The University of Queensland invites applications for a PhD scholarship in Synthesis of biomimetic materials in the 2020/2021 academic year.

Project details:

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.

Worth of Award

  • $28,092 per annum tax free (2020 rate), indexed annually.


  • 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.

How to Apply

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

  • 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.

Deadline: Applications close on March 31, 2020.


Click here for more details and to apply

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