Our research & impact

Leading edge defence research in an increasingly complex security landscape.

Engineers from the UNSW Canberra Space team work at the National Space Test Facility at Mt Stromlo during testing for the M2 mission.
First in Australia
for research excellence and impact.
19th in the world
UNSW has rocketed 26 spots in the 2024 QS World University Rankings.
future global leaders.

Collaborative impact across the globe

We’re an internationally recognised, successful, research-intensive university listed first in Australia for research excellence and impact. Though renowned for our excellence in defence research, we also generate new knowledge across a range of fields in non-defence related areas. Examples include bushfire prediction modelling, gender equality and healthcare policy. 

Our research extends across the globe, and we value our community of world-class scholars who consistently produce high-quality research. UNSW Canberra fosters an excellent research environment; our international collaborations, study programs and state-of-the-art research facilities enable us to make ground-breaking discoveries to help change industry and government.

Security & defence

Our research in security and defence promotes peace and stability in a challenging geopolitical environment. View information on AUKUS and the PLuS Alliance in addition to other key research areas.

Research excellence

Research excellence is the backbone of UNSW Canberra’s quality learning and teaching experiences. We’re one of the top specialist institutions in the world, achieving a significant international research profile and securing Australia’s future through defence partnerships.

Research centres, institutes & initiatives

Our centres, institutes and initiatives provide innovative research across a number of specialist areas including cyber security, systems engineering and public sector services. We proudly deliver capability and international thought leadership through our global academic and industry partnerships.

Collaboration and partnerships

We partner with local, national and international organisations. We foster mutually beneficial relationships with a broad range of organisations. Our collaborators include local small businesses, major defence companies, state and federal governments and other institutes.

Defence Research Institute

The Defence Research Institute (DRI) in Canberra unifies UNSW’s defence-related research with global academic and industry partnerships to develop and deliver the best defence and security capabilities.

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Research facilities

From unique laboratories to one of the most comprehensive defence research libraries in the southern hemisphere, explore what we can offer you through our state-of-the-art research facilities.

Collaborative funding

We have expertise and experience working with our research partners, from conception through to commercialisation. We can advise on the potential to access Commonwealth and state-level funding dedicated to supporting innovative research between industry and universities.

Postgraduate research study

PhD study opportunities

Explore our wide range of PhD study opportunities.

Postgraduate research degrees

We deliver an unparalleled postgraduate research environment specifically designed to help HDR candidates thrive in their chosen field of research.

Explore our range of postgraduate research degrees to kick start your research journey with UNSW Canberra. 

Scholarships and funding

Scholarships are available to research candidates with exceptional potential who plan to undertake a higher degree by research (HDR). A range of benefits and financial support are offered through our scholarships, including a stipend, tuition fees, and student health cover.