Research Assistant, Civil Engineering

Putrajaya, Malaysia
03 Oct 2019
End of advertisement period
03 Nov 2019
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Closing date 3 Nov 2019 23:00 (UK time)
Salary RM 0–Negotiable
Location Malaysia
Department Heriot-Watt University Malaysia
Category Research
Status Full Time

About Heriot-Watt University

Heriot-Watt University has five campuses: three in the UK (Edinburgh, Scottish Borders and Orkney), one in Dubai and one in Malaysia. The University offers a highly distinctive range of degree programmes in the specialist areas of science, engineering, design, business and languages.

With a history dating back to 1821, Heriot-Watt University has established a reputation for world-class teaching and practical, leading-edge research, which has made it one of the top UK universities for business and industry. We connect with industry at every level and develop programmes to match their needs – so employers get work-ready industry-fit graduates.

Heriot-Watt is also Scotland's most international university, boasting the largest international student cohort.

We have an established set of values that help us to nurture innovation and leadership, and show our commitment to continuous improvement and development in all our activities.

For full details on our University please view our Careers at Heriot-Watt http://www.hw.ac.uk/about/careers-at-heriot-watt.htm

About our Team

Heriot-Watt University Malaysia (HWUM) is a UK university campus based in Putrajaya, Malaysia. HWUM is the second international campus of Heriot-Watt University ("HWU") which is a leading research-intensive UK university, specialising in science, technology, engineering, business, languages, textiles and design. With an international reputation for scientific and technological excellence, the University is truly global in scope and scale with a campus in Dubai, three campuses in Scotland and over 150 partners world-wide.

HWUM is operating from a stunning, purpose-built, eco-friendly, lakeside campus that currently has more than 2,000 students. Besides the academic offerings that range from Foundation to Undergraduate and Postgraduate programmes in Business, Engineering, Construction, Actuarial Science and more, the university is a pioneer in Impact-Based and Positive Education aiming at developing Purpose-driven, resilient and world-ready graduates.

With a highly motivated community, state-of-the-art learning resources and world-class learning and teaching facilities, the Putrajaya campus is a dynamic and stimulating place to study, grow and flourish. Students studying at Heriot-Watt University Malaysia undertake a well-structured developmental programme that takes them in four stages to develop the skills of knowing and leading self, leading teams, leading communities and leading enterprise. This inculcates emotional intelligence, interpersonal and analytical skills sought after by employers. Learning outcomes and standards are identical across all campuses which enables students to seamlessly transfer between campuses.

Detailed Description

Heriot-Watt University Malaysia is seeking to recruit an enthusiastic candidate to help deliver research in the area of Civil and Structural Engineering. The successful candidate will be employed for a period of 3 years, and will be required to fulfil the research obligations of a project entitled ‘Investigating the Mechanical Properties of Waste Tyre as Peat Soil Reinforcement (PSR) for Carriageway Construction Applications’ . This research funded by the Ministry of Education and aims to develop a peat soil reinforcement using waste tyre for carriageway application. The research methodology is in two stages. The first part will be the investigation of the behaviour of PSR under load. Second stage will be the development of numerical modelling and paramedic analysis of the proposed PSR. Management of waste tyre will shift towards comprehensive reuse, reduce, and recycle approach that will reduce the development of new landfills.

The post-holder will be required to demonstrate a thorough knowledge of civil engineering, materials and/or mechanics of material, and to have a working knowledge of a range of topics within the sphere of their chosen discipline. He/she will be expected to work as part of a wider research team, and to develop strong links with colleagues located at the Malaysia and Scottish campuses, as well as with those partners and collaborators related to the project.

All of the research activities and the project reporting will be undertaken in English and so fluency is essential. The successful candidate will also be required to register for a higher research degree, for example, Doctor of Philosophy or Master of Philosophy, for which a tuition fee waiver will be granted. As a requirement of the tuition fee waiver, the post-holder may also be required to tutor undergraduate students.

Key duties and responsibilities

  1. Conduct and manage research and related administrative activities, with guidance as required, ensuring that project aims and objectives are met.
  2. Working closely with the supervisory team, develop and plan research objectives.
  3. Present information on research progress and outcomes to, for example, project lead, funding body, university research committee, research team, etc.
  4. Publish research reports, conference and indexed journal papers in line with project requirements.
  5. Build appropriate networks within and outside the team.
  6. Support dissemination and contribute to technical workshops, seminars and conferences as appropriate
  7. Where needed, travel to partner universities (research collaborators) to carry out research and/or attend meetings presentations etc.
  8. Ensure that all data collection undertaken as part of the project is done so ethically and in line with both UK (GDPR) and Malaysian privacy and data protection policies, and in compliance with the requirements of the funder.
  9. Provide tutoring and assist in the supervision of student research projects as necessary.
  10. Register as a Master (by research) or PhD student, and fulfil all obligations of this registration and course of study.
  11. Applicants should note that the Intellectual property generated as part of this research belong to both Heriot-Watt University Malaysia and the project funder.

Education, qualifications and experience

Essential Criteria - these are attributes without which a candidate would not be able to undertake the full remit of the role. Applicants who do not clearly demonstrate in their application that they possess the essential requirements will normally be eliminated at the short listing stage.

Desirable Criteria - these are attributes which would be useful for the candidate to hold. When shortlisting, these criteria will be considered when more than one applicant meets the essential criteria.

Education & Qualifications


  • Bachelor degree in Civil Engineering or related cognate discipline
  • Satisfies the entry requirement for MPhil or PhD programme, Heriot-Watt University


  • Master or equivalent in appropriate discipline (Civil Engineering or Structural Engineering)

Means of Assessment

  • Certificates



  • Knowledge of concrete technology, structural concrete design & analysis.
  • Clear communicator with good reading and writing skills; good at understanding and explaining concepts


  • Knowledge of mechanics of materials
  • Possesses research and analytical skills with strong capacity to conduct independent research
  • Research experience
  • Experience of publishing papers in journals/ conferences
  • Successful completion of funded research and/or funded knowledge exchange

Means of Assessment

  • Application form and interview

Competencies, Skills & Knowledge


  • Ability to conceptualize problems and develop well-reasoned and logical viewpoints
  • Fluent (verbal and written) in English
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office Software (Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
  • Hardworking, proactive, willing to learn new things
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team
  • Flexible, self-motivated and able to plan his/her own work
  • Good interpersonal skills

Means of Assessment

  • Application form and interview

Special Factors (if applicable)


  • Nationality must be Malaysian
  • Enjoys being part of an academic community, and willing to take a 'hands on' approach from the outset.

How To Apply

Applications should be submitted to the iRecruit.

Applications must be submitted by 3 November 2019. If you are not contacted by the selection committee by 10 November 2019 then please assume that on this occasion your application has been unsuccessful.

The University is committed to equality of opportunity.