NUSRI-affiliated PhD Programme


NUS Suzhou Research Institute (NUSRI), registered and located in Suzhou, China, is a university-level research institute of the National University of Singapore (NUS). It was launched to extend NUS research excellence beyond Singapore, and to promote research collaboration between Singapore and China. The key research areas of NUSRI include energy and environmental technology, food science and technology, new media and software development, biomedical science and engineering, microelectronic devices and functional nanomaterials. A detailed description of NUSRI research is available at The NUSRI-affiliated PhD programme is initiated with the following objectives:
a. To attract quality PhD students to NUSRI for impactful and applied research;
b. To promote academic-industry collaboration and technology innovation;
c. To build a research talent pool and strengthen NUSRI research in the long term.

Programme Structure

1. The NUSRI-affiliated PhD programme consists of a first year of course work in NUS, a subsequent 2 years of research in NUSRI, and a final year of research work in NUS (the so-called "1+2+1" model). Minor deviations from this model will be allowed subject to the approval of the student's home Department and Faculty and contingent on the student complying with all applicable rules and regulations, including the maximum candidature duration of five years. However, the final year of the candidature must be spent in Singapore.
2. Under normal circumstances, a student will complete two modules per semester and other non-technical modules in the first two semesters at NUS, as well as the comprehensive qualifying examination (CQE), before the start of his/her attachment to NUSRI. He/she will prepare for the oral qualifying exam (OQE) while at NUSRI, and pass the OQE within two years of the start of candidature. The OQE may be taken at NUS or at NUSRI, as long as all conditions required for the OQE are met. Any remaining coursework requirements will be met in the final year, which must be spent at NUS.
3. A student of the NUSRI-affiliated PhD programme shall register with a department in NUS Faculties/Schools and meet all requirements for admission, matriculation, progression and graduation set by the respective department and faculty. Once registered, a student cannot transfer to any other PhD. programme in NUS.
4. NUS shall grant an NUS Research Scholarship to each student of the NUSRI-affiliated PhD programme as shown in Table below. The scholarship covers tuition fees and a monthly stipend determined in accordance with NUS rules covering the NUS Research Scholarship.
5. Upon completion of their course work in NUS, students proceed with their research projects in NUSRI in the next two years. A student shall receive an annual allowance of RMB36,000 (i.e., RMB3,000/month) during the 2-year period of research in NUSRI.
6. In year 4, students shall return to NUS for coursework, research and PhD thesis preparation, and each of them shall receive a monthly stipend of S$2,500. Upon fulfilling all the departmental, faculty and university requirements, students will be conferred the NUS PhD degree.
7. Tuition fees will be covered by the NUS Research Scholarship while students are in NUS.
8. The above "1+2+1" programme structure and scholarship are summarized in the Table below.

Year 1 at NUS Year 2&3 at NUSRI Year 4 at NUS
Activities - Course work
- PhD qualifying exam
- Research project work - Research project work
- PhD qualifying exam
Scholarship - Course work
- A monthly stipend of S$2,000
- Waiver of tuition fees
- A monthyl stipend of at least RMB3,000
- Covers tuition fees
- A monthly stipend of S$2,500

Admission Requirements

1. The minimum entry requirements for the PhD programme are as follows:
    a. At least 4-year Bachelor’s or Bachelor’s (with Second Upper Honour) Degree or equivalent;
    b. GRE: aggregate score between 310 and 320 for Verbal & Quantitative Reasoning and a score of 3.5 for Analytical Writing;
    c. TOEFL: minimum score of 85 for internet-based test, OR
    d. IELTS: minimum score of 6
* (GRE, TOEFL or IELTS are required if medium of instruction at university is not English.)
2. Proficiency in Chinese is an advantage as the PhD student will carry out research at NUSRI in China for two years.

Application Time

A candidate is normally admitted at the beginning of each semester of the academic year i.e. at either August or January.
Application materials are available anytime throughout the year.
Closing Date
January 2019 Intake Closed
August 2019 Intake 15 Nov. 2018
Note: 1. Pls select “NUS(Suzhou)Research Institute” in the column “Attached to research Institute/Centre”.
          2. Applications received after the closing date will be considered for the next relevant intake.

Supervisor Available in FoS (in alphabetical order)


Associate Professor
Self-assembled functional molecular nanostructure arrays
Molecular-level interface controlled organic thin films for organic photovoltaic devices
Interface problems associated with graphene-related devices

CHIN Wee Shong

Associate Professor
Semiconducting sulfide and oxide nanocrystals
Core/shell and doped functional nanomaterials
Hybridized nanoparticles/polymer composites
Surface-derivatized metallic nanoparticles

Huang Dejian

Associate Professor
Anti-aging medicine, bioactive constituents in edible plants
Chinese herbal medicine, dietary antioxidants and oxidative stress functional foods for controlling hyperglycemia
Luminescent molecular and nanoprobes for detection of small molecules (NO, NO2, H2S, ClO-, etc) of biological importance
High throughput screening methodology development

LU Yixin

Asymmetric catalysis and synthesis
Medicinal chemistry

LIU Xiaogang

Associate Professor
DNA-Modified Nanoparticles
Nanostructured Materials
Transition Metal-based Catalysis
Lanthanide-Doped Luminescent Nanoparticles

Wong Sek Man

Plant pathology and molecular virology
Molecular and cell biology

XU Qinghua

Associate Professor
Conjugated organic & polymer materials and their applications
Nanocomposites with enhanced optical properties
Photophysics and electronic processes of molecules and materials for solar cell applications
DNA-drug interactions and charge transfer processes in DNA
Optical spectroscopy and imaging

YANG Hongshun

Assistant Professor
Organic Food Processing
Food Safety Engineering
Sustainable Food Processing via Byproduct Utilization
Food Nanotechnology
Rapid Detection of Hazards for Food Defense
Food Security

ZHOU Weibiao

Food engineering and food processing
Particularly food process modelling and optimisation
Advanced process control
Baking processes
Dairy processes, drying
Functional foods and the effect of food processing on some functional components such as isoflavones and antioxidants

Supervisor Available in FoE (in alphabetical order)

GUO Yongxin

Antennas for emerging wireless communications
Implantable/wearable antennas for biomedical applications
MMIC modelling and design
RF energy harvesting and wireless power for biomedical applications and IoTs
RF and Antennas for satellite SAR and Radar application


Functional Materials
Thin Film Deposition
Nanostructured Materials

REN Hongliang

Associate Professor
Biomedical Mechatronics
Computer Integrated Interventional Systems

Surgical Navigation and Planning systems
Robotic and Sensing in Medicine
Wireless Biomedical Sensor Networks

Vincent LEE

Associate Professor
MEMS (Microelectromechanical Systems)
Nanowires & NEMS (Nanoelectromechanical Systems)
Nanophotonics & Optical MEMS
BioMEMS & LOC (Lab-on-a-chip)
LOC Using Nanophotonics
Power MEMS & Energy Harvesting
MEMS Packaging Technology


Associate Professor
Power microelectronics
Intellligent power devices and smart ICs
Microsystem Technology

ZHOU Zhiying, Steven

Associate Professor
Computer and machine vision
Mixed Reality / Augmented Reality
Multimodal Human Computer Interface
Computer-Human Interaction
Interactive and digital media