Optimal photosynthetic traits on ecological time-scales

Optimal photosynthetic traits on ecological time-scales


Science and Engineering

Project Name

Optimal photosynthetic traits on ecological time-scales

Project Description

A 3 year PhD scholarship is available for a bright and energetic candidate to join Prof. Ian Wright’s plant ecology group at Macquarie University to work on the ARC-funded project “Optimal photosynthetic traits on ecological time-scales” (joint funding to Wright and to I. Colin Prentice, Imperial College London).

In this project we will build new understanding of the interplay between soils and climate in shaping plant nutrient and water use “strategies” for photosynthesis. Underpinning the project is new theory – based on microeconomic and optimality principles – for how species optimise ecological-physiological traits in relation to environmental factors. A chief focus will be empirical analysis of local- and global-scale trait datasets. Within that framework this PhD project will depend somewhat on the strengths and interests of the successful candidate, but very likely include field-tests of key predictions. Previous experience in measuring plant physiological properties under field conditions would be highly regarded – especially photosynthetic and/or hydraulic traits.

Other important information:

The successful candidate must commence at Macquarie University before 31st March 2018.

This scholarship is open to both domestic and (exceptionally qualified) international applicants. A demonstrated ability to conduct independent research (research, data analysis & write-up) is essential.

Contact Name: Professor Ian Wright 

Contact Email: ian.wright@mq.edu.au

Contact Phone:+61 2 9850 4228

This scholarship is available to eligible candidates to undertake a direct entry into a 3 year PhD program.

The value and tenure of the scholarship is:

  • The MQRTP full-time stipend rate is $26,682 per annum (in 2017 tax exempt, for up to 3 years (indexed annually)
  • The scholarship is comprised of a Tuition Fee Offset and a Living Allowance Stipend.

Applicants will need to complete a HDR Candidature and Scholarship Application Form and arrange for two academic referee reports to be submitted to the Higher Degree Research Office. The application form and further information can be found on the Application page.   

To be eligible for a scholarship, applicants are expected to have a record of excellent academic performance and preferably, additional relevant research experience and/or peer-reviewed research activity, awards and/or prizes in line with the University’s scholarship rating guidelines. Refer to the Rating Scholarship Applicants section for more information about these guidelines.

Macquarie University will advise the successful applicant of entitlements at the time of scholarship offer.

Please quote the allocation number on your application.

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