Conserving Koalas on Private Land under Climate Change

Project opportunity

This Earmarked Scholarship project is aligned with a recently awarded Category 1 research grant. It offers you the opportunity to work with leading researchers and contribute to large projects of national significance.

Are you are interested in using multidisciplinary science to solve important species conservation problems under climate change? If so, this may be the perfect PhD project for you. This exciting project will aim to tackle the challenging problem of protecting koalas on private land in New South Wales (NSW), Australia under the threat of climate change. In NSW a large proportion of the koala’s distribution occurs on private land. Therefore, finding solutions to their conservation on these lands is critical for the species’ long-term survival. Yet, projected changes in climate, leading to increased frequency and severity of drought, heatwaves, and fire complicate this challenge and must be considered in developing private land conservation strategies. The successful candidate for this PhD project will work closely with a highly multidisciplinary team of researchers and policy makers to better understand the implications of climate change for conserving koalas on private land in NSW. Using ecological data/models and decision analysis you will explore the consequences of climate change (including the increased occurrence of  drought, heatwaves, and fire) for designing private land conservation initiatives for koalas. This project would suit someone with strong quantitative skills and an interest in working with conservation organisations and governments to solve real-world conservation problems. The project is supported by a broader Australian Research Council Linkage Project and you will work closely with a multidisciplinary team of researchers, governments, and conservation organisations. If you are interested in this opportunity, please send a CV and cover letter to Professor Jonathan Rhodes (

Scholarship value

As a scholarship recipient, you'll receive: 

  • living stipend of $29,863 per annum tax free (2023 rate), indexed annually
  • tuition fees covered
  • single Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)


Professor Jonathan Rhodes

School of Earth and Environmental Sciences


Preferred educational background

Your application will be assessed on a competitive basis.

We take into account your

  • previous academic record
  • publication record
  • honours and awards
  • employment history.

A working knowledge of ecological modelling would be of benefit to someone working on this project.

The applicant will demonstrate academic achievement in the field(s) of environmental, ecological, or conservation sciences and the potential for scholastic success.

A background or knowledge of ecological modelling and decision analysis is highly desirable.

Latest commencement date

If you are the successful candidate, you must commence by Research Quarter 3, 2022. You should apply at least 3 months prior to the research quarter commencement date.

If you are an international applicant, you may need to apply much earlier for visa requirements.

How to apply

You apply for this project as part of your PhD program application.

View application process