Research Awards recipients 2015


Vice-Chancellor’s Research Excellence Award

Sara Charlesworth

Professor Sara Charlesworth

College of Business, School of Management

Professor Sara Charlesworth is an ARC Future Fellow in the School of Management’s Centre for Sustainable Organisations and Work. Her research focuses on gender inequality in employment and has involved collaboration with diverse organisations, including GM Holden, Victoria Police and the Australian Human Rights Commission, and with colleagues in Canada and the UK.

Professor Charlesworth’s research has direct policy impact and has been cited in reports of a number of parliamentary inquiries and decisions of the Fair Work Commission.

Find out more about the Vice-Chancellor’s Research Excellence Award.


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Vice-Chancellor’s Research Supervision Excellence Award

Vipul Bansal

Professor Vipul Bansal

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Applied Sciences

Professor Vipul Bansal is an ARC Future Fellow and mentors a cross-disciplinary team of 25 researchers as the Director of the Ian Potter NanoBioSensing Facility and the group leader of the NanoBiotechnology Research Laboratory (NBRL). Over the past five years, he has supervised 15 doctoral candidates to successful completions, with a number now placed in reputed organisations such as Defence Science and Technology Organisation, Stanford University and the University of Oxford.

His research focuses on the development of new nanomaterials for applications in diagnostics, drug-delivery, bio-imaging, catalysis and flexible electronics. He serves on the editorial advisory board of six reputed journals including the senior Section Editor of PLOS ONE and Associate Editor of RSC Advances.

Find out more about the Vice-Chancellor’s Research Supervision Excellence Award.


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Vice-Chancellor’s Research Excellence - Early Career Researcher Award

Bill Davey

Dr Bill Davey

College of Business, School of Business IT and Logistics

Dr Bill Davey is a Senior Lecturer in Information Systems. He has held several working group positions with the International Federation of Information Systems and is the Associate Editor of the journal, Education and Information Technology.

Dr Davey is the RMIT chief investigator in a joint research project with Baden-Württemberg Cooperative State University in Stuttgart, Germany, investigating design of hospital information systems, and has published several key papers with researchers from Idaho State University on aged care and informatics.

He is currently working on a book on Requirements Elicitation for information systems. Dr Davey supervises two industry-based PhD candidates in Project Management and two PhD candidates investigating the value of IT in addressing specific health issues.

Find out more about the Vice-Chancellor’s Research Excellence – Early Career Researcher Award.


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Vice-Chancellor’s Doctoral Research Excellence Prize

Rozina Abdul Rani

Dr Rozina Abdul Rani

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Supervisors: Professor Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh; Professor Michael Austin; Dr Madhu Bhaskaran

Thesis title: Anodized Nb2O5: Application for Gas Sensors, Lithium-Ion Batteries and Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells

Dr. Rozina Abdul Rani was a doctoral student in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Her doctoral thesis contributed to producing in-depth knowledge on the capabilities of oxide of niobium for specific devices including gas sensors, batteries and solar cells.

Her research resulted in fundamental knowledge regarding the synthesis parameters and structural properties of the investigated material, enabling enhancement of these devices' performance. Rozina’s work has been published in several high-impact factor journals and received worldwide attention within scientific communities.

Find out more about the Vice-Chancellor’s Doctoral Research Excellence Prize.


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Vice-Chancellor’s Higher Degree by Research Publication Excellence Award

Shi-Yang Tang

Dr Shi-Yang Tang

College of Science Engineering an Health School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Supervisors: Dr Khashayar Khoshmanesh, Dr Ravi Shukla

Dr. Shi-Yang Tang completed his PhD in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering in 2012-2015. During this time, he developed versatile microfluidic systems for the sorting, trapping, chemical stimulation and microscopic analysis of cells, with a potential application in emerging lab-on-a-chip platforms.

He also developed several innovative microfluidic systems utilising gallium-based liquid metal alloys. His works have been published in several high-impact journals, including PNAS, Advanced Functional Materials, Lab-on-a-Chip and Analytical Chemistry.

Find out more about the Vice-Chancellor’s Higher Degree by Research Publication Excellence Prize.


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RMIT University Research Excellence Award

Chun Hui Wang

Professor Chun Hui Wang

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering (Director, Sir Lawrence Wackett Aerospace Research Centre)

Professor Chun Wang is the Director of the Sir Lawrence Wackett Aerospace Research Centre. His research focuses on the creation and application of advanced materials and analytical models for structural integrity management of safety-critical structures in a wide range of industries.

Over the past five years, he has received 11 ARC grants, supervised 15 PhD students and 6 postdoctoral fellows, and completed collaborative projects with Boeing, Defence Science and Technology Organisation, Carbon Revolution, and Defence Materials Technology Centre.


Sarah Bekessy

Associcate Professor Sarah Bekessy

College of Design and Social Context, School of Global, Urban and Social Studies (Future Fellow)

Associate Professor Sarah Bekessy is an ARC Future Fellow and leader of the Interdisciplinary Conservation Science Research Group in the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies. She is interested in the intersection between science and policy in environmental management and is currently involved in a range of research projects, including an ARC Future Fellowship titled ‘Socio-ecological Models for Environmental Decision Making’. She leads two themes under the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions – Threatened Species, and Clean Air and Urban Landscapes.

Her research on ‘Reimagining the Suburb’ (funded by the Myer Foundation) was recently highlighted in newspapers around Australia. Sarah she gave the keynote address at the Cities International Conference in Surabaya, Indonesia, in November 2015.


Jason Potts

Professor Jason Potts

College of Business, School of Economics, Finance and Marketing (Professor of Economics)

Professor Jason Potts is a professor of economics in the School of Economics, Finance and Marketing, and an ARC Future Fellow. His research focuses on the very early stages of a new technology (such as 3D printing or the blockchain) when agents need to cooperate to discover entrepreneurial opportunities in the shadow of subsequent competition.

His work examines the institutions that emerge to govern that space, and how these relate to innovation policy.


Find out more about the RMIT University Research Excellence Award.


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RMIT University Doctoral Research Excellence Prize

Kelly Burns

Dr Kelly Burns

College of Business, School of Economics, Finance and Marketing

Supervisors: Professor Imad Moosa, Dr George Tawadros

Thesis title: A Reconsideration of The Meese-Rogoff Puzzle

Dr Kelly Burns is an Early Career Research Fellow at Curtin University and a recent doctoral graduate of the School of Economics, Finance and Marketing at RMIT University. Her research focuses on international monetary economics, mineral and energy economics, and forecasting.

Her most notable research achievements include the publication of a book, Demystifying the Meese-Rogoff Puzzle, and over ten A-ranked publications, including a paper in the prestigious Journal of Macroeconomics. Kelly has also secured competitive research funding including grants from the BankWest Curtin Economic Centre.


David Blades

Dr David Blades

College of Design and Social Context, School of Global, Urban and Social Studies

Supervisors: Dr Joseph Siracusa, Dr Aiden Warren

Thesis title: "This Awesome Field"; A History of United States Nuclear Testing and its Influence on Nuclear Thought, 1945-1963

Since the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, there have been over 1,900 nuclear tests. What were their purpose and consequences of nuclear testing on international security?

In his engaging and deeply researched thesis, which has since been published to critical acclaim by Rowman & Littlefield, Dr. David Blades explores how nuclear testing influenced nuclear thinking in the United States, revealing how these tests had an enormous influence, not only on how the weapons and their delivery systems were developed, but also on the strategies for their use.


Ahmad Sabirin bin Zoolfakar

Dr Ahmad Sabirin bin Zoolfakar

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Supervisors: Professor Kourosh Kalantar-zadeh, Professor Vipul Bansal

Thesis title: Tuning and Engineering of ZnO and CuXO for Sensor, Solar Cells and Storage Devices

Dr Ahmad Sabirin bin Zoolfakar was a doctoral student in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He investigated properties of model metallic compounds including zinc and copper oxides for the development of sensors, energy harvesting cells and memory devices.

Ahmad was able to produce fundamental knowledge on parameters that can be engineered in order to enhance the properties that can be obtained from the metallic compounds. The outcomes of this study produced new insights into the development of nanotechnology enabled devices.


Find out more about the RMIT University Doctoral Research Excellence Prize.


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RMIT University Higher Degree by Research Publication Excellence Prize

Jasvinder Sidhu

Jasvinder Sidhu

College of Business, School of Accounting (Associate Lecturer.)

Supervisors: Professor Garry David Carnegie; Professor Brian West

Jasvinder Sidhu completed his Master of Professional Accounting and Master of Commerce degrees at RMIT in 2006 and also completed an Honours degree at the University of Ballarat. He is a School of Accounting staff member and doctoral candidate.

While undertaking his Honours and PhD research, Jasvinder authored eight journal articles, including in Accounting History, Journal of Intellectual Capital, and Corporate Ownership and Control, and has presented peer-reviewed papers at conferences in Europe, North America, India and New Zealand.

His main research interests are accounting history and intellectual capital. He is also involved in volunteer work and applies accounting techniques in creating efficient service models for community work.


Brendan Keogh

Brendan Keogh

College of Design and Social Context, School of Media and Communication (Adjunct Principal Research Fellow.)

Supervisors: Professor Larissa Hjorth; Mr Christian McCrea

Brendan Keogh is an adjunct research fellow in the School of Media and Communication at RMIT, and a freelance videogame critic. His research focuses on the phenomenological and critical aspects of videogame play and development cultures.

He has written about the craft of videogames for a variety of outlets including Overland, Polygon, Ars Technica, Kotaku, Reverse Shot, New Statesman, Edge, and the ABC's The Drum. He is the author of Killing is Harmless: A Critical Reading of Spec Ops: The Line.


Andreas Boes

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Electical and Computer Engineering.

Supervisors: Professor Arnan Mitchell; Mr Giang Thach Nguyen

Andreas Boes is a doctoral candidate with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Ultrahigh bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems (CUDOS) within the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, RMIT University. Andreas has discovered a new method to modify the functionality of the material lithium niobate with nanometer precision without damaging the surface.

These new structures can control light and sound waves within microchips with applications ranging from quantum optics to drug delivery. Andreas has presented 9 peer reviewed conference papers and published 8 journal articles, including in Advanced Materials Interfaces, Physical Review Letters and Applied Physics Letters.


Find out more about the RMIT University Higher Degree by Research Publication Excellence Prize.


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RMIT University Research Excellence - Leadership Award

Adrian Mouritz

Professor Adrian Mouritz

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School Aerospace, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering (Head of School.)

Professor Adrian Mouritz is Head of the School of Aerospace, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering and Leader of the Multifunctional Composites Research Team. Professor Mouritz leads a large team of researchers, including five academic staff, six Research Fellows, and over 20 PhD students, performing fundamental and applied research into composites for aerospace, automotive, marine and other applications.

The team led by Professor Mouritz has an extensive national and international collaborative research network, and the research is funded from many government and industry sources including the ARC, Boeing, Airbus, Ford, Defence Science Technology Group, United States Office of Naval Research and several small-to-medium sized Australian companies.

Find out more about the RMIT University Research Excellence – Leadership Award.


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RMIT University Innovation Excellence Award

Leslie Yeo

Professor Leslie Yeo

College of Science, Engineering and Health, School of Civil, Environmental and Chemical Engineering (Future Fellow and Professor of Chemical Engineering)

Professor Leslie Yeo is an ARC Future Fellow, Professor of Chemical Engineering and Director of the MicroNanomedical Research Centre. Leslie was the recipient of the Young Tall Poppy Science Award and Monash University’s Dean’s and Vice-Chancellor’s early career research awards.

His work on microfluidics has been featured widely in the media and has culminated in a book, over 175 publications and 7 patents. Leslie is the Editor of Biomicrofluidics and editorial board member of Interfacial Phenomena and Heat Transfer and Scientific Reports.

Find out more about the RMIT University Innovation Excellence Award.


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RMIT University Research Excellence - Team Award

Rajiv Padhye

Centre for Advanced Materials and Performance Textiles

Associate Professor Rajiv Padhye, Centre Director

College of Design and Social Context, School of Fashion and Textiles

The Centre for Advanced Materials and Performance Textiles (CAMPT) is the leading-edge textile research facility within the School of Fashion and Textiles. A group of widely-experiences researchers explore the synergies between textile design, optimal technological performance, and fashion appeal.

Innovative solutions are sought for practical textile problems encompassing improved personal protection, athletic performance, health, and wellbeing. CAMPT has developed notable products including protective fabrics for defence, fire fighters and sports applications, and car seat covers that ensure optimal airbag deployments.


Olga Troynikov

Associate Professor Olga Troynikov, Associate Professor, School of Fashion and Textiles

Lijing Wang

Associate Professor Lijing Wang, Associate Professor, School of Fashion and Textiles

Jenny Underwood

Dr Jenny Underwood, Senior Lecturer, School of Fashion and Textiles

Arun Vijayan

Dr Arun Vijayan, Senior Research Fellow, School of Fashion and Textiles

Lyndon Arnold

Dr Lyndon Arnold, Research Fellow, School of Fashion and Textiles

Amit Jadhav

Dr Amit Jadhav, Research Fellow, School of Fashion and Textiles

Rajkishore Nayak

Dr Rajkishore Nayak, Research Fellow, School of Fashion and Textiles

Kate Kennedy

Kate Kennedy, Lecturer, School of Fashion and Textiles


Find out more about the RMIT University Research Excellence - Team Award.


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Malcolm Moore Industry Research Award

Ruwini Edirisinghe

Dr Ruwini Edirisinghe

College of Design and Social Context, School of Property, Construction and Project Management

Dr Ruwini Edirisinghe is a Vice-Chancellor's research fellow in the School of Property, Construction and Project Management at RMIT University. She is working in the emerging "ICT and smart technologies in construction" research area. She is leading a number of research and industry projects and international research collaborations.

Dr. Edirisinghe has developed a smart safety vest to monitor the physiological conditions of construction workers in real time to improve work health and safety. Validating the technology's usability in industry is ongoing.


Ingo Karpen

Associate Professor Ingo Karpen

College of Business, Graduate School of Business and Law

Dr Ingo Karpen is an Associate Professor and cross-disciplinary researcher in Strategy, Service and Design at RMIT University’s Graduate School of Business and Law. In his research, Ingo focuses on optimising both organisational design and customer experience design in view of better engaging stakeholders and co-creating better solutions.

For this purpose, Ingo collaborates with international business partners across industries but particularly health care providers to facilitate knowledge generation for the betterment of business and society.


Find out more about the Malcolm Moore Industry Research Award.


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