PhD scholarship - Bringing Digital Excellence to Clinical Excellence: Leading Digital Excellence in Queensland Health


Enrolment status New students
Student type Domestic students, International students
Level of study Higher Degree by Research
Study area Business and Economics, Engineering and Computing, Health and Behavioural Sciences, Medicine, Science and Mathematics
HDR funding type Living stipend scholarship, Top-up Scholarship
Scholarship value $40,000 per annum, Single Overseas Student Health Cover ($3,800). In addition, $5,000 for education-related expenses is provided each year.
Scholarship duration 3 years with the possibility of two 6 month extensions in approved circumstances
Opening date 14 April 2020
Closing date 3 May 2020


The Department of Health (Qld) is partnering with the University of Queensland (UQ) and the Digital Health CRC (DHCRC) to support the emergence of a new breed of interdisciplinary leader who can use evidence and thought-leadership to help shape the digital transformation of healthcare in Queensland and become respected leaders in Australia and globally.

This work will offer a coordinated set of three PhD scholarships to deliver subprojects that address the priorities of Queensland Health, including those of the Queensland Clinical Networks Executive (QCNE) and the Office of the Chief Clinical Information Officer (CCIO). Some subprojects will be transferrable (i.e. focusing on one Statewide Network or Hospital and Health Service, with insights then being transferred to other Statewide Networks or HHSs) while others will be overarching (i.e. focusing on the concerns of the Queensland Health system as a whole). 

The Project has five working principles that set it apart from other opportunities:

  1. Interdisciplinary: The Project is designed to support a new breed of interdisciplinary leader, who deeply understands clinical realities, data and technology, and business transformation. Accordingly, each student will be guaranteed supervisors from across at least three disciplines (clinical, business/economics, and data/digital) as well as the industry sponsor.
  2. Well-governed: The Project will link into existing governance structures to ensure a pathway to impact. The Clinical Excellence Division at the Department (Qld) has created a new virtual unit (the Health Intelligence Unit—HSIU) to facilitate this governance. The subprojects will be run through the HSIU and supported by the Department (Qld), including the QCNE, Office of the CCIO and eHealth Queensland.
  3. Cohort effects: Doctoral students and postdoctoral and clinical fellows will be admitted as part of a cohort and will have regular opportunities to meet with each other, with supervisors, and with the project sponsors. The aim is to support the growing ecosystem of digital health.
  4. Resourced: Students will be eligible to receive a scholarship package that includes a generous living stipend and an annual education allowance.
  5. Impactful: The subprojects will be chosen in consultation with Queensland Health to ensure they are addressing priority areas for Queensland and Australia, and that they can make a meaningful impact.

The long-term objective of the scholarships is to support the digital transformation of healthcare in Queensland by building intellectual leadership and by growing a rich ecosystem of students, supervisors, fellows, and university-industry collaborations that can maintain and advance momentum over time, and to link this Project with broader initiatives being supported by the DHCRC nationally so that the leaders in individual states across Australia can become national (and ideally international) leaders who can together make significant improvements to the health system.

In addition to benefiting from resources in the University of Queensland and Queensland Health, students selected into this program will benefit the resources of the Digital Health CRC, including educational resources and networking benefits.  For more details on these benefits, see the HDR Program page.

The following figure provides a summary snapshot of the approach being taken to these projects.


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

Applications are closed.

Before you get started

If this scholarship has rules, download and read them.

How to apply

To apply for admission and scholarship, follow the link on the upper right of this page. There is no separate application for scholarship because you will have the opportunity to request scholarship consideration on the application for admission.

Before submitting an application you should:

When you apply, please ensure that under the scholarships and collaborative study section you:

  1. Select ‘My higher degree is not collaborative’
  2. Select 'I am applying for, or have been awarded a scholarship or sponsorship'.
  3. Select ‘Other’, then ‘Research Project Scholarship’ and type in ‘QLD HEALTHin the 'Name of scholarship' field.

See an example of what you have to do

Learn more about applying for a higher degree by research at UQ

In your application, applicants must submit a preliminary proposal.  This is to be submitted along with your other documents in the system (i.e. testamurs, transcripts, CV etc.). You are to submit this in the "Evidence and Document Upload" section of the online application. In the "Name of evidence type" field, choose "Other Supporting Document/s". This proposal must address the following points:

  • What is the problem you seek to address?
  • Based on your knowledge of the current state of digital health in Queensland, why is this problem critical to address now?
  • Is the subproject you wish to conduct likely to be overarching or transferrable? (Please see the descriptions provided earlier). If the subproject is overarching, why? If the subproject is transferrable, describe how and which other networks or HHSs could benefit.
  • Who would/could be your supervisors on the subproject?  To show feasibility you must identify advisors from at least two of the three areas noted above, namely: (1) Clinical (e.g., from Faculty of Medicine or Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences), (2) Business/economics (e.g., from the School of Business, School of Economics, or the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health), and (3) Data/digital (e.g., from the School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering)
  • What benefits would your subproject offer if conducted successfully?
  • How does your track record indicate that you can conduct the subproject successfully?
  • The 5-page proposal should be all-inclusive of all sections.  For example, if you cite literature, the references should be included within the 5 pages.  Likewise, we do not need a cover page.  Please just include the title of the proposal and your name at the top of the first page.  For consistency across applications, we are assuming the document is written in single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font with 1-inch margins.
  • The only exception to the 5-page rule is if you wish to include an Appendix with further details on the project.  You are not required to include an Appendix and it will not necessarily be reviewed in detail, but you may include it if you wish, e.g., to provide methodological details on the study you wish to conduct. Our selection process will focus on the 5-page proposal only. 

The information you provide in your application is collected for the purposes of (1) assessing your eligibility for this scholarship, (2) selecting scholarship recipients, and (3) administration of the scholarship. The University of Queensland will disclose the information you provide to Queensland Health for the stated purposes. The University will not otherwise disclose the information to a third party without your consent, unless such disclosure is authorised or required by law.  For further information, please refer to the University’s Privacy Management Policy at

Selection criteria

We will select candidates based on GPA, past research experience, and their 5 page proposal.

    Applications are closed.


    Professor Andrew Burton-Jones
    +61 (0) 418 232 495
    Applications are closed.

    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.

    Applications are closed.