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APEC-Australia Women in Research
Fellowship 2022
Dr. Syuhaida binti Ismail
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Economy: Malaysia


Host Institution: The University of Melbourne


Project Title: Index of project communications management for the construction industry during the Covid-19 pandemic and endemic


Project Outline: The non-compliance at construction sites especially during the uncertain COVID-19 pandemic and endemic arose with many penalties issued for carrying out construction works without following the various national guidelines and restrictions during these critical stages. Amongst the reasons leading to this non-compliance is the miscommunication at the construction site since 90% of construction activities involved communication. Also, based on communications management theory, workers, especially of foreign languages, have dissimilar understandings of the

same knowledge disseminated by the employer (in this case the contractor), largely impacted by their education level. Thus, this research aims at proposing the index of project communications management to be used between the workers and employers during the pandemic and endemic stages, which there are apparently grey areas between the transition of these 2 stages.

Reasons for applying for fellowship:

Lower context:

  1. Further, my academic and professional career by expanding more collaborations in research grants, publications, activities and mobilities across different regions by making diverse comparisons of unique practices in various countries collaborate

  2. Offer opportunities to embark on applying the research grants funded by the Australian institutions through research collaborations between both countries, where the potential MoU signed between institutions of different countries will also expand further collaborations, not only in research, but also in my professional career at large e.g. teaching attachment, invitation as plenary/keynote speaker in international conferences etc.

  3. Increase my H-index and citation, as well as all researchers involved and also the respective institutions since combining various countries' case studies in the international research, this would increase the potential of publication in highly reputable journals.


Higher context:

  1. Encourage the development of new ideas in cutting-edge STEM disciplines based on the title of the proposed research itself, i.e. on the comparison between the COVID-19 pandemic and endemic communications management practices, which is current and not yet undertaken extensively in the area of Project Management and Civil Engineering at large.

  2. Bring benefits to Malaysian economies' research outputs through this research has high potential to be published in high-indexed journals thus increasing the citation and H-index of Malaysian researchers and research institutions.

  3. Open the new horizon of communications management being studied from the context of the Civil Engineering field by representing a cutting-edge engineering discipline since communications management is commonly discussed from the perspective of behavioural management alone

  4. Assimilate the Australian best practices into the Malaysian current practices of project communications management to encourage the development of new ideas from traditionally benchmarking against merely the Southeast Asian countries.


Past Achievements:

  1. Published 315 technical papers, articles and books with 26 H-index

  2. Produced 114 Intellectual Property Rights

  3. Received 29 gold awards, 9 silver awards and 22 other research awards

  4. Secured 98 local research grants and 4 international research grants at AUD 3.7 million

  5. Graduated 10 and 5 PhD students as the main supervisor and co-supervisor, respectively

  6. Trained 4 post-graduate researchers and currently supervising 16 PhD students and 5 Engineering Doctorate students

  7. Invited as the plenary/keynote speaker in local/ international conferences and webinars by engineering institutions globally to share my research findings and experiences

  8. Acknowledged internationally by the International Science, Technology and Innovation Centre for South-South Cooperation under the auspices of UNESCO, the African Science, Technology and Policy Institute and the University of Applied Science and Arts, Northwestern Switzerland through scholarships/ awards given based on research merits

  9. A strong advocate of STEM education, where more than 20,000 school students and the Bottom 40 children have benefitted from several STEM programmes conducted at the national level, funded by ministries/government agencies, professional bodies and private companies

  10. Appointed as the Malaysian STEM Officer by the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) the UK

  11. An activist promoting women engineering graduates and girls to pursue engineering careers and STEM education regardless of gender biases under the role as the Women Engineers Section committee of the Institution of Engineers Malaysia via various STEM publications/research and talks/workshops conducted.


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