Postgraduate Research Scholarship in Resettlement, Livelihoods and Mining

Brisbane, Australia
22 Mar 2018
End of advertisement period
22 Jun 2018
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Sustainable Minerals Institute

The Sustainable Minerals Institute at The University of Queensland (UQ) is a world leading research institute dedicated to finding knowledge-based solutions to the sustainability challenges of the global minerals industry. Our purpose is to develop practical solutions to the challenges of operating sustainably in the resources sector. We have a unique inter-disciplinary approach including expertise in engineering, science and the social sciences.

Our expertise, which comes from experience across the research, government and industry sectors is genuinely independent and objective. Our work covers all facets of the life of mine from geology, to minerals extraction, water management issues, minerals processing, workplace health and safety, mine rehabilitation, energy and community engagement.

The HDR Research

The Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining at the University of Queensland (UQ) is seeking a high-quality applicant eager to undertake a multi-disciplinary PhD on the topic of resettlement and livelihood restoration in the mining industry. This PhD research focus on a range of factors that influence resettlement and livelihood restoration practices in the mining sector. The aim of the research will be to elicit the key factors that shape social performance in this area of activity, and to identify practices and approaches that promote improved social and business outcomes.

The Project 

This PhD will be part of a program of research under the UQ-Industry Consortium on Mining, Resettlement and Livelihoods. is an initiative of The University of Queensland's Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining. It is a multi-party, industry-university research collaboration on mining and resettlement in order to build knowledge for practical application. This initiative is the first of its kind. The aim of the Consortium is to:  (i) better understand how mining and resettlement risks are being managed by the industry, (ii) identify strategies for improving livelihood outcomes for people affected by mining and resettlement, (iii) conduct applied research that informs future policy and practice, (iv) contribute to debates about social due diligence and the development of social safeguards.

The key focus areas of the project are: developing a deep understanding of the drivers of resettlement and livelihood restoration outcomes for companies and project affected communities, seeking to qualify enablers and barriers relating to specific resettlement/livelihood restoration scenarios, and exploring different practice models and their potential for improving social performance outcomes. The outcomes from this research will feed into current policy and practice debates globally about resettlement, social safeguards and social performance in the resource sector.

The person

In addition to meeting UQ requirements for admission to PhD study, applicants should have a first class or second class A Honours degree or equivalent in human geography, political science or sociology with demonstrated experience, or at least a keen interest, in sustainability knowledge and concepts in mining.  Applicants must clearly demonstrate research potential, and relevant research experience will be considered very favourable as well as a willingness to undertake high quality research leading to innovative outcomes.  Experience studying or working in the resources sector is desirable but not essential.

PhD Admission and Scholarship

Applicants must note that selection by SMI for participation in this research project and admission and scholarship to UQ are two separate processes. The applicant who successfully applies to this PhD research project opportunity will then be required to apply to the UQ Graduate School for admission and scholarship. Strict deadlines apply.

SMI will assist the successful applicant with their application for admission and scholarship, but note that a successful application to SMI for this research project does not guarantee a successful application to the UQ Graduate School for admission and scholarship.

The current Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship rate set by the Australian government is AUD$27,082.00 per annum (2018 rate, indexed annually) tax-free for three years with two possible six-month extensions in approved circumstances. The successful applicant will also have the opportunity to receive a tax-free scholarship of AUD$10,000 per annum for three years. This scholarship is available to top-up an existing scholarship or as working capital to support research related activities. This scholarship does not cover tuition fee support or living allowances. 

For further information on PhD entry requirements, admission and scholarships, please visit the UQ Graduate school website on applying for a higher degree by research at

To Apply

To submit an application for this role, use the Apply button below. All applicants must supply the following documents:


For further information, email Professor John Owen at

To discuss the UQ Graduate School application for admission and scholarship processes, please contact the SMI Higher Degree by Research (HDR) Office at

Applications close

Applications for this research project close 22 June 2018.