First listed on: 17 February 2023

CSIRO Industry PhD Scholarship: Long-term privacy with verifiable credentials


Acknowledgement of Country 
CSIRO acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land, sea and waters, of the area that we live and work on across Australia. We acknowledge their continuing connection to their culture and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. View our vision towards reconciliation. 

The Opportunity

  • Gain experience working with industry to solve real-world problems while you earn your PhD 
  • Develop transferable professional skills 
  • Get access to specialised expertise, equipment and training 

The CSIRO Industry PhD Scholarship (iPhD) Program is an industry-focused, applied research scholarship and training program that brings together an industry partner, the university and CSIRO. 

You will undertake a co-designed research project that will develop your ability to translate research into commercial outcomes.  

You will get real-world experience and access to specialised expertise, equipment and training.

Our graduates develop transferable professional skills and are well positioned to work at the cutting edge of industry focussed research.  

Scholarship details 

The Program includes:

  • admission to the university PhD program  
  • a four-year scholarship package of approx. $45,000 per annum  
  • a four-year Project Expense and Development package of up to $13,000 per annum  
  • an in-business component with an industry partner of at least 3 months 
  • professional development training to enhance your applied research skills  
  • supervision by CSIRO, the industry partner, and the university  

Project Title:   Long-term privacy with verifiable credentials 

Project Description:   Verifiable credentials (VC) have emerged as the future of digital identity and is attractive for the provision of digital health services in a secure and privacy-preserving manner. As a key pillar of self-sovereign identity, VCs providing users with more control over their personal information, enabling selective disclosure of attributes to access services and prove one’s identity. This ensures that digital health services can be provided in compliance with emerging privacy regulations such as the general data protection regulation (GDPR), consumer data right (CDR), health information portability and protection act (HIPAA) and others – specifically by adhering to the principle of data minimisation. However, selective disclosure does not intrinsically guarantee user privacy especially in the long-term – as user’s choices/behaviours over a period can be used to link their transactions and single them out. To address this challenge, the project will adopt an information theoretic approach to investigate the challenge of achieving long-term privacy with verifiable credentials and guiding user decision-making. 

Project supervisors:   

    CSIRO supervisor: Surya Nepal 
    Business Unit: Data 61
    Research program: Human Centric Security  
    Email address: 

    University supervisor: Robin Doss  
    Deakin University  
    Email address: 
    Faculty: Science, Engineering and Built Environment 
    School: Centre for Cyber Security Research and Innovation (CSRI)

    Company name: BUPA HI PTY LTD 


  • Primary location of the student: Deakin University, Melbourne Burwood campus. 
  • Other potential locations: CSIRO, Clayton 
  • In-business component with Industry partner: BUPA Asia Pacific, Melbourne

Overview of who we are looking for 

The ideal student will have:

  •     Strong research training experience with a formal qualification at Honours/Masters level in computer science/software engineering/cyber security. 
  •     Strong understanding of research methodology, programming skills and experience in proof of concept (PoC) development. 
  •     Some understanding of network communications, digital identity, and protocol design.  
  •     Strong oral and written communication skills, good problem-solving skills and ability to work on applied research problems. 

A proven ability to publish research outcomes in high-impact venues would be an advantage. 


To be eligible to apply you must:

  •     be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a New Zealand citizen 
  •     meet host university PhD admission requirements 
  •     meet university English language requirements 
  •     not have previously completed a PhD 
  •     be able to commence the program in the year of the offer 
  •     enrol as a full-time PhD student 

Applications will be assessed on:

  1. Experience relevant to the field of research, including any research experience
  2. Suitability for the project
  3. Academic excellence
  4. Motivation for undertaking an Industry PhD project

At CSIRO Australia's national science agency, we solve the greatest challenges through innovative science and technology. We put the safety and wellbeing of our people above all else and earn trust everywhere because we only deal in facts. We collaborate widely and generously and deliver solutions with real impact. 

Further information about the CSIRO Industry PhD Program can be found at:  

How to Apply:

CSIRO is not accepting applications.  Please email an expression of interest, CV and all transcripts to CSRI.

For details on how to apply, please see website at:  HDR Scholarship - Verifiable Credentials | Deakin 

Applications close:   

This advertisement will remain open until filled. Early applications are strongly encouraged.

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