Associate Professor of Design with specialization in Wood Oriented Furniture Design
University of Gothenburg Faculty of Fine Applied and Performing Arts

Associate Professor in Design with Specialization in Wood Oriented Furniture Design

Diary id:PAR 2020/69

Employment level:Fixed term


Apply by:2020-08-06

Form of employment: Scope: 50%

Location of employment: HDK-Valand Steneby, Dals Långed

Start date: 1 January 2021 or by agreement

Registration number: PAR 2020/69


The University of Gothenburg addresses society’s challenges with multifaceted expertise. Our 47,500 students and 6,400 staff members make the University a large and inspiring workplace. A strong research environment and appealing programmes attract researchers and students from around the world. With new knowledge and new perspectives, the University of Gothenburg is contributing to a better future. HDK - the Academy of Design and Crafts and Valand Academy merged to form a new department on 1 January 2020.

The new department, HDK-Valand – Academy of Art and Design, together with the Academy of Music and Drama, constitute Scandinavia’s largest artistic faculty, with a unique breadth of artistic education and research. The department seeks to contribute and promote sustainable development in which design is a clear and active player. The position offers an opportunity to collaborate with colleagues to develop and strengthen the HDK-Valand department; the Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts; and the University of Gothenburg, which offers a broad network with many opportunities for collaborations and exchanges of knowledge.

HDK-Valand Steneby

The position is located at HDK-Valand in the Steneby unit in Dals Långed, where our mission is to educate designers and artisans well-versed in their materials. The concepts of materials, body and space permeate the unit’s activities and that can take on different expressions within each degree programme. Steneby is an international cultural and educational environment in Dals Långed in Dalsland, about 170 kilometres north of Gothenburg.

Degree programmes

The Bachelor’s programmes are Wood Oriented Furniture Design, Metal Art, and Textile-Body-Space. The Master’s level includes a programme, Applied Arts and Design, with three specialisations equivalent to the Bachelor’s programmes. The language of instruction is English in Wood Oriented Furniture Design, Metal Art, and Applied Arts and Design. HDK-Valand has doctoral studies in design.

Wood Oriented Furniture Design programme

In the Wood Oriented Furniture Design programme, students develop a personal approach to furniture design through project-based courses. Basic knowledge of materials, techniques and design methodology lay the foundation for developing an autonomous work method and a critical approach towards furniture design. Courses in creative expression, communication, theory and history are offered together with students in the other artistic Bachelor’s programmes at HDK-Valand Steneby. During the programme, the student focuses on developing abilities and approaches regarding artistic and material-related questions. The programme is designed for students who want to work with furniture design using an exploratory and conceptual approach to materials, innovation and sustainable development in both local and global contexts. The international nature of the study programme means that the language of instruction throughout the education is English, both in verbal and written communication.


Design with Specialisation in Wood Oriented Furniture Design

Specific subject description

Furniture design at HDK-Valand Steneby is a specialisation within the field of design. As a result, it rests on an established and general view of the content, structure and context of the design process, a method for generating and giving form to values in relation to people’s needs, requirements and expectations. This can affect both practical functions and perceived expressions of a given identity. The method is firmly grounded on an artistic approach, in which techniques and materials work together to create a communicative artefact. Specialisation refers to the view of the practical exploration’s significance for the result. Starting at the sketch stage, it is applied directly in the material, and it then follows the entire design process, with the aim of extracting knowledge and information in a creative work. The subject has a practical character professionally that is developed in step with society, locally and globally. Furniture design relates to the concept of “furniture” as an element of the local human environment, a tool and expression of the cultural context for which the product is intended. It can be understood as a conventional part of the interior of a room but can also be interpreted in a broader understanding of the relationship of people to their spatial local environment.

Job description

As an associate professor in design with a specialisation in wood oriented furniture design, you are expected to:

– serve as programme coordinator for the BFA Programme in Wood Oriented Furniture Design;

– assess;

– be responsible for the educational structure of the teaching;

– have overall responsibility for evaluation and quality assurance procedures for the programme in collaboration with other employees;

– teach at the bachelor’s (first-cycle) and master’s (second-cycle) levels;

– supervise at the bachelor’s and master’s levels;

– plan and implement collaborative activities, such as exhibitions and collaborations with private and public parties in the community;

– perform administrative work, which may involve coordination of assessing applicants; course responsibility and results reporting; and timetable and budget planning.

These tasks are carried out in close collaboration with the work group, which together conducts and develops the study programme. The work group includes a professor, associate professor, lecturer and a workshop technician.

The position also involves active participation in the entire operations of the HDK-Valand Steneby unit and the department. Other duties include regular participation in the specific meetings of the HDK-Valand Steneby unit and, together with the unit manager and professor, assuming responsibility for the development of the subject and the relevance of the programme in relation to the surrounding community. Recruitment of students is developed and implemented in collaboration with other colleagues and is part of the programme coordinator’s assignments.


The qualifications for employment as a teacher are stated in Chapter 4, Sections 3–4, of the Higher Education Ordinance and the University of Gothenburg’s appointments procedure. In accordance with the Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 4, Section 4.2, a person is qualified for employment as associate professor in disciplines in the fine, applied or performing arts who has demonstrated teaching expertise and been awarded a doctorate in fine, applied or performing arts, has demonstrated artistic expertise or has some other professional expertise that is of value in view of the subject matter of the post and the duties it will involve.


Assessment of teaching expertise

Special emphasis will be placed on pedagogical expertise as well as the ability to develop educational activities in collaboration with colleagues and the surrounding community where the following criteria are given special consideration:

– Documented experience of educational activities in a university college/university.

– Documented experience of summative assessment and course development.

– Documented experience of administration and/or project management, such as taking responsibility for planning, organising and developing projects or courses where experience in course development within the university college/university is a useful qualification.

Assessment of artistic expertise

– Experience as a designer in different contexts, such as part of an organisation or on a consultancy basis.

– Documented artistic expertise in design.

– Documented visibility and valuation in professional contexts.

– Documented artistic development work.

Other assessments

– Artistic university education at the Master’s level in design or equivalent

– Professional experience in furniture design, with design for industrial production providing a useful qualification.

– Ability to make external contacts both nationally and internationally.

– Documented administrative skills and organisational ability.

– Documented good collaboration and communication skills.

– Very good knowledge of English and Swedish, both verbally and in writing.

– Your personal approach to the subject of design also is important.

For this recruitment, we will mainly consider applicants who, after an overall assessment, are considered to have the best potential, in relation to existing expertise in the work group, to carry out relevant tasks and contribute to a positive development of activities and operations. Great emphasis is placed on subject matter skills, teaching expertise and personal suitability.

Interviews, tests and reference checks may play a role in the selection process. Given that applications may be reviewed by international experts, it is preferable for applications and their annexes to be submitted in English. If the application is written in Swedish, it may be translated. In the event of any deviation between the translated document and the Swedish original, HDK-Valand assumes no responsibility for the translation or for direct, indirect or other forms of damage that may occur during the translation.


The employment is a substitute position until 31 August 2022 and can be extended if the permanent employee’s leave is extended.

For further information

Information on the position is provided by Acting Head of Unit Ann-Sofie Julin, +46 (0)31-786 5139,

Questions about the hiring process can be directed to Human Resources Officer Therese Vestlund,

Union organisations

Union representatives at University of Gothenburg can be found here:


Apply for the position through the University of Gothenburg’s recruitment portal by clicking on the “Apply” button. As the applicant, you are responsible for ensuring that the application is complete in accordance with the advertisement and that it is submitted to the University by the last application date. Publications that cannot be digitally attached to the application are to be sent to: HDK-Valand, Therese Vestlund, Box 131, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden and need to be received by the last application date.

Deadline for submitting the application 6th of August 2020.

The University of Gothenburg works actively to promote a work environment marked by gender equality and values highly the qualities diversity brings with it. The University sets salaries on an individual basis. According to regulations of the National Archives, the University is obligated to keep application documents for two years after the employment decision. If an applicant for a position specifically requests the return of the documents, the documents will be sent back after these two years; otherwise they will be disposed of.

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