NatiOn – National research school in clinical and translational cancer research

Karolinska Institutet and Uppsala University are offering a three-year national research school (NatiOn) in clinical and translational cancer research commencing in April 2022. The aim of the programme is to offer a tailored package of courses as a knowledge-base for future clinical researchers in the cancer field. The programme concentrates primarily on molecular oncology and research methods for (prospective) clinically active individuals in the cancer field.

NatiOn is financed by the Committee for Doctoral Education at KI, the Swedish Cancer Society, U-CAN at Uppsala University and CancerResearch at KI.

Call for applications

Up to twenty doctoral students will be admitted.

Call for funding:  Apply electronically in KI Prisma. Deadline: 7 May 2021 (at 2 pm).

Notice of admission will be given in August 2021.

Target group

The programme is for doctoral students. Applicants should have a clinical or translational project in cancer research and clinical affiliation is meritorius through a permanent position or other longer-term undertaking.

We also encourage applications from doctoral students at preclinical departments who have completed at least four years of medical studies and intend to become clinically active researchers in the field of cancer.


To apply you must:

  • a doctoral student at KI or any other Swedish university or expected to be admitted to doctoral education at latest three weeks before course start in April 2022
  • have an university education relevant for the scope of the research school


Your application will be judged from two perspectives:

  • The project – scientific quality, feasibility and relevance
  • The applicant – experience and motivation


Your application is to contain the following information:

  • Application form
  • CV
  • Description of your research plan (max three pages)
  • Reasons for applying (why you want and need to take this particular programme)
  • Testimony from a supervisor confirming your suitability and need for the programme
  • Testimony from your clinical manager that you will be granted leave to attend the programme (if applicable)

About the research school

The research school does not cover the participants’ salaries during the course periods (although some compensation is possible). Travel and maintenance allowances are possible in the first instance from the respective employer/clinic, and in the second from the NatiOn-research school. The participants’ clinical managers (or their equivalents) are required to testify that they will be granted paid or unpaid leave for each course period. During the course periods there will be no time or opportunity for any parallel clinical work.

Course periods

The programme comprises a total of 20 weeks of full-time study (30 credits) over three years, divided into six two to four-week blocks.

Block 1 November 2019
Block 2 Spring 2020
Block 3 Autumn 2020
Block 4 Spring 2021
Block 5 Autumn 2021 (prel.)
Block 6 Spring 2022 (prel.)

The programme is designed to give a solid and advanced foundation for clinical cancer research. The courses include more advanced study of basic and new concepts in cancer biology, molecular oncology, research methods and clinical cancer research tools. The programme is also adapted to the obligatory basic block for doctoral students at Karolinska Institutet and Uppsala University, and meets the requirements of most other Swedish universities. The programme is to be completed in its entirety. Teaching is in Swedish and English.

Intended learning outcomes

After completing the programme, participants are expected to be able to:

  • formulate specific scientific hypotheses
  • understand the processes underlying the transformation of a normal cell into its malignant counterpart and the consequences of malign transformation at a cell and orgasm level
  • understand how biological knowledge on the development of cancer is used in modern cancer therapies
  • be familiar with the methods used in modern and translational cancer research
  • design clinical experimental and observational studies
  • compose applications for research grants and to ethical review boards
  • conduct data-gathering procedures
  • analyse data, independently and with statisticians
  • interpret results
  • write scientific reports and critically review publications.


For further details, contact:

Daria Glaessgen

Research school director

Karin Lindberg

Research school director