Scholarship details

Study levels

Postgraduate and Research

Student type

Future students

Study area

Building and planning, Science, technology and engineering and mathematics


Australian or New Zealand and International

Application dates

Applications close
30 April 2022

What you'll receive

  • The successful applicant will receive a living allowance of $28,854 (AUD) per annum for three years, indexed annually
  • The scholarship is for full-time study and can be used to support living costs.
  • A six-month extension to the scholarship is also possible, subject to approval by QUT.

Successful international students will be considered for a HDR tuition fee sponsorship, if successful in receiving the scholarship.


  • Meet QUT academic and English language entry requirements for the Doctor of Philosophy (IF49)
  • A bachelor’s degree with first-class honours (or equivalent) or a Master’s degree from a recognized university is a prerequisite. Evidence of publishing in international peer-reviewed journal, previous knowledge of collaborative governance, and demonstrated experience in mixed qualitative and quantitative social science methods will also be viewed favourably.
  • The candidate should have enthusiasm for working with researchers across disciplines; and strong written and oral English skills.

How to apply

Future QUT research student applicants:

  1. Follow the how to apply steps.
  2. You must submit your expression of interest (EOI) by 30 April 2022.
  3. Apply for the scholarship in your EOI by:
  • nominating Angela Guerrero as your principal supervisor; and
  • in the financial details section, enter the details of this scholarship at question 2.
  1. If your EOI is accepted you will be invited to submit a full application including a research proposal to finalise your application.


The conditions for retaining the scholarship are set out in the rules of the QUT Postgraduate Research Award (Domestic) or QUT Postgraduate Research Award (International).

About the scholarship

This funded PhD project is an exciting opportunity to work on promoting the adoption of agricultural practices to improve water quality in the Great Barrier Reef catchments and stop the degradation of one of our most valuable ecosystems.

Sugarcane farming is a key contributor to water quality decline in the GBR due to nutrients and contaminants entering coastal waters in run-off from agricultural activities. This has a negative impact on key habitats for species, aggravates the impacts of climate change and threatens the health of reef ecosystems and dependent tourism and fishing industries. Multiple policy instruments and governance efforts to halt impacts of run-off on water quality in the Great Barrier Reef catchments by incentivising sustainable agricultural practices abound - yet their effectiveness is still uncertain. The use of collaborative governance arrangements in the region has been shown to increase trust, knowledge sharing, understanding of policy issues amongst stakeholders and implementation capacity. However, measuring the impact of collaborative governance on practice adoption remains elusive.  Particularly, there is a need for understanding how collaborative governance interact with other policy instruments (e.g. financial incentives, regulation, extension programs) and other factors that influence decisions to adopt sustainable practices. This knowledge is important for the development of more targeted and cost-effective governance interventions.

This scholarship is funded by a Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA) Fellowship awarded to Dr Angela Guerrero by the Australian Research Council with co-funding from the Queensland University of Technology.

The PhD candidate will be embedded in a broader research project seeking to understand factors influencing the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices in GBR catchments. However, the student should also be motivated to explore different research grounds and acquire knowledge and skills across the diversity of disciplines offered at QUT. As part of the transdisciplinary environment of Centre for the Environment, the student will collaborate with and benefit from other students and researchers with diverse research interests and perspectives.

For further information, please contact: Angela Guerrero

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