PhD on the Ecology and Design of Water Systems in Peri-Urban Landscapes of Bandung Indonesia

  • Scholarship available

    The successful applicant will receive a tax-free living allowance of $30,000 per annum for 3.3 years, and Tuition Fee Scholarship of $35,800 per annum for the duration of scholarship. There may also be opportunities for suitable students to enhance income as sessional academics. International students need to secure their own flights, support their own relocation and Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) costs.

  • Apply by 19 June 2022 @ 11:55 pm AEST

How to apply


Applications are invited from appropriately qualified individuals (domestic/international) for a Climate Change PhD scholarship funded by the Informal Cities Lab and the Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

This project is led by Dr Michaela Prescott and Professor Diego Ramirez-Lovering of Monash University Department of Architecture, and Associate Professor Alex Lechner of Monash University Indonesia. This PhD project is strategically aligned to the Monash Citarum Action Research Project and the Victorian Endowment for Science Knowledge and Innovation (VESKI) funded Citarum Transformation Living Lab.

To understand the impact of climate change in an urbanising context, we need to investigate how peri-urban landscapes in the context of their water systems function at multiple scales. The PhD project will use the lenses of ecology and design to examine peri-urban landscapes across nested spatial scales (Resident, Household, Village, City, Tributary, Water catchment) in the Citarum River watershed. This will be undertaken through design research supported by field investigation. The project will use a PhD-by-project approach to examine the potential for the catchment’s ecological revitalisation.

The PhD project will include both systems- and design-thinking approaches. Systems-thinking will be used to examine the ecology of peri-urban landscapes in order to manage impacts of urbanisation on water systems, based on a big picture view. Design-thinking will be used to frame engagement with diverse Indonesian village communities and other stakeholders to understand and synthesise local knowledge systems and lived experiences of their constructed and ecological environments. The project aims to bring these two approaches to design and innovate new solutions to the challenge of urbanising water systems within the context of climate change. In doing so, the project provides an avenue for the candidate to make a tangible and positive contribution to the fields of architecture/landscape architecture/urban design. The research team also aims to better equip designers and policymakers in planning for water systems in peri-urban landscapes

About the Informal Cities Lab

The Informal Cities Lab seeks to address wicked, multidimensional challenges through research and development activities spanning spatial, social and economic dimensions. We do so through engaging with a coalition of partners working across sectors and disciplines. We pursue a research model – Transdisciplinary Impact Research – which sets an arc from discovery research (new knowledge and innovation) that can go on to be tested on the ground through implementation working closely with governments, communities and the development sector.

Candidate Requirements

This scholarship opportunity is open to both domestic and international applicants. Accordingly, the successful candidate working at the interface of design and ecology will need to:

  • Have an excellent academic record in landscape architecture, architecture, environmental/urban design, or a related field.
  • Have a strong background in landscape architecture, urban studies and/or applied ecological design, with a demonstrated experience in landscape and urban design at a variety of scales. Grasp of geospatial technology is an advantage.
  • Be highly motivated for scientific research, have specific interest in the topic and appropriate background, have personal initiative, be comfortable with both team and independent work, and have good organisational skills.
  • Have excellent English written and oral communication skills. Grasp of the Indonesian language is an advantage.

Applicants must fulfil the criteria for PhD admission at Monash University. Details of eligibility requirements to undertake a PhD in MADA are available here.

Candidates will be required to meet Monash entry requirements, which include English-language skills, where applicable. Scholarship holders must be enrolled full-time and on campus.

Successful applicants will be expected to enrol by August 2022.

Demonstration of research ability through publications in high impact journals is desirable.


Enquiries concerning this opportunity should be directed to Dr Michaela Prescott (

Submit an Expression of Interest (EoI)

EOIs shall comprise:

  • The completed HDR Expression of Interest Form
  • Evidence of academic qualifications
  • Evidence of English-language proficiency, where applicable
  • A curriculum vitae, including a list of any published works
  • Academic writing sample
  • By way of a research proposal: a 2-300 word statement outlining how you would approach the project described in the project description above

Research proposal and CV guidelines can be found here.

EOIs must be sent in the form of a single attachment to an email, to

Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed over Zoom if necessary. The interviews will be conducted in English.