Scientia PhD Scholarships

UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme

Under the Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme, UNSW will enrol up to 700 new PhD scholars of exceptional quality over the next 10 years. The Scheme directly underpins the UNSW Strategy 2025 goals.

Scientia scholars will have a strong commitment to making a difference in the world with demonstrated potential for contributing to the learning and teaching excellence, social engagement and/or global impact pillars of the 2025 Strategy.

These prestigious scholarships will include a stipend of $40,000 per annum for 4 years and a support package of up to $10,000 per annum to provide support for development activities, international collaboration, and other related expenses.

Applications for the Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme 2019 have now closed. Please register your interest for next year's application round at www.2025.unsw.edu.au/apply.

UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website

Business School 2018 priority research areas

Potential Scientia scholars can select from the following research projects within the UNSW Business School.

Consequences of Auditor’s Information Acquisition Processes

Investors, regulators, and all other firm’s stakeholders rely on the auditor’s role in assuring the accuracy and credibility of financial statements. Therefore, an auditor must acquire and evaluate relevant information not only obtained from the client firm but also from other information sources.

Supervisory team: Professor Gary Monroe and Lili DaiProfessor Ken Trotman

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Eroding the mandatory nature of law: testing modern regulatory compliance

Evidence presented to the financial services Royal Commission suggests that some intensely regulated large businesses regard compliance with the law as a risk management issue, rather than an absolute obligation. This project will investigate interaction between legal compliance, risk management and the normative status of law in regulated sectors. It will also examine the role of regulators and regulatory guidelines in ensuring legal compliance.

Supervisory team: Rob Nicholls School of Taxation & Business Law, UNSW Business School) and Professor Pamela Hanrahan (School of Taxation & Business Law)

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Modelling Policy toward Ageing in Emerging Economies: Indonesia and beyond

This research will focus on the development and application of economic policy modelling towards ageing in emerging economies. The cutting edge economic model to investigate policy implications under demographic change, the overlapping generations (OLG) model, will be extended to incorporate the informal sector to address quantitatively critical issues such as inequality in policy design.

Supervisory team: Professor John Piggott (CEPAR) and Dr. George Kudrna (CEPAR, UNSW Business School). Associate Professor Isabella Dobrescu School of Economics .

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

The eyes have it: Eye-movements and decision-making

We often make carefully considered decisions on the basis of risks and possible rewards; e.g., which stocks to invest in, or who to vote for in an election. However, most decisions that we make don’t receive much consideration. For example, we ‘decide’ where to move our eyes several times every second, often seemingly without thought or effort. Recent research shows that rapid and automatic eye-movements can be influenced by risks and rewards. This project will investigate whether risk/reward affects automatic eye-movements in the same way as more reasoned choices and whether we can influence people’s choices by manipulating their eye-movements.

Supervisory team: Mathew Chylinski (School of Marketing , UNSW Business School),

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Longevity Risk Models and Actuarial Applications with Data Analytic Techniques

Longevity risk is a significant risk facing pension funds, insurers and governments. Data analytic techniques and individual level data remains relatively unexplored. This research will apply advanced data analytic techniques using individual level data to provide a more comprehensive model for longevity risk incorporating sample variation, multiple risk factors and mortality heterogeneity. New insights will come from data and a comprehensive assessment of model risk.

Supervisory team: Professor Michael Sherris (School of Risk & Actuarial, UNSW Business School), Professor Andres Villegas (School of Risk & Actuarial, UNSW Business School) and Associate Professor Jonathan Ziveyi (School of Risk & Actuarial, UNSW Business School).

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Modern Bayesian Inference in Implicit Probabilistic Models

Recent advances in generative adversarial networks have sparked tremendous excitement about the more general area of implicit probabilistic models. These models are only defined via simulations from an unknown (implied) distribution and provide a much more flexible data-modelling approach than traditional prescribed probabilistic models. However, their generality comes at the expense of extremely difficult inference challenges.

Supervisory team: Scientia Professor Robert Kohn (School of Economics, UNSW Business School) and Scott Sisson (School of Computer Science and Engineering, UNSW Engineering). Dr Edwin Bonilla (UNSW Engineering).

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Optimal risk management under solvency and capital adequacy considerations

This project will develop novel statistical methods motivated by substantive problems involving analysis of individuals responding to changes in their work and personal environments. Our focus will be health economics and changes such as government policy initiatives or unexpected health shocks where concerns arise about inequality in healthcare. For example, are there important differences associated with socio-economic status or insurance coverage in treatment and financial burdens occurring after a health shock? Such questions are best answered using panel data where individuals are tracked over time. Methods developed will exploit such data and will apply outside the planned applications in health.

Supervisory team: Scientia Professor Robert Kohn (School of Economics, UNSW Business School), Professor Scott Sisson (School of Mathematics and Statistics, UNSW Science) and Professor Denzil Fiebig (School of Economics, UNSW Business School).

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

The sociomateriality of new workplaces: multimodal analysis and organization studies

'New' workplace designs are ubiquitous, foregrounding trends such as co-working, office-less organization, micropeneur-ship, minimal hierarchisation, and weaker borders between workplace, home, and leisure. Despite being of such interest, little research has investigated the sociomaterial nature of these designs and their implications for new meanings about 'work'. .

Supervisory team: Professor Markus Hoellerer (School of Management, UNSW Business School), Associate Professor Louise Ravelli (School of the Arts & Media, UNSW Arts & Social Sciences)

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Financial decision making and cognitive decline over the lifecycle

The research will develop an actuarial and financial based framework for longevity risk modelling, drawing on the latest research in mathematical finance and longevity risk models. It will propose and analyse innovative structured retirement products incorporating investment, longevity and aged care/health risks; and propose and analyse the innovative design and assessment of risk management strategies aimed at mitigating financial and mortality risk. The research addresses the significant and topical issue of financing retirement risks with a comprehensive retirement income product. It has significant implications for both national and individual welfare and will provide the basis for industry product innovation.

Supervisory team: Professor Hazel Bateman (School of Risk and Actuarial Studies, UNSW Business School), Associate Professor Isabella Dobrescu (School of Risk and Actuarial Studies, UNSW Business School) and Professor Kaarin Anstey (UNSW Science).

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Using behavioural economics to inform decision making in fertility treatment

One in six couples experience infertility, causing personal suffering to millions world-wide and contributing to Australia’s below replacement fertility level. Fertility treatment is optional, relying on decisions patients are motivated to make. This project will apply behavioural economic methods to fertility treatment choices, providing insight into the reasons patients initiate, change or discontinue treatment, thus identifying policy-levers that nudge patient cohorts toward treatment pathways with the highest utility.

Supervisory team: Professor Andreas Ortmann (School of Economics, UNSW Business School), Associate Professor Georgina Mary Chambers (UNSW Medicine). Professor Louisa Jorm(UNSW Business)

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Mindful leadership: A new way to drive innovation

This interdisciplinary project will study how disruptive and incremental innovation is best driven by mindful leadership. Mindful leadership is new to the literature and draws on Eastern and Western literatures on mindfulness. We will compare this new leadership typology with transformational, transactional and servant leadership styles. Our research will inform practice including: how to develop leaders to deliver continuous innovation; potential benefits and risks of certain types of leadership on innovation; and how to cultivate and support mindfulness and wisdom in leaders, especially in highly competitive and short-term oriented organisational cultures that encourage sub-optimal leadership.

Supervisory team: Professor Chris Jackson (School of Management, UNSW Business School), Jane XJ Qiu (School of Management , UNSW Business School), Associate Professor Joel Pearson (School of Psychology, UNSW Science ).

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.

Understanding gender dynamics across STEMM: exploring laboratories in action

The elicitation of risk preferences, and the determination to what extent they are context- and domain-specific, remains an important problem for social sciences and public policy. Better and robust elicitation of such preferences would improve decision making in contexts such as health, wealth (namely old-age provision), and transportation. Unfortunately, different elicitation methods provide often divergent estimates. In the proposed project, we attempt to identify through appropriate experimental design and implementation both in the lab and the field, people's latent (“deep”) risk preferences from observed stated and revealed choices across elicitation methods, context, and time (reliability of estimates over time).

Supervisory team: Dr Abigail Powell (Centre for Social Impact, UNSW Business School), Professor Louise Chappell (School of Social Sciences, UNSW Arts & Social Sciences) and Dr Caroline Ford (UNSW Medicine)

To register an Expression of Interest with the supervisors, please visit the UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship Scheme website.