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Call: QUT Creative Industries Faculty PhD Scholarships for 2015 Entry

It’s that time of the year, so we’re now calling for applications from prospective PhD students who are interested in joining an innovative and high-profile research group at Australia’s leading university for media and communication studies, Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane.

I’ve posted the Social Media Research Group’s overall call for applications below, but I also want to call specifically for expressions of interest for the second PhD scholarship associated with my current ARC Future Fellowship project. Drawing on social media data, Hitwise Australia, and Fairfax Digital sources, this project seeks to investigate the patterns of intermedia information flows in the Australian online public sphere, and (in addition to the first PhD student Felix Münch, whose focus is especially on methodological development) this second PhD will use innovative quantitative and qualitative research methods to trace user engagement with major events and topics in Australian public debate over time and across social and mainstream media networks.

PhD students applying for this scholarship will need to possess a detailed understanding of recent events in Australian politics and public life as well as of the Australian media environment. They should also have proven skills in the mixed-methods (quantitative / qualitative) analysis of social media data and other data sources, ideally including a working knowledge of analytical tools including Tableau, Gephi, Excel, etc. Familiarity with the approaches and methods developed by the QUT Social Media Research Group and documented at Mapping Online Publics would be welcome. For further enquiries about this PhD opportunity and its role in the wider Future Fellowship project, please contact me at

But in addition to this specific PhD scholarship, my colleagues and I are also interested in other PhD applications for social media-related research in the current QUT scholarship round. Below is our call for applicants, with further information on how to apply:

QUT Social Media Research Group Call for PhD Applications

Join the QUT Social Media Research Group! Applicants with excellent academic track records (equal to an Australian Bachelor Degree with First Class Honours) or equivalent professional research experience may be eligible for competitive PhD scholarships to undertake study in the Creative Industries Faculty at QUT. The Faculty is also offering a number of top-ups to these scholarships for highly ranked students whose projects align with our areas of strength.

The Creative Industries Faculty’s world class, industry-connected researchers undertake innovative applied and theoretical research in the media, creative arts and design, and QUT is home to some of the world’s best researchers in digital media, communication and culture, given the highest possible rating of 5 in both the 2010 and 2012 ERA rankings.

QUT’s Social Media Research Group is a global leader in social media research, and one of the main contributors to the University’s strength in Digital Media overall. Supported by several major research grants and strategic collaborations with industry, QUT researchers are investigating the use of social media in crisis communication, in news and politics, as a backchannel to television and other media, and in everyday life. We are leading methodological innovation by exploring the uses of ‘big data’ for studying major social media platforms, by integrating STS and software studies into our approaches to social media platforms, as well as by developing novel mixed-methods approaches that support critical and interpretative analysis.

We are seeking new PhD students to investigate topics such as:

  1. The practices of sharing and engaging with mainstream media content through social media;
  2. the history and political economy of social and mobile media platforms;
  3. approaches to geomedia research, including locative and geosocial media;
  4. the structures and effects of follower networks in Australian social media spaces, using social network analysis methods;
  5. the consequences of emerging online platforms on the production and consumption of culture;
  6. new methods to generate quantitative metrics that describe activity patterns in social media datasets;
  7. agent-based simulation approaches for the analysis of networked co-creation of culture;
  8. critical and interpretive approaches to user engagement and evaluation practices;
  9. cross-platform flows of media content, data and cultural practices;
  10. uses, meanings and implications of mobile relationship and dating apps;
  11. the making and circulation of gender and sexuality with networked media.

Potential supervisors include:

If you are interested in applying, please contact Axel Bruns ( or Jean Burgess (, in addition to following the processes below.

How to Apply

Information on the University’s Annual Scholarship Round can be found here.

Closing date: 30th September 2014 (earlier enquiries strongly encouraged).

Further information about the Faculty’s research can be found here.

Looking for a supervisor? Please view our Academic Staff profiles here.

Any Questions?

Contact the Creative Industries Faculty HDR support team at or phone +617 3138 3799 or 3138 8591.