Synthesis of biomimetic materials - PhD scholarship


Enrolment status New students
Student type Domestic students, International students
Level of study Higher Degree by Research
Study area Science and Mathematics
HDR funding type Living stipend scholarship
Scholarship value $27,596 per annum tax-free (2019 rate), indexed annually.
Scholarship duration Three years with the possibility of two 6-month extensions in approved circumstances.
Opening date 25 July 2019
Closing date 31 December 2019

Scholarship description

As a part of Professor Alan Rowan’s ARC Laureate fellowship this project aims to understand how soft materials in the human body can be precisely modelled to produce sophisticated and responsive materials.

For this project, in a synthetic/rheological approach, the candidate will examine material changes as a function of chemical modification of semiflexible polymers. By modifying the monomer structure, the stiffness and helical pitch of the polymers can be altered and the effect upon bundling studied. Ultimately, the project aim will be to characterise what the structural parameters are that control the onset and gradient of the strain stiffening – the two key parameters of biomimetic hydrogels.

The interdisciplinary nature of the project, and diverse background of researchers within the Rowan group, will provide the candidate with access to cutting edge equipment and training in new research areas such as high-resolution microscopy, tissue culture, rheology and bioengineering.

The outcomes of this project will be applied in tissue engineering and immunology through to responsive soft matter and robotics.


To be eligible, you must meet the entry requirements for a higher degree by research.

Before you apply

If this scholarship has rules, download and read them before applying.

How to apply

To be considered for this scholarship, please email the following documents to Professor Alan Rowan ( and/or Dr Jan Lauko (

  • Cover Letter that addresses how you meet the requirements for participation in the project
  • Detailed academic CV with a focus on past research and laboratory skills and details of two referees
  • Academic transcript/s

Please note the following: Submitting the above documents does not constitute a full application for admission into The University of Queensland's PhD program. If you are selected as the preferred applicant, you will then be invited to submit a full application for admission. You can familiarise yourself with the documents required for this process on the Graduate School's website.

Selection criteria

Applications are invited from outstanding and enthusiastic, international and domestic graduates of high scholarly calibre as evidenced by a high Grade Point Average (GPA) and will have a First Class Honours degree, Masters degree or equivalent. Past research publication output is desirable.

The candidate should have a background in physical organic and/or polymer chemistry, with experience in structural and material characterisation.


Dr Jan Lauko
+61 7 3346 4179

Terms and conditions

Read the policy on UQ Research Scholarships.

A domestic part-time student with carer’s responsibilities, a medical condition or a disability, which prevents them from studying full time may be eligible for scholarship consideration, on a case by case basis.