Two PhD scholarships are available for a research program in realising resilience at Hunter Water under the supervision of Associate Professor Graham Brewer

PhD Opportunity - Realising Resilience at Hunter Water

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Two PhD Scholarships are available through the Faculty of Engineering and Built Environment at the University of Newcastle for for a research program in realising resilience at Hunter Water under the supervision of Associate Professor Graham Brewer

We are seeking expressions of interest from two highly motivated and enthusiastic applicants interested in pursuing an intensive PhD program in building resilience and sustainable futures.

The projects will be undertaken in partnership between Hunter Water, the University of Newcastle and CIFAL Newcastle.

Its purpose is to gain an understanding of the complex relationships between Hunter Water’s strategic direction and the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

This partnership will deliver a robust yet detailed mapping of the needs and aspirations of the community it serves whilst concurrently identifying the cultural barriers and enablers to resilient change.

Hunter Water will benefit from a deep understanding of the connection between its business and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), both in terms of alignment of business strategy with SDG metrics and the use of the SDG principles as the lever to initiate cultural change in pursuit of leading to resilience innovation in the face of resilience challenges being imposed by global warming/climate change adaptation and the increasing occurrence of extreme weather events.

Objectives of the scholarship program:

  1. To understand the links between personal attitudes, consequent behaviours, and the formation of group culture in relation to resilient water supply and usage in times of change.
  2. To explain these links in the context of Hunter Water as an organisation, and the communities that it serves.
  3. To develop models, tools or techniques that facilitate knowledge transfer thereby assisting Hunter Water as an organisation, and the communities that it serves, during the transition to more resilient water solutions.

Some examples of projects are below though the specific direction of the projects can be negotiated with the supervisor.

Project one: To investigate and explain the barriers to, and enablers of organisational change. These are expected to arise as a consequence of the need to secure resilient long-term water supply solutions for the diverse communities that make up the Hunter region.

Project two: To investigate and explain the core expectations of the people of the Hunter community in relation to their water supply, and the elasticity that they exhibit in relation to alternative, novel water supply solutions.

Successful candidates will be encouraged to complete a Thesis by Publication.

The successful candidates will be expected to enrol full-time at the University of Newcastle and commence studies by the end of 2017.


This a Commonwealth Government and/or internal scholarship, which provides a full-time living allowance of $26,682 per annum (2017 rate, tax-free, indexed annually), for a period of up to 3.5 years (equivalent full-time student load). It is a full tuition fee scholarship


This scholarship is open to domestic and International students. The successful applicant must meet the University of Newcastle’s admission eligibility criteria. The successful applicant must commence their candidature by the end of 2017.  The successful students will be expected to complete bi-annual report on findings to date to the sponsor.


Applicants are advised to contact Associate Professor Graham Brewer

Contact: Associate Professor Graham Brewer
Ph: +61 2 4921 5794

APPLICATIONS CLOSE 29th September 2017

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