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PhD scholarship available – Sustainable Consumption and Digital Media

Are you looking to further your research career in the humanities or social sciences? Do you have an interest in how social communication, learning and social networks can foster sustainable and energy efficient household practices?

Applications are invited for a CRC for Low Carbon Living (CRCLCL) PhD scholarship position based at the Swinburne University of Technology Hawthorn campus, Melbourne, offered in conjunction with CSIRO.

The PhD position will contribute to a collaborative CRCLCL research project titled ‘A “virtual market” for analysing the uptake of energy efficiency measures in residential and commercial sectors’. The project uses agent-based modelling (ABM) to represent consumer behaviour, social networks and their responses to non-financial incentives and barriers in order to better understand, plan and assess different types of market interventions to achieve energy efficiency. Visit the CRCLCL website for more information about the research project.

This PhD will examine the role and mechanisms of social communication, learning and social networks in fostering sustainable and energy efficient household practices. The study will explore this in relation to the digital media technologies and internet infrastructure, and the emergent types of knowledge and goods exchange, social interaction and lifestyles they bring about. Some relevant areas of interest include:

    ·Sociology of consumption: in particular how people respond to social and economic incentives and barriers to energy efficient homes;

    ·Environmental implications of emergent economic and lifestyle models (e.g. thrift, collaborative and ethical consumption, or sharing economies);

    ·Models of networked and collaborative knowledge production/exchange for sustainability;

    ·Social processes of innovation to catalyse energy efficiency in the residential sector;

    ·International and/or local case studies of communication strategies promoting sustainable household practices.

The PhD candidate will be based the Swinburne Institute for Social Research and will work within, and be supervised by, an interdisciplinary team of researchers with expertise in media and communications, sociology and anthropology (in conjunction with CSIRO).

What is being offered

The scholarship is for three years and provides a stipend of $30,000 per annum for domestic students or $25,000 per annum for international students, with an additional one-off allowance of $5,000 for travel and research support.

Skills and experience

Applicants should have a bachelor degree with honours (H1 or H2A) or the equivalent in the humanities or social sciences (e.g. media and communications, anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, environmental policy and studies, economics), demonstrated knowledge and interest in the topic area, and ability to work productively both independently and collaboratively as part of an interdisciplinary team with researchers and industry partners. Applicants must meet Swinburne’sPhD entry requirements.

How to apply

Applications close on 31 January 2016. To submit an application, visit the Swinburne University website and submit a resume, cover letter and response to the Key Selection Criteria, as listed in the Position Description.

To enquire about this scholarship please contact:

Name: Dr Aneta Podkalicka

Phone: 03 9214 4401

Email: apodkalicka@swin.edu.au