International Relations U21 PhD Scholarships

International Relations offer a number of Scholarships each year to assist PhD students in travelling to our U21 partners, so that they can further their research and make new connections.

PhD Scholars at our U21 celebration BBQ at Westmere:
Back row, from left to right: Nikolaos Kalyviotis (Civil Engineering, Melbourne); Michael Walz (Geography Earth and Enviromental Sciences, University of New South Wales); Andy Jolly (Social Policy, Connecticut); Labib Azzouz (Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering, Shanghai Jiao Tong University); Alejandro Vigna-Gomez (Physics and Astronomy, Amsterdam).
Front row, from left to right: Madlen Sokowiak (Business, University of British Columbia); Emma Taylor-Collins (Social Policy, Melbourne), Carolina Lavecchia (Mechanical Engineering, Melbourne).

International Relations offer a number of Scholarships each year to assist PhD students in travelling to our U21 partners, so that they can further their research and make new connections. Each Scholarship pays up to £1,500 to assist a student with travelling and accommodation costs; a visit is usually for around one month. Applications are for travel in the following academic year i.e. bids submitted during 2018-19 will be for visits proposed to take place between 1 August 2019 and 31 July 2020. 

We are continuing to encourage applications to the University of Melbourne, and to the University of Amsterdam, given the strength of our partnerships with those institutions. However, we welcome applications looking to travel to all U21 partners outside the UK.

You can scroll down this page to find details of previous International Relations U21 PhD Scholars, including reports. For a full list of U21 institutions please visit the U21 website

Usman Singapore Ascendas m

"I gained a lot of benefits including widening my professional network as a result of being engaged with other academics at NUS and contacts from Singapore’s rail industry, being confident to write academic articles in an international context demonstrating first-hand experience… I have established a life-long relationship with my U21 host university through the host supervisor and a number of researchers." Usman Tasiu Abdurrahman (School of Engineering), travelled to National University of Singapore (NUS) in 2018. 

How to apply...

Applications for travel during 2019-20 have now closed. Applications for travel in 2020-2021 will open in Winter 2019. 

For an indication of what the application will look like for 2020-21, you can have a look at this year's application form and scholarship guidelines using the links below:

U21 PhD Scholarship Application Form (for travel in 2019-20)U21 PhD Scholarship Guidelines U21 PhD Scholarship Promotional Flyer 

When applications re-open, International Relations will also be running PhD Scholarship Info Sessions, for more detail about the scheme and a chance to answer any questions. If you have any further questions, please contact Lauren Rawlins, International Relations. 

Previous Scholarship winners:

Reports and thesis titles from previous PhD Scholars - including their advice for future applicants. 

2019-20 Awardees

2019-20 Awardees
Destination Name  School Thesis/Project Title
University of Maryland & UC Davis Beth Parkes  History ‘One minute I’m dark, the next minute I’m white’: Skin bleaching, suntanning and race in the Black Atlantic, 1960-85
University of Melbourne Eleanor Rowan  Law A study investigating the equitable doctrine of undue influence and the ‘protective procedures’ in place for sureties entering bank lending transactions 
National University of Singapore Guoyang Ye Metallurgy & Materials KNN-based multifunctional materials for high-performance energy harvesting devices
University of Melbourne Khadijat Olorunlambe  Engineering Acoustic Emission: Discovering joint condition, degradation and failure 
University of Melbourne Naomi Bennett Chemical Engineering Ocular drug delivery: a novel treatment for atopic corneal calcification 
University of Amsterdam  Ozlem Ogten-Young Social Policy Assembling Belonging: An Examination of Belonging of Unaccompanied and Separated Youth within the Asylum System in the UK.  
McMaster University Raeni Birmingham Business School Green Bonds and Climate Budget Tagging: Accountability Solution for Climate Finance 
University of Melbourne Sandra Pertek Social Policy Sexual and gender-based violence at the intersection of religion and displacement: Religion in the SGBV experiences of refugee and migrant women 
University of Melbourne Sanjeevan Kanagalingam Mechanical Engineering  Design and Development of Patient-Specific Fixation Devices 
University of Hong Kong Wendy Wemakor  Engineering  Exploring the relationship between railway safety & operational performance 
UC Davis

 Xulyu Cao

Biosciences Molecular networks controlling root development in tomato 
University of Melbourne

Yana Shabana

LCAHM Translation Through the Prism of Settler-Coloniality:  Indigenous Elimination, Framed Translation, and the Israel Palestine Conflict
Anmol Gautam U21 PhD Scholarship, Biosciences, University of Maryland
Maria Salama U21 PhD Scholarship, Computer Science, University of Melbourne
Paul Fisher U21 PhD Scholarship, Applied Health, University of Maryland

2018-19 Awardees


Destination Name School Thesis/Project Title
Lund University Kristina Stoewe Social Policy Integration of refugees in Germany and the UK through self-employment: their potentials, needs and the role of business support programmes
McGill University Sophia Butt Social Policy Is the Prevent Duty Guidance for Higher Education Institutions in England & Wales (2016) fit for purpose?
University of Melbourne William Horncastle Government and Society Neoliberalism, Political Finance, and Inequality: A mixed-methods investigation into the relationship between political finance regulation and income inequality
National University of Singapore Usman Tasiu Abdurrahman Engineering Economic Evaluation on the Presence of Platform Screen Doors at Train Stations
University of Amsterdam Matthew Coulson Mathematics Rainbow subgraphs of graphs with large minimum degree
University of Melbourne Pablo Giovani Palafox-Alcantar Civil Engineering Collaboration in the Implementation of Circular Economy Business Models: A Game Theory Approach
University of Melbourne, UNSW Emily Fisher Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences Investigating the neuroprotective effect of exercise; the role of redox homeostasis
University of Queensland Vasileios Matthaios Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences  Direct Measurement of On-Road Vehicle Emissions in the UK: Implications for Air Quality

2017-18 Awardees

Destination Name School Thesis/Project Title
Amsterdam Alejandro Vigna-Gómez Physics and Astronomy Isolated Binary Evolution in Population Synthesis
Maryland Chloe Helen Bent History and Cultures Race and Remembrance in Jamaica: The Families of Treasure Beach
McGill Pedro Lorena Godoy GEES Tracking changes in the ecological diversity of Crocodyliformes through deep geological time
Melbourne Sophie Cope History and Cultures Making Time Material: Domestic Dated Objects in Seventeenth-Century England
Melbourne Victoria Williams English Frameless Fictions: Capturing Identity in Virtual Environments
Melbourne Emma Taylor-Collins Social Policy Youth social action in the UK: Access and inclusion
Melbourne Paul Betts POLSIS Evidence Based Policing or Policy-Based Evidence-Making: the Case of British policing
Melbourne Nikolaos Kalyviotis Civil Engineering Infrastructure Management: Devise a business model for transport
National University of Singapore Scott Edwards Government & Society The role of trusting relationships in a security community: the development of trust in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)
Shanghai Jiao Tong Labib  Azzouz Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering Benchmarking International High-Speed Railways from Sustainability Perspective
University of British Columbia Madlen Sobkowiak Business School Sustainability transformation, leadership, accountability and governance of public sector organisations
University of New South Wales Fatemeh Ghaderiardakani Biosciences Understanding Ulva sp. Growth and Development

2016-17 Awardees


Forename Surname School College Destination Thesis/Project Title
Andy Jolly Social Policy CoSS Connecticut Household Food Security amongst Undocumented Migrant Families in the UK.
Magda Carvahlo Aguiar Applied Health Research CoSS Melbourne Modelling preventive strategies for vitamin D deficiency
Valentina Grazian Mathematics EPS Auckland Saturated fusion systems over p-groups of sectional rank 3 for p odd
Carolina Lavecchia Mechanical Engineering EPS Melbourne Computational Modelling of the lumbar and cervical spine
Maria Salama Computer Science EPS Melbourne Stability of Self-Aware Software Architectures
Timothy Poon Physics and Astronomy EPS Ohio State University Surface characterisation and development of optical label-free biochip for biomolecule sensing
Alba Gonzalez Mechanical Engineering EPS UBC Design and Development of Dynamic Implants for the Spine
Anmol Gautam Biosciences LES Maryland Structural studies of DNA partitioning protein KorB from RK2 plasmid
Sarah Voets Sport & Exercise Science LES McGill Motor Learning and Reward in Parkinson’s disease
Bin Li GEES LES Melbourne Governance of Urban Redevelopment in Guangzhou, China from 1990
Michael  Walz GEES LES UNSW Hazard Uncertainty and related damage potentials of extra tropical cyclones

 2015-16 Awardees


Forename Surname School College Destination Thesis/Project Title
Robert Brown History CAL Melbourne Yellow Peril or Golden Future? Anglo-Australian responses to East Asia, and the disseminating and contesting of the ‘yellow peril’ construct through transnational networks, 1870-1970.
Shi-Yuh Chen Ironbridge Institute CAL Queensland Indigenous Rights, Heritage and Representation in Taiwan: The Role of the Museum
Onder Islek Education CoSS UBC An investigation into the balance of the school curriculum content for pupils with visual impairment in Turkey
Lindsay Murch Government & Society CoSS UNSW Sex and Gender in the World of Drone Pilots
Craig Holloway Mathematics EPS Auckland Determining the Stability of Transversely-Isotropic Fluids
Clemens Schannwell GEES LES UBC Computing the volume response of the Antarctic Ice Sheet over the next 300 years
Angela Meadows Psychology LES Connecticut Internalised weight stigma and quality of life in overweight and obese individuals (working title)
Claire Burley Sport Exercise & Rehabilitation LES UBC Exercise for brain health: Underlying mechanisms, interventions and clinical applications in dementia and ageing.
Olivia Thomas Cancer Sciences MDS Queensland Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Multiple Sclerosis: investigating EBV antigen-induced T cell cross-recognition of central nervous system proteins
Paul  Fisher Health & Population Sciences MDS Maryland A small area study of the association between temperature and human health in Birmingham, UK and the implications for climate change.


  2014-15 Awardees



Forename Surname School College Destination Thesis/Project Title
Ben Johnson Medicine MDS Melbourne Molecular genetic investigation of inherited thrombocytopenia 
Charlotte  Bendall Law CAL McGill & UBC Gender in intimate relationships: a socio-legal study.
Chris  Jeavons Mathematics EPS Waseda Optimal constants and extremising functions for Strichartz-type inequalities
Christian Darko Business CoSS McGill Wage inequality in Ghana: The role of education, Skill-Biased Technological Change and Foreign Direct Investment
Jonathan Dugdale History CAL McGill An Inter-Regional Approach to Liao Dynasty Architecture 
Leonie Clitherow GEES LES UBC Terrestrial invertebrates and their subsidies to stream communities across floodplains in watersheds of different ages in Glacier Bay, Alaska
Rhys Crilley Government and Society CoSS Queensland & UNSW  Legitimacy Claims in the Digital Age: Analysing Visual Narratives of Strategic Communication
Roland Sookias GEES LES McGill Euparkeriidae and the early evolutionary radiation of archosauriforms
Simon Wild GEES LES Melbourne & UNSW 20th Century Storminess –
Developing a coherent understanding of long-term trends and decadal variability
Yu Zhang Metallurgy and Materials EPS Virginia Corrosion of Titanium for Biomedical Applications

 2013-14 Awardees


Aimee Fox-Godden @ UNSW

Elena Perez-Alvaro @ Queensland

Enrico Vanino @ HKU

Guanxiong Wang @ UNSW

Jiayuan Li @ UBC

Simon Phelan @ UNSW

Thea Buckley @ Delhi-U

Name School College Destination Thesis Title
Aimee Fox-Godden History CAL UNSW Addressing the gap in the ‘learning curve’ of the British and Commonwealth forces in the First World War by examining the learning relationship between the Western Front and the subsidiary theatres.
Chiara Mingarelli Physics and Astronomy EPS UBC Exploring the use of PTAs (Pulsar Timing Arrays) to detect gravitational wave s from supermassive black hole binaries . 
Elena Perez-Alvaro Mechanical Engineering EPS Queensland Human remains as watery graves: protection of shipwrecks containing human remains. 
Enrico Vanino Economics CoSS HKU The behaviour and strategic interaction between Chinese and European firms in areas such as international trade and direct foreign investment.
Geoffrey Mills EDACS CAL UConn The composition of a campus novel with a strong comic thrust and a supporting investigation into the recurring elements of farce found in the academic novels of three well known practitioners: Kingsley Amis, Malcolm Bradbury and David Lodge.
Guanxiong Wang Mechanical Engineering EPS UNSW To develop a multilevel filter capable of separating molecular components from complex fluids including blood plasma, aimed at biomedical and healthcare applications requiring blood analysis.
Jiayuan Li Government and Society CoSS UBC Exploring the time trend of life satisfaction in China over the past two decades and report a marked decline in happiness. 
Samantha Husbands Health Sciences MDS UBC Identify and develop best practice guidance for building decision-analytic models, which are utilised in health care funding decisions internationally. 
Sarah Penny Immunity and Infection MDS Virginia Research into identified phosphor-antigens related to colorectal and oesophageal cancers with the aim of discovering potential new immunotherapeutic targets.
Simon Phelan Sport and Exercise Science LES Queensland Examining the learning culture within a British Olympic high performance centre in investigating how the workplace enables or constrains coach professional learning. 
Thea Buckley Shakespeare Institute CAL Delhi Exploring the intersection between Shakespeare’s original English works and selected new local language Indian adaptations.