The Exertion Games Lab (exertiongameslab.org) in Melbourne, Australia, is seeking exceptional PhD candidates to research the future of exertion games and play.
The Exertion Games Lab is a new lab that researches the future of gaming in order to understand how to design better interactive experiences, in particular games that require intense physical effort from players. We call it the intersection between gaming and sports. Our research is focused on the merging of play and the active human body, drawing from research streams such as interaction design, human-computer interaction and computer games research.
The culture in the Exertion Games Lab is one of interdisciplinary work. At the Exertion Games Lab, we do not just philosophize and write about the future, we actively invent it. We emphasize the development of working prototypes in order to fully understand what play is, why we play, and how we will play in the future. We do this because we believe playing and gaming is a fundamental part of what makes us humans who we are, and an understanding of this brings us closer to our vision of a better world filled with interactive technologies that support human values.
We are looking for exceptional candidates who value an interdisciplinary perspective, are highly motivated, willing to learn a variety of new skills, can think outside the box, are creative as well as technical, and also have highly developed analytical and communicative skills.
We are offering a great open-plan lab environment in the Design Hub, Australia's newest interdisciplinary design center at RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology), where we work together to invent the future of exertion games, with great support for physical game prototyping and international collaborations. You will be supervised by me, Florian 'Floyd' Mueller; I have created the lab based on my experiences from working across 3 continents at research labs such as MIT's Media Lab, Media Lab Europe, Xerox Parc, Fuji Xerox, Microsoft Research Asia, the University of Melbourne, CSIRO and Stanford University.
Unlike most other countries, RMIT's PhDs in the Exertion Games Lab take only 3 years, they require a 4-year degree or a Masters (exceptions if you have work experience etc.), and there are many different scholarships available that can cover both tuition and living expenses: http://rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=igf2sdssaler1 (International students will be mostly looking at RUIRS, and Australian/New Zealand citizens at APA. There is also jason.edu.au for more scholarships, and your home country might also offer scholarships to conduct PhD research overseas, for example we have had great experiences with DAAD and Fulbright.)
Also, applications for a PhD work a bit different than in most other countries: You can apply anytime, but in order to be considered for most scholarships, you will need to have your application in before the 28 Oct 2011 (note time-difference!) for a start date of early/mid 2012. But before you submit your application, you will need to have convinced us in the Exertion Games Lab to support your application.
So in order to support your application, please send us (http://exertiongameslab.org/about) via email your CV, a cover letter with what you would like to research with your PhD, and why, and a link to your portfolio, including any research papers you might have written. In your portfolio, we will be looking at your potential for creativity, excellence and drive in relation to Exertion Games. If we like what we
see, we will then underwrite your application that you will send to the central RMIT University PhD application system.
We should also mention that you will be doing your PhD right in the heart of the world's most livable city, Melbourne:
Here is what Wired said about us recently:
Looking forward to reading your applications!