Horticultural pollination and nutrition

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Horticultural pollination and nutrition


Applications are invited to be submitted to the Office of Research. Outcomes will be announced early 2019.

Four PhD scholarships are available to: (1) determine cross-pollination effects on fruit or nut quality; (2) understand crop nutrition effects during pollination and fruit development; and/or (3) develop rapid assessment techniques for predicting fruit or nut quality. Study crops may include avocado, macadamia, strawberry, almond, mango, lychee or custard apple.

Four PhD scholarships are available to support a large project, ‘Increasing yield and quality in tropical horticulture with better pollination, fruit retention and nutrient distribution’. This project is funded by Horticulture Innovation Australia.

PhD students on this project will have excellent access to state-of-the-art chemistry and genotyping facilities, a food analysis laboratory with hyperspectral scanner, and controlled environment glasshouses. Frequent travel will be required to large horticultural enterprises in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia or New Zealand.

The PhD projects will assess:

1) The impact of cross pollination on fruit drop, fruit yield, nutritional value, health benefits and shelf life in the study crop(s);

2) The impact of crop nutrition during flowering, pollination, fruit development and post-harvest storage; and/or

3) The use of hyperspectral imaging techniques to predict the chemical composition of leaves, flowers and fruits.

There is scope for the choice of research topics and study crops to be tailored to the interests of individual students.

These scholarships are open to domestic and international students. However, international students should be aware that the scholarships do not cover the cost of international student tuition fees and overseas student health cover.

For more information contact Prof.Stephen Trueman at strueman@usc.edu.au

  • Domestic student or International HDR student at USC
  • Bachelors Degree with First Class Honours or equivalent previous study, relevant work experience, research publications, or other research experience
  • Maintain satisfactory progress
  • Not hold an equivalent qualification to the one currently being applied for
  • Not have previously held a Commonwealth-funded postgraduate research scholarship unless it was terminated within six months of the current scholarship’s payments commencing
  • Not be the recipient of an equivalent award, scholarship, or salary, providing a benefit greater than 75 percent of the RTP rate to undertake a HDR. Income unrelated to the course of study is not to be taken into account.
Selection criteria
  • Academic qualifications
  • Alignment of the proposed research to one of USC’s areas of research concentration
  • Record of research publications
  • Professional research experience
  • Research experience and skills in any of the following areas would be desirable: (a) pollination, plant reproductive biology and fruit development; (b) analysis of paternity or gene flow in plants; (c) crop nutrition; (d) analysis of food chemical composition, preferably for fruit or nuts; (e) hyperspectral imaging and modelling; (f) establishing and managing farm-based or laboratory-based research trials.
Eligible programs
Number available
$30,000 stipend, indexed annually 
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