PhD Elevate Scholarship - CQUniversity and Gladstone Ports Corporation Partnership (Ecological Engineering)

We seek an independent and highly motivated graduate with relevant experience and interest in ecological engineering to undertake research into the design and implementation of ecological engineering approaches to living seawalls in an industrial port. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to contribute to the implementation of working-with-nature solutions for a planned large project in a major port in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area, Australia, and hence to produce research with a tangible and immediate impact. The aim of this PhD project is to investigate the application of recognised terrestrial ecological engineering design principles, as well as monitoring ecosystem outcomes of working-with-nature trials for seawall construction.

Scholarship Value: $30,000 stipend per year and access to an operational budget to support research expenses

Length of Scholarship: 3 years

Number Available: 1

Opening Date: 29 July 2020

Closing Date: 22 February 2021

Study LevelPostgraduate (Research)
Year of StudyFuture; First year
Study RegionGladstone Queensland
Study ModeOn-campus
Study LoadFull time

To be eligible for the Scholarship, an applicant must:

  1. have completed a Bachelor Degree with Honours I or IIA, or be regarded by CQUniversity as having an equivalent level of attainment;
  2. be an Australian or New Zealand citizen or permanent resident of Australia or eligible for a student visa for temporary residence and already be living in Australia at time of application due to travel restrictions that are currently in place in Australia due to COVID-19;
  3. be approved for admission and enrolling in, a Doctor of Philosophy in the School of Health, Medical and Applied Sciences at CQUniversity;
  4. enrol full-time and be an internal candidate at CQUniversity’s Gladstone campus;
  5. not previously have held a Commonwealth Government-funded or CQUniversity-funded postgraduate research scholarship, unless it was terminated within six months of the scholarship’s payments commencing; and
  6. must not be receiving an equivalent award, scholarship or salary providing a benefit greater than 75% of the Scholarship stipend rate to undertake a research higher degree.

Applications are invited from candidates who have or can demonstrate:

  1. A degree in ecology, biology or environmental engineering (Honours or MSc).
  2. Ability to work independently in the field
  3. Ability to meet deadlines
  4. Teamwork skills, and
  5. An interest in with working with industry or external stakeholders.

Candidates with equivalent or complementary experience are also encouraged to apply.

Coastal defences built using traditional methods typically replace natural habitats, disrupt ecological connectivity and can mediate the invasion of pest species.  However, by incorporating relatively small design modifications that create “novel ecosystems”, the environmental, social and economic value of coastal works can be greatly improved.  The development of effective “working-with-nature” approaches, that align engineering and ecological objectives, is a highly topical and rapidly growing area for research.

The position will be based at CQUniversity’s Coastal Marine Ecosystems Research Centre (CMERC) in Gladstone, Australia.  Just a one-hour flight from Brisbane International Airport, Gladstone houses one of Australia’s leading multi-commodity ports, and is a gateway to the adjacent Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.  The CMERC headquarters, located on the Gladstone Marina, boast world-class facilities and access to cutting-edge research equipment for coastal and marine science.  The position will involve working closely with scientists from CMERC and with the Port of Gladstone.

The PhD Candidate will be part of the vibrant Coastal Marine Ecosystems Research Centre (CMERC) at CQUniversity’s Gladstone campus. The research group includes 20 staff with a goal to undertake research that works with nature to build an economically and environmentally sustainable future to enrich our coastal communities. CMERC is the only coastal research facility based in Central Queensland and features world-class research equipment and laboratories with access to cutting-edge analytical capabilities. CMERC staff have strong links with local industry and community groups and are working closely with Traditional Owners to empower them as custodians of Land and Sea Country. CMERC collaborates with a number of internationally renowned research groups. This scholarship will provide the PhD Candidate with a strong research environment with ample opportunities for research collaborations at the national and international level.

The position will be supervised by Associate Professor Emma Jackson. The successful candidate will be expected to commence work early in 2021.

Enquiries and applications should be submitted by e-mail to Associate Professor Emma Jackson.  All supporting documentation should be included within a single email.  The selection process will commence on 22 February 2021, but applications received after that date will be considered until the position is filled.

The application should include:

  1. A cover letter describing how your skills and research expertise address the selection criteria;
  2. Your current resume and academic transcripts together with a list of publications and projects;
  3. The names of two referees, together with email and phone contact information; and
  4. If applicable, examples of scientific writing (e.g. published scientific articles, research reports, thesis).
All applicants will be notified to their nominated email of the result of their application once the selection process has finalised.
CQUniversity and Gladstone Ports Corporation