2019 Industrial PhD Scholarship

Group of surgeons washing their hands at


An opportunity has arisen for a driven commercially-minded student to get a fully-funded PhD scholarship for an industrial project on a next generation disinfectant for the healthcare environment at the University of Auckland. 

The project aims to develop an antimicrobial detergent or handwash based on natural products, for healthcare applications.

This industry-based PhD project is offered by the Biocide ToolBox (University of Auckland), and driven by an industry-partner with whom the student will be greatly involved. It will be based primarily at the Faculty of Medical Health and Sciences, under the supervision of Associate Professor Simon Swift, but will be a multidisciplinary collaboration between chemistry, pharmacy and medical sciences.

Next Generation Disinfectant

The handwash formulations used in hospitals suffer from poor activity and concerns over effects on the skin for multi-users. The research proposed will target the formulation of natural biocides in such a way that is safe to use on skin, and have activity against key antibiotic resistant pathogens.


This industry-based PhD fellowship is offered by the Biocide ToolBox (University of Auckland), and driven by an industry-partner with whom the students will be greatly involved.


This is a Callaghan Innovation funded industrial project - the students will be expected to spend a significant amount of time working with the company, and gain major industrial experience and professional development.  

Selection Criteria

The successful applicant will have a high-level BSc(Honours) or Masters qualification with pharmaceutical science or chemistry background and an interest in formulation of natural biocides, physical characterisation and antimicrobial testing. 


We are looking for an individual with top quality academic background, with strong and adaptable research skills. The right candidate will demonstrate scientific initiative and be an independent thinker with excellent verbal and written communication. Experience working on technology R&D projects with commercial partners is a plus.


The successful candidate will get a business mentor and personal development including exposure to industry and healthcare environment.

The candidate must also meet the eligibility criteria to enrol at the University of Auckland.

This project is due to start in the third 2019 quarter, with flexible starting dates for the right candidates.


Fully-funded project - standard stipend NZD$26,000 p.a. and tuition fees

Your application should enclose:

  • Note of application

  • CV

  • Academic record

  • 2 referee reports from tenured academics

  • English language proficiency results if applicable

  • Industry references if available

  • If you are not already resident in New Zealand, a clear statement about when you would expect to be able to come to New Zealand is required.



*** Applications now closed ***


Contact Marija Gizdavic-Nikolaidis to apply - for further details, fill in the form below


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