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Spotlight on a student: Zahra Assarkhaniki

Zahra in front of a blurred city horizon and sky

Zahra is a final year PhD candidate in the Centre for Spatial Data Infrastructures and Land Administration (CSDILA) at the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology (FEIT) in The University of Melbourne. Zahra has been engaged with research and training activities over the past ten years. As an urban analyst and designer, she has also been involved in a series of highly sensitive urban planning and design projects. Her academic background is urban and environmental design engineering, and her research interests include urban analytics, resilience and sustainability assessment, machine learning, and data science.

What is your research about?

My research looks at integrating the quantification and analysis of sustainability and community resilience to advance the approach for inclusively benchmarked land and community resilience in local scales. This research embeds resilience measurement into the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a globally applied blueprint for sustainability, and presents a workflow to localise SDGs. The proposed workflow combines GIS and machine learning techniques to conduct advanced spatial analysis for assessing community and land resilience.

Who are your supervisors?

Prof Abbas Rajabifard and Dr Soheil Sabri.

What do you want to do next?

I am passionate about research and training. The academic environment has shaped a big part of my life, and I wish to continue research activities after graduation. Besides, research exists when it supports practitioners in their practice and propose solutions to real-life problems. Therefore, I would also like to be engaged with industry projects and government organisations.

Have you received any awards?

Below are the awards that I have received for my PhD research:

  • Melbourne Research Scholarship for the duration of my course
  • Best Journal Paper 2020, awarded by the Department of Infrastructure Engineering, The University of Melbourne.

Further information

Zahra is happy to answer any questions about her research – you can contact her on LinkedIn.