QAEHS is a new university-wide multidisciplinary Centre, funded jointly by Queensland Health and the University of Queensland, to conduct research into all aspects of interactions between the environment and human health. Scholarships may be available in toxicology, microbiology, epidemiology, and integrated environmental health (see attached list).

Eligibility requirements: Applicants must be eligible for enrolment as domestic students (Australian citizen or permanent resident, or New Zealand citizen). The minimum academic requirement is Honours Class 1 or equivalent, consistent with APA (Australian Postgraduate Award) requirements at the University of Queensland: see

Stipend: $26,288 per annum (2016 rate), indexed annually, tax-free for three years with a possible six month extension in approved circumstances.

Dates: These scholarships are for commencement in early 2017. The recommended last date for applying online is 16 September 2016.

Advisors: See attached list.

Inquiries: To discuss specific topics and research areas, contact advisors directly

Information about PhD enrolment/progression at UQ: see

General inquiries: Ms Leanne Brennan 

To apply: Applicants should contact potential advisors directly to initiate a conversation about specific projects and student-advisor match. See attached list, and the specific ISSR topics below. Once you have agreement in principle with an advisor, apply online at Please ensure that you specify in the free-text field QAEHS PhD Stipends. Note that this call is limited to four places, but you can also specify that, if unsuccessful, you wish to be considered in the general (UQ-wide) scholarship selection process.


Professor Michele Haynes, (, with

Senior Research Fellow Dr Jason ( and

Research Fellow Dr Danilo (

Professor Haynes, Dr Ferris and Dr Bolano provide expert supervision in environmental epidemiology. Professor Haynes is a statistician with over twenty years’ experience in the development and application of statistical methodology for the analysis of data, particularly in the social sciences. Dr Ferris is a statistician has over ten years of social science and public health research experience, with a strong focus on alcohol and drug research, sexual health, and adolescent health. Dr Bolano is a demographer and social statistician with expertise in quantitative methods for social sciences and longitudinal data analysis.

Research topics include:

  • Clandestine drug labs and evaluation of remediation practices in Queensland
  • Waste-water analysis
  • Spatial analysis (e.g. alcohol outlet density, alley lighting changes) and population health harms
  • Social determinants of environmental and health risk exposure
  • Interrelationships between social processes, environmental exposure and health outcomes over the life course.

PhD Scholarship to study Indigenous healthcare architecture

PhD Scholarship to study Indigenous healthcare architecture

Scholarships are available to Australian and New Zealand citizens for PhD study as part of the project: ”Understanding Indigenous experiences of architectural settings to improve Indigenous health outcomes: Does design matter?” This is an Australian Research Council funded Discovery Project led by Prof Paul Memmott, and Dr Timothy O’Rourke from the AERC, with Prof. Michele Haynes and Dr Bernard Baffour from the Institute for Social Science Research at The University of Queensland. Prof Memmott and Dr O’Rourke will supervise the successful applicants who chose to focus on architectural questions related to healthcare design for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The project would suit applicants with degrees in architecture, planning, anthropology and social science.


The scholarship has the conditions of an Australian Postgraduate Award with a stipend of AUD$26,288 per annum (2016 rate, indexed annually) for three years. Candidates are required to be resident in Brisbane. Additional funding may be available for candidates undertaking fieldwork in remote or regional areas. There are no tuition fees due for Australian and New Zealand citizens.  Online applications are now open. Further advice is on PhD study at UQ available from the UQ Graduate School. Interested applicants are encouraged to read the project description website and then to contact Dr Timothy O’Rourke directly.

Project summary

The significance of cross-cultural design principles and practice is recognized for particular building types but poorly understood in healthcare architecture, despite the untenable state of Indigenous health. Preliminary evidence suggests that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people fail to present for health care until chronically ill, due to fear or dislike of health services and their settings. Across a range of institutional scales and service delivery settings, this research aims to understand how the design of particular settings affect Indigenous people’s use, experience and perceptions of hospitals and clinics. Developing innovative and adaptable research methods, we aim to establish the programmatic principles and architectural qualities that lead to improved Indigenous healthcare participation, user experience and health outcomes, reducing the disparity in health for the most marginalized Australians.

The goal of this research project is to improve the experience and use of healthcare architecture for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.  Our aim is to identify the best design principles and practices through an analysis of existing clinics and hospitals and surveys of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander users.

The overarching research question is: “When it comes to health service engagement, does design matter to Indigenous people, and how does it affect their decisions around accessing health care?” This aim is further articulated in the following four research questions:

What are the typical architectural characteristics of existing healthcare settings?

What is the relative importance of setting in attracting or preventing Indigenous access health services?

What are Indigenous people’s perceptions of healthcare settings (both positive & negative attributes)?

What are the setting design elements and strategies that promote Indigenous access to healthcare?