PhD Research Projects: Expressions of Interest


Dolby Australia and the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) have joined forces to examine the use of immersive audio in games.  

The project will develop new approaches to sound and game design to create next-level player experiences.  Using practice-based research methods we will create and test a series of game prototypes that feature immersive audio.

As part of this initiative, we are recruiting a team of postgraduate researchers to explore the future of spatial audio in the context of real-time game engines.  Researchers will work in a state-of-the-art studio environment as part of a research team with expert industry, academic, creative and technical support.

With a focus on game/sound design for ‘headphone-first’ immersive audio content creation, a series of prototypes will be developed based on opportunities identified through the literature review and background research.  The UTS Games Studio and the Animal Logic Academy have a range of existing games (including virtual and augmented reality games) which can be used as a test bed for more sophisticated approaches to sound design.

PhD researchers will work on the creation of prototypes with reduced functionality/scope  that are nonetheless sufficiently functional to test underlying sound and game design concepts.  The focus will be on the development of new techniques that improve the quality, efficiency and/or ease of use of headphone-first immersive content generation.


We are calling for expressions of interest from suitably qualified and experienced candidates to undertake specific PhD projects at the University of Technology Sydney.  Candidates should be Australian residents.

Applicants should have completed:

  • a UTS recognised masters by research; or
  • bachelor's degree with first or second class honours (division 1); or
  • an equivalent higher qualification; or
  • provide other evidence of professional experience that demonstrates your potential to pursue graduate research studies.

In addition, we anticipate that candidates will have expertise in at least one of the following areas and a willingness to develop skills in the others:

  • Spatial audio composition and/or sound design
  • Sound design/composition for games or other immersive environments
  • 3D game engines
  • User centered design approaches and the conduct of user studies

Research Environment & Support

PhD researchers will be supported by a team of industry experts from Dolby and researchers from the UTS Games Studio, Music & Sound Design and the Animal Logic Academy.  Resources include high-performance gaming PCs, multi-speaker immersive sound platforms, multiple augmented and virtual reality headsets, and a full range of professional sound design, spatial audio, animation & visual effects software.

Expressions of Interest

To register your expression of interest, please email your CV and selected project from the list above to Prof. Andrew Johnston at and Dr. Robert Sazdov  


Selected candidates will be supported in their application for PhD scholarship funding.  If this is successful, students will receive a tax-free stipend to support their research.  As the closing date for scholarship applications is September 30, 2021 we encourage you to submit your expression of interest no later than September 20, 2021.