Fulbright success for Julian O'Shea

Monash Art, Design and Architecture’s Julian O’Shea has been announced as a recipient of the prestigious 2022 Fulbright Future Scholarship.

Fulbright is the leading foreign exchange scholarship program of the United States, aimed at fostering binational collaboration and exchange of ideas.

Recipients are awarded fully funded opportunities for study and research programs in the U.S, for projects that aim to have a positive effect on the health, livelihoods and prosperity of Australians.

Julian particularly enjoys the storytelling and communication aspect of his research, sharing educational stories about sustainability through short form videos.

Currently, he has around 1.2 million likes on Tik Tok and 177K subscribers on his YouTube channel.

O’Shea’s series ‘Unknown Melbourne’ highlights hidden secrets and history throughout Melbourne’s CBD and Suburbs, showcasing the city to an international audience.

He is currently a PhD researcher in the Mobility Design Lab, at Monash Art, Design and Architecture. As part of his research project, Vehicle for Change, O’Shea explores how the use of sustainable vehicles - ranging from plastic-bottle kayaks to solar tuk tuks - could be used for social engagement.

For Julian, the Fulbright Future Scholarship is an exciting opportunity to travel and experience the U.S.’ innovative approaches to sustainability and alternative vehicle design.

“It'll be an amazing chance to meet with academics, researchers, city planners, designers, and really inform what I'm doing here at Monash,” said Mr O’Shea.

He’ll work alongside Dr. Lance Rake, a former Fulbright Senior scholar and current Professor of Industrial Design at the University of Kansas.

Through a case study approach Julian plans to meet individuals across the U.S. and discover how their sustainable vehicles have made an impact on the wider community and sustainability.

“Just to hear what worked about the project, what was challenging and what we can learn for future initiatives,” he said  regarding his methodology.

Julian’s research primarily focuses on the themes of sustainable development and technology for impact.

“Big, loud, dangerous vehicles are not good for anyone, so finding ways to reduce emissions, to improve air quality … is something that I think really impacts everyone.”

“For me, the role of design is to improve quality of life.

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