Future Projects (79)

2. UBD, Title: Brunei’s pragmatic development focused international relations, (with Principal Investigator, Dr Stephen C Druce).

While multilateral relations through membership of international bodies, such as the UN, ASEAN, OIC, have aided Brunei’s success as small state on the international arena, bilateral ties and pragmatism have been the most evident and productive methods employed by Brunei in international relations and foreign policy. This pragmatism has been particularly evident since the early 1990’s when Brunei began to break with a ‘colonialist’ policy and established bilateral ties based on economic partnerships that were linked to the need to diversify its economy, particularly with the Northeast Asian counties of China, Japan and South Korea. In recent years, a major economic partnership has been developed with China. The idea of pragmatism together ‘non-interference’ and ‘neutrality’ have also influenced Brunei foreign policy in relation to successfully resolving potential conflicts and overlapping territorial claims or disputes. The main aim of the proposed research is to explore the role of pragmatism in Brunei’s international relations and foreign policy, particularly in relation to economic partnerships and diversification and how this relates to Brunei’s 2035 vision, and the possible future implications this may have for the country both regionally and internationally.

Low Wind Speed Turbine: Field Tests and Commercialization.

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Chee M Lim
  • Application invited for:Master

CAMES has developed technology for low wind speed turbine, and the project has reached the stage for field testing and commercialization. This project will fabricate 5kWp capacity turbines to be placed at strategic locations for field testing. The test data will be used for further product refinement. The project shall also study the commercialization potential of the turbines, and the aim is to prepare for a startup company. Joint supervision with Dr. S. Mathew

Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) Study of Sub-surface Road Structures.

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Chee M Lim
  • Application invited for:Master

The project involves the survey of road sub-surface conditions in Brunei. The project will involve signal processing, data analytics, and system integration of GPR system for rapid roads.

From Innovation To Commercialization of Perovskite Solar Cell.

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Chee M Lim
  • Application invited for:PhD

The main aim of this project is to study the production process of Pervoskite Solar Cell (PSC). As various PSC structures are available, a selected type of PSC will be optimized for production. The product specification is at least 16% power conversion efficiency with module dimension of at 16 x 16 cm2. Joint supervision with Dr. NTRN Kumara

Investigation of Hybrid Plasmonic Nanostructures for Water Purification and Nanophotonic Devices

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Yuan-Fong Chou Chau
  • Application invited for:Phd degree

Hybrid plasmonic nanostructures (HPNs) are a combination of structured metal and dielectric materials in the nanoscale. HPNs possess special optical and electrical effects which are applicable to the diverse applications on water purification and other nanophotonic devices, such as nanoantennas and bio-sensors. The water purification technology will compliment existing water treatment technologies where the HPNs based water purification technology is targeted for the treatment of industrial waste water containing organic compounds, metals, and micro-organisms. In this project, the investigated HPNs will be performed by using the simulation and experiment methods simultaneously.

Design of the nanoplasmonic metamaterials for applications on light manipulation and energy harvest

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Yuan-Fong Chou Chau
  • Application invited for:Phd degree

In this project, we will focus on the design and analysis of high throughput of nanoscale plasmonic metamaterial for light manipulation and energy harvesting. We will aim to promote the development of nanoplasmonic metamaterials for applications in light manipulation and energy harvest, such as plasmonic solar cell, plasmonic nanoantenna and highly sensitive plasmonic biosensors. For achieving this purpose, four research steps will be carried out base on our previous works: design, fabrication, measurement, and application. In addition, a numerical method by using the finite element method will be performed to simulate and design the tunable efficiency and nonlinear enhancement of electromagnetic resonances of various plasmonic metamaterials.

Investigation of a photonic crystal fiber based on surface plasmon resonance sensing

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Yuan-Fong Chou Chau
  • Application invited for:Ms degree

A photonic crystal fiber based on surface plasmon resonance (PCF-SPR) sensing of a gold layer or gold nanoparticles will be investigated. The sensor has two advantages: polarization independence and less noble metal consumption. The coupling characteristics and sensing performance of the sensor are performed by using by the finite-element method (FEM) based on Maxwell's equations. The characteristics of birefringer, foundmantal modes and optical loss spectrum of the PCF-SPR sensor will be discussed in detail in this project.

Functionalized Zeolites Catalyst for the Production of Valuable Chemical Feedstock from Natural Gas in Brunei

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Abdul Hanif Mahadi
  • Application invited for:Masters PhD

The aim of this project is to synthesize functionalized zeolites catalyst for methane activation reaction. The activation of methane enables the direct conversion of methane (a major component of natural gas) into higher monetary value chemicals such as alcohols, syngas, alkenes, alkynes and aromatics, a reaction regarded as the “holy grail” in the chemical industry. Zeolite comprises of a crystalline framework of aluminosilicates and because of its high porosity and reactive acidic sites, zeolites has shown to have exceptional performance as catalyst in various reactions in the chemical industry. The active sites can be chemically modified to enhance its catalytic performance, thus to functionalise the catalyst. The world market demand for zeolites catalyst is USD20 billion in and it is projected to grow to USD24 billion by 2018.

Morphologies of Metal Oxides as PGM Nanoparticles Support for Heterogeneous Catalytic Reactions

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Abdul Hanif Mahadi
  • Application invited for:Masters PhD

Heterogeneous catalysis technology is the key for green energy. It is involved in making petrochemical processes more efficient and also the development of renewable energy such as water splitting and solar photovoltaic cells. Metal oxides are usually used as materials for heterogeneous catalysis. Since most of the catalytic reactions occurs on the surface, surface chemistry and optimisation is utmost important. One method to optimise the surfaces of the metal oxide catalyst is by specifying its exposed facets, and this can be achieved by tuning the morphology of the metal oxides. However, this method of optimisation is not feasible for the chemical industry due to the complication and high cost of synthesising these morphology-controlled oxide catalysts. This project aims to develop facile and cost effective synthesis methods, so the catalysed chemical processes can be more efficient and economical.

Research, Product Development and Demonstration of Coatings for Maritime-Building Infrastructure

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Ren Chong LIM
  • Application invited for:PhD and Master in Material Science by Research

The aim of this applied-research project is to develop and demonstrate coatings for application in maritime-building infrastructure. There are three types of coatings to be developed and demonstrated: antifungal, anticorrosion and concrete-protection. There are three main activities for this project. The initial research and development activity will take place at the Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences (CAMES), under the host organisation, Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD). The latter demonstration activity will be conducted in collaboration with the Centre of Science and Technology, Research and Development (CSTRAD) on maritime-building assets belonging to the Ministry of Defence Brunei Darussalam. The final activity involves filing the patent applications related to these coating products. Laboratory skills and knowledge related to undergraduate Chemistry and/or Physics are required.

Metal oxide nanoparticle for gas sensor

Prevention of unforeseen and sudden accidents within our immediate environment as a result of gaseous pollutants and /or gas cylinder leakage make it necessary for researchers and industrialist across the world to provide effective means for present and future prevention through fabrication of gas sensors. Semiconductor metal oxide gas sensors have been proven to be the most efficient gas sensors exploited so for due to a number of reasons such as simplicity in their fabrication and cost effective.

Gas sensor materials modeling and simulation

Theoretical study always help to understand the more sciences. This modelling and simulation study is to explore the behavior of pristine and different doped metal oxide clusters in the presence of gas molecules. The results may help to understand the mechanism of sensitivity and reactivity improvements in the gas sensors which will be useful for the experimental works. Energy calculations, geometry optimizations, density of states (DOS), and natural bond orbital analyses are some of selected simulation works.

Modification of activated carbon for wastewater treatment.

Waste generated as by product from many factories. Zinc, copper, nickel, lead and toxic dye contaminated wastewater has been a major concern due to its extremely hazardous impact on the environment and human health. Adsorption method have been proven to be most effective and low-cost technique for treating the contaminated wastewater. Modified and development of activated carbon with waste biomass as its precursor are considered as an excellent adsorbent for removal of the contaminants due to its cost effective and high adsorption capacity.

CO2 utilisation to value added products

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Hasliza Bahruji
  • Application invited for:PhD MSc

This project aimed to utilize CO2 for production of value added products and as carbon feedstock for biofuels synthesis. The research will focus on key challenges in catalysts design and catalytic reaction. Student will be exposed to the synthesis of heterogeneous catalysts using impregnation method and deposition precipitation method. Catalytic reaction will be carried out using gas flow reactor at different temperature and pressure. Student also will have opportunities to collaborate with university in Malaysia, Indonesia and UK to carry out experiments and catalysts characterisation.

Photocatalysis reforming of biofuels

  • Centre for Advanced Material and Energy Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Hasliza Bahruji
  • Application invited for:PhD MSc

This project will focus on designing and modification of semiconductor for photocatalytic reforming of biofuels mainly for the production of hydrogen gas. Student will be exposed towards synthesis and characterization of metal nanoparticles on semiconductor supports, and also second generations semiconductor. Student also will be exposed on instrumental analysis, XRD, N2 adsorption, SEM, and solar mediated photocatalytic reactor.

Trainee Teachers' Perceptions of School-Based Assessment in Malaysia: An Exploratory Study.

  • Centre for Lifelong Learning
  • Contact:Mark Smith
  • Application invited for:

School-based assessment, while quite established in many Western countries, is still relatively new in the Asian education context. Consequently, operational problems such as large class sizes, lack of teacher skills and inadequate computer management systems mean that many teachers are still focused on more traditional methods of assessment. This paper attempts to address this apparent reluctance by teachers to embrace school-based assessment through an exploratory research study on 25 first year bachelor of education students from a Malaysian Institute of Teacher Education. Findings showed that the majority of students were more positive towards a student-centred and formative learning approach after the students had experienced a teaching unit based on formative assessment principles. Results may serve as a useful starting point for researchers interested in more classroom-based explorations of school-based assessment in Asia.

Making Sense of ‘Dusunness’: Reconceptualising Ethnic Representation and Identity

This study aims to extend Frederik Barth’s work (1969) on ethnic boundaries to reconceptualise Dusun identity as a zero sum game, and to move away from treating ethnic identity as deculturation and loss of identity. Other major objectives of the study are to identify variations in the representations of ‘Dusun’ in official discourses and state narratives in the colonial and post-colonial periods in Brunei and to some extent, Sabah. This study will also give consideration to emic and etic perspectives in order to understand the ways the Dusuns identity themselves and make sesen of ‘Dusunness’ in everyday life. By collating in-depth qualitative data, this project will provide important insights and information on a significant ‘puak’ in Brunei and their status, and their contribution to nation building and formation of national identity.

English as medium of instruction in Southeast Asian Higher Education Institutions

This is a collaborative project led by Prof Roger Barnard, Waikato University and Zuwati Hashim, Universiti Malaya, that investigates the status, challenges and directions of the use of English as a medium of instruction in various Southeast Asian nations. The project will lead to a publication of a volume by Taylor & Francis.

Use of English in the professional world in China: A comparative perspective with other EFL/ESL nations

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Paul Deyuan He
  • Application invited for:one potential PhD candidate

The present project intends to explore the use of English in the professional world in China. In contrast to the use of English in Brunei, one of the dominant themes of the literature on language in China is the belief that English, particularly its spoken form, plays a limited role in the lives of the country’s mainly Chinese-speaking population. For this reason, it is argued, there is no societal basis for the development of Chinese English. One of the limitations of this argument is that it is based on expert opinion rather than empirical evidence about the nature and extent of English use in the lives of China’s educated people. This project aims to examine the results of a survey involving about 2,500 English users in China which seeks to generate much-needed baseline data about patterns of language choice and use in one centrally important yet overlooked domain: the professional workplace. Its findings may indicate the importance of English use in the workplace of China’s professionals, and in-depth analysis and comparison of the findings will be conducted in relation to English use in other EFL/ESL nations, including Brunei, as reported in previous literature. The project will hopefully provide significant implications for English education in China as well as other EFL/ESL nations.

Foreign language learning anxiety in China: Theories and applications in English language teaching

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Paul Deyuan He
  • Application invited for:one potential PhD candidate

With more than 50 years’ development, the study on foreign language learning anxiety (FLLA) still remains a popular research topic among scholars in western countries. Though at its initial stage of development in China, FLLA has caught increasing attention from Chinese researchers in recent years, and it has been frequently discussed in journal and newspaper articles. FLLA is believed to be one important reason for students’ “dumb English”. Considering the paucity of monographs on FLLA in China, this project attempts to bridge the gap. The project reviews and discusses previous literature and current status and major issues centering on FLLA worldwide, and explores FLLA in China making use of innovative triangulated research methodology combining both quantitative and qualitative methods, namely, questionnaire surveys, focused interviews, and classroom observations. The project also highlights the significance and implications of the conclusions drawn, and then envisions the future of FLLA research globally with a particular focus on China. Readers can derive from this project the latest developments and issues concerning FLLA, the reasons leading to FLLA and the verified effective strategies alleviating such anxiety, which will be of great interest and benefit to them.

Media discourse of reports on the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement: A comparative analysis of UK and Malay World newspapers. (Dr Andrew Kythreotis, PI, Dr Sharifah N Alkaff Dr Siti Mazidah Mohamad Dr J McLellan)

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr James McLellan
  • Application invited for:n/a

4 key research questions: 1. What concerns about anthropogenic climate change are revealed through how the media in the UK and the Malay World framed the Paris Agreement? 2. To what degree are the three main frameworks for responding to climate change, catastrophism, gradualism and scepticism, revealed in this corpus? 3. Did the respective reporting of the Paris Agreement lead to any changes in government climate policy in the countries covered in the project over a timeframe of 6 months? 4. How can the project findings assist His Majesty’s Government with respect to future policy trajectories related to national and international climate change commitments and Wawasan 2035 in Brunei Darussalam?

Borneo and Mindanao: A comparative study of translanguaging practices and identity projection, negotiation and concealment.

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr James McLellan
  • Application invited for:n/a

This project compares and contrasts the languages and peoples of two large islands of insular Southeast Asia, Borneo and Mindanao, focussing on multilingualism, and on interactions within and between ethnolinguistic communities. Whilst there are comparisons to be made using binary polarities e.g. coastal vs interior, indigenous vs immigrant, it is hoped that this project can break new ground by going beyond such simplistic frameworks in order to show that the region can be a locus for development of new theoretical and methodolgical approaches that are locally derived, not imported from elsewhere in the world. Translanguaging (Garcia & Li Wei 2014) is an alternative term for language mixing, language alternation or code switching, more appropriate to multilingual insular Southeast Asia. Identity projection is how communities and individuals view themelves and wish to be viewed by others. Identity negotiation is relevant in contexts where minority groups are part of larger polities and may thus feel that they have to subsume, or even conceal, their identity, language and culture. This is applicable to Mindanao as part of the Philippines governed from Manila, and to Sabah, Sarawak and Kalimantan in Borneo, ruled from Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta respectively. Brunei Darussalam is the only independent polity not controlled from outside.

Active Youth: Challenged, Empowered, and Mobilised

Today we witness the rising number of grassroots, youth-led organisations established by Bruneian youth who are passionately driven to address key issues in development: environment; economy; education; social; and humanitarian. In light of this exciting turn to youth-led initiatives in the nation, it is warranted that we offer an analysis of their active engagement via Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and social enterprises to support the nation’s progress and development. We aim to provide an insight into the intricacies of youth empowerment and engagement in Brunei for their individual socio-economic progress and nation’s development. Via a semi-structured interview with leaders, founders, and members of NGOs, social enterprises, and government officers at Ministry of Culture, Youth, and Sports, a survey, and observation of their activities, we seek to find the answer to four overarching questions: one, the critical driving factors that paved way for youth involvement now and then; two, the conditions that sustain their involvement; three, how youth network operates within the parameters of the country’s national philosophy of MIB (Melayu Islam Beraja); and four, the challenges Bruneian youth faced in materialising their ultimate goals, at individual, communal, and national level. Ultimately, we hope to reveal the restructuring of power relations between youth and government agencies in the nation.

Visible and Influential: Young Bruneian Muslims' use of Instagram for Self-Branding and Identity Expression

Most young people are taking to online sites to express their individualities and narrating their selves via their everyday self-disclosure. In Brunei Darussalam, Instagram is seemingly use actively as a space and/or as a tool to express one’s self and identity. In a short span of time, we witness distinct and innovative social practices such as the growth of Bruneian contemporary Muslim fashion industry, fed by these young people’s compulsion to share everyday activities on their social media. By observing young Muslim Bruneians online sharing on their Instagram profiles could provide us a window into the society’s dynamic socio-cultural and religious fabrics. This surge of individualised sharing by young Muslim Bruneians led the researchers to question the individual’s intention of their own sharing practices, and if they intentionally and strategically take advantage of the user-driven sharing capability of social media for self-branding and self-development. Via personal conversations with young Muslim Bruneians and supplemented by observation of their Instagram activities and a survey, the researchers aim to reveal their self-disclosure practices on their Instagram profile, their future aspirations connected to their self-disclosure, and finally, to portray the power social media has in shaping the future of the young generations in Brunei.

From Hallyu A-List Celebrities to Hallyu 2.0 Influencers: Audience-Celebrities’ Affective Cultural Engagement on Social Mediascape in Brunei Darussalam.

Hallyu 2.0, the new wave of Korean cultural discourses and materialities circulated, engaged, and affirmed on social mediascape, via social media influencers is producing new patterns of cross-cultural engagements, self-consciousness, and self-identification. The Hallyu 2.0 influencers are ordinary individuals yet recognised beyond their localities due to intensive (re)production of relatable cultural content and affective labour on social media. Diffusion of Korean culture and its materialities no longer rest on the shoulders of the A-list celebrities but are today equally shared with these new influencers. User-generated content, one of social media affordances, is intensifying audience-celebrities collaboration in the cultural content generation on social media resulting in the growth of affective interpersonal relation between both parties. And as a consequent, developing an innovative form of cultural transfer that is highly relatable and affective. Despite the growth in this affective influence of South Korean’s influencers in the region in the recent years, this area remains understudied. Brunei Darussalam, a Southeast Asian nation, has seen Korean culture embraced by its youth. While K-Pop and K-Drama remain as main cultural influences in the nation, the Hallyu 2.0 influencers showcasing fashion and beauty, for instance, have gained the attention of the young Bruneian youth in recent times. To capture this contemporary form of Hallyu 2.0 affective cultural transfer, this study focuses on Bruneian women lived new Korean wave experience to be elicited by in-depth interview, survey, and online observation. This study explores Bruneian women’s identification with the influencers; their new form of self-consciousness; and their affective engagement with the Korean cultural materials and discourses on Instagram and YouTube in their everyday life.

Emerging Environmental Awareness in 20th-Century Accounts of Flight

This project examines twentieth-century author-aviators' flight accounts as sources of an environmentalist discourse that see relations between the human, technology, and nature as synergetic and collaborative rather than hierarchical. These author-aviators were significantly aware of how the airplane, the aviator, and the surrounding environment necessarily sustain each others' functions in order to produce flight. The aviator – traditionally seen as superior to the machine and the environment – thus becomes re-positioned as a collaborator.

Fast Food as a Transnational Space: Filipino Transnationalism and Jollibee in Brunei Darussalam

A phenomenal business success story, Jollibee has become an iconic ‘Filipino’ brand and one of Asia’s most admired companies. It has stood out for beating McDonald’s in its own game in the Philippines, as well as in Brunei where Jollibee is the most dominant fast food chain. One of the unintended offshoots of Jollibee’s success was that it has become a marker or vector of (trans)national identity and pride among overseas Filipinos in countries where they have established branches. Reports had it of very long lines of expectant customers greeting the opening of branches, say, in Queens in New York in 2009, Hawaii in 2010, Houston in 2013, Singapore in 2013 and Chicago and Winnipeg in 2016. It puzzles many observers. In Brunei, there is no frenetic reactions to Jollibee, but nevertheless Filipinos in Brunei appear to be silently proud of its Philippine origin. Long domesticated as part of the social landscape, Jollibee has long been accepted by locals and it enhances or validates even more the sense of pride Filipinos feel towards Jollibee. Along with the churches, Philippine embassy, TFC (The Filipino Channel) and Filipino gatherings at home, restaurants, and parks, Jollibee is among the key symbols and places where Filipino trans-local or transnational identities are affirmed or reinforced, and passed on to the younger generations. Using data from interviews, focus group discussions, photo/video elicitation and participant observation, this paper seeks to examine the ways and the extent to which Jollibee plays a role in the transnational identity formation among adult Filipinos in Brunei as well as their children. It also aims to explore possible explanations for the apparently striking difference between the intensity of Filipino responses to Jollibee in Brunei compared with those in places like Singapore and the United States.

Joseph Ralston Hayden as Exemplar of Power-Knowledge?”

This research project seeks to examine the interplay between the ‘political’ life and academic persona of Joseph Ralston Hayden to determine whether or not, in what ways if if did, and to what extent it exemplified the complex relationship between knowledge and power. Being a highly regarded expert of the Philippine affairs, an accomplished Professor of Political Science at University of Michigan, the Vice Governor of the Philippines in the 1930s and an adviser to Douglas MacArthur during the Second World War, Joseph Ralston Hayden seemed to personify the organic ties between knowledge and power, between expertise and political interests. He seemed to represent many scholars, like those identified by Robin Winks in his book Cloak and Gown (1987), who have worked for or with the powers-that-be, such as the Office of Secret Service (OSS) or the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). By teasing out the details of how Hayden’s scholarly and political roles interacted and reinforced each other, and at times generated friction or conflict, I hope to contribute to efforts to understand how and why the scholarly and the political can hardly be separated, but at the same time the appearance of their oppositional ties needs to be sustained.

Global Encounters and the Arts in Southeast Asia. From the Bronze Age to European Colonialism Globalization and the Arts in Southeast Asia. The Rise of a New Art World

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Rui Oliveira Lopes
  • Application invited for:one PhD and one MA candidate

This project discusses the artistic and cultural exchanges in the context of trade, migrations, and circulation of knowledge across the South China Sea. It examines artistic experience and its role in the transmission of knowledge, in the adaptation of transcultural discourses, and in the formation / transformation of cultural identities. The arts in Southeast Asia have been analysed and studied under the perspective of isolated geographies and cultural identities and only sporadically understood under the context of a global art history. Throughout the centuries, the South China Sea served as a platform for intercultural dialogue not only for surrounding cultures but also for distinct European powers with distinctive modes of cultural interaction. The understanding of the arts in Southeast Asia in a global perspective requires a fundamental reconceptualisation of the objects, material culture, themes, and methods under a "de-centralized” art history crossing the historical and the contemporary.

Architectural Heritage in Brunei Darussalam: Safeguarding, Identity and Sustainability

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Rui Oliveira Lopes
  • Application invited for:one PhD and one MA candidate

The UNESCO 1972 World Heritage Convention, ratified by Brunei Darussalam in 2011, recognises the universal value of cultural heritage momuments, groups of buildings, and historical sites from the point of view of cultural history, design, science and technology. Historical buildings are not simply human made structures, but rather an expression of cultural identities, principles of governance, religious beliefs, and also stands as a carrier of collective memories. An architectural heritage should be interpreted as an ‘artefact’ in relation to the formative process of cultural expressions. This research project intends to understand the cultural, stylistic and historical significance of architectural heritage in Brunei Darussalam in order to ensure its safeguarding and sustainability. For this project we focus on the use of digital technologies to support the surveying and archival analysis of architectural heritage in Brunei Darussalam. Through the methods of digital humanities, this project endeavour is focused on the documentation (geometric, architectural, historical) through 2D and 3D drawings, creating digital and interactive maps for geo-spatial, contextual, and phenomenological navigation to locate architectural heritage. This project aims to make an inventory of architectural heritage in Brunei and use digital humanities to create an interactive and open access platform designed for education, conservation, cultural management, safeguarding awareness, social responsibility, and tourism development.

Higher Education and Creative Employment

  • Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Rui Oliveira Lopes
  • Application invited for:one PhD and one MA candidate

Over the last decades, in tandem with the fast growing creative economy and a better understanding of the economic, social and cultural impact of the CCI, many universities have been establishing tailored academic programmes, faculties, schools and institutes, to respond to a demand for creative workforce. However, with a growing number of technical tools made available, the democratisation of knowledge (through online tutorials / how to), and the informal nature of the CCI ecologies some of the questions that can be raised are: what is the employment rate of creative graduates with a related job position? How are higher education institutions responding to employers needs? Are creative employers preferring to employ candidates with a CCI related degree or anyone with technical skill / experience will do?

The 2015 Paris Climate Agreement: A comparative analysis of media and subsequent policy discourses from the UK and Malay World.

The Paris Climate Agreement (PCA) of 2015 promised to pave the way for more transformational climate policy (Kythreotis, 2015). However, a heterogeniety of discourses representing climate change – scepticism, gradualism and catostrophism – have remained prevalent within society. Whilst there has been scientific and policy strides with respect to tackling anthropogenic climate change (ACC), an important question remains as to the role played by the media in framing such prevalent discourses on climate change. This project will evaluate the concerns related to ACC by conducting a critical discourse analysis (CDA) of UK and Malay World newspapers, examining the degree to which scepticism, gradualism and catastrophism were represented in newspaper articles after the 2015 PCA, and to see whether there was any correlation between newspaper reporting and subsequent changes in government policies on climate change in the case study countries. In doing this, this research will add new empirical and theoretical insights into how we understand the relationship between media, science and policy discourses on climate change, which could then lead to more effective future policy on climate change.

Virtual Learning Environment for Developing Accountability

Hedges are powerful tool that manages the distance between a claim or ideology and the writer. These linguistic tokens are often seen to be overused by novice writers. Noticeably, students often hide behind hedges or simply agree to expert knowledge holistically so as to not carry the weight of proving ideational claims. This research attempts to identify possible avenues to encourage the development of students’ accountability, as hedges as indicators, through the use of virtual learning environment such as Canvas. Textual analysis is performed on more than 200 discussion and comment posts to identify the various hedges used by the participants.

Learners as Educators in the Virtual Absence of Authority

Educators often find themselves asking and answering their own questions, and learners parroting what is delivered in classes in examinations. This is noticeable throughout the teaching strata, from primary, to secondary and university classroom settings. The learning that takes place is restricted and streamlined, naturally because there is only one way of thinking – “the educator’s way”. This results in the lack of creativity, proactivity and innovative thinking in learners. This research attempts to identify possible avenues to encourage the expansion of students’ accountability in learning through the use of e-learning technologies such as Canvas.

On-line Communication by the Brunei Government in Malay and English With David Deterding

Previous research has analysed the English used in banking press releases in Brunei Darussalam (Mayyer, 2016). The current paper builds on this by analysing the language used by the Brunei government in official online communication. Two sources will be analysed: a portal that has similar pages in both Malay and English for a range of topics, including the environment, investment and digital identity; and Facebook posts which are either in Malay or in English.

Integrated SOFC-Biomass gasification system for energy generation and water purification

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Abul K. Azad
  • Application invited for:PhD, MEng (Chemical & Process and Energy Systems)

The conjunction of biomass gasification with solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) is a promising and forthcoming possibility for electricity and heat cogeneration along with profound environmental and socioeconomic benefits. This is in-line with one of the strategies to achieve GDP target of 63% contibution from the non oil and gas sector, i.e. innovation technology and creative industry. Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are in the commercialization phase and, therefore, would be interesting to integrate with biomass gasification technologies to have a single and highly efficient system; combining the benefits of each system to establish a new technology. Biomass fuelled integrated SOFC system is one of the key energy technologies of the future since it combines the merits of renewable energy sources and hydrogen energy systems. Together with an integrated gasification plant that gasifies wood chips in a two-step gasification process, electricity and heat will be produced in an environmentally friendly way. The produced heat will be used for water purification. This is a novel technique to produce electricity and driniking water, and lots of space to do research and development.

Nanostructured materials for supercapacitors for energy storage applications

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Abul K. Azad
  • Application invited for:PhD, MEng

Supercapacitor is an energy storage device that attempts to combine the high power density of a capacitor with the high energy density of a battery. Conventional supercapacitors use carbon based electrodes, mostly graphite. In recent years, alternatives such as carbon nanotubes, graphene, and other nanostructured materials have been considered to construct supercapacitor electrodes.

Single/double/triple perovskite-type electrodes for solid oxide fuel cells

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Abul K. Azad
  • Application invited for:PhD, MEng

There are many ceramics that has been investigated as potential anode materials and many of which are perovskite-type structures. Recently, double perovskites with the general formula A2BB/O6 have also been reported to be good anode materials.Changing of the A and B-site cations has strong effect not only on its structural and electrochemical properties but also on the performance in fuel cell applications. Many compositions have already been studied and many more is on-going to find the best composition. Huang et al. [1] reported that the double perovskite Sr2MgMoO6-δ has been an excellent anode as it yielded high power density and has high sulfur tolerance. Bernuy Lόpez et al. shows high redox and 1200 °C under 5% H2/Ar reducing and stability and up to 1000 °C under 5% H2/N2 conditions. However, recent work done by Bi et al. shows that the material possessed very poor intrinsic catalytic activity for oxidation of both H2 and CH4 in the absence of Pt mesh/paste as current collector. On the other hand, Vasala et al. has investigated the effects of W and Nb substitution on active element Mo in the structure and electrical properties. Niobium compounds are well known to show an excellent catalytic activity for different reactions, being used as active catalysts for methane oxidation. To our knowledge, no work has been done on the double perovskite material Sr2FeNbO6-δ as an anode in the application of solid oxide fuel cell. Fe and Ti ions are stable cations and have good stability of the perovskite structure against reduction. [1]. Y.-H. Huang, R. I. Dass, Z.-L. Xing, and J. B. Goodenough, “Double Perovskites as Anode Materials for Solid-Oxide Fuel Cells,” Sci. , vol. 312, no. 5771, pp. 254–257, Apr. 2006.

Internet of Things (IoT): Residential Utility Monitoring System

Grant Details: UBD/RSCH/1.3/FICBF(b)/2018/001: Internet of Things for Residential Monitoring System (BND$20,000) Statistic has shown that water and electricity usages in Brunei is among the highest in the region. This is despite the fact that globally, over 1 billion people across the globe are not receiving clean water. Normally, treated ‘tap’ water contains about 300+ chemicals and pollutants; even after treatment mainly due to pathogens gaining access to the system. This is made worst by industries; contaminating the water sources such as rivers, seas etc. The main objective of this project is to develop suitable IoT systems for water and electricity monitoring in terms of water-usage, electricity usage, flow and quality. By employing data analytics, it shall be able to detect abnormalities; leakages and quality changes, and raise alarms to house-owners/authorities. The multi-disciplinary project requires the identification of important parameters for water-quality control and electricity, development of IoT systems such as sensors and communication link, development of analytical tool, as well as the development of interface to provide feedback to users. It is envisaged that the project would produce affordable but effective tools which would assist house-owners in controlling their water-usage and quality as well as electricity usage, authorities for detections of leakages and preventions of contaminants as well as other relevant agencies

Internet of Things (IoT): Agriculture

Brunei is blessed with a wide variety of plants in its wild forest; with some endemic plant only found locally, having impressive medicinal properties. Researchers at Institute of Biological and Environmental Research (IBER), UBD have been studying different varieties of endemic plant from different perspective: growth conditions, medicinal properties, etc., and they are interested in engaging with the engineering faculty to design and prototype a system that is able to monitor different parameters related to the plant as well as feedback mechanism to maintain optimal growth conditions. As such, only students interested in combining engineering with agriculture need to apply. It is expected that the system shall constitute of sensors, actuators, communication device, data storage capability and data analytic capability; depending on the requirements from the potential uses. Subsequently, the student is expected to design, prototype and test the design. Different parameters such as soil moisture, temperature, humidity, etc. are expected to be monitored and kept in a database to produce time-series data for off-line analysis. The system may be extended to feedback system with analytic capability. As an end product, the student is expected to produce a system that is capable to be used by researchers for monitoring as well as for their experiments to find optimal growth conditions of different species of plant.

Location detection without GPS

Generally, we relies on GPS location tracking for our orientation; despite its low accuracy and dependency on actually receiving enough GPS signals to enable location detection. There is, indeed, many circumstances that we may not be able to receive enough GPS signals. The purpose of this project is to design and prototype a low-cost system with reasonable accuracy that is able to give us our coordinates. For the project, the student is expected to do a thorough literature review of the different methods that may be used for location detection under different circumstances. General user requirements shall then be dictated to the student, for the design, prototype and testing of the system. It is expected that different systems be tested in terms of accuracy and power requirements; to satisfy different needs of different possible users.

Hydroxyapatite synthesis from natural clamshell for biomedical applications

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Hazwani Suhaimi
  • Application invited for:PhD/Master

The clamshell can be utilized in hydroxyapatite (HAp) synthesis due to the presence of high CaCO3 content. Since the characterization and composition of HAp is comparable to human skeletal and dental structure, HAp has been widely used as bone filler, orthopedic implants coating, drug carrier and other biomedical applications. The common method for HAp synthesis such as chemical precipitation, hydrothermal and chemical vapor have not reported a good control on the morphology of HAp because the processes of nucleation, crystal growth and agglomeration are not well investigated. This research project is aimed to optimize ultrasonication method in synthesizing HAp with the hypothesis that this method can influence seeding, direct the crystal growth as well as agglomeration of the compound structure. The HAp composite will be characterized using Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), powder X-Ray Diffraction (XRD), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) to investigate the morphology, structural and functionalization of the material. The HAp produced will also be tested in biocompatibility with osteoblast cells since the progress of nontoxic nanoparticles and biocompatible has been of interest in recent years to find new material that can support the growth of bone cells.

Intelligent wearable anti-sprain system to prevent ankle sprain injury

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Hazwani Suhaimi
  • Application invited for:PhD/Master

People around the world participate in many different sports activities for various reasons ranging from personal satisfaction, stress reliever, relaxation and for keeping fit. However, sports is one of the major causes of injuries, which can lead to possible sprains on body parts, disability and even death in severe cases. The most common sports-related injury is ankle sprain. Inadequate treatment of repeated ankle sprains can lead to chronic ankle instability and possibly arthritis in later years. Apart from researches on effective treatment, prevention of ankle sprain injury is also equally, if not, more important. Amongst the many active researches in the field of prevention mechanisms, the design and fabrication of intelligent wearable anti-sprain system is envisioned to help in the foot and ankle biomechanics. This project aims to design, develop and fabricate wearable anti-sprain system which may be attached to relevant parts of the ankle, to detect incorrect landing postures and provide corrective mechanism to prevent such injuries that happen in any sports-related activities. As such, the project shall delve into understanding the reflex mechanisms that happen prior and during ankle sprain, designing suitable sensors, processing unit as well as feedback mechanism. It is envisaged that the device may be embedded in the clothing of athletes (e.g. in a pair of sport legging), and as such, minimally invasive.

Diffusion of lactic acid in cell-seeded tissue engineering scaffolds

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Hazwani Suhaimi
  • Application invited for:PhD/Master

While many studies in the literature assumed a similar value for the glucose diffusivity in both water and cell culture media (CCM), Suhaimi et al hypothesized the difference in the composition and hydrodynamic properties of both media should give different respective diffusivities. The results shown have proven the hypothesis to be correct. The glucose diffusivity in CCM has been found to be significantly reduced than the one in water due to CCM having a larger dynamic viscosity than water. Another reason may be due to the presence of extra components and therefore the difference in fluid properties of CCM. Although the result from this research does not exclusively apply to all other biological media/cultures since the variation in composition of media may imply a different diffusivity value, it does highlight the danger of assuming glucose diffusivity in CCM as equal to that in water. Similar to the self-diffusivity of glucose in CCM, the effective diffusivity for tissue engineering (TE) materials imbibed in CCM has also been found to be significantly smaller than those in water which is contrary to what have been generally assumed in the previous studies. This further proves that the presence of extra components is a contributing factor to a difference in the effective diffusivity value. Lactic acid is an example of a metabolic waste product produced by cells. As similar to the vascular system in vivo, we should mimic the system in such a way that the diffusion of lactate acid within the scaffold is also monitored. In this way, it may complete the biochemical communication and especially useful in developing a mathematical model that can simulate real situations.

Experimental Investigation of Bioenergy Properties of Local Microalgae Consortium in Brunei Darussalam

Microalgae has been considered as 3rd generation biofuel sources from last decade owing to its excellent capability of CO2 capture and sequestration, water treatment, prolific growth rate and enormous energy content. Although energy research on microalgae has spread throughout the world, there is very limited to no initiative experimental studies has been performed particularly in Brunei, given into consideration that the weather in Brunei is quite suitable for growing microalgae. The conditions include adequate rainfall, average temperature of 28 ͦC and presence of direct sunlight throughout whole year. The research work will examine the bio-energy potential of native blue-green microalgae consortium. The local species of microalgae will be collected and energy properties will be characterized. Proximate analysis comprises of moisture content, calorific value, volatile matter, ash content and ultimate analysis (C, H, O, N, S) will be demostrated through standard ASTM method. Based on the outcome of microalgae biomass characterization, the study will endeavour to blend the biomass with other type of popular bio-energy producing biomass and generate heat by combustion. The Microalgae is aimed to be as a new source of potential bioenergy feedstock for heat and electricity generation, minimizing atmospheric GHG and supplementary options to excessive fossil fuel applications in Brunei.

Non-point pollution and its impacts on water quality of Brunei River.

Abstract: Problems with water quality normally link with increased pollutants as a result of human activities. River has constant interaction with its physical environment as well as the climate and human factors. There are two categories of water pollution sources: point and non-point sources. Point source pollution is due to direct discharge from waste water treatment and industrial plants, whereas non-point sources that come from other sources and locations (e.g. residential area). Brunei has 4 major rivers with Brunei Muara district being the most populated district. Hence Brunei river in Brunei Muara district could well be affected with pollutants. Hence it is the focus of this research project to focus on non-point pollution along the residential area of Brunei river and its impact on water quality.

Hydrodynamic studies of circular cross flow membrane filtration.

Abstract: Membrane fouling is a major impediment to membrane efficiency and it results in the reduction of membrane performance. Despite the vast efforts to reduce the effect of membrane fouling by improving membrane properties, optimizing operating conditions and pre-treatment of feed water, fouling is unavoidable. Improved hydrodynamic conditions such as manipulating shear rates on membrane surfaces, improved design of the membrane systems, and induced flow instabilities are other useful methods in overcoming membrane fouling and concentration polarization. These methods would be further studied using both experimental and computational methods in a circular cross flow membrane filtration.

IoT for monitoring water quality of Sungai Brunei

Abstract: In 2010, it was reported that BND3.9 million had been allocated to clean up Sungai Brunei. As of 2015, Brunei has not yet been able to control its non-point source of pollution, which carries around 30 to 40 per cent of total pollutant load. The main objectives of the project are to develop IoT systems to monitor the water quality of Sungai Brunei and its tributaries, and to propose mitigation measures to minimize the impact of non-point source of pollution in Sungai Brunei. In order to address these issues, four main tributaries which eventually leads to Sungai Brunei are investigated: Sungai Kedayan, Sungai Menglait, Sungai Tungkadeh, and Sungai Rimba. These areas are heavily associated with steady increase in population growth and economic development which indirectly affecting the overall water quality along these rivers. Each river will have its own proposed sites where IoT systems will be placed and monitored directly. The multi-disiplinary research project will require: measurement of water quality parameters such as pH, temperature, turbidity, conductivity, dissolved oxygen and fecal coliform, development of IoT systems such as sensors, and offer constant real-time online monitoring as feedback to users. This research project will be a subsidiary to our initial project proposal (FIC Research Grant applied) on “non-point pollution and its impact on water quality of Sungai Brunei”. With results gathered from IoT systems and manual data gathering and analyses (from initial project proposal: non-point pollution and its impact on water quality of Sungai Brunei), it is hoped that Sungai Brunei and its tributaries will have its reliable water quality monitoring systems and can assist goverment agencies such as Jastre in proposing preventive measures to preserve the water quality of our Sungai Brunei for the present and future generations. This work will hence add value to the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) work at Sungai Brunei.

Biorefinery concept: Valorisation of biomass and wastes to value-added products and energy

Brunei has the potential to generate value-added products, chemicals, fuels and energy from biomass or wastes from industries via biomass conversion processes such as gasification and pyrolysis. The concept of biorefinery is the integration of processes which is comparable to petroleum refinery, but instead it uses biomass as its feedstock and has the potential to diversify the economy away from oil and gas. Rice husk, rice straw, grasses, invasive species (eg: Acacia) and microalgae/macroalgae species are a few of many potential candidates of biomass feedstock. However, the selection of biomass feedstock and their characterisation is an essential pre-requisite step to find out whether the material is suitable for conversion. The generated biomass products have to also undergo characterisation to assess their viability towards potential usage in various industrial applications such as energy (biofuels), agriculture and bio-based chemicals. This particular research area is vast, and processes may include a combination of: i) Feedstock pre-treatment; ii) Thermochemical processes such as pyrolysis, gasification and combustion; iii) The incorporation of catalyst such as zeolites, metal-oxides or natural minerals into the processes; iv) Potential separation of selected chemicals/gases

Design and optimisation of a novel biomass catalytic screw reactor

The objective of this project is to design and improve the biomass pyrolysis system, particularly the reactor and feeding unit. Students are required to review the existing system in laboratory, pilot plants and industries, particularly on biomass conversion systems; compare and make several design concepts to suit the requirement. A simple prototype is expected which shall be incorporated onto our existing pyrolysis/gasification system unit. Knowledge on CAD software such as Solidwork is essential.

End-to-End security of IoTs

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Sandhya Aneja
  • Application invited for:Ph.D./Masters Programme with Major in Networks, Programming and Linux systems

There are mainly two types of networks, one is Internet and other is Telecommunication network. IoT devices connect using one of these existing networks. Underlying networks are secure and thus now securing IoT devices end to end means extending the security mechanism where these devices connect. A solution for security where IoT device uses the Internet is to be explored in the project

Communication over wireless peer to peer network

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Sandhya Aneja
  • Application invited for:Ph.D/Masters Programme with Major in Networks, Programming and Linux systems

In, a peer-to-peer wireless network, there is no hierarchy among the devices. All the devices are equal and therefore are known as peers. Each device determines what data is to be shared on the network. In peer-to-peer network, each device functions as both a client and a server. How calls may be setup in such a network, is to be explored in this project.

Machine Translation for the Malay Language

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Sandhya Aneja
  • Application invited for:Ph.D/Masters Programme with Major in Intelligent Artificial System , Python Programming and Linux sy

Artificial intelligence machine translation has not yet achieved the benchmark. Malay language, the language of Brunei Darussalam uses the same character set as of the English language. A project wherein data is to be formed and establish a BLEU score for Malay to the English language translation system is to explore. There are projects like- Adversarial text generation, Anomaly text sequence detection is to be studied in the context of Malay language

Solid Modelling of Bat Flapping Wing Kinematics

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Wahyu Caesarendra
  • Application invited for:Bachelor of Engineering

Recently, a technology based bio-inspired has shown gradually impact to human life. This project aims to study a flying behavior of bat as a preliminary study on unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for video aerial monitoring in Brunei. The ultimate goal for this long-term research study e.g. for monitoring bush fire in Brunei. The objective of this project is to design a kinematics modelling of sophisticated bat flapping behavior using SolidWorks. The bat flapping wing design project starts by investigating bat flying behavior in indoor tunnel designed by internship Virginia Tech University student. The bat flying behavior will be captured by high-speed cameras installed inside the tunnel. According to this video camera recording, a detail of bat flapping wing mechanism will be sketch. A four-bar-linkage mechanism will be used to model the bat flapping wing movement. Once all parts are designed, the part will be printed using 3D printer and will be build a prototype.

Development of real-time in vivo corrosion monitoring for absorable medical implant materials

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Wahyu Caesarendra
  • Application invited for:Master of Engineering by Research

Over 2.2 million people per year require surgery to repair critical bone defects resulting from accidents, diseases, and trauma. The people with a bone fracture is usually undergoing with two times surgery, one for bone repair to attach the metal implant and another one is for removing the metal implant from the body after the bone has been recovered. This second surgery may psychologically inconvenient for the patient because of pain or required an additional cost. Due to this reason, an absorbable metal implant is necessary. The implant has certain desired structural/mechanical properties and desire to minimize the toxicity effect agains the human body. With the development of material science engineering, absorbable metal implants are currently being developed in decades. The objective is one the metal implant attached to the body, it is not necessary to remove the metal implant from the body because it can absorb to the body by a chemical reaction and biological process. The research mainly focuses on the measurement of biomedical materials corrosion inside the body. Where this will affect directly for the health for the human. The present invention related to the field of bio-medical implants made of biodegradable material could be an advantageous for temporary application, such as mechanical support during bone healing. After completion of healing process, the implant should be removed to avoid long-term side effect.

Real-time surface quality monitoring for adaptive manufacturing process parameters with embedded deep learning method

  • Faculty of Integrated Technologies
  • Contact:Dr Wahyu Caesarendra
  • Application invited for:Doctor of Philosophy

In recent years, the development of advanced manufacturing technology has been continuously pushed towards a higher demand for specification due to a need for better and more consistent product quality, reduced product cost and shorter manufacturing process. The advancement of manufacturing process equipped with an intelligent method open possibilities to answer the existing challenges. To date, the surface quality monitoring of abrasive processes such as grinding and polishing relies on visual inspection and is typically conducted in offline mode once the entire process completed. The surface quality measurements such as thickness, surface roughness and material removal rate require a considerable amount of time and skilled operators, because of the repetitive process (de-mounting and mounting) of the component/work coupon to the fixture. This research will develop a real-time monitoring method for abrasive process by connecting sensor, robot and DAQ device in the hardware setup; and embed a deep learning method into the system integration. A convolutional neural network (CNN) will be used in this research to predict the surface quality parameter. The prediction result of CNN will be connected to the robot to provide a decision whether the current process is operating in normal mode. If the process is running abnormally, the process parameters will adaptively altered based on the decision input from CNN method. This real-time montoring and adaptive mechanism will maintain the quality of the component with reduced overall manufacturing time.

4D Printing of Shape Memory Alloys for Near Net Shape Manufacturing of Smart Parts for Kinetic Energy Harvesting and Aeronautical Applications

This work investigates an additive manufacturing route of producing functional net shaped parts from pre-alloyed magnetic shape-memory alloy powders e.g. Ni-Mn-Ga and TiNi. Shape memory alloy powders that will be used in this investigation will be produced by ball milling (BM) method. Additive manufacturing via Direct Metal Laser Melting (DMLM) will be used in this research due to the reason that it removes the need of post-printing sintering and the possibility to obtain complex shaped parts from the shape memory alloys. The fourth-dimension (4D) is created by the predictable change in 3D printed part configuration over time as the result of shape-memory functionality. DMLM will be proved successful in producing net shaped porous structures (spring-like, 3-D hierarchical lattice structures, etc. with good mechanical strength. It is intended to produce parts with porosities ~25% by using powders with distinct morphologies. The printed parts undergo reversible martensitic transformation during heating and cooling, which is a prerequisite for the shape-memory behavior. Thermo-magneto-mechanical trained 3D printed parts obtained from ball milled alloy powders will be expected to produce reversible magnetic-field-induced strains (MFISs) of up to 0.01% – 1% for energy harvesting applications and proper sealing behavior for aeronautical applications.

Historical Heritage sites in Brunei Darussalam

The State of Brunei Darussalam is characterized by a very diverse and facinating historical background strongly tied to the sea. Most of Brunei has been underwater for the last 15 millions of years and, since then, it emerged very slowly up to its present position. During this period,offshore Brunei experienced a number of events such as sea level changes and biodiversity oscillations still visible today both on onshore outcrops and in the offshore deposits. Today the offshore harbors several coral reefs and preserves remnants of the Second World War which greatly contribute to the diversity of the marine life. This project aims to study all those past and recent events that have transformed the Sultanate into a sanctuary of biodiversity and richness. Brunei abundant historical sites need to be preserved, highlighted, correctly displayed for the local community as part of their heritage and have to potentially become very attractive to tourists and scientists to boost the local economy. The ultimate goal is to reach out to the local community and make it aware of all these sites and suggest how to showcase them to boost the local economy.

Benthic Biodiversity offshore Brunei Darussalam.

Foraminifera are major component in terms of biodiversity of the Benthic systems in the marine environment. It seems from Preliminary data that offshore Brunei harbors an extremely diverse fauna. Calcarinids, Amphisteginids, Larger Benthic Symbion bearing Foraminifera and all the small Benthics all seem to be nicely displayed to their respective water depth limitations. Studying their diversity and distribution will give us clues on how to interpret the palaeoenvironments of a lot of onshore outcrops.

Neocortex Models for Athletes (NMA)

The intended goal of this project will be to design and to emulate neocortex models of athletes (NMA) using hierarchical reinforcement learning. The criteria used to design NMA is based on goals set by trainers/coaches for athletes in different sports. NMA will be tested using case based reasoning with the knowledge base already formed and evolving for different national sports.

Petrogenesis of Ophiolite Suites in Borneo Island and Comparisons with the Zambales (Philippines) and Othrys (Greece) Ophiolites: Possible implications on the Genesis of Abiotic Methane

Ophiolites represent remnants of the Earth's Upper Mantle and Oceanic Crust. Knowledge of their geotectonic evolution and petrogenesis are considered as fundamental keys to the reconstruction of the Earth's history and geotectonic evolution, as they comprise huge and important parts of the Earth's interior. Recently, it has been suggested that these rocks are responsible for the production and exhalation of methane of abiotic origin, which is a theme of growing interest. The present study deals with the detailed investigation of the Borneo ophiolite suite, aiming to unravel the complex geological history of Borneo Island with several implications on the geological development of Malaysia. Geological mapping in certain areas of interest in the Sabah region (Pulau Malawali, Kundasang, Ranau, Telupid, Beluran, please see map provided), collection and preparation of specimens, as well as their thorough microscopic investigation, employing polarising and Scanning Electron Microscope techniques, will be performed. Gas emissions from the ophiolite will be analysed, in order to test the hypothesis for the production of abiotic methane. The proposed research aims at: (i) unraveling the genesis and evolution of the Ancient Mantle and Oceanic Crust of the area of Borneo from the acquisition of data during a thorough petrological investigation, and (ii) investigating the role of these rocks in the formation of the unconventional production of abiotic methane.

A Pilot Geochemical Atlas for Resource Exploration and Environmental Management in the Brunei-Muara District, Brunei Darussalam

Geochemical mapping of large regions is a challenge for applied geoscientists as it is a fundamental tool for the exploration of a plethora of Earth resources, as well as for environmental monitoring and land management. For this reason, regional-, national- and global-scale geochemical mapping projects have been carried out in various countries the last decades (e.g. Geochemical Map of Europe, USA, large regions of Africa, etc.).. The current project is proposed to cover the District of Brunei-Muara as a first effort to construct a similar Atlas in Brunei Darussalam. The area is dominated by sedimentary formations of Miocene to Quaternary age and characterised by various geological units, which have been accumulated from the discharge of ancient and modern rivers and their interaction with a marine environment. A large number of samples will be collected and analysed in order to highlight potential geochemical organic and inorganic anomalies. Subsequent interpretation of these anomalies will lead to implications regarding: (i) the potential existence of economic resources, (ii) environmental applications (e.g. biosorbents of pollutants, waste filters), iii) adverse environmental impacts (anthropogenic and natural) and the consequences to public health, and (iv) the provenance of the sediments and consequently the geological history of Brunei Darussalam.

Gold deposits in Borneo: Exploration potential and environmental impacts

  • Faculty of Science
  • Contact:Chun-Kit Lai
  • Application invited for:MSc, PhD

Discovery of high-quality gold-(copper) deposits is successively reported in the Sarawak, Sabah and Kalimantan regions of Borneo. Despite the economic significance, the extend of the Bornean gold mineralisation has never been well established. Recent discovery of extensive hydrothermal pyrite occurrence in sedimentary rocks highlights the presence of ancient hydrothermal activities in the country and thus gold prospectivity. This 2-year project (starts in May 2018) represents our first step to develop UBD into a regional hub of Economic Geology and Mineral Resource research. With an integrated approach of ore deposit geology, radiometric age dating, geochemistry, statistics and GIS spatial analysis, we aim to delineate the space-time distribution of gold mineralisation in Borneo and assess the regional/local (esp. within Brunei Darussalam) gold-forming potential. Meanwhile, we will also investigate the potential environmental impacts of Bornean gold exploration/mining activities. The project contributes to the further strengthening/diversification of the national economy on one hand, and safeguarding the nation from cross-border mining-related pollution on another.

Plant conservation in human influenced landscape of Brunei Darussalam

The Anthropocene has been proposed as a new geological period characterized by the impact of human society on native ecosystems. In an epoch characterized by rapid depletion of resources, large scale deforestation, rapid urbanization, extinction of species and aggravated climate change, agroforestry systems, small forest patches and homegardens are recognized as key factors within the landscape matrix, for conservation of biodiversity at the local level. Proponents of the emerging field of Biocultural Diversity also point out to the parallelism existing between biological, cultural and linguistic diversities, and the possibility of co-evolution and interdependencies between these entities that were hitherto considered independent of each other. In this context, the proposed project aims to study the plant diversity in the human modified landscape of Brunei Darussalam, including how the local community has contributed to plant conservation, and the economic, social and cultural importance of native plant species. We will assess: 1) the plant species diversity, 2) the contribution of the local community in conservation of native species and the economic and biocultural importance of these species. UBD students of Bruneian Nationality will participate in the research; final outputs would include scientific papers, conference presentations and distribution maps of endangered plant species in Brunei. The results will be an important tool for policy makers, researchers and local communities looking forward for the dual cause of conserving both biological and cultural diversities.

Revision of Osmundaceae fern family

Osmindaceae is one of the most archaic fern family, within the Flora Malasyana project I am conducting a taxonomic revision of this family for the Malesian Region. Up to now we know approximately 17 species in this area. The project is expected to be published in 2019.

Machine Learning and/or Data Mining

We study and investigate in following machine learning algorithms: 1) Evolutionary methods for unsupervised/semi-supervised clustering 2) Metric Learning algorithms, similarity measures 3) Model-based techniques 4) Time-based clustering algorithms 5) Computer Vision algorithms With applications into 1) Clinical/Medical Data 2) Geology (Source Rock Characterisation; Raw Water Quality Analysis; Geochemical Atlas) 3) Material Science 4) Biology etc

Modelling and Identifying Driving Patterns of Brunei Drivers.

The main aim of this research project is to study the driving patterns of drivers in Brunei using time-series simulation and sensor data and machine learning techniques, identifying extensively detailed driving parameters thereby helping drivers to improve road safety.

Natural Language Processing and Text Mining

The main objective of this study is to develop a framework for identifying patterns in text. Based on the built model, we apply prediction techniques on textual data. This can be applied to various domains such as advertisement, management, social studies, medicine, education, etc.

Marine organismal responses to global change - warming

This project will consider how intertidal ectotherms behaviourally thermoregulate and acclimate to the temperature extremes experienced when exposed in air. We are especially interested in unraveling the nature and mechanisms of rapid heat hardening. Other elements include multi-stressor responses, such as the coupled effects of heating and drying when air-exposed.

Metabolism and energetics associated with snails living under extreme and variable pH circumstances

This project will explore the constraints on energetic balance of circumstances leading to limited energetic uptake and the apparently high energy costs of life in acidified estuarine ecosystem. It will involve gastropods as a model system.

Chemical Analyses of Natural Products derived from Plants native to Brunei Darussalam

Brunei Darussalam is home to some of the most diverse species of flora and fauna. Whilst folklore medicine is commonly known within the community, very little scientific backing and evidence has been published on the natural products derived from the endemic flora and fauna of Brunei Darussalam. The active ingredients found in these natural products may be beneficial or toxic to our health. The aim of this project is to study some selected local food products derived from selected local plants. Identifying the key ingredients in the plant extract may lead to the production of formulations of high commercial values, which may be useful for the local Bruneian entrepreneurs. Chemical analyses and investigation of materials will be helped by methods including, but not limited to chemical assays, heavy metal analyses, nutritional composition, spectroscopy and microscopy. We are actively looking for masters in research candidates, research assistants and temporary placement research interns. Interested candidates should email fairuzeta.jaafar@ubd.edu.bn

Developing under-utilised and agricultural waste materials for various applications

In the modern world, handling waste has been a major global concern. In Brunei alone, the amount of waste generated per capita is estimated at 1.4 kg per day. From the total waste produced, almost 70% goes directly to landfills. These waste materials have the potential to be a gold mine of functional materials. Therefore, our interest lies in the development of functional materials from domestic and agricultural waste. In this project, you will research methods of extracting useful materials from waste materials and its possible applications. This may involve making pulp or fertilisers from agricultural waste or small-scale recycling of plastic domestic waste. We are actively looking for masters in research candidates, research assistants and temporary placement research interns. Interested candidates should email fairuzeta.jaafar@ubd.edu.bn

Combining ultrasound and microbubbles for targeted drug delivery

Microbubbles are micron-sized, inert gas cores stabilised by a biocompatible surfactant in an aqueous dispersion. Introduced into the blood stream via intravenous injection, they react with ultrasonic waves to create very specific signals. This improves the contrast between tissue and the surroundings, effectively “lighting up” the blood in an ultrasonic image. More recently, microbubbles have been shown to be a promising targeted drug delivery vehicle. Drugs could be loaded onto a microbubble surface and upon reaching a specific site for drug delivery, the microbubbles could be popped to release drugs only at that particular site. This method of targeted drug delivery is of particular interest in cancer therapeutics as undesirable side effects could be minimised by only targeting cancerous cells and leaving healthy cells intact during chemotherapy. In this project, you will learn how to create, handle and characterise microbubbles using a variety of analytical methods, namely optical microscopy and ultraviolet spectroscopy. Once proficient in handling and characterising microbubbles, you will investigate methods of loading drugs onto microbubbles via adsorption to microbubble surface. Permeation studies will also be carried out in order to determine efficacy of microbubble-drug permeability as well as the effects on sonoporation on a permeable membrane and to see whether microbubbles improve permeability due to cavitation. We are actively looking for masters in research candidates, research assistants and temporary placement research interns. Interested candidates should email fairuzeta.jaafar@ubd.edu.bn

Green Synthesis of Novel Schiff Bases

The introduction of new therapeutic agents to act against various diseases is very essential nowadays due to the emergence of diseases. Schiff bases are very potential compounds which can be effective against the problem of drug resistance and they have been known to be capable of exhibiting a wide range of biological potentials such as anticancer, antibacterial and antifungal. Recently, much attention has been focused on Schiff bases derived from amino derivatives such as S-alkyl/aryl esters of dithiocarbazic acids. The main aim of this project is to explore on the green synthesis of novel straight chain and cyclic Schiff bases using a variety of carbonyl compounds and amino derivatives.

Dynamic kernel density estimation in the chaotic advection problem

The aim of the project is to develop numerical strategies for obtaining accurate estimations of the tracer concentration fields from the ensemble of stochastic trajectory solutions of the Lagrangian particle dispersion model. Specifically, more information can be obtained in a stochastic problem than just a static density. We can go beyond standard kernel density estimation (KDE) methods by exploiting the fact that we are solving a dynamic problem. Hence we can introduce a new class of methods, which we will call the dynamic KDE (DKDE). The starting point of DKDE is the Green's function representation of the solution to the advection-diffusion equation (or Fokker-Planck equation). The Green's function for a short-time interval is then approximated by considering the leading order WKBJ series solution of the advection-diffusion equation, under the assumption that the diffusivity parameter is small.

Pan-tropical Forest Tree Project

This work is a cooperative project joined by more than 200 researchers worldwide. It currently contains data from more than 3000 individual plots, about 800,000 trees, including approximately 12,000 tree species. This data will be used for mapping and understanding tropical tree species distributions worldwide. Please contact me if you like to join by contributing your tree inventory data.

Brunei Forest Observatory

This project will establish a large network of permanent plots in the many undisturbed forest types of Brunei Darussalam. This network will function as a research infrastructure for the study of tropical forests under climate change. Data will be collected on tree species composition, tree growth, recruitment and mortality, soil parameters, climate and any other relevant environmental parameters. The idea is that researchers from around the world will come to Brunei to use this research infrastructure. We hope to have this project ready and running by 2016.

Forest Fragmentation Project Southwest China

In 2012 we established 50 permanent plots in forest fragments ranging in size from one to several 1000 hectares in Xishuangbanna, southern China. These forest fragments are surrounded by rubber plantations that have sprung up in the region since the 1990s. Again, the idea is that researchers from around the world will come and use this permanent research infrastructure to study the effects of forest fragmentation on both animals and plants. If you are interested to work in this plot network, please contact me.

Construction and Evaluation of Homemade Smartphone Spectrophotometer in Studying Beer’s Law

Mobile phones have become part of our day-to-day activities and they are constantly changing the way we communicate and learn. The portability and ubiquity of smartphones has provided new possibilities for the chemistry laboratory to support blended learning and provide opportunities for entrepreneurial skills and environmental awareness. In this project, the students will design, build and test homemade spectrophotometer using a mobile phone and simple components with creative designs. The performance of the constructed prototype will be compared with commercial spectrophotometers currently being used in the laboratory in studying Beer's Law and absorbance spectrometry. This project will be part of a bigger collaborative project with a Computer Science final year student who will be in charge of developing the mobile Apps specific for the designed prototype.

Construction and Evaluation of Solid-State Ion Selective Electrodes (ISE) Prepared from Pencil Leads Coated with Conducting Polymers and Sol-Gel Membranes

The aim of the project is to fabricate ISE’s from graphite pencil leads through electrode modification with conducting polymers as well as sol-gel procedures. The fabricated electrodes will be evaluated based on their potentiometric response with pH and various cations and anions.

Spectroscopic and Electrochemical Properties of Selected Native Plant Species from Brunei

Many plant species indigenous to Brunei are unexplored in terms of their usefulness as functional food and medicine or as a source of compounds with special properties such as pigments for solar cell applications. This study provides a preliminary investigation on the availability of chemical components in plants that have special properties that may be utilised for various applications. The students should be able to integrate the theory and practice of spectroscopy and electrochemistry in solving real world problems.

Development of novel and smart nanomaterials for sustainable energy and environment applications.

Synthesizing novel and smart nanomaterials using green approach for sustainable energy and environment applications.

Fabrication of novel perovskites nanomaterials for energy and environment.

Synthesizing novel perovskites nanomaterials for possible energy and environment applications.

Development of graphene-based nanomaterials for energy and environment applications.

Fabrication of novel and graphene-based nanomaterials using green approach for energy and environment applications.

Food (including Halal food) Analysis

As an Islamic country, Brunei Darussalam strives to implement the production of Halal products, especially food, in accordance to Islamic dietary law. However, majority of the commercial food products in Brunei are yet being imported from abroad. Hence, there is a risk on food frauds to be aware of by the public. For example, contamination of food products by traces of pork material.Currently, we are working on a detection system based on Real Time Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) or Loop-Mediated Isothermal Amplification (LAMP) that could allow detection of low abundance pork DNA in food samples. In addition, we are also striving to develop novel methodologies based on electrochemical and colorimetric detection systems. In parallel, we are also attempting to improve the efficacy of each methodology by implementing nanotechnology on catalytic mechanisms, biochips production and so on, as well as to develop a detection system that can be utilized for on-site monitoring. Putting it together, our goal is to develop highly sensitive, highly specific, rapid, portable and robust detection systems that can be employed for on-site monitoring during Halal food inspection.Please email: <minhaz.ahmed@ubd.edu.bn> with your interests for updated proposals.

Microbial analysis

By targeting specific DNA regions of pathogens, RT-PCR can be employed for the detection of foodborne and waterborne pathogens for microbial analysis. Currently, we are in collaboration with the Institute of Health Science (IHS) to develop a detection system based on RT-PCR technique for the detection of bacteria, including Bacillus cereus, Legionella pneumophila and Staphylococcus aureus.Furthermore, we are also developing new strategies using tablet blister packs for the detection of White spot syndrome virus (WSSV), which has been associated with shrimps infection harvested from South China Sea that has caused huge economic losses.With the increase of undeclared importation of plants and planting materials from neighboring countries, local plants are more susceptible to dangerous diseases caused by microbes infections. Hence, we are also planning to develop strategies that can allow detection of harmful microbes to identify infected plants in counter for further damages. Please email: <minhaz.ahmed@ubd.edu.bn> with your interests for updated proposals.

Clinical diagnostics

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death not only in Brunei Darussalam, but also globally. human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG)is a hormone commonly found in the serum of pregnant women. Presence of significant high level of hCG in men and non-pregnant women can serve as an indication for cancer development. Previously, our laboratory has conducted studies on the detection of hCG based on nanotechnology and electrochemical biosensing approach. By electrochemically quantifying the level of gold nanoparticles that are conjugated to anti-hCG antibody, we could indirectly quantify the level of hCG in serum. Using this strategy as template, we are striving to bring this methodology toward the detection of other biomarkers like sIgA (Saliva), C-reactive protein (CRP), Interleukin 1 Beta, Prostate specific antigen (PSA) etc. Please email: <minhaz.ahmed@ubd.edu.bn> with your interests for updated proposals.

Phytonutrients in protecting hepatocytes from lipid accumulation and lipid-mediated cellular damage.

NAFLD includes a spectrum of conditions associated with lipid deposition in liver cells (hepatocytes) and inability of the liver cells to respond to insulin (insulin resistance). We have shown previously that induction of autophagy can prevent accumulation of lipid droplets in the hepatocytes and improves hepatic steatosis which leads to the pathogenesis of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). This project is aiming to investigate the biochemical properties of several promising polyphenols in inducing autophagy in liver cell lines along with their role on lipogenesis and insulin signalling in hepatocytes.

Lead-selective chelators on solid support for the encapsulation of lead

Lead(II) ion is a serious environmental contaminant from various sources such as pesticides, burning of coal and from automobile emissions. Another source of contamination is perovskite-based solar cells which contains lead that can leak into the environment via waste water routes. Perovskite-based solar cells have seen a rapid advance in research over the past few years (at UBD included), due to improved efficiencies which makes it a competitor for large scale and low-cost photovoltaic technology. Therefore, to limit human exposure, lead contamination (whether from perovskite solar cells or other sources), should be removed. There are several ways of trapping lead, among them are adsorption onto nanoporous materials such as carbon nanotubes (CNTs), activated carbon/charcoal, graphene oxide and other materials; through permeable functionalised membranes; or through the complexation with small organic ligands/molecules. Thiohydroxamic acids are small organic ligands that have been shown to bind selectively to Pb but have so far not been conjugated to solid supports. The main advantage of utilising solid supports is their easy removal simply by filtering away the solid, which contains the captured lead. Therefore, in this study, we propose to conjugate novel modified thiohydroxamic acid molecules which act as lead chelators onto a solid support such as magnetic nanoparticles or activated carbon, for the sequestering of lead from water and other environmental sources. Interested candidates should email natasha.keasberry@ubd.edu.bn

(a) Thermochromic glazing coatings/Thin films for solar control applications (b) Study the optical and electrical switching properties of doped VO2

  • Faculty of Science
  • Contact:Dr Voo Nyuk Yoong
  • Application invited for:MSc/PhD in Applied Physics

(a) The aim of this research project is to study the thermochromic materials, for glazing, whereby the change in optical property is revisable with temperature. This study mainly investigate the transition temperature of various transition metal oxides, dopants and deposition technologies in order to obtain the closest transition temperature to room temperature. This project will mainly be of experimental nature. (Available for 1 MSc student and 1 PhD student) (b) The optical and electrical switching properties of Vanadium dioxide (VO2) are of great interested by many researchers as VO2 behave like a semiconductor whereby the transition temperature can be tuned by doping with other elements. This study aims at investigate the switching properties of the doped vanadium dioxide. (Available for 1MSc/PhD student)

DFT Studies on the electronic structures of natural dye for dye-sensitized solar cells

  • Faculty of Science
  • Contact:Dr Voo Nyuk Yoong
  • Application invited for:MSc in Applied Physics

In this research project, the students will be studied the efficiency of the natural dyes using the density functional theory. The ground-state, electronic structures and absorption spectra of these dyes will be studied. (Available for 1 MSc student)

Graphene membrane for desalination of water

  • Faculty of Science
  • Contact:Dr Voo Nyuk Yoong
  • Application invited for:MSc/PhD in Applied Physics

Sea water is the major source of water on Earth. However, high concentration of salinity in the sea water makes it unsuitable for domestic usages. We aim to design graphene nanopores membrane for filtration and desalination of sea water. This research consists of studying the pore sizes and pressure of the graphene sheets for the salt rejection ability by molecular dynamics. After optimised the salt rejection performance, the optimsed design of the graphene with nanopores will be fabricated. Then, characterizations will be performed.

Computer Vision Based Plant Species Classification

This project aims to develop an automated system for plants species classification (identification/recognition) using computer vision techniques. This is a multi-phase project so more than one candidate can apply. The prospective candidates require knowledge in the filed of image processing, machine learning and mobile application development. This project aims to achieve the following objectives: • Automate the identification process of plants species using computer vision techniques (i.e. using pictures taken by camera/mobile) • Build an initial knowledge-base of plants’ images (leaves) and other relevant information • Set-up a cloud-based framework to provide the online classification services • Develop a smart mobile application for real-time plants species recognition

Computational Modeling/Simulation - Data Analytics

This project is related to the computational modeling and/or simulation for various fields including computational chemistry and biology. The projects requires understanding and skills in applying computer modeling and simulation techniques along with application of machine learning techniques.

Data/Information Visualization ----- Data Mining, Computer Vision/Image Processing and Deep Learning Applications

Developing Visualization Tools for various signal systems ------ Various applications of data mining and computer vision/image processing techniques using sensors and machine learning/deep learning techniques; CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 Kit, Raspberry Pi 3 IBM IoT Kit, Raspberry Pi Touchscreen Display, Raspberry Pi 3 Camera Kit, XBOX ONE KINECT SENSOR - For details contact thru email.

Studying the microbial diversity in Brunei for applications in bioremediation and biotechnology

  • Faculty of Science
  • Contact:Dr Pooja Shivanand
  • Application invited for:B.Sc./M.Sc./Ph.D./Internship

Microbial diversity encompassing a spectrum of various types of microorganisms (bacteria, fungi, algae etc.) is a promising national resource. There are more kinds of microbes than plants, vertebrates and insects combined. However, since microbes are small, they are least known. This gap in knowledge is particularly apparent for bacteria and other prokaryotic organisms. Microbes have radically reshaped life on this planet. They have not just adapted to even extreme environments on earth but can also consume just about anything, including metals, chemicals, pesticides, petroleum and natural gas—all of which are toxic to us. Hence these microorganisms play a pivotal role to ameliorate effects of naturally occurring and man-made disturbances in environments. Study of microbes will reveal novel biochemicals, enzymes and active ingredients useful to humans as industrial agents, food products, biopharmaceuticals, cosmetics, biofuels and more. Microbial diversity in Brunei has been less investigated till date. This region offers a niche for exploring this untapped natural resource.

A Pilot Geochemical Atlas for Resource Exploration and Environmental Management in the Brunei-Muara District, Brunei Darussalam

Geochemical mapping of large regions is a challenge for applied geoscientists as it is a fundamental tool for the exploration of a plethora of Earth resources, as well as for environmental monitoring and land management. For this reason, regional-, national- and global-scale geochemical mapping projects have been carried out in various countries the last decades (e.g. Geochemical Map of Europe, USA, large regions of Africa, etc.).. The current project is proposed to cover the District of Brunei-Muara as a first effort to construct a similar Atlas in Brunei Darussalam. The area is dominated by sedimentary formations of Miocene to Quaternary age and characterised by various geological units, which have been accumulated from the discharge of ancient and modern rivers and their interaction with a marine environment. A large number of samples will be collected and analysed in order to highlight potential geochemical organic and inorganic anomalies. Subsequent interpretation of these anomalies will lead to implications regarding: (i) the potential existence of economic resources, (ii) environmental applications (e.g. biosorbents of pollutants, waste filters), iii) adverse environmental impacts (anthropogenic and natural) and the consequences to public health, and (iv) the provenance of the sediments and consequently the geological history of Brunei Darussalam.

Petroleum system analysis of Cretaceous-Paleacene Formation, Great South Basin, New Zealand

The petroleum system concept helps oil companies to decide which prospects are most likely to contain oil or gas. Source rock and reservoir rocks are critical to the success of a petroleum system, and includes generation and maturation of organic matter to become source and the migration of these source rocks to the reservoirs. Every exploration initiates with the evaluation of source rock on a regional scale. Of high importance in this scope is the estimation of hydrocarbon potential of the source rock. This information can be further integrated with various components of basin development, which include the rate of sedimentation, rate of subsidence, burial history and thermal history. In this study, the source rock analyzed are from the Cretaceous-Paleocene Hoiho and Taratu formations. Organic geochemistry helps determine whether the source rock has the capacity for oil or gas generation, and whether the source rock is mature enough for hydrocarbon expulsion. Reservoir characterization studies is another part of that study using well log data, and seismic section to discover the subsurface structural configuration and evaluate the reservoir quality evolution in terms of porosity and permeability to accommodate adequate amount of hydrocarbon.

Integrated petroleum system studies using source rock and reservoir characterizations of Taranaki Basin New Zealand

This study is a part of larger research topic of the analysis of petroleum system elements of Upper Cretaceous-Paleocene Farewell Formations of Taranaki Basin, New Zealand. The petroleum system is a unifying concept that encompasses all of the different elements and processes of petroleum geology, which include the crucial elements (source, reservoir, seal and overburden rocks), essential processes (trap formation and generation-migration-accumulation), and all genetically-related hydrocarbons which have migrated from one pool of effective source rocks to reservoir accumulations, shows or seeps. Relative timing of these elements and processes are very crucial for the accumulation and preservation of hydrocarbons. Petroleum exploration is futile without these elements, and hence, tits study is highly important.

Ground- and Surface Water Investigation in Brunei Darussalam

Brunei relies heavily on its surface water resources for drinking water usage. This project will study hydrochemical changes at key sampling points (lake, river, groundwater) through longterm monitoring techniques using datalogger as well as passive samplers.The benefits of passive sampling over traditional sampling methods will be highlighted. Moreover it is planned to study the water balance of peat soils as well as perform groundwater mapping exercises using geophysical tools.

Ground- and Surface Water Investigation for Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) in Brunei Darussalam

Environmental Regulations, specifying the need for Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) are new to Brunei and only become mandatory in 2017. Currently a range of significant major projects, are underway such as the building of the Brunei Temburong Bridge, the building of a fertilizer plant in Lumut as well as the harbourfront development in Bandar Seri Begawan. One of the biggest project which is currently ongoing is the construction of a fertilizer plant in Lumut. Thyssen Krupp Industrial Solution is responsible for the construction of the fertilizer plant , which has a project value of more than a Billion Dollar. The EIA is a necessity for the project to prove that adverse impact on the environment is avoided. However the monitoring duration and assessment of the baseline conditions for the EIA are not clearly defined in the regulations. This project aims to perform water sampling and analysis as wells as install observatory groundwater monitoring points for monitoring and sampling at Lumut in the vicinity of the plant. The results aim not only add value to the EIA for the project at Lumut but also to EIA’s in Brunei as a whole.

Investigation of Formation Damage of a Brunei Darussalam Oil and Gas Reservoir

Scaling and Formation Damage can severely reduce the production of oil and gas. This project aims to perform scaling simulation as well as Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) studies to identify scaling and potential formation damage mechanisms. It is also planned to perform coreflooding studies to investigate scaling and formation damage under Reservoir Pressure and Temperature.

Unsupervised human activities recognition

Human Activity Recognition (HAR) is an important component in assistive technologies, however, we have not seen wide adoption of HAR technologies in our homes. Two main hurdles to the wide adoption of HAR technologies in our homes are the expensive infrastructure requirement and the use of supervised learning in the HAR technologies. Many HAR researches have been carried out assuming an environment embedded with sensors. In addition, the majority of HAR technologies use supervised approaches, where there are labeled data to train the expert system. In reality, our natural living environment are not embedded with sensors. Labeled data are not available in our natural living environment. We are developing a framework for autonomous HAR suitable in our natural living environment, i.e. the sensor-less homes. The framework uses unsupervised learning approach to enable a robot, acting as a mobile sensor hub, to autonomously collect data and learn the different human activities without requiring manual (human) labeling of the data.

Storage cloud-based smart devices for Internet of Things (IoT)

Smart devices in an IoT system, such as the smart home, either connect through their own proprietary server running their server side applications, or they connect through the user home network where a center device is running the necessary server side applications. The second approach is not flexible and not user friendly to setup. There is increasing number of systems that take the first approach of having their own cloud server. However, not all developers are capable of hosting their cloud server to cater for large volume of users. This restricts the development of large scale IoT systems to large companies. There is also the concern of being tied to a proprietary service. To address this issue and to allow amateur developers to build large scale IoT systems, we are developing a new form of connectivity for IoT systems by exploiting storage-cloud services widely used by general public such as DropBox and Google Drive.

Self-driving car

Self-driving car technologies are growing and maturing. It will be part of the future transport system. We are initiating our venture into this domain inline with our interest in robot navigation. In this project, we will build a prototype self-driving car and use it to conduct research works in the various aspects of self-driving car.

Effects of local and global environmental changes on aquatic ecosystems

Aquatic ecosystems are at risk of ecological deterioration due to increasing local environmental changes and/or global climate changes. Brunei Darussalam has various unique marine and freshwater ecosystems throughout the country (e.g., coral reefs, estuaries, rivers, lakes) but many of the environments have not been explored and monitored in details. This research project aims (1) to study biological (e.g., diversity and physiology of primary producers), chemical (e.g., organic matter, nutrients), and physical (e.g., temperature, salinity) conditions of the aquatic ecosystems in Brunei, (2) to understand biogeochemical cycles of major biological elements (e.g., C, N, P), and (3) to develop a strategy for the conservation and management of the ecosystem.

Diversity of seaweeds in Brunei Darussalam and the search for useful substances toward commercialization

Seaweeds (marine macroalgae) have been globally receiving attention from many industrial areas (e.g, food, pharmaceuticals, fertilizers, biofuel). Brunei Darussalam has a rich diversity of marine life but the diversity of seaweeds and their potentials as an economic source have never been studied. This research project aims (1) to identify seaweed species in Brunei and make a database of the diversity for conservation, (2) to study physiological and ecological characteristics of local seaweeds, and (3) to search for useful substances for industry and commercialization.

Stability of polymer solar cells.

Conjugated semiconducting polymers are promising materials for low cost solar cell due to the ease of large scale production with roll to roll printing. However these materials require more study to determine their photochemical stability and thermal stability for use in organic solar cells.

Development of high efficiency organic solar cells

Power conversion efficiencies of solution-processed organic solar cells have recently exceeded 14% through the development of novel high-performance organic materials. Further improvements in performance can be achieved with a better understanding of the factors that limit organic solar cell efficiency. This project aims to identify the structure-property relationships that govern organic solar cell performance and gain detailed insights into the approaches for optimizing the structural, morphological, optical and electronic properties of the organic materials.


  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Mohd Ayub Sadiq

Majority of lung cancer patients were diagnosed in Stage 3 or 4 and overall median survival time was 6.1 months in Brunei Darussalam. Although the survival time was comparable to some developed countries, survival can be improved by early detection. Improving awareness of individuals on risk factors, early signs and symptoms, and practice of regular check up, the survival can be improved. Therefore, we are interested to assess the awareness and practice in the community. The study will involve, designing and validation of research tool, and a survey method to achieve the study objectives.


  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Mohd Ayub Sadiq

Smoking-related diseases have been the primary cause of mortality in Brunei Darussalam. Recent study showed that the prevalence of smoking in Brunei Darussalam was still high (15.2% among adult populations and 31.8% among male). It is important to understand knowledge, attitude and practice with regard to smoking among Brunei population so that effective intervention can be carried out in the future. The study will involve, designing and validation of research tool, and a survey method to achieve the study objectives.


  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Mohd Ayub Sadiq
  • Application invited for:ONE PHD STUDENT - PHD IN PUBLIC HEALTH

Cancer is a leading cause of deaths in Brunei Darussalam. Using the past available data since the start of cancer registry in 2002, it will be adequate to assess the existing data and develop methods to forecast for the next 3 to 5 years. Various time-series methods will be explored to identify the best-fit model for the forecasting. Developing models, evaluating models to identify the best-fit model, and using the model to forecast will be the key steps.


  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Application invited for:

D-allulose is a pure form of rare sugar manufactured synthetically without animal or alcohol derivatives. The aim of this 24-week double-blinded, prospective, randomized controlled trial is to investigate the effect of consumption of D-allulose on overweight and obese individuals, and to compare with erythritol (non-calorie sweetener). The objectives of the trial are to evaluate and compare the effect of D-allulose and erythritol by measuring: (i) body weight and BMI change; (ii) body fat composition (iii) full blood count, HbA1c, TNF-alpha, urine, lipid, renal and liver function profiles at 12 and 24 weeks; and (iv) evaluate overall satisfaction on the D-allulose consumption and assess participants’ diet and physical activity using a novel mobile application. Healthy adults with BMI 25 and above will be recruited from the community and clinical setting. We aim to recruit a total of 80 participants of which 40 will be randomly assigned to test product (D-allulose) and 40 to control (erythritol, a non-calorie sweetener). This randomised product (test or control) is to be diluted in liquid and consumed three times a day, 30 minutes before meal or immediately after meals. Daily consumption of this randomized products will be recorded by participants via a mobile application which is also used to record meals consumed as per protocol. Baseline measurements of participants will include the following: body temperature, blood pressure, heart rate, weight and height, waist and hip circumference and percentage body fat. Baseline blood tests will include the following: full blood count, plasma insulin and glucose, HbA1c, GIP, GLP-1, TNF-alpha, fasting lipid, renal and liver function profiles and urine for microscopic examination.

OPCAR Project: Improving Oral Palliative Care for Terminally-ill Patients in Brunei Darussalam

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Jagjit Singh Dhaliwal
  • Application invited for:

Globally and locally, there is an increased epidemic of people with life-limiting diseases that includes cancer, metabolic diseases (Diabetes mellitus), renal failure and cardio-vascular diseases. Quality of life for people with life-limiting diseases is often threatened due to poor access and use of available health care resources. Older people live with more multi-morbid life limiting illness and tend to use lesser oral care services. In 2015, only 12% older Brunei people above 55 years (n=17456) used oral care services. Around 1357 (0.4% of total Brunei population) Bruneians die every year. However, currently neither ‘geriatric oral care services’ nor ‘oral palliative care services’ are available in Brunei Darussalam. This is also similar to global context where there is a lack of understanding on need for specialized oral care. Poor oral hygiene in frail elderly at the end of life facilitates the colonization of pathogens on the surfaces of teeth, tongue and dentures (Chalmers, 2005). This further increases the risk of respiratory infections which can be life threatening (Azarpazhooh, 2006). Saliva production is reduced and the cleansing effect of saliva on the tongue and mucous membrane is lost. Radiotherapy or chemotherapy can also cause xerostomia (Pinna et al 2015). Dry mouth is the most common oral health problem among seriously-ill patients and affects more than 90% of hospice cancer patients (Fischer, 2014). Specific oral problems like root caries, burning mouth, difficulty speaking, swallowing, altered taste sensation, aphthous ulcers and denture related problems are common. Majority of the patients at the end of life are more prone to oral candidiasis (thrush). Untreated acute dental pain often led to delirium among terminally ill patients (Chalmers 2000). Various barriers yet challenge quality oral care services for people with life-limiting illnesses. Patient and family centered issues related to why lack of utilization is yet unknown. Indeed, 40% of terminally-ill patients tend to lose the ability to communicate with their care-givers about their oral health issues (Chen et al 2013). As a result may suffer treatable pain or infection in the mouth that often get unnoticed and non-referred. On the other hand, main clinical barriers include lack of clinical assessment tools for health care practitioners to assess and refer patient with oral care problems to dental health practitioners. Similarly, there is no stronger evidence available on standards of oral care treatment guidelines for terminally ill population. In this context, our study aims to 1) To develop baseline knowledge base on current oral care practices for people with life-limiting illness by health care practitioners 2) To develop a new clinical tool “Oral Palliative Care Assessment and Referral (OPCAR) instrument” for assessing and referring palliative patients to oral care services 3) To validate the new clinical tool “Oral Palliative Care Assessment and Referral (OPCAR) instrument” for assessing and referring palliative patients to oral care services 4) To conduct a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to test the effectiveness of newly developed clinical tool in improving quality of life among people with life limiting illness

Perinatal loss and Misscarriages Experiences

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr. Khadizah Haji Abdul Mumin
  • Application invited for:1 MA from FASS, 1 MHSc Midwifery (already taken)

Women and their partners celebrate pregnancy with joy. However, not all outcomes of pregnancies are successful. Some couples experienced pregnancies’ losses such as through miscarriages, the born of deceased and even stillbirth babies that resulted to the experiences of grief. The period of mourning and grief following the loss or death or even poor prognosis of the infants is usually termed as bereavement. These experiences posed challenges to nurses’/midwives’ and other healthcare practitioners' (e.g. Doctors, religious advisors, psychologists, and etcs) in exercising ther roles in caring for the bereaved couples. In addition, husbands of the women are too faced with great challenges during this vulnerable period. Islam being the national religion and Malay being the dominant citizen in Brunei requires that the provision of healthcare, specifically nursing/midwifery care to be tailored to these needs. These include taking into account the Multicultural societies of Brunei in application of the Melayu Islam Beraja. Hence, this project highlight the significance of delivering cultural specific nursing/midwifery care in Brunei that uphold the ‘Melayu Islam Beraja’ as the country’s philosophy, and is in line with the aspiration of His Majesty the Sultan on becoming a country as ‘a zikir nation’. Therefore, the data from this project will have significant implications for developing educational and health intervention programs targeted at helping couples and their family experiencing pregnancy loss. This project is jointly led by Dr. Siti Mazidah from Faculty of Art and Social Sciences and Dr. Khadizah from PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences, Universiti Brunei Darussalam with other research experts fromARSB IHS, Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Centre for Islamic Studies (SOASCIS) and the Ministry of Health.

The practice of postnatal warming ("berdiang") amongst women in Brunei.

One of the current cultural practice of warming women’s body in the postnatal period in Brunei is called “Berdiang”. Charcoals are heated on fire and put into a big can and women are to lie beside the can. However, the use of charcoal burnt with fuel in fire can be viewed to be hazardous if practice in poorly ventilated confined spaces. It can lead to carbon monoxide production and consequently poisoning. This study aims to determine women’s awareness of the practice of “Berdiang”; whether they have been previously involved in this practice, and; if there are any intention to carry out this practice following their current delivery. This research is led by Dr. Khadizah abd Dk. Dr. Nurolaini from PAPRSB IHS, with other research experts in the same faculty, and the Ministry of Health.

Spiritual Aspect of Childbirth

Childbirth is long known as a normal process in a woman's life event. However, it is a significant experience; not only to the women, but also the men as their husband. In some countries and culture, the event is also fundamental to the couples' families. Hence, women's health throughout the childbirth period is an important aspect of their life. Historically, as defined by the World Health Organisation (WHO), health is not merely the absence of diseases and infirmity, but comprises of a holistic aspects: physical/biological; psychological/mental; social; and spiritual. All these aspects are inter-connected and inter-related to each other contributing to the complete health of women, their husbands and other carers throughout the childbirth event. Although there are substantial amount of research conducted into various areas of childbirth. The research mainly focuses on the physical/biological being of the women. The study specific to the spiritual being of women during childbirth is still consider as a grey area, and Brunei is not exceptional. Taking the spiritual aspects for granted or ignoring them will incomplete the wellbeing of women throughout childbirth. This research has three stages. The first stage is aimed at a one year research project focusing on the antenatal period. Throughout the antenatal period, a woman may be hospitalized due to medical reasons and complications of childbirth. These are such as having medically diagnosed for having high blood pressure; diabetes; and anaemia. Common complications throughout childbirth may include hyperemesis gravidarum; constipations; and backpain/joint pain. Due to these diagnoses or complications, women are usually interpreted as sick. Spiritual wellbeing of the women, in particular, their religious needs are often taken for granted. It is noteworthy that the dominant religion of the population of Brunei is Islam that comprises of about 80% of the total population. Islam is not only a religion in Brunei, but also that guided the daily living of Muslim in Brunei. Praying (Shalah) five times in a day is the first pillar of Islam. It can be considered as an aspect of basic religious need for any hospitalized individual, including the pregnant woman. Muslim also recite du'a and zikir; and read al-qur'an to strengthen spiritual wellbeing. This propose study aim at exploring nurses'/midwives' roles in providing spiritual care (in particular the religious aspect) to women during hospitalization at the antenatal period. These religious needs are such as assisting women to perform prayer (shalah); encouraging du'a and dzikir; reading al-qur'an and other religious needs. The study objectives are to: 1) describe the religious needs of women during hospitalization in the antenatal period. 2) explain the facilitators and barriers for nurses/midwives in assisting women for meeting their religious needs during hospitalization in the antenatal period 3) suggest recommendations for assisting women in meeting their religious needs during hospitalization in the antenatal period. The second, third and fourth stages of this project will focus on labour and the postnatal period; and the care of the newborn. This large project is targeted at enhancing the Ibadah-friendly hospital Initiatives which are already in existence in Brunei Public Hospitals. This project will be co-led by Dr. Khadizah from PAPRSB Institute of Health Sciences (PAPRSBIHS) and Dr. Azmi from Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien Centre for Islamic Studies (SOASCIS) with involvement of other research experts from PAPRSB IHS, Institute of Policy Studies; and the Ministry of Health.

The nature and extend of palliative care and terminal suffering among hospitalised patients in Brunei Darussalam

With an increasing terminally ill population across the world, there is greater awareness and interest among international health policy makers in improving quality of life for terminally ill patients. In Brunei Darussalam hospital services are utilized more commonly particularly during the last days of life. The Wawasan 2015 for Brunei Darussalam has highlighted the delivery of high quality care in the acute hospital setting as an area of priority. Yet one of the most common complaints is that hospitals are related to care during last hours of life. Previous research also found that older people often experience perceived poor care and mistrust on the quality end of life care at hospitals. On the other side (of the world), palliative and end of life care in Brunei Darussalam yet remains in its developmental stages. Around 98% of Brunei Darussalam palliative population does not have access to palliative care5 and little is known about extent of palliative care needs among hospitalized patients from this population. The aim of this study is to explore the extent and meaning of terminal suffering among hospitalised Brunei Darussalam patients. . * Application invited for ONE PHD STUDENT -PhD in Nursing


Brunei Darussalam has one of the highest prevalence and incidence of End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) in the world. Ministry of Health, Brunei Darussalam has shown the steady increase in number of patients undergoing renal replacement therapy. In 2014, 94.5% of total ESRD patients underwent dialysis and only 5.5% underwent transplant done elsewhere. The Department of Renal Services, Ministry of Health encourages ESRD patients to opt for kidney transplantation as their primary treatment choice rather than undergoing dialysis treatment three times a week as financial burden related to dialysis treatment and the renal translation proved as effective as in increasing survival and improving quality of life. Recently, Sultanate of Brunei successfully completed transplant surgeries at local level. However, similar to any other country, there is shortage of kidney donors at local level. Studies in western world explored cultural beliefs, mistrust, fear, lack of information, being old, and pre-existing medical conditions as barriers to living kidney donation among relatives of patients with chronic renal failure undergoing hemodialysis. Yet little is explored around barriers and facilitators of organ donation, in particular kidney donation among the perspectives of living eligible donors in Brunei Darussalam. This study aims to explore the perspectives of living donor kidney transplantation among family members of patients with ESRD in Brunei Darussalam.Application invited for ONE PHD STUDENT -PhD in Nursing

Improving the Utilization of Evidence based Practice among nurses in Brunei Darussalam (IUEP study): a mixed method randomized controlled trial

EBP has widely been accepted as an appropriate framework for health care professionals including healthcare professionals to embrace and use as a basis for their practice. Several studies identified that EBP can lead to a higher quality of care, improved patient outcomes, a culture of safety, and decreased cost of health care. Besides the benefits of using EBP in health care, there were inconsistencies in its utilization and implementation in the clinical working environment. The Ministry of Health in Brunei Darussalam wanted to achieve service excellence through strategy Vision 2035 by utilizing evidence based approaches, interventions and practices in the health care system. Vision 2035 also indicate the Ministry’s expectation towards healthcare professionals in ensuring high quality healthcare settings care they provide to patients are based on current research findings. To achieve Vision 2035, there is a need to build an organizational cultures that support EBP, implement strategies to enhance healthcare professionals’ EBP knowledge and skills, and provide environments where EBP can thrive and be sustained is necessary. However, this appeared to be a challenging agenda and goal the level of healthcare professionals’ understanding or skills to apply EBP in their daily practice in Brunei is currently unclear. Healthcare professionals’ ability to integrate and utilize research evidence into the practice in order to deliver optimal patient care in Brunei Darussalam has not been investigated. This study will be undertaken to understand the level of healthcare professionals’ utilisation of EBP in their daily care. The outcomes from this study will be highly significant in promoting EBP in Brunei Darussalam’s health care system by informing educators in that areas that needs improvement in healthcare settings education and policy makers in planning healthcare professionals’ professional development opportunities.Application invited for ONE PHD STUDENT -PhD in Nursing

Investigation of BK channel as a potential prognostic biomarker and therapeutic target for breast cancer

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Lie Chen
  • Application invited for:PhD/Master

In Brunei Darussalam, breast cancer has remained consistently as the leading cause of death and a worrying trend of younger age of onset has emerged in recent years. High mortality in poor prognostic breast cancer, such as the triple negative, patients has been attributed to the lack of suitable biomarkers for therapeutic targeting. The functionally diverse and ubiquitously expressed calcium- and voltage-activated potassium BK channel has recently been shown to promote cancer cell proliferation, invasion and migration during the carcinogenic process. Preliminary evidence in aggressive glioma and cancer cell lines has demonstrated the promising potential of the channel, especially the gBK glioma splicing variant, serving as both a malignancy marker and an immuno-target. We, therefore, aim to establish for the first time the role of the high-grade-tumour-specific BK complex in the carcinogenesis of breast cancer. The expression spectrum of the complex (channel’s pore forming splicing variants and associated accessory subunits) in general cancer progression and breast tumours of different clinical stages and their cell proliferative and migratory effects will be studied. Establishment of this high-grade-tumour-specific BK complex as a prognosis marker will form the basis of preliminary pharmacological targeting of BK channel specific to breast cancer carcinogenesis.

Investigating the burden and risk factors of active & latent tuberculosis in Brunei

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr. Li Ling Chaw
  • Application invited for:Masters by research, Master of Public Health by coursework (MPH)

A project is currently planned on determining the investigating the burden and risk factors of active TB, as well as the risk of progression from latent to active TB, using national-based surveillance data from MoH Brunei. Students interested to undertake this topic will be exposed to epidemiological concepts and biostatistical analysis.

Effect of climate on infectious diseases detection in Brunei

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr. Li Ling Chaw
  • Application invited for:Masters by research, Master of Public Health by coursework (MPH)

The seasonality of infectious diseases has been a long known but less understood phenomenon. Equally perplexing is the differences in trends seen between temperate and tropical areas. Contributing factors that could be climate conditions and social/cultural differences in human behavior. Students who are interested in this topic have the opportunity to handle and analyze datasets relating to population health, meteorological and social science.

Determining geographical hot spots for active tuberculosis cases in Brunei

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr. Li Ling Chaw
  • Application invited for:Masters by research

A project is currently planned on investigating the presence of spatial clustering or hot spots for Brunei, using national-based surveillance data from MoH Brunei. Students interested to undertake this topic have the opportunity to analyze the dataset using softwares such as R, ArcGIS and/or QGIS.

Bruneian Local Rice Study

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Siti Rohaiza Ahmad
  • Application invited for:Master in Biomedical Science by Research

Impact on health - Glycemic Index of local Bruneians rice.

Genetic variation profiling of 100 important pharmacogenes in the Bruneian population

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Zen Huat Lu
  • Application invited for:PhD/Master by research

Pharmacogenomics or the associations between genetic traits of individuals and their responses to drugs is believed to hold the key to the solution of low (30 to 60%) pharmaceutical efficacy observed in many of today’s drug treatments. In ASEAN, information pertaining to the prevalence of pharmacogenomic biomarkers is incomplete. Individual case safety reports (adverse effects or drug-related problems) per million population per year range from ~3600 in Singapore to just 9 in Brunei. Therefore, an ASEAN-wide pharmacogenomics consortium has recently been tasked to fill in the gap. As a collaborative project between ASEAN countries and RIKEN (Japan), the initial study will involve the next-generation sequencing of 100 important pharmacogenes in 1000 individuals across the 10 ASEAN nations. In Brunei, DNA from 100 anonymous healthy individuals will be extracted and the 100 pharmcogenes library constructed for sequencing at RIKEN. Genetic variations identified here and those from other ASEAN individuals will aid in the estimation of allelic frequencies of genotypic biomarkers of drug metabolisers. Such information should ultimately provide the important scientific support on the wider implementation of pharmacogenomic screening in Brunei and ASEAN using a customised pharmacogene panel.

A Genotype Catalogue of (Potential Human Genetic Disorders in) the Southeast Asian Populations

  • Pengiran Anak Puteri Rashidah Sa'adatul Bolkiah Institute of Health Sciences
  • Contact:Dr Zen Huat Lu
  • Application invited for:Final Year Undergraduate or Internship

Millions of human genomics variants from different studies have been made publicly available over the last three decades. While many genetic disorders have been identified consequently, much remains undeciphered and yet understanding of these variants is paramount to the realisation of personalised precision medicine. Regrettably, systematic variant data for the majority Austronesian population groups in Southeast Asia have been at best patchy if not upright shortcoming. Our current effort attempts to catalogue all the known genotypes, including their allele frequencies, in this region and link them to reported genetic disorders.

Perceptions of EMI among ESL higher education students in Brunei

The study seeks to add to the growing body of knowledge regarding EMI in higher education, and focus on student perspectives, which until now have been under-explored. The study can contribute to the growing literature on EMI, an emerging area of research in EAP (English for Academic Purposes) and ELF (English as a Lingua Franca) disciplines.

Teachers' and Learners' perceptions of classroom language learning tasks

The overarching purpose of this research is to aid in understanding the causes of failure and success in language teaching classrooms. While most research in this area focuses on teacher action, teacher beliefs, methods, syllabus, materials development etc., the aim of this research is to investigate how school-aged learners see the language classroom and, by reference to similar data gathered from teachers, investigate the extent to which there may be a difference in perceptions of purpose, value/usefulness and expectations. The research is situated within phenomenology, specifically linked to Personal Construct Theory, and utilizes repertory grids as a means of gathering data and stimulating learner and teacher expression of how they see the classroom. This initial study, intended as a pilot for larger, broader research plans, focuses on secondary school learners in Brunei and their teachers.

The impact of 30 years of EMI (English as a Medium of Instruction) education in Brunei

The objective of this study is to investigate the impact of EMI (English as a Medium of Instruction) education through the bilingual education system in the country in HE (higher education).

Teachers' and learners' perceptions of classroom language learning tasks.

The overarching purpose of this research is to aid in understanding the causes of failure and success in language teaching classrooms. While most research in this area focuses on teacher action, teacher beliefs, methods, syllabus, materials development etc., The aim of this research is to investigate how school-aged learners see the language classroom and, by reference to similar data gathered from teachers, investigate the extent to which there may be a difference in perceptions of purpose, value/usefulness and expectations. The research is situated within phenomenology, specifically linked to Personal Construct Theory, and utilizes repertory grids as a means of gathering data and stimulating learner and teacher expression of how they see the classroom. This initial study, intended as a pilot for larger, broader research plans, focuses on secondary school learners in Brunei and their teachers.

The pronunciation of the indigenous languages of Brunei Darussalam

The aim of this project is to collect a recording of the Angin Utara ('North Wind and the Sun') text read in each of these indigenous languages and then complete a phonological analysis of the passage. The seven indigenous languages that are officially recognised in Brunei Darussalam are Malay, Kedayan, Dusun, Bisaya, Tutong, Belait, and Murut. This project enables us to provide a description of the pronunciation of these languages which can help in the preservation of some of these languages.

Development of Innovative Lubro-Cooling Methods for Sustainable Machining of Difficult-To-Cut Materials

Machining is considered as the most important and widely utilized domain of manufacturing industry. Since its inception, the main objectives of researchers have been to enhance productivity and quality and reduce cost of process. Recently, with growing awareness of environmental degradation and scarcity of natural resources, the requirements of reduction in energy consumption, pollution and industrial wastes are also being earnestly included in the list of objectives. The aim of the project is to make machining process sustainable by means of simultaneously minimizing energy consumption, pollution, process waste and cost and maximizing productivity and product quality in cutting of high-strength materials by finding innovative ways the process heat is dissipated and lubrication is provided. The project is structured in the following units: (1) investigating the effects of cryogenic cooling, micro-lubrication and their hybridization on the aforementioned sustainability measures; and (2) investigating the effects of adopting varying proportions of used and fresh emulsion coolant mixture on the sustainability measures. The research methodology is mostly an experimental plan with statistical analyses and optimization. The work materials are high-strength engineering and engineered materials such as titanium alloy, composites of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic and laminated arrangement of the first two.

Comparative Analyses of Throttling-Sublimation and Quenching-Evaporation-Convection Based Mechanisms of Cryogenic Cooling with Varying Lengths of Injection in Machining of Titanium and Inconel Alloys

Rapid heat dissipation is critical for machining of high-strength alloys. Cryogenic coolants can be divided into two categories: (1) Regenerative and (2) Evaporative coolants. CO2 based regenerative cooling makes use of Joule-Thomson effect to absorb heat from surroundings when the compressed gas throttles from an orifice. The cooling effect turns the gas into snow, which adheres to the surface of the tooling system. The snow further absorbs heat from the tool body and sublimates to the gaseous phase. An evaporative cryo-coolant is in a liquid phase once it gets in contact with the tool’s surface, where quenching based cooling kicks-off. This process increases the kinetic energy of the coolant, which causes the temperature to rise up to its boiling point. The boiling based evaporative heat absorption increases the potential energy, which converts LN2 into gas. The resulting gas still possesses enough capacity to dissipate heat from the cutting region by convection. It is important to quantify the heat absorption capacity of each of the FIVE modes and investigate the effects of fluid injection duration so as to redesign the coolant delivery systems for maximum cooling effectiveness. The improvements will be refelected in terms of longer tool lives, higher productivity, better surface integrity, lower cost and lesser energy consumption in continuous and intermittent machining.

Transforming the lives of immigrants in the UK: The case of ESOL programme

Politicians and media in the United Kingdom have increasingly highlighted the link between the immigrants’ ability to speak English language and immigrants’ integration into society and wellbeing. Adult education programs such as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) which provides English language learning service classes to immigrants play a crucial role in helping them to integrate into the British society and improving their wellbeing. Utilising a transformative service research (TSR) agenda, this study examines how service design and the role and activities of actors within ESOL programme impact the wellbeing of ESOL learners. This qualitative study consists of 28 semi-structured interviews with ESOL students comprised of immigrants from different parts of the world to the UK and 5 ESOL tutors. The findings reveal the significance of the element of service design beyond the ESOL programme as well as the role and activities of actors’ (i.e. service users, service provider and other actors) in the user sphere of the value co-creation process in contributing to the ESOL learners’ wellbeing. The findings further demonstrate the dynamism and idiosyncratic nature of the elements of wellbeing that arise at multiple points of interactions between ESOL learners and other actors throughout the transformative service experience. Congruency of goals between actors and supportive linkages between actors in the service system are found to be the enablers of ESOL learners’ transformative service experience and vice versa. Theoretically, the study identifies the need to widen the lens of study beyond the service logic approach commonly used in the literature when studying transformative service. This entails putting emphasis on activities and interactions in both the joint sphere and user sphere of the value co-creation process, as promoted by customer dominant logic as well as emphasis on other actors in the network who may co-create with others stakeholders, as promoted by the service ecosystem perspective.

Deep Learning Training with Limited Data

Deep learning needs lots of data for training; however, in some industrial applications, the significant amount of data may not be available, limiting the deep learning approach. Modern techniques like transfer learning and generative adversarial networks show some hope to solve this challenge. The objective of the project is to propose new techniques for deep learning training.

Deep Learning Security

Deep-learning networks are susceptible to butterfly effect wherein small alterations in the input data can point to drastically distinctive outcomes, making the deep learning network inherently volatile. Thus, the output of deep learning network may be controlled by altering its input or by adding noise. Research has shown that it is possible to fool the deep learning network by adding an imperceptible amount of noise in the input.

Generative Adversarial Networks - Reverse Image Captioning - text to image and Scaling GAN Training with Batch Size

Generative Adversarial Networks may have potential to solve the text-to-image problem, but there are challenges in using GANs for NLP. Image classification have got benefitted with large mini-batches and one of the open question the question https://distill.pub/2019/gan-open-problems/#batchsize is if they can also help to scale GANs

A Celebratory Volume on Professor Donald Brown's Historical-Anthropological Study of Brunei Society and Culture. A co-edited book proposal with Stephen C. Druce as part of the collaborative project between the Institute of Asian Studies and the Academy of Brunei Studies has recently been accepted for publication by Routledge, London.

It has been 50 years since Professor Donald Brown undertook his pioneering research on Brunei history, society and culture. To mark the occasion scholars from within and outside Brunei approaching 20 scholars have gathered together to examine critically and also celebrate various aspects of Professor Brown's work. This project establishes Brunei firmly in its well-deserved position on the anthropological-historical map of Southeast Asia. It also confirms the role that Professor Brown's seminal and pioneering studies of Brunei has played in stimulating further research., and his internationally recognized work in our more general understanding of human nature, culture, behavior and history.

Tourism Development in Chiang Mai, Thailand: Mobilities and Encounters

Chiang Mai is the major tourist hub in northern Thailand, and has a long-established tourism industry. The project takes stock of these developments, evaluates the existing literature and proposes some directions for future research. This is especially significant as the Thai authorities for heritage and culture have recently placed Chiang Mai and its historical importance as the capital of the Kingdom of Lanna on its Tentative List for submission for UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Part of the purpose of the project is also to evaluate the contribution of Professor Erik Cohen to the sociological-anthropological study of tourism in Thailand more generally. Two papers have already been published on his work and a third is in preparation.

(with Dr Jeremy Jammes) Changing Research Styles, Methodologies and Perspectives on Southeast Asia; and Insider-Outsider: Changing Research Styles in Southeast Asian Studies.

The research questions posed comprise: Are there still some research areas to explore in Southeast Asian studies? Are there Southeast Asian societies and cultures still considered as ‘exotic’’, not-yet-explored and ready for new scholarly investigation? Can we come up with new methodologies, research materials and concepts to understand the rapid transformations of Southeast Asian peoples and cultures? Out of these changes, what is new and exciting empirically and conceptually, and what has transformed our current understandings of the human condition in Southeast Asia? How have our changing approaches and the changing societies and cultures which we study influenced what we have discovered and how we have analyzed those findings in changing socio-cultural, economic and political contexts? To address this range of questions, the Institute of Asian Studies (IAS) and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) organized an international conference on 30 – 31 July 2018 at Universiti Brunei Darussalam. The conference gave the opportunity to fifteen researchers in a range of disciplines embracing the social sciences and humanities (history, philology, geography/development, language and literature, sociology and anthropology) to reflect on their personal relationships to the research terrain, their fieldwork or their engagement with archives and library materials. The conference also brought together scholars who are representative of a range of ethnicities, generations, and scientific traditions (American, British, French, Australian, Southeast Asian). An important theme for conference participants was to encourage them to reflect on and rethink their experiences of these changes both in their continuing personal and institutional research trajectories and in the ongoing need to address the ever-changing subjects of their studies. If a personal account might illuminate the motives and interests that could have inspired and edified research, it can also challenge our perceptions of the project of accessing and gathering research materials, the subject/object researched, and the societies themselves. An important focus which has not been sufficiently examined in the more recent formal methodological and ‘scientistic’ arenas which have given rise to several edited books on the region comprised the more informal and unexpected experiences of research, not simply those of personal encounters, of moral, intellectual and emotional investment with research subjects and their contextualization, but also ‘the importance of being wrong’, of ‘methodological blunders and mishaps’, ‘empirical errors’, ‘theoretical dead-ends’, historical misinterpretations’, ‘silencing as method’, ‘the anthropology of remembering’, ‘translation and self-reflexivity’, ‘shifting tracks and improvised itineraries’, ‘generational and digital challenges’, ‘the ethnography of secrets’, ‘trans-border and local narratives in a regional context’ and ‘language change and moving identities’. The proposal for an edited book has been agreed; and the project is ongoing.

SME Innovation Systems in a Small-Sized Developed Country: A Study of Brunei Darussalam

Previous research on innovation systems largely focused on considerably large developed countries with population exceeding one million, thereby leaving us with hardly any understanding of the systems of innovation of SMEs in small-sized developed countries. Consequently, this project seeks to investigate how SMEs in a small-sized developed country exploit both country specific domestic resources as well as external, international knowledge to build their innovation capacity. And how SMEs in a small-sized developed country exploit both domestic markets and international markets in commercializing their innovations. The study will be conducted in Brunei Darussalam, a developed country with a population of less than five hundred thousand people.

Determinants of Halal Entrepreneurial Intention among Business Students in Brunei Darussalam

The purpose of this study is to investigate the determinants of halal entrepreneurial intention among business students in Brunei Darussalam. Additionally, it aims to assess the significance of Islamic religiosity in influencing halal entrepreneurial intention. This exploratory study takes on a cross-sectional quantitative research design. Using a survey approach, primary data will be retrieved from business major students from three public universities in Brunei. This study hypothesised that the Islamic religiosity, along with attitudinal, social pressure and institutional support positively influence entrepreneurial intention. The potential findings may be of benefit to the field of entrepreneurship in Brunei, particularly in gaining more interests among the younger generation to take on halal business. Furthermore, this study falls in-line with the government’s efforts to diversify the economy; and the findings can potentially encourage entrepreneurs and businesses to exploit the halal industry through entrepreneurial efforts.

Halal Business Ecosystem in Brunei Darussalam: Themes and Challenges

This study explains Brunei Darussalam’s emerging presence in the global halal industry and attempts to unveil the themes and challenges of operating halal businesses in the country. This study draws upon the concept of business ecosystem and the observations from the authors’ industry-academic experience, thoughts and interpretations. The study highlights the prevalent themes and challenges surrounding the country’s economy, institutional influence, product and service capabilities, infrastructure, human capital and market potential. The study reveals several areas that need to be rectified and the impeding challenges could serve as indications to stakeholders that constructive and critical approaches need to be addressed so that all stakeholders in the country’s halal business ecosystem enjoy the vast benefits of the global halal industry. This study presents fresh insights into a lesser known yet an increasingly significant nation in the global halal industry. Additionally, the authors’ reflection could potentially spark more interest and research in halal business in Brunei Darussalam.

Asymmetry and Leptokurtosis in Financial Data

  • UBD School of Business and Economics
  • Contact:Dr Gamini Premaratne
  • Application invited for:a PhD candidate who is keen to explore this topic for his thesis. Candidate should have a strong b

Many studies found that financial data exhibits non-normal characteristics such as Asymmetry and Leptokurtosis. Though the third-moment or skewness has been studied. there is not yet a good in-depth analysis in fourth moment or leptokurtosis. This study aims to provide an extensive literature on leptokurtosis discuss the importance and use of this measure in relation to financial data and develop suitable tests for testing kurtosis in the presence/absence of skewness.

Use of Pearson family distribution in modeling economics and financial data

  • UBD School of Business and Economics
  • Contact:Dr Gamini Premaratne
  • Application invited for:PhD candidate who is willing to start his PhD in economics or Finance at UBD. Strong background in

Pearson family of distributions has not been used extensively in economics though there are few applications in finance. The objective of this study is to explore the behavior of economics data in relation to this family of distributions.

Developing a new sensitivity measure for market risk

  • UBD School of Business and Economics
  • Contact:Dr Gamini Premaratne
  • Application invited for:Master by research and PhD candidates. Some empirical work of this topic can be done by a student wh

This study aims to search for a new sensitivity measure that can explain the behavior of returns and volatility. Using some preliminary work available in the literature a measure can be developed theoretically and tested empirically.

Operationalizing an Inclusive Islamic Financial Planning Approach: Challenges and Opportunities

Given that poverty is a multi-faceted problem with the understanding that those in poverty are not homogenous, requiring a personalized context to help manage their circumstances, therefore there is a need to consider an inclusive Islamic Financial Planning (IIFP) approach rather than a one-size-fits-all approach towards mitigating poverty. Consideration towards operationalizing IIFP is essential to ascertain if such as approach can be applied in a socio-economic context such as that of Brunei.

Business Models of Digital Marketplace in Asean

  • UBD School of Business and Economics
  • Contact:Dr Hj Mohammad Nabil Almunawar
  • Application invited for:Master, PhD (study on network effect and expansion strategy of cybermediations)

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is undergoing a paradigm shift from Government-to-Government (G2G) to Community-to-Community relationships with the emphasis on integration and collaboration. The relatively recent developments of Information and Communication Technology (ICT), especially Social Networks, Web 2.0, mobile technology and its related technologies have become the main drivers of this paradigm shift. This study assesses each leading ASEAN members to take advantage of the the digital marketplace as a platform for innovative business survavibility and economic diversification strategy to build Business-to-Consumer (B2C) or Consumer-to-Consumer (C2C) integration and collaboration. Digital marketplaces have enabled new types of transactions and are becoming an increasingly important part of the economic development. The research will be benefiting Brunei in understanding and preparing the potential of digital marketplace based on the lesson learnt from neighboring ASEAN countries that have been utilizing the digital business platform. The outcome of the research will be the framework and modelling digital marketplace based on successful implementations without leaving the local wisdom of Brunei’s identity. The research will deploy qualitative method by interviewing experts and players of digital marketplace in ASEAN countries. Case studies will be conducted on a particular e-commerce segment such as social commerce in Brunei.

The effect of Critical Pedagogy in the praxis of teaching Critical Thinking Skills amongst teacher-candidates: a case study

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr Aliamat Omar Ali
  • Application invited for:

The needs to empower teacher candidates and students with critical thinking skills in Brunei Darussalam have become one of the most important agenda in the education sector. Inevitably, teacher educators play a critical role in shaping teacher-candidates' praxis in promoting the application of critical thinking skills in classroom. It is believed that the approach to critical questioning adapted by the teacher educators during classroom interactions through guided participation will be appropriated by teacher-candidates in their own teaching. Thus, the main objective of the research is to observe whether the implementation of critical pedagogy by teacher educators will influence teacher-candidates questioning styles and approach in their classroom specifically in the Bruneian contexts. In order to achieve this, on top of proper plannings, classroom recordings and classroom discourse analyses need to be conducted which involve both settings that is at SHBIE and in schools. On one hand, while this study is looking for concrete evidence of transfers, if any, of praxis of critical thinking skills between both settings, on the other hand findings from this study can be utilised to further enhance the pedagogy of thinking skills in teacher education especially in the local contexts. It is expected that the findings from this research is to be shared in at least at one international conference and to be published in reputable journals.

Assessing Digital Literacy skills of Digital Native Generation in higher education

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr. Juraidah Hj Musa
  • Application invited for:Master Degree

With heavily rely on digital technologies, teaching and learning processes in higher education requires students to have digital literacy skills. According to Eshet (2012), digital literacy skill is a survival skill which students need in order to function effectively in digital learning environments. With Eshet’s model of digital literacy skill as a framework, this project aims to assess the digital literaciness of students in higher education. Based on Prensky’s assumption, these students are categorised as the digital native generation, in which this generation lives their lives immersed in digital technologies and that they learn differently from previous generations.

Amalan Terbaik Guru dalam Menyerapkan Nilai Murni Kemahiran Berbahasa

Research Team: Dr Hj Rozaiman Makmun, SHBIE, UBD Dr Hj Abu Bakar Madin, SHBIE, UBD Dr Hjh Suraya Hj Tarasat, SHBIE, UBD Dr Roslina Abu Bakar, UPM, Malaysia Noradinah Hj Jaidi, SHBIE, UBD Sri Kartika Hj Abdul Rahman, SHBIE, UBD

What and how do teachers learn by taking part in Lesson Study and Learning Study? A qualitative meta-analysis 2018-19

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr Keith Wood
  • Application invited for:

This study aims to investigate what and how teachers learn in utilizing a Lesson Study (LS) and a Learning Study (LeaS) model of teaching and what underpinning factors support or prevent such learning. In all its adaptations, Lesson Study emphasises the use of evidence to guide teachers’ collaborative reflection on what works in the classroom. It is timely to attempt a qualitative meta-analysis of a sample of reports of these studies to identify what they tell us about their effect on teacher learning - about what works from the perspectives of the teachers involved, and why the design and facilitation of the LS works from the perspectives of the facilitators and researchers involved. The reports published in a sample of journals – IJLLS, TATE, SJER, EARJ, ER and ZDM - over the last five years will be subjected to a systematic review to seek answers to two questions. Firstly, what do teachers learn by taking part in Lesson Study (LS)? The first focus of the review is on LS as critical reflection on practice, as teacher learning voiced by teachers. Secondly, what is the theory of learning that underpins the design, facilitation and evaluation of the LS? The second focus of the review is on the design for teacher learning voiced by facilitators of LS. Collaborator: Professor Airi Rovio-Johansson, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Physical Education and Well-being: Global and Holistic Approaches to Child Health (research book)

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr. Timothy Lynch
  • Application invited for:Palgrave Macmillan/ Springer International

This research book is a sequel to "The Future of Health, Wellbeing and Physical Education: Optimising children's health through local and global partnerships" http://www.palgrave.com/de/book/9783319316666 How are children’s wellbeing and health enhanced through the physical dimension in practice?

Primary Education Health & Physical Education (HPE) implementation and teacher preparation (Australia)

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr. Timothy Lynch
  • Application invited for:Government reports and A* journals

Surveys from 625 principal participants representing all education systems, various school sizes and regions within Australia. Data gathered has involved writing over 85 government reports/ publications https://legacy.aitsl.edu.au/school-leadership-ecollection/search-the-school-leadership-ecollection/detail?id=how-are-primary-education-health-and-physical-education-teachers%27-best-prepared • Researched a UK physical education university course – ‘Ofsted’ awarded ‘outstanding’ • Interviewed secondary PE teachers teaching in primary schools • Investigating HPE in remote Indigenous schools • Implementing Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for health and wellbeing

Primary Education Health & Physical Education (HPE) implementation and teacher preparation (Brunei Darussalam)

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr. Timothy Lynch
  • Application invited for:Government reports and A* journals

Collect surveys from principal participants representing government education system, various school sizes and regions within Brunei.

Project Title: Integrated Innovative Curriculum & Assessment (IICA) Project sub-section: Content-Language Integrated Learning

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr Norashikin Yusof
  • Application invited for:

This research project consists of five designed-based studies to inform the applicability of the proposed Innovative Inter-disciplinary Curriculum and Assessment Model (IICA) in (a) disseminating interest and motivation in students’ learning of science and mathematics, (b) instilling spiritual and social awareness embedded in the scientific and mathematical concepts, (c) promoting students’ understanding of science and mathematic concepts, and (d) improving students achievement in science and mathematics curriculum. The activities planned are: (1) Designing curriculum using a modified technological, pedagogical and content knowledge framework with personalized multi-model assessments or the Personalized Pedagogy, Assessment and Technology (PPAT) matrix; (2) Implementing and evaluating the CUP strategy for the teaching and learning (pedagogy) of the content in selected schools; (3) Investigating students’ understanding of the content through the social-semiotics and language integration; (4) Investigating the outcomes of multi-model formative assessments of students’ learning of science and mathematics concepts, and (5) Examining the effect of teacher-student interactions on students’ mathematising development. The outcome of the research project will be i) the Model for Innovative Inter-disciplinary Curriculum and Assessment for curriculum and assessment design, which can be replicated and disseminated to teachers as part of their continuous professional development. ii) innovative teaching and learning resources developed through the implementation of the IICA model. iii) books and journal articles publications on IICA model in international reputable publication houses.


  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr Sallimah M. Salleh
  • Application invited for:Masters of Education (by Research) PhD in Education

This research project consists of five designed-based studies to inform the applicability of the proposed Innovative Inter-disciplinary Curriculum and Assessment Model (IICA) in (a) disseminating interest and motivation in students’ learning of science and mathematics, (b) instilling spiritual and social awareness embedded in the scientific and mathematical concepts, (c) promoting students’ understanding of science and mathematic concepts, and (d) improving students achievement in science and mathematics curriculum. The activities planned are: (1) Designing curriculum using a modified technological, pedagogical and content knowledge framework with personalized multi-model assessments or the Personalized Pedagogy, Assessment and Technology (PPAT) matrix; (2) Implementing and evaluating the CUP strategy for the teaching and learning (pedagogy) of the content in selected schools; (3) Investigating students’ understanding of the content through the social-semiotics and language integration; (4) Investigating the outcomes of multi-model formative assessments of students’ learning of science and mathematics concepts, and (5) Examining the effect of teacher-student interactions on students’ mathematising development. The outcome of the research project will be i) the Model for Innovative Inter-disciplinary Curriculum and Assessment for curriculum and assessment design, which can be replicated and disseminated to teachers as part of their continuous professional development. ii) innovative teaching and learning resources developed through the implementation of the IICA model. iii) books and journal articles publications on IICA model in international reputable publication houses.

Innovating Classroom Teaching and Learning: Design and Implementation

  • Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah Institute of Education
  • Contact:Dr Sallimah M. Salleh
  • Application invited for:Masters of Education (by research) PhD in Education

This research project aims to improve students’ achievement in Science, Mathematics and Language education. This research proposes an intervention strategy that will inform stake-holders on how an innovative classroom teaching could promote conceptual understanding, and motivate students to participate in Science, Mathematics and English education. The aim of this study is to design an innovative inter-disciplinary curriculum, develop resources using applications for a technology enhanced teaching and learning, implement the curriculum in classroom using the proto-type resource, and assess the impact of the innovative inter-disciplinary curriculum and resource application in primary and secondary school students’ achievement and attainment of conceptual understanding. It is hypothesized that the innovative inter-disciplinary curriculum will be a useful model for classroom teachers to replicate, and the application for resource development can be used to develop teaching and learning materials. Such model and applications will empower teachers to collaborate in designing their own inter-disciplinary curriculum and resources. The outcome of the research will have a significant contribution towards teaching and learning in primary and secondary Science, Mathematics and English language education, which will be indicated by the improved students’ achievement and the attainment of the concepts, and observed interest to pursue Science, Mathematics and English at higher education.