Study As
Full Time

Principal Supervisor
Associate Professor Niro Wellalage

Main Campus
City West

Applications Close
08 Oct 2023

Study Level

Applications Open To
Domestic Candidate or International Candidate

Tuition Fees:

All domestic students are eligible for a fee waiver. Find out more about fees and conditions.

Project Stipend:
$32,500 p.a. (2023 rates) available to domestic applicants only

About this project
Develop insights into the green energy performance of large companies   

If you are motivated to seek out a career in business and keen to address corporate environmental issues, the University of South Australia – Australia’s University of Enterprise – is offering a hands-on project-based PhD within the Centre for Markets, Values and Inclusion (CMVI).
Greenhouse gases and human carbon dioxide are primary drivers of climate change. Industrial firms are accountable for more than 1/5th of direct emissions, and this proportion rises significantly when indirect emissions are considered.  

Methodologies have been adapted to study the nexus between environmental practices and energy, mostly in public firms. Unlisted firms are less considered in the empirical literature and policy discourse even though they are an important part of the economy and have significant environmental externalities.  

Our project aims to develop a deeper understanding of the link between firm-level green practices (both generic environmental and energy-centric) and energy performance in a large and diverse sample of unlisted firms operating globally.  

Specifically, we aim to understand if green practices matter for unlisted firms’ energy performance, and whether the green practices–energy performance relationship is heterogeneous based on firm characteristics, ownership, management, and geographical locations. We also want to discover if recent regulatory changes moderate the green performance–energy performance nexus. 

You will be based in the CMVI Research Centre, which will give you access to current datasets on financial markets and corporate performance and excellent computing facilities. You will work in a thriving academic environment and be fully mentored by researchers who are thought leaders in their field.

What you’ll do

In this project-based research degree, you will undertake a literature review and data collection, and then analyse the data using statistical software packages. You will look at quantitative data and analyse it to report on insights about green practice to determine if energy performance relationships are heterogeneous or based on firm characteristics, ownership, management, and geographical locations. 

During the project you will be guided by world-class experts with expertise in corporate finance and sustainability, environmental corporate social responsibility, economic policy evaluation and corporate governance. We will support you in presenting and publishing your findings in high-impact academic journals and at conferences.  

Upon completion, you will have expert knowledge in firm-level environmental performance, corporate practices, and governance and their impact on firm sustainability. You will be equipped with skills in financial data collection, data analysis techniques, and reporting and communicating results.  

Where you’ll be based

You’ll be based within the CMVI. We combine specialist skills and multidisciplinary perspectives to provide a trans-disciplinary approach to delivering meaningful research, which informs innovative, evidence-based solutions for a more inclusive and sustainable future. 

Operating locally, nationally and internationally, CMVI researchers provide evidence to inform public and private sector choices and policies, resolve global development and governance issues in populations experiencing inequity, and develop incentives for business and not-for-profits to develop, monitor and report on socially responsible enterprises 

Our vision is a world in which social and economic development is sustainable and inclusive of all in society. Our mission is to combine specialist skills and multidisciplinary perspectives to provide innovative and enterprising solutions that support inclusive and sustainable communities locally, nationally and internationally.

Supervisory team

Department of the Premier and Cabinet
Financial Support

This project is funded for reasonable research expenses. Additionally, a living allowance scholarship of $32,500 per annum is available to Australian and New Zealand citizens, and permanent residents of Australia, including permanent humanitarian visa holders. Where an international applicant holds an external scholarship or sponsorship a full or partial fee waiver may apply in some circumstances for exceptional applicants. Other international applicants will be required to pay full tuition fees of approximately AUD$37,700 per annum (2023 rates).  

Australian Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander applicants will be eligible to receive an increased stipend rate of $46,653 per annum (2023 rates). A fee-offset or waiver for the standard term of the program is also included.  For full terms and benefits of the scholarship please refer to our scholarship information. 

Eligibility and Selection

This project is open to applications from Australian or New Zealand citizens, and Australian permanent residents or permanent humanitarian visa holders. International applicants that are self-funded or hold an external scholarship or sponsorship are also invited to apply. 

Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria for entrance into a PhD. Applicant who can also demonstrate the following will be highly regarded:
  • Prior research experience
  • Quantitative data analysis skills
  • Knowledge of statistical software packages
  • Knowledge of databases and computational facilities
All applications that meet the eligibility and selection criteria will be considered for this project. A merit selection process will be used to determine the successful candidate.

The successful applicant is expected to study full-time and to be based at our City West campus in the heart of Adelaide.

Essential Dates

Applicants are expected to start in a timely fashion upon receipt of an offer. Extended deferral periods are not available. Applications close on Sunday 8 October 2023. 

How to apply:

Applications must be lodged online, please note UniSA does not accept applications via email.

For further support see our step-by-step guide on how to apply , or contact the Graduate Research team on +61 8 8302 5880, option 1 or email us at You will receive a response within one working day.

IMPORTANT: This site is optimised for the latest versions of Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox and Chrome. Note that earlier versions of any browsers mentioned are supported, but likely to demonstrate slower response times.

By choosing to continue, you agree to the privacy policy. Show Privacy Policy

Research and industry

Other projects you may be interested in

Latest news


If you wish to develop your own project please review our guidelines and contact the Graduate Research Admissions team if you have any questions. 

Contact us