Case Study - Dr Sunil Singh

Case Study - Dr Sunil Singh

Sunil SinghWhat was the name of your PhD/project?

Prioritisation of pest species for biosecurity risk assessments: using plant-parasitic nematodes and Australia as examples.

When did you complete your PhD?

January 2010 - July 2013.

Who were your PhD supervisors?

Dr Mike Hodda and Prof Gavin Ash.

What was your supervising institution?

CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences, Canberra.

How did you hear about PhD opportunities with the CRC?

I heard about the opportunity with the CRC from my PhD supervisor, Dr Hodda.

Why did you commence a PhD with the CRC?

The PhD research topic (Investigating methods for prioritising the biosecurity risks from plant parasitic nematodes) on offer from the CRC was interesting and well aligned with my interests and experience.

What did you enjoy most about undertaking your PhD through the CRC?

The CRC education and training program provided students with excellent opportunities for professional development and networking (e.g. annual science exchange meetings, workshops, and field visits). Having a group of PhD students working on projects relevant to plant biosecurity made it easier to share experiences and keep up the motivation.

What were the benefits of completing a PhD with the CRC?

Working on a CRC project has enhanced my profile as a researcher. I was able to interact with many researchers from academia, industry and government, working on biosecurity related projects. Since my project had an applied aspect, I was able to convey my findings and also get feedback from end users, which was important in the development and successful completion of my project.

What were your key achievements while/since completing your PhD?

The Australasian Plant Pathology Society, in recognition of my PhD research contributions (four published scientific papers and two papers under review) awarded me the Allen Kerr Postgraduate Prize for 2013.

Since completing your PhD, where have you been working?

I have recently completed and I am currently looking for post-doc and research opportunities.

How easy do you think it will be to find a position?

There are a number of opportunities available in the field and I am positive that I will be able to secure a position soon.

What advice would you give anyone considering a PhD?

Chose an interesting topic, regularly discuss your progress with your supervisors, publish papers, try and present your work at national and international conferences.

What did you find the most challenging aspect of your PhD?

Gathering data on a large number of plant-parasitic nematode species for use in the biosecurity models was the most challenging and time consuming aspect.