Advert ID: 20006600
PhD scholarship: Tree Mortality and Forest Recovery Following Unprecedented Drought and Bushfires
Western Sydney University
Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, NSW
About the project
The Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment (HIE) within Western Sydney University is looking for a highly motivated and qualified candidate for a 3-year PhD commencing in early 2021. The project will contribute to our understanding of patterns of tree mortality and forest recovery following severe drought and bushfires.
The 2019-20 Black Summer fires burnt over 5 million hectares, of predominately temperate forests, in eastern and south-eastern Australia. Much of Australia’s temperate eucalypt forests are usually highly resilient to fire. However, many of these forests were subject to the lowest rainfall and highest temperatures on record preceding the fires. This raises important questions about the capacity of these usually resilient forests to recover from the combined impacts of fire, drought and heatwaves.
This project aims to quantify variation in post-fire recovery across different forest types following the Black Summer fires, and investigate underlying causes of variation in post-fire recovery, such as plant traits, fire severity, and pre- and post-fire climatic conditions.
The successful applicant will join the fire research group, led by A/Prof Matthias Boer, and be co-supervised by Dr Rachael Nolan, A/Prof Boer and A/Prof Brendan Choat (who leads the plant hydraulics and water relations group at HIE).
Note, the PhD will involve remote area fieldwork in NSW, subject to COVID-19 restrictions. Given this project requires significant amounts of remote area fieldwork, we are seeking a candidate who currently resides in Australia, or is an Australian resident, who will be able to be based locally for the duration of the PhD.
What does the Scholarship provide?
We welcome applicants from a range of backgrounds who are keen to apply their skills to the project topic.
The successful applicant should:
How to apply:View details
International applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency.
How to apply
For questions and advice about the research project, please contact the Lead Researchers:
For questions and advice about the application process, please contact the Graduate Research School:
Closing date: 30th November 2020 (applications close at 11.59pm Australian Eastern Standard Time AEST).