University

Denna sida på svenska This page in English

Policy and Organizational Framework

The Water Research School is a collaboration between The Swedish Water & Wastewater Association (Svenskt Vatten) through the research clusters VA-teknik Södra, DRICKS, VA-kluster Mälardalen, and Dag&Nät, and Sweden Water Research, involving researchers from seven Universities in Sweden. In the following text “clusters” refers to the four clusters plus Sweden Water Research (i.e., in total five partners). The Water Research School was launched 2017 and it is coordinated and administered by the Department of Water Resources Engineering at Lund University. The Water Research School is funded 2017-2020 through a grant from the Swedish Research council FORMAS.

Aims and Objectives

The Water Research School aims to establish a platform for research education of high international quality within the water sector and support community building and collaboration between individual PhD student, supervisors and Universities.

The objectives of the Water Research School are:

·         to give the water PhD students better knowledge and understanding of the needs, conditions and relations of the wider society that they work for and within

·         to create and shape a network for the students, for better understanding of each other’s research and for life-long relations in their working life, be it in academics, public service or business

·         to improve and complement on-going and coming research by adding societal and sustainability values and considerations 


The main activities of the Water Research School are PhD courses, yearly seminars, and the mentor program.

PhD courses

The courses of the research school will circulate between the seven universities, and encompass in total 12 courses. The teachers will come from the seven universities, from international universities and from the water sector.

Yearly seminars

The seminars will be arranged in collaboration with one of the seven universities involved in the research school. Each seminar will have a specific theme. During the seminars students can give and listen to interesting talks, participate in workshops and social events. Key speakers will be invited to give presentations. Both members of the research school and their supervisors are invited to the yearly seminars. The seminars are free of charge. Travel (up to 2000 SEK/participant) and accommodation costs (up to 500 SEK/night) of the members of the research school will be covered by the research school, see below. The seminars might have restrictions in the number of participants, if so, the steering committee decides who are allowed to attend.

Educational study tour

One educational study tour will be arranged. Only a limited number of students are allowed. The most active students in the research school will have a priority to participate in the tour. The tour will likely take place 2020.

Mentor Program

The exact format of the mentor program is not yet decided. The first mentor meeting will take place in February 2018 in Luleå.

PhD Student initiated activities

Collaborations are encouraged and supported within the water Research School. PhD Students are welcome to form interest groups and initiate activities which can be financially supported if the steering committee agrees. Groups can be formed around topics, methods or other fields of interest related to the PhD studies.

Support for supervisors

Activities of the Water research School enable gathering not only of PhD students but also of supervisors leading to a deeper development of competence within research education. Supervisors are invited to take part in the yearly seminars arranged by the Water Research School.

Quality Assurance

Activities are continuously evaluated to assure that they meet the outlined requirements. The evaluations ties in with the fundamental aim to systematically and continuously develop the quality of the courses. Teaching as well as PhD-students’ achievements are evaluated and evaluation reports are discussed by the steering committee.

Application and Admission

Who can participate?

The research school is open for PhD students associated to the clusters, VA-teknik Södra, DRICKS, VA-kluster Mälardalen, and Dag&Nät or Sweden Water Research.

As a member in the Water Research School you will meet and interact with fellow PhD students within the water sector. You get to visit different research environments in Sweden and participate in courses of high international standard. You can participate in the yearly seminar, give and listen to interesting talks, participate in workshops and social events. You will get access to the mentorship program. Members of the research school have priority for courses and other activities with limited numbers of participants.

What is expected from the members of the research school?

Members of the research school are expected to take at least three courses arranged by the Water Research School, participate in the yearly seminar and participate in the mentorship program.

Application to be a member of the Water Research School

An application form on our webpage ( should be completed. Each application has to be approved by the steering committee.

Application and admission to courses

The courses within the Water Research School normally have a limited number of participants. Members of the research school will be given priority. As far as possible, each cluster will be given the same number of participants. The steering committee decides who are allowed to participate in the courses, this should normally be done two months before the course starts. If there still are vacancies left, other PhD students or members of the Swedish Water & Wastewater Association can also apply to the courses as long as they fulfil the requirements (normally a Master degree, or equivalent). A fee of 5000 SEK will be charged for these students.

Courses are given free of charge to members of the research school. The Water Research School will pay travel costs (up to 3000 SEK per course) and accommodation (up to 500 SEK per night), see below. If a student cancel their application without a valid reason within two months before the course start a fee of 2000 SEK will be charge unless the vacancy can be filled with another participant.

Reimbursment of Travel and Accommodation expenses

Yearly seminars:

Travel (up to 2000 SEK/participant) and accommodation costs (up to 500 SEK/night) of the members of the research school will be covered by the research school.


The Water Research School will pay travel costs (up to 3000 SEK per course) and accommodation (up to 500 SEK per night).


Any additional costs needs to be covered by the home department or research cluster, ask your supervisor how to book your tickets if you are unsure how it should be done.

Request of reimbursement of travel and accommodation expenses should be send as a requisition (Rekvisition in Swedish) and not an invoice (faktura) to the director of studies (Magnus Persson) by email including a full specification (who, when, why). Invoices will not be accepted due to that we then also needs to pay overhead costs (meaning double OH costs), and this is not included in the budget of the research school.

Organizational Structure

Steering Committee

The steering committee decides which courses to be given, approves course plans, makes decisions concerning economy, and approves membership application to the Water Research School. The steering committee consists of five permanent members; the cluster leaders Karin Jönsson (VA teknik Södra), Bengt Carlsson (VA-kluster Mälardalen), Thomas Pettersson (DRICKS), Anneli Hedström (replacing Maria Viklander, the cluster leader for Dag&Nät), and Kenneth M Persson (Sweden Water Research). In addition, a PhD student representative will be selected each year.


Physical meetings will take place twice a year. In addition, skype meetings are arranged when urgent matters arise. In the case a member cannot attend a meeting; the committee member is responsible to notify a deputy to attend the meeting in question.

Notices, Agendas and Meeting Minutes

The physical meetings are arranged by the director of studies. Notices and agendas for the steering committee meetings are to be provided no later than one week in advance of the meeting. The approved meeting minutes are to be sent out as soon as possible after the meeting, normally within a week.

Director of Studies:

The director of studies (Magnus Persson) is responsible for the administration, handling membership and course applications, arranging and participating in steering committee meetings and yearly seminars. In collaboration with course examinations develop course programs, advertise the course, diplomas, and course evaluations. The director of studies will also manage the Water Research School webpage.

Course examiner

Each course will have a course examiner, responsible for planning and running the course, booking premises, guest lecturers etc. A course program and schedule should be prepared and send to the steering committee for approval well ahead of the beginning of the course. The course examiner should, together with the director of studies, perform of course evaluation after each course and report the results to the steering committee. The course examiner should hand out diplomas after students completed all requirements and make sure all students get their credits at their home university.

Reference group

A reference group with ten members will be appointed. The role of the reference group is to be external evaluators, give feedback, be ambassadors of the Water Research School, and participate in the mentor program. The reference group should have at least one physical meeting per year.