PhD Fellowship in Environment at University of Western Sydney

Applicants are invited to apply for PhD position in environment science at University of Western Sydney. All students regardless of citizenship are eligible to apply. The deadline for applying is March 31, 2015.

The newly established ARC Centre of Excellence for Translational Photosynthesis (CETP) is seeking a motivated PhD candidate to work at its UWS node housed within the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment (HIE). The PhD candidate is anticipated to commence in 2015. One of the key challenges of the 21st century is closing the gap between current rates of food production and increasing global food demands, requiring new ways to improve crop productivity.

The CETP seeks to identify natural and modern solutions to supercharging photosynthesis as a means of improving crop yield and efficiency. C4 plants (e.g., maize, sorghum, sugarcane) are more productive and efficient than the more prevalent C3 (e.g., wheat, rice) plants because they operate a. CO2 concentrating mechanism (CCM) which serves to supercharge photosynthesis. The CCM is a set of biochemical and anatomical modifications to the ancestral C3 system that requires extra energy.

The overall aim of the PhD project is to elucidate the molecular and environmental regulation of C4 photosynthesis using naturally-occurring and genetically altered C4 grasses. The project outcomes will serve the strategic goals of bioengineering C3 crops with superior C4-photosynthetic traits and improving the productivity of C4 crops. The project offers training in various plant physiology and biochemistry techniques, including leaf gas exchange, stable carbon isotope discrimination, chlorophyll fluorescence, bioimaging, enzyme activity, gene and protein expression, data analysis and scientific communication.

- Domestic students will receive a tax free stipend of $ 30,392 per annum and a funded place in the doctoral degree.
- International students will receive a tax free stipend of $ 30,392 per annum. Those with a strong track record may receive a fee waiver.
- Funding is available for project costs and conference travel.

Application Requirements

- Demonstrate excellent academic performance in one or more of the following areas: plant physiology, biochemistry or molecular biology.
- Hold qualifications and experience equal to an Australian First Class Bachelor Honours degree or equivalent overseas qualifications and be enthusiastic and highly motivated to undertake further study at an advanced level.
- Possess a strong aptitude for plant biology.
- International applicants must also demonstrate a high level of proficiency in the English language. Please refer to the English language requirements at

How to apply?
- Applicants should discuss their eligibility and interests with Dr Oula Ghannoum on 0 4570 1581 or via email.
- Contact the Office of Research Services to discuss enrolment and scholarships at
- Please submit an application form, CV, names and contact information of two referees, and a one-page research proposal that aligns with this project's aims.
- The application form can be downloaded from the web:

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