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Australian Research Council Project Stakeholder Involvement in School Design PhD Top-up Scholarship

The Faculty of the Built Environment invites applications for the Top-up Scholarship Semester 2, 2017 
Scholarship value
An annual stipend of $22,000 per year for three and a half years. There is also the possibility that the successful candidate could have access to significant in-kind support in terms of access to staff, data and support from the ARC project partners, although this will have to be negotiated as the project develops.  
To investigate how school principals, teachers, parents and other school community stakeholders might usefully contribute to the design of their school
This PhD research forms part of a broader, three-year ARC Linkage project which started in March 2017 and which involves an unprecedented collaboration comprising: Infrastructure Australia; treasury and finance departments in NSW, Victoria, QLD and WA; education departments of six Australian jurisdictions; key private sector organisations; and three leading universities (UNSW, University of Melbourne, QUT).
The aim of the overall research project is to develop a world-first ‘Value Rating’ that maximises the educational outcomes (performance) facilitated by a school relative to the total costs of that built environment. This Value Rating is the basis for developing a new procurement decision-making framework which will help school design decision makers ensure that the contribution of a built facility to educational outcomes (performance) is optimised against the total costs of provision (including operational costs). The differential performance and costs in the delivery and operation of a school built facility arising from alternative procurement decisions (including public-private partnerships versus non-public-private partnerships) will be assessed and explained. All of these outcomes will be transferable to Catholic and Independent schools.
The UNSW PhD research is one of four PhD projects in the ARC Grant and will focus on how school principals, teachers, parents and other school community stakeholders might usefully contribute to the design of their school. There are two starting research questions:
  1. How might the school community best be incentivised to engage in design decision making? Drawing on recent research on knowledge as a form commons, this aspect would consider the conditions under which sharing design decision making rights will increase stakeholder engagement. 
  2. To what extent is the school community able to identify good design outcomes? Investigating the specific changes that principals and teachers would like to see in the design of their schools and comparing those with the improved value rating such changes would actually deliver in operation. 
Supervision and location
The PhD scholarship will be supervised by Associate Professor Sidney Newton and Professor Martin Loosemore in the Faculty of the Built Environment at UNSW. 
Selection criteria
The PhD scholarship is available to both: those with a background in design or construction wishing to better understand stakeholder engagement in the procurement of school infrastructure; and/or those with a background in education wishing to better understand the role that the design and management of school built environments play in delivering effective learning outcomes 
To apply
Applicants must show high academic achievement in an honours or masters by research or coursework program (with a research element) in a related discipline. 
Submit an EOI and include your CV (with two academic references) and a 500 word maximum statement clearly outlining your suitability for the position. Please also submit examples of your writing ability (such as previous research theses) and any publications you may have been involved in as an author. For full details, please sclick here.
Submit your statement to Associate Professor Sidney Newton. Please include “School Design ARC Project Top-up Scholarship” in the subject line of the email.
Submission Deadline: 1st June 2017.
Awards are made on the basis of academic merit, research experience and/or research potential, as well as suitability of the applicant’s application statement and interview performance.
Commencement of study
The successful applicant must be fully enrolled as a full-time candidate in the PhD program commencing Session 2, 2017. The conditions and responsibilities of candidature are as laid down by the UNSW Graduate School. 
You must be an Australian citizen or Australian permanent resident or an International student who has been awarded a UNSW or external scholarship to cover your fees that commences in the same calendar year. Please note that if a successful applicant has a UNSW scholarship in addition to this top up then they are not permitted to earn more than 75% of the value of the UNSW scholarship amount.
Selection process
All EOI applications are reviewed by Built Environment’s Higher Degree Committee in the first instance.
Applications accepted for PhD candidature will then be considered by the selection panel including the Built Environment Associate Dean Research and the project supervisors Associate Professor Sidney Newton and Professor Martin Loosemore in the Faculty of the Built Environment at UNSW. The panel will decide if an award is to be made. 
Announcement of award
The successful applicant will be informed by late June 2017 and subject to agreement will be expected to start as soon as possible after that, subject to any VISA requirements for international students. 
Page Last Updated: 11 May 2017