Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

Primary content

Discovery Program (2019 edition)

Authoritative Version
Guides & Guidelines as made
These grant guidelines relate to schemes funded under the Discovery Program of the National Competitive Grants Program. The Discovery Program supports the growth of Australia’s research and innovation capacity, which generates new knowledge resulting in the development of new technologies, products and ideas, the creation of jobs, economic growth and an enhanced quality of life in Australia. In particular, these rules relate to the Australian Laureates Fellowships scheme, the Future Fellowships scheme, the Discovery Early Career Research Awards scheme, the Discovery Indigenous scheme and the Discovery Projects scheme.
Administered by: Education
Registered 24 Oct 2019
Tabling HistoryDate
Tabled HR24-Oct-2019
Tabled Senate11-Nov-2019
Table of contents.

Discovery Program (2019 edition)

Australian Laureate Fellowships

Future Fellowships

Discovery Early Career Researcher Award

Discovery Indigenous

Discovery Projects

Opening date:

Available on GrantConnect

Closing date and time:

Available on GrantConnect

Commonwealth policy entity:

Australian Research Council

Enquiries:

Researchers are required to direct requests for information to the Research Office within the Administering Organisation.

ARC Contacts are on the ARC website.

Date guidelines released:

8 October 2019

Type of grant opportunity:

Restricted competitive

 

Australian Research Council Act 2001

 

I, Dan Tehan, Minister for Education, having satisfied myself of the matters set out in section 59 of the Australian Research Council Act 2001, approve these grant guidelines under section 60 of that Act.

Dated 20 September 2019

 

Dan Tehan

Minister for Education


Contents

1.             Discovery Program processes. 7

                Introduction. 9

2.             About the Discovery Program.. 10

Objectives. 10

Intended outcome. 10

Scope and timeframes. 10

Key performance indicators. 10

Other relevant information. 10

About the Discovery Program grant opportunities. 11

3.             Grant amount and grant period. 11

4.             Eligibility criteria. 12

What are the eligibility requirements for applications?. 12

Who is eligible to apply for a grant?. 12

Who is eligible to be a named participant?. 14

What are the limits on the number of applications and projects per named participant?. 15

5.             What the grant money can be used for. 16

Eligible grant activities. 16

Ineligible grant activities. 16

What grant funds can be used for 16

What grant funds cannot be used for 17

6.             The assessment criteria. 18

7.             How to apply. 18

Attachments to the application. 19

Timing of the grant opportunities. 19

Questions during the application period. 19

Withdrawing an application. 19

8.             The grant selection process. 20

What is the grant assessment process?. 20

Eligibility criteria assessment 20

The assessment process. 20

National Interest Test 21

Requests not to assess process. 21

Rejoinder process. 21

Who will assess applications?. 22

Who will approve grants?. 22

9.             Notification of application outcomes. 23

Feedback on Your application. 23

10.           Successful grant applications. 23

The grant agreement 23

Specific research policies and practices. 23

Ethics and Research Practices. 23

Intellectual Property. 23

Publication and dissemination of research outputs and research data. 24

How We pay the grant 24

Grants Payments and GST. 24

11.           Announcement of grants. 24

12.           How We monitor Your grant activity. 25

Keeping Us informed. 25

Reporting. 25

End of year report 25

Progress reporting by exception. 25

Final report 26

Grant agreement variations. 26

Compliance visits and record keeping. 26

Evaluation. 26

13.           Probity. 26

Appeals process. 27

Conflict of interest 27

Privacy and protection of personal information. 28

Confidential Information. 28

Freedom of information. 29

14.           Consultation. 30


 

Part A     Australian Laureate Fellowships. 31

A1.          About the scheme. 31

Important dates. 31

Description. 31

Objectives. 32

A2.          Grant amount and grant period. 32

A3.          Grant eligibility criteria. 33

Applications. 33

Australian Laureate Fellowship candidates. 34

Eligibility to apply. 34

Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellowship or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship  34

A4.          The assessment criteria. 34

A5.          Successful grant applications. 36

Fellow responsibilities. 36

Your responsibilities. 36

A6.          How We monitor Your grant activity. 36

Part B     Future Fellowships. 37

B1.          About the scheme. 37

Important dates. 37

Description. 37

Objectives. 37

B2.          Grant amount and grant period. 38

B3.          Grant eligibility criteria. 39

Applications. 39

Future Fellowship candidates. 39

Eligibility to apply. 39

B4.          What the grant money can be used for. 41

B5.          The assessment criteria. 41

B6.          How to Apply. 43

Attachments to the application. 43

B7.          Successful grant applications. 43

Fellow responsibilities. 43

Your responsibilities. 44

Part C     Discovery Early Career Researcher Award  (DECRA) 45

C1.          About the scheme. 45

Important dates. 45

Description. 45

Objectives. 45

C2.          Grant amount and grant period. 46

C3.          Grant eligibility criteria. 46

Applications. 46

DECRA candidates. 47

Eligibility to apply. 47

C4.          What the grant money can be used for. 48

C5.          The assessment criteria. 48

C6.          How to Apply. 50

Attachments to the application. 50

C7.          Successful grant applications. 50

DECRA responsibilities. 50

Your responsibilities. 51

Grant Agreement Variation. 51

Part D     Discovery Indigenous. 52

D1.          About the scheme. 52

Important dates. 52

Description. 52

Objectives. 52

D2.          Grant amount and grant period. 53

D3.          Grant eligibility criteria. 54

Applications. 54

Chief Investigators. 54

DAATSIA candidates. 55

Eligibility to apply. 55

Partner investigators. 55

D4.          What the grant funds can be used for. 55

Eligible Expenditure. 55

D5.          The assessment criteria. 56

D6.          How to Apply. 57

Attachments to the application. 57

D7.          Successful grant applications. 57

DAATSIA recipient responsibilities. 57

Your responsibilities. 57

Part E     Discovery Projects. 59

E1.           About the scheme. 59

Important dates. 59

Description. 59

Objectives. 59

E2.           Grant amount and grant period. 59

E3.           Grant eligibility criteria. 60

Applications. 60

Chief Investigators. 60

Partner Investigators. 60

E4.           What the grant funds can be used for. 60

Eligible expenditure. 60

E5.           The assessment criteria. 61

15.           Glossary. 63

 


 

1.              Discovery Program processes

The Discovery Program is designed to achieve the Australian Government’s objectives for research and innovation.

This grant program contributes to the ARC’s Outcome 1, which is to grow knowledge and innovation through managing research grants, measuring research excellence and providing advice.

There are five grant opportunities in the Discovery Program: Australian Laureate Fellowships; Future Fellowships; Discovery Early Career Researcher Award;
 Discovery Indigenous;
and Discovery Projects.
The following process flowchart is relevant to all five grant opportunities.

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The grant opportunity opens.

We (the ARC) publish the grant guidelines and advertise on GrantConnect.

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You (the Administering Organisation) complete and submit an application.

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We manage the assessment of all applications.

We manage the assessment of applications against eligibility criteria and assessment criteria including an overall consideration of value for money.

Your application will be assigned to Detailed Assessors to undertake in-depth assessments. You will have an opportunity to respond to Detailed Assessors’ written comments through a rejoinder.

Selection Advisory Committee (SAC) members will then assess Your application, consider the Detailed Assessors’ ratings and comments and Your rejoinder and assign a final score.

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We make grant recommendations.

The SAC will collectively consider all applications and recommend to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) the applications to be funded, and the level and duration of funding for each project.

The CEO will recommend to the Minister the applications to be funded, and the level and duration of funding for each grant.

In making recommendations to the Minister the CEO will consider the applicant’s response to the National Interest Test. The CEO will seek information from Administering Organisations on applications where there is concern about how they meet the National Interest Test based on the information provided in the application form. The CEO will make grant recommendations to the Minister that satisfy the National Interest Test and which are eligible for funding.

ê


 

 

Grant decisions are made.

The Minister decides which applications are approved, and the level of funding and duration of funding for each approved project.

The Minister may consider the National Interest Test in determining which applications to approve.

ê

We notify You of the outcome.

We advise You if Your application was successful or not through Our Research Management System (RMS).

ê

We enter into a grant agreement with You.

We will enter into a grant agreement with You through RMS.

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Delivery of the grant.

You undertake the grant activity and report to us as set out in Your grant agreement.
We manage the grant by monitoring Your progress and making payments.

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Evaluation of the grant opportunity.

We evaluate the specific grant activity and the individual grant opportunity as a whole.
We will use information You provide to Us through Your reports to inform evaluations.

Introduction

1.1.                  These grant guidelines establish the rules which govern the administration of the Discovery Program including the application, eligibility, and selection processes to be followed and the assessment criteria that will be used to select grantees.

1.2.                  These grant guidelines contain information for the Discovery Program schemes.

1.3.                  You and the named participants must read these grant guidelines before filling out an application.

1.4.                  This document sets out:

a.              the purpose of each of the Discovery Program schemes;

b.             the general eligibility and assessment criteria applicable for all Discovery Program schemes;

c.              the additional specific eligibility and assessment criteria applicable to each scheme;

d.             how applications are considered and selected;

e.             how grantees are notified and receive grant payments;

f.               how grantees will be monitored and evaluated; and

g.              responsibilities and expectations in relation to each scheme.

1.5.                  In this document:

a.              Sections 1 to 14 provide general information for all Discovery Program schemes; and

b.             Parts A to E provide specific information about each scheme.

1.6.                  These grant guidelines are a legislative instrument current as at the date of signing by the Minister and have been prepared in accordance with the requirements of the ARC Act in force at that date.


 

2.              About the Discovery Program

2.1.                  The Discovery Program is one of two Programs under the ARC National Competitive Grants Program (NCGP).

Objectives

2.2.                  The Discovery Program aims to deliver outcomes of benefit to Australia and build Australia’s research capacity through support for:

a.              excellent, internationally-competitive research by individuals and teams;

b.             research training and career opportunities for the best Australian and international researchers;

c.              international collaboration; and

d.             research in priority areas.

Intended outcome

2.3.                  The intended outcome of the Discovery Program is to contribute to the growth of Australia’s research and innovation capacity. Increasing Australia’s research and innovation capacity generates new knowledge and results in the development of new technologies, products and ideas, the creation of jobs, economic growth and an enhanced quality of life in Australia.

Scope and timeframes

2.4.                  Discovery Program grants are awarded on the basis of excellence through a competitive peer review process for each grant opportunity.

2.5.                  Each Discovery Program grant opportunity is open for applications once a year or as required.

2.6.                  These grant guidelines will be in effect from the date the Minister signs these grant guidelines.

Key performance indicators

2.7.                  The Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for the Discovery Program are identified each year in the ARC Portfolio Budget Statements and the ARC corporate plan. Reporting is provided every year in Our annual report.

2.8.                  The KPIs focus on long-term outcomes as well as medium-term outcomes relating to building Australia’s research capacity, for example, research careers and training, contributions in areas of national need and research collaboration.

Other relevant information

2.9.                  The Discovery Program is undertaken according to the Australian Research Council Act 2001 (ARC Act) and the Commonwealth Grants Rules and Guidelines (CGRGs).


 

About the Discovery Program grant opportunities

2.10.              The schemes available under the Discovery Program are:

a.              Australian Laureate Fellowships—Part A;

b.             Future Fellowships—Part B;

c.              Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)—Part C;

d.             Discovery Indigenous—Part D; and

e.             Discovery Projects—Part E.

2.11.              The five schemes comprise:

a.              three schemes which provide fellowships for individual researchers at different stages of their careers:

          early career researchers through the DECRA;

          mid-career researchers through Future Fellowships; and

          established researchers through Australian Laureate Fellowships.

b.      the Discovery Indigenous scheme which provides project funding and fellowships for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers and may include a Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award (DAATSIA); and

c.       the Discovery Projects scheme which provides project funding for research conducted by individuals and teams.

3.              Grant amount and grant period

3.1.                  For each grant opportunity, applications for the levels of funding listed in Table 1 will be considered. Further details are provided in the scheme specific parts (Parts A to E) of these grant guidelines.

3.2.                  Table 1: Discovery Program funding and grant duration.

Grant Opportunity

Funding for each grant:

Australian Laureate Fellowships

(Part A)

·      a salary supplement for the Australian Laureate Fellow, for five consecutive years on a full-time basis

·      salary support for two Postdoctoral Research Associates (PDRA), for five years each

·      stipend support for two Postgraduate Researchers (PGR), for four years each

·      project costs of up to $300,000 per year for five consecutive years (which may be used to fund additional PDRAs and PGRs)

·      up to an additional $20,000 per year for Kathleen Fitzpatrick or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellows

Future Fellowships

(Part B)

·      a salary at one of three levels for the Future Fellow, for four consecutive years on a full-time basis

·      project costs of up to $60,000 per year for four consecutive years

DECRA

(Part C)

·      a salary for the DECRA recipient, for three consecutive years on a full-time basis

·      project costs of up to $50,000 per year for three consecutive years

Discovery Indigenous

(Part D)

·      a salary at one of five levels for the DAATSIA recipient, for up to five consecutive years on a full-time basis

·      project costs of between $30,000 and $500,000 per year for up to five consecutive years, inclusive of the DAATSIA salary

Discovery Projects (Part E)

·      project costs of between $30,000 and $500,000 per year for up to five consecutive years.

4.              Eligibility criteria

What are the eligibility requirements for applications?

4.1.                  You can only submit one application for the same project in any grant opportunity. This includes applications which fundamentally have the same research intent, approach and outcomes, regardless of any variations in the research, the named participants and/or organisations.

Who is eligible to apply for a grant?

4.2.                  We will only accept applications from the Eligible Organisations in Table 2.

4.3.                  The Eligible Organisation that submits the application will be the ‘Administering Organisation’ and is referred to as ‘You’. All other Eligible Organisations named on the application will be an ‘Other Eligible Organisation’.

4.4.                  Table 2: Eligible Organisations.

Organisation Name

Organisation ABN

Australian Catholic University

15 050 192 660

Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies

62 020 533 641

Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education

32 039 179 166

Bond University

88 010 694 121

Central Queensland University

39 181 103 288

Charles Darwin University

54 093 513 649

Charles Sturt University

83 878 708 551

Curtin University

99 143 842 569

Deakin University

56 721 584 203

Edith Cowan University

54 361 485 361

Federation University Australia

51 818 692 256

Flinders University

65 542 596 200

Griffith University

78 106 094 461

James Cook University

46 253 211 955

La Trobe University

64 804 735 113

Macquarie University

90 952 801 237

Monash University

12 377 614 012

Murdoch University

61 616 369 313

Queensland University of Technology

83 791 724 622

Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology
(RMIT University)

49 781 030 034

Southern Cross University

41 995 651 524

Swinburne University of Technology

13 628 586 699

The Australian National University

52 234 063 906

The University of Adelaide

61 249 878 937

The University of Melbourne

84 002 705 224

The University of New England

75 792 454 315

The University of New South Wales

57 195 873 179

The University of Newcastle

15 736 576 735

The University of Notre Dame Australia

69 330 643 210

The University of Queensland

63 942 912 684

The University of Sydney

15 211 513 464

The University of Western Australia

37 882 817 280

Torrens University Australia

99 154 937 005

University of Canberra

81 633 873 422

University of Divinity

95 290 912 141

University of South Australia

37 191 313 308

University of Southern Queensland

40 234 732 081

University of Tasmania

30 764 374 782

University of Technology Sydney

77 257 686 961

University of the Sunshine Coast

28 441 859 157

University of Wollongong

61 060 567 686

Victoria University

83 776 954 731

Western Sydney University

53 014 069 881

Who is eligible to be a named participant?

4.5.                  Named participants are those individual researchers who are nominated for the particular roles identified for each grant opportunity.

4.6.                  Roles that named participants may be nominated for under the Discovery Program are:

a.              Australian Laureate Fellowship candidates (Part A);

b.             Future Fellowship candidates (Part B);

c.              DECRA candidates (Part C);

d.             DAATSIA candidates (Part D);

e.             Chief Investigators (CIs) (Parts D and E); and

f.               Partner Investigators (PIs) (Parts D and E).

4.7.                  All CIs, PIs and candidates named in an application must:

a.              satisfy the eligibility criteria for the role they are to perform;

b.             take responsibility for the authorship and intellectual content of the application, appropriately citing sources and acknowledging all significant contributions, including from third parties; and

c.              have met their obligations regarding previously funded projects, including submission of satisfactory final reports to the ARC at the grant opportunity closing date.

4.8.                  CIs and ARC Fellows must not undertake an HDR during the project activity period.

4.9.                  A Project cannot start until all named participants meet the eligibility criteria in these grant guidelines.

What are the limits on the number of applications and projects per named participant?

4.10.              These limits only apply to CIs and candidates.

4.11.              The limits are designed to ensure that named participants have the capacity to undertake each project.

4.12.              A named participant can be concurrently funded through the Discovery Program for a maximum of:

a.              two projects as a CI; or

b.             one ARC Fellowship and one project as a CI; or

c.              one ARC Fellowship or project if the individual is also a Director on an active ARC Centre of Excellence and/or a Special Research Initiative project.

4.13.              At the grant opportunity closing date for DECRA, Discovery Indigenous and Discovery Projects applications, we will count:

a.              the number of Discovery Program CI roles or ARC Fellowships that the individual will hold on active projects on the grant opportunity’s active project assessment date;

b.             whether the named participant will hold an ARC Centres of Excellence and/or Special Research Initiatives Director role on active projects on the grant opportunity’s active project assessment date; and

c.              the number of DECRA, Discovery Indigenous and Discovery Projects applications We are currently assessing which include that participant as a CI or candidate.

4.14.              Applications for Australian Laureate Fellowships, Future Fellowships, ARC Centres of Excellence or Special Research Initiatives do not need to meet the project limit requirements at the grant opportunity closing date. If an Australian Laureate Fellowships, Future Fellowships, ARC Centres of Excellence or Special Research Initiatives application is successful, named participants must meet the project limits under section 4.12 before the project can start. Project limits can be met by relinquishing existing active project(s), or relinquishing role(s) on existing active projects, or withdrawing application(s) that would exceed the project limits.

4.15.              If a role or Project must be relinquished to meet the limits at the grant opportunity closing date for a DECRA, Discovery Indigenous and Discovery Projects application, We must approve the Variation before the grant opportunity closing date. Any relinquishment Variation submitted or approved after the grant opportunity closing date will not be taken into account when counting the number of projects under section 4.13.

4.16.              It is Your responsibility to determine if applying for, or holding, a project under these grant guidelines will affect an individual researcher’s eligibility for other ARC grant opportunities as other ARC grant opportunities may have different project limits. We reserve the right to change project and application limits in future grant opportunities.


 

5.              What the grant money can be used for

Eligible grant activities

5.1.                  The Discovery Program supports research activities that meet the definition of ‘research’.

Ineligible grant activities

5.2.                  The Discovery Program does not support applications that involve Medical Research, as detailed in the ARC Medical Research Policy on the ARC website.

5.3.                  We cannot fund the same research activities, infrastructure or project previously funded or currently being funded through any other Commonwealth grant.

5.4.                  The Discovery Program does not support activities leading solely to the creation or performance of a work of art, including visual art, musical compositions, drama, dance, film, broadcasts, designs and literary works, unless those works are directly related to the projects activities and demonstrably research based.

What grant funds can be used for

5.5.                  You can only spend the grant on eligible expenditure items that directly support the project and in accordance with any additional special conditions in the grant agreement.

5.6.                  Eligible expenditure items are:

a.           Personnel, which may include:

i.           salary support, for example postdoctoral research associates, research assistants, technicians and laboratory attendants. Salary support must be requested at an appropriate salary level for Your organisation, including 30 per cent on-costs. Where the relevant parts of these grant guidelines contain a specified salary level, only funding up to this level may be requested from Us;

ii.         stipends for HDR candidates at a rate of $27,609 per year. This figure is based on the 2019 price levels of funding and will be subject to variation (for example, due to annual indexation). Updated levels will be available on the ARC website);

iii.     expert services of a third party if the services are directly related to and essential for the project. Such services include, but are not limited to:

§  language translation services, transcribing services;

§  purchase of bibliographical or archival material (electronic or hard copy); and

§  data collection and analysis services;

b.             teaching relief for CIs, as specified in the relevant part of these grant guidelines (see Parts D and E);

c.              travel costs essential to the project, as specified in the relevant part of these grant guidelines (see Parts B to E);

d.             expenditure on field research essential to the project, including technical and logistical support and travel expenses (accommodation, meals and incidental costs);

e.             equipment (and its maintenance) and consumables essential for the project. Funding will not be provided for equipment or consumables that are considered to be for broad general use;

f.               other, which may include:

i.           access to national and international research and infrastructure facilities including specialist archives, collections and databases;

ii.         access to technical workshop services linked to and justified explicitly against the project (for example, machine tools and qualified technicians);

iii.        publication and dissemination of project research outputs and outreach activity costs;

iv.       specialised computer equipment and software essential to the project;

v.         web hosting and web development specific to the project;

vi.       workshops, focus groups and conferences that are essential for the conduct of the project (including reasonable hospitality costs such as morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea); and

vii.      reasonable essential costs to allow a participant who is a carer, or who personally requires care or assistance, to undertake travel essential to the project.

What grant funds cannot be used for

5.7.                  Unless the following activities meet the definition of research, the Discovery Program does not support production of:

a.              computer programs, research aids and tools;

b.             data warehouses, catalogues or bibliographies; or

c.              teaching materials.

5.8.                  You cannot request or use grant funds for the following activities:

a.              basic facilities that should normally be funded by an Administering Organisation, and/or Other Eligible Organisation (including standard refurbishment costs of a laboratory);

b.             capital works and general infrastructure costs;

c.              costs not directly related to the project, including but not limited to professional membership fees, professional development courses, fees for patent application and maintenance, equipment for live music or drama performances, equipment for gallery/museum exhibits, visas, relocation costs, entertainment costs, purchase of alcohol, insurance, mobile phones (purchase or call charges) and other indirect costs;

d.             fees for international students or the Higher Education Contribution Scheme (HECS) and Higher Education Loan Program (HELP) liabilities for students;

e.             salaries and/or on-costs and/or HDR stipends for CIs or PIs, in whole or in part; and

f.               salary top ups for personnel above the salary level specified in these grant guidelines.

5.9.                  The following basic facilities must be provided (where relevant) and funded by You, or the Other Eligible Organisation(s) and are not funded by the grant:

a.              bench fees or similar laboratory access fees;

b.             access to a basic library collection;

c.              access to film or music editing facilities;

d.             work accommodation (for example, laboratory and office space, suitably equipped and furnished);

e.             basic computer facilities such as desktop computers, portable computer devices, printers, word processing, and other standard software; and

f.               standard reference materials or funds for abstracting services.

6.              The assessment criteria

6.1.                  You must address all of the relevant assessment criteria in Your application. We will assess your application based on the weighting given to each criterion. Different weightings are assigned to individual criterion.

6.2.                  The application form asks questions that relate to the assessment criteria. The amount of detail and supporting evidence You provide in Your application should be relative to the project size, complexity and grant amount requested. The application form includes character, word and page limits.

7.              How to apply

7.1.                  Before You submit an application, You and the named participants must read these grant guidelines, the relevant part of this document for the appropriate grant opportunity, the Instructions to Applicants, and the draft grant agreement. These documents may be found on GrantConnect. Any alterations and addenda will be published on GrantConnect and by registering on this website you will be automatically notified of any changes.

7.2.                  To apply, You must:

a.              complete the application form in the format We require;

b.             address all of the eligibility and assessment criteria;

c.              make sure that Your application is submitted in accordance with these grant guidelines, grant agreement, Instructions to Applicants and application form. You must only submit an application if it and the named participants will be eligible for the grant opportunity as per these grant guidelines;

d.             certify that the application is compliant with these grant guidelines and all relevant laws and regulations;

e.             submit Your application through Your Research Office; and

f.               ensure that the person assigned the Research Office Delegate role in RMS is authorised to certify and submit applications.

7.3.                  You are responsible for ensuring that Your application is complete and all details in the application are accurate and current at the time of submission.

7.4.                  You cannot change Your application (additions, deletions or modifications) after the grant opportunity closing date and time.

7.5.                  We reserve the right at any point in the process to seek evidence from You to support the certification of applications.

7.6.                  In-kind contributions in the budget section of the application should not include basic salary for any Commonwealth Fellowships, unless it is salary over and above the Commonwealth component supported.

7.7.                  The application form includes help information and further information is in the Instructions to Applicants document on GrantConnect. If you have any technical difficulties, please contact arc-systems@arc.gov.au.

Attachments to the application

7.8.                  You must attach supporting documentation to the application form in line with the instructions provided in the form or in the Instructions to Applicants. You should only attach requested documents. We will not consider information in attachments that We do not request.

Timing of the grant opportunities

7.9.                  We publish open and closing times for submission of applications on GrantConnect.

7.10.              You must submit Your application to Us between the grant opportunity opening and closing date and time specified on GrantConnect. We will not accept late applications, other than in exceptional circumstances (such as due to natural disasters) in which case We will discuss this with You, and if We agree, invite You to make a late application.

7.11.              If you are successful, a grant will commence:

a.              on the grant commencement date (available on the ARC website) for the grant opportunity;

b.             after Ministerial announcement;

c.              on a date set by the Minister; or

d.             in line with other arrangements that are approved by Us,

whichever is the later.

Questions during the application period

7.12.              Questions during the application period should be directed to Your Research Office. Answers to frequently asked questions may also be posted on GrantConnect.

Withdrawing an application

7.13.              We may approve the withdrawal of an application upon receipt of a written request with justification from You. We will only approve such a request in exceptional circumstances.


 

8.              The grant selection process

8.1.                  All applications will be considered through a competitive peer review process.

8.2.                  We manage the assessment of applications. Further information about the assessment process is available on the ARC website.

What is the grant assessment process?

Eligibility criteria assessment

8.3.                  We will review Your application against the eligibility criteria.

8.4.                  We may determine whether an application meets the eligibility requirements in these grant guidelines at any stage during assessment of the application.

8.5.                  If an application is ineligible, the application may not be progressed through the assessment process and We must not recommend the application for funding.

The assessment process

8.6.                  All applications which meet the eligibility criteria will be assessed and merit ranked using all assessment criteria.

8.7.                  If We consider that an application is incomplete We may in Our absolute discretion decide to recommend that the application not be approved for a grant.

8.8.                  If We consider that an application is inaccurate or contains false or misleading information, or is otherwise a breach of the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research, We will in Our absolute discretion decide to recommend that the application not be approved for a grant.

8.9.                  Your application will be considered on its merits, based on:

a.              how well it meets the assessment criteria;

b.             how it is ranked against other applications; and

c.              whether it provides value for money (as defined in the Glossary).

8.10.              We may request additional information during the assessment process.

8.11.              The process that We will undertake includes the following steps.

a.              We assign applications to General Assessors.

b.             Applications are assigned to Detailed Assessors. In assigning assessors We may take requests not to assess into account (see below for further information on this process).

c.              Detailed Assessors provide assessments to Us with scores and written comments against assessment criteria for each application.

d.             Applicants are provided with Detailed Assessors’ comments and are invited to submit a rejoinder (see below for further information on this process).

e.             Applications, scores and comments provided in the detailed assessments and the applicant’s rejoinder are provided to the General Assessors for consideration. General Assessors assign their own scores against the assessment criteria.

f.               The SAC meets to discuss the ranking of each application relative to other applications and determines funding recommendations.

8.12.              The SAC makes recommendations to the CEO on which applications should be approved for funding, which applications should not be approved for funding, and the level of funding and duration of each grant.

National Interest Test

8.13.              On the application form, applicants must provide a separate response on the national interest of the research proposal.

8.14.              In making recommendations to the Minister, the CEO will:

a.              consider the recommendations from the SAC;

b.             consider the applicant’s response to the National Interest Test;

c.              seek information from Administering Organisations on applications where there is concern about how they meet the National Interest Test based on the information provided in the application form; and

d.             make grant recommendations to the Minister that satisfy the National Interest Test and which are eligible for funding.

Requests not to assess process

8.15.              You may name up to three persons whom You do not wish to assess an application by submitting a ‘Request Not to Assess’ form as detailed on GrantConnect and on the ARC website. This form must be received by Us two weeks prior to the grant opportunity closing date.

8.16.              Only one request containing the names of up to three individual assessors may be submitted per application.

8.17.              If a request includes the name of a current ARC College of Experts member, as listed on the ARC website at the time of submitting the ‘Request Not to Assess’ form, the request must be accompanied by comprehensive evidence justifying the request for the ARC College of Experts member or members named. If We consider the evidence is not sufficient for the named ARC College of Experts member or members, We will reject part, or all of the request.

8.18.              We have absolute discretion about whether We accept or refuse a ‘Request Not to Assess’. We will not notify You of the outcome.

Rejoinder process

8.19.              You will be given the opportunity to respond to assessors’ written comments through a rejoinder. Names of assessors will not be provided. Further information on the rejoinder process is available on the ARC website.


 

Who will assess applications?

8.20.              Applications will be assessed by Detailed Assessors and a SAC comprising General Assessors.

8.21.              Any Detailed Assessors or General Assessors must adhere to and uphold the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (2018).

8.22.              Any College of Experts or SAC members who are not an Australian Public Servant must uphold the Australian Public Service Values and Code of Conduct in accordance with Part 1, Section 2.9 of the CGRGs.

8.23.              We have procedures in place for managing organisational and personal Conflicts of Interest for Detailed Assessors, SAC members and ARC staff. Details of these procedures are in the relevant section of these grant guidelines and in the ARC’s Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy available on the ARC website.

Who will approve grants?

8.24.              In accordance with the ARC Act, Our CEO will submit grant recommendations to the Minister for consideration.

8.25.              The CEO will make recommendations for funding to the Minister based on any number of assessments.

8.26.              Under the ARC Act, the Minister may (but is not required to) rely solely on recommendations made by the CEO.

8.27.              The Minister will determine which grants to approve. In addition to the assessment criteria set out in these grant guidelines, the Minister may consider the National Interest Test in determining which applications to approve. The Minister’s decision is final in all matters, including:

a.              the approval of the grant;

b.             the grant funding amount to be awarded;

c.              the duration of the grant; and

d.             the terms and conditions of the grant.

8.28.              The ARC Act states that the Minister must not approve a grant for any application that fails to:

a.              meet the eligibility criteria;

b.             comply with the assessment process; and

c.              satisfy the requirements for financial assistance.


 

9.              Notification of application outcomes

9.1.                  We will advise you of the outcome of Your application via RMS, following a decision by the Minister.

9.2.                  If You are unsuccessful, You may be able to submit a new application for the same, or similar, research application in future grant opportunities. This will depend on the specific provisions of the grant opportunity You are applying for. You should include new or more information to address any weaknesses that may have prevented Your previous application from being successful.

9.3.                  If Your application is found to be ineligible, You will be notified of this through RMS.

Feedback on Your application

9.4.                  Feedback will be provided on eligible applications through RMS.

10.          Successful grant applications

The grant agreement

10.1.              If You are successful, You must enter into a legally binding grant agreement with the Commonwealth represented by the ARC.

10.2.              We use the ARC Discovery Program grant agreement which contains standard terms and conditions that cannot be changed. A sample grant agreement is available on GrantConnect. Any special conditions attached to the grant will be identified in the grant offer.

10.3.              You will have 28 calendar days from the date of the grant offer to execute this grant agreement with the Commonwealth.

10.4.              We must execute a grant agreement with You before We can make any payments. We are not responsible for any of Your project expenditure until a grant agreement is executed. You must not start any activities until all third party agreements are executed.

Specific research policies and practices

10.5.              You and each participant are required to be compliant with all relevant laws and regulations. In particular, You must certify in Your application that You comply with the following requirements.

Ethics and Research Practices

10.6.              All applications and ARC-funded research projects must comply with the requirements specified in the ethics and research codes, practices and policies on the ARC website.

Intellectual Property

10.7.              We do not claim ownership of any intellectual property in an application or in any research arising from a project. All research projects funded by us must comply with practices and policies on the ARC website.

Publication and dissemination of research outputs and research data

10.8.              All research projects funded by us must comply with the ARC Open Access Policy on the dissemination of research findings, which is on the ARC website. We strongly encourage:

a.              the depositing of data arising from a project in an appropriate publicly accessible discipline and/or institutional repository; and

b.             all participants applying for grants to have a Persistent Identifier such as an Open Researcher and Contributor Identifier (ORCID ID) in their RMS Profile.

How We pay the grant

10.9.              Payments will be made as set out in the grant agreement. Grant funding will typically be paid monthly through Our payment system.

10.10.           The grant offer will specify the approved grant amount to be paid. 

10.11.           We will not pay more than the approved grant amount under any circumstances. If you incur extra costs, You must meet them.

10.12.           Grant funding may be indexed.

10.13.           Once the grant agreement is executed by the Commonwealth payment will be made on the next available date for grant payments after the grant commencement date.

10.14.           Any grant awarded will be subject to sufficient funds being available for the project, the provisions of the ARC Act and the continued satisfactory progress of the project.

Grants Payments and GST

10.15.           All amounts referred to in these grant guidelines are exclusive of the goods and services tax (GST), unless expressly stated otherwise.

10.16.           You are responsible for any and all financial and taxation implications associated with receiving funds.

11.          Announcement of grants

11.1.              If successful, Your grant will be listed on GrantConnect 21 calendar days after the date of effect as required by Section 5.3 of the CGRGs.

11.2.              We will publicise and report offers and grants awarded, including the following information about the project:

a.              Your name and any other parties involved in or associated with the project;

b.             named participants and their organisations;

c.              the project description (the title and summary descriptions);

d.             Your response to the National Interest Test;

e.             classifications and international collaboration country names; and

f.               the ARC grant funding amount.

11.3.              You should ensure that information contained in the project title and summary descriptions will not compromise Your requirements for confidentiality (such as protection of intellectual property).

11.4.              In making public information about a project that has been approved for a grant, We may use a project description, including title and summary, which differs from that provided in the application.

12.          How We monitor Your grant activity

Keeping Us informed

12.1.              You must let Us know if anything is likely to affect Your project.

12.2.              You must also inform Us of any changes to Your:

a.              name;

b.             address(es);

c.              nominated contact details; and

d.             bank account details.

12.3.              If You become aware of a breach of terms and conditions under the grant agreement, You must contact Us immediately.

Reporting

12.4.              You must submit reports in line with the grant agreement. Reports must be submitted to Us through RMS, unless otherwise advised by Us.

12.5.              The amount of detail You provide in Your reports should be relative to the project’s size, complexity and grant amount.

12.6.              We will monitor progress by assessing reports You submit and may conduct site visits or request records to confirm details of Your reports if necessary. We may occasionally need to re-examine claims, seek further information or request an independent audit of claims and payments.

End of year report

12.7.              You must submit an end of year financial report by 31 March in the year following each calendar year for which the grant was awarded. We will make the form for these reports available in RMS, with instructions on the ARC website.

Progress reporting by exception

12.8.              A progress report by exception must be completed as part of the End of Year Report only if significant issues are affecting the progress of the project.

12.9.              If We are not satisfied with the progress of any project, further payment of funds will not be made until satisfactory progress has been made on the project. If satisfactory progress is not achieved within a reasonable period of time, the grant will be terminated and all outstanding grant funds will be recovered by Us.


 

Final report

12.10.           You must submit a final report for the project within 12 months of the final ARC approved project end date. We will make the form for this report available in RMS, with instructions on the ARC website.

12.11.           The final report must address compliance with the conditions on which funding was granted, as set out in the grant agreement.

12.12.           If the final report is not submitted or is not satisfactory to Us this will be considered as an eligibility matter for future ARC applications for the named participants on the project.

Grant agreement variations

12.13.           We recognise that unexpected events may affect the progress of a project. In these circumstances, You can request a variation to Your grant agreement by submitting a Variation of Grant Agreement (Variation) to Us in RMS.

12.14.           You cannot request an increase to the approved grant amount.

12.15.           You should not assume that a variation request will be successful. We will consider your request based on provisions in the grant agreement and the likely impact on achieving outcomes.

Compliance visits and record keeping

12.16.           We may visit You during or at the completion of Your project to review Your compliance with the grant agreement. We may also inspect the records You are required to keep under the grant guidelines and grant agreement. We will provide You with reasonable notice of any compliance visit.

12.17.           You must retain the evidence and paperwork relied upon to certify Your application in RMS and make this available to Us if requested.

Evaluation

12.18.           We may evaluate the grant opportunity under the Discovery Program to measure how well the outcomes and objectives have been achieved. We may use information from your application and reports for this purpose. We may also interview you, or ask you for more information to help us understand how the grant impacted you and to evaluate how effective the program was in achieving its outcomes.

12.19.           We may contact you up to five years after You finish Your grant for more information to assist with this evaluation.

13.          Probity

13.1.              The Australian Government will make sure that the grant opportunity process is fair, according to the published grant guidelines, incorporates appropriate safeguards against fraud, unlawful activities and other inappropriate conduct and is consistent with the CGRGs and the ARC Act.


 

Appeals process

13.2.              The appeals process is designed to ensure that an application has been treated fairly and consistently in the context of selection processes.

13.3.              We will only consider appeals against the administrative process and not against committee decisions, assessor ratings and comments, or the assessment outcome. Appellants must identify the specific clause(s) of the grant guidelines, policy or procedure which they believe has been incorrectly applied.

13.4.              You must submit an appeal using the ARC Appeals Form on the ARC website and have it authorised by a Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent. Appeals must be received within 28 days of the date You receive notification of the outcome of Your application. We will not accept appeals later than 5.00pm (AEDT/AEST) on the appeals submission due date.

13.5.              Appeals must be submitted to Us electronically to ARC-NCGP@arc.gov.au.

13.6.              If You do not agree with the way We have handled Your appeal, You may complain to the Commonwealth Ombudsman. The Ombudsman will not usually look into a complaint unless the matter has first been raised directly with Us. The Commonwealth Ombudsman can be contacted on:

Phone (Toll free): 1300 362 072

Email: ombudsman@ombudsman.gov.au

Website: www.ombudsman.gov.au

13.7.              Applicants may at any time seek to appeal Our decisions using available external appeal options. The Administrative Appeals Tribunal does not have general power to review Our decisions.

Conflict of interest

13.8.              Our purpose is to support the highest quality research and as such Our conflict of interest policy is designed to ensure that all material personal interests are disclosed. As a result, conflicts of interest are identified and managed in a rigorous and transparent way to ensure the integrity, legitimacy, impartiality and fairness of Our processes. Management of Conflicts of Interest in this way is designed to maintain public confidence in Our business processes.

13.9.              Any conflicts of interest could affect conduct of the selection processes and/or the performance of the grant. There may be a conflict of interest, or perceived conflict of interest, if the relevant ARC staff, an assessor, member of a committee or advisor and/or You or any of Your personnel:

a.              has a professional, commercial or personal relationship with a party who is able to influence the application selection process, such as an Australian Government officer or SAC member;

b.             has a relationship with, or interest in, an organisation, which is likely to interfere with or restrict the applicants from carrying out the proposed activities fairly and independently; or

c.              has a relationship with, or interest in, an organisation from which they will receive personal gain because the organisation receives a grant under the NCGP.

13.10.           You will be asked to certify, as part of Your application, any perceived or existing conflicts of interests or that, to the best of Your knowledge, there is no conflict of interest. Each individual or organisation named in an application must declare any conflict of interest that exists or is likely to arise in relation to any aspect of the application or project to You at the date of submission.

13.11.           If a Conflict of Interest exists or arises, You must have documented processes in place for managing the Conflict of Interest for the duration of the project. Such processes must comply with the Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research (2018), the ARC Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy and any relevant successor documents.

13.12.           If You later identify that there is an actual, apparent, or potential Conflict of Interest or that one might arise in relation to an application, You must inform Us in writing immediately.

13.13.           We will handle any Conflicts of Interest as set out in Australian Government policies and procedures. Conflicts of interest for Australian Government staff will be managed as set out in the Australian Public Service Code of Conduct (Section 13(7)) of the Public Service Act 1999. Committee members and other officials must also declare any conflicts of interest.

13.14.            We publish Our Conflict of Interest Policy on the ARC website.

Privacy and protection of personal information

13.15.           We treat your personal information according to the 13 Australian Privacy Principles and the Privacy Act 1988. This includes letting You know:

a.              what personal information We collect;

b.             why We collect your personal information; and

c.              who We give your personal information to.

13.16.           You are required, as part of Your application, to certify Your compliance with the Privacy Act 1988, including the Australian Privacy Principles and impose the same privacy obligations on any subcontractors You engage to assist with the activity. You must ask for the Australian Government’s consent in writing before disclosing confidential information.

13.17.           Your personal information can only be disclosed to someone else if:

a.              You are given reasonable notice of the disclosure;

b.             where disclosure is authorised or required by law or is reasonably necessary for the enforcement of the criminal law;

c.              if it will prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to a person’s life or health; or

d.             if You have consented to the disclosure.

Confidential Information

13.18.           The Australian Government may use and disclose confidential information about grant applicants and grant recipients under the NCGP to any other Australian Government business or function. This includes giving information to the Australian Taxation Office for compliance purposes.


 

13.19.           We may reveal confidential information to:

a.              assessors, the SAC and other Commonwealth employees and contractors to help Us manage the program effectively and in accordance with any other provision of these grant guidelines or subsequent grant agreement;

b.             the Minister and their staff;

c.              employees and contractors of Our entity so We can research, assess, monitor and analyse Our programs and activities;

d.             employees and contractors of other Commonwealth agencies for any purposes, including government administration, research or service delivery;

e.             other funding bodies for the purpose of obtaining funding from that body;

f.               other Commonwealth, State, Territory or local government agencies in program reports and consultations;

g.              the Auditor-General, Ombudsman or Privacy Commissioner; and

h.             a House or a Committee of the Australian Parliament.

13.20.           We will treat the information You give Us as confidential if it meets one of the four conditions below:

a.              You clearly identify the information as confidential and explain why We should treat it as confidential;

b.             the information is commercial in confidence;

c.              revealing the information would cause unreasonable harm to You or someone else; or

d.             You provide the information with an understanding that it will stay confidential.

13.21.           The grant agreement will include any specific requirements about special categories of information collected, created or held under the grant agreement.

Freedom of information

13.22.           All documents in the possession of the Australian Government, including those about the Discovery Program, are subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act).

13.23.           The purpose of the FOI Act is to give members of the public rights of access to information held by the Australian Government and its entities. Under the FOI Act, members of the public can seek access to documents held by the Australian Government. This right of access is limited only by the exceptions and exemptions necessary to protect essential public interests and private and business affairs of persons in respect of whom the information relates.

13.24.           All Freedom of Information requests must be referred to the Freedom of Information Coordinator in writing.

By mail:          Freedom of Information Coordinator

                          Australian Research Council

                          GPO Box 2702

                          CANBERRA  ACT  2601

By email:        foi@arc.gov.au

14.          Consultation

14.1.              We may conduct a survey of Eligible Organisations after the outcomes of each grant opportunity are announced. Outcomes of the survey have been considered in the development of these grant guidelines.



Part A          Australian Laureate Fellowships

A1.         About the scheme

A1.1               This part of the document sets out the specific requirements for the Australian Laureate Fellowships scheme. This part must be read together with the general Discovery Program requirements detailed in Sections 1-14 of these grant guidelines.

Important dates

A1.2               The grant commencement date and active project assessment date for each Australian Laureate Fellowships grant opportunity will be available on the ARC website.

Description

A1.3               The Australian Laureate Fellowships scheme reflects the Australian Government’s commitment to excellence in research by supporting world-class researchers to conduct research in Australia.

A1.4               The scheme encourages applications from the highest-quality researchers by providing eligible Australian Laureate Fellows with project funding in addition to a salary supplement and salary-related (on-cost) support.

A1.5               We may name two successful Australian Laureate Fellows as the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellow and the Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellow. The Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship may be available to a highly ranked female candidate from the humanities, arts and social science disciplines. The Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship may be available to a highly ranked female candidate from the science and technology disciplines. Recipients will be provided with additional funding to undertake an ambassadorial role to promote women in research.

A1.6               The Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship and the Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship are awarded to:

a.              undertake an ambassadorial role to promote women in research;

b.             mentor early career researchers, particularly women, to encourage them to enter and establish research careers in Australia; and

c.              encourage applications from female research leaders of international repute.


 

Objectives

A1.7               The Australian Laureate Fellowships objectives are to:

a.              support ground-breaking, internationally-competitive basic and applied research;

b.             forge strong links among researchers, the international research community and/or industry and other research end-users;

c.              enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas;

d.             attract and retain outstanding researchers and research leaders of international reputation; and

e.             provide an excellent research training environment and exemplary mentorship to nurture early-career researchers.

A1.8               The intended outcomes of the Australian Laureate Fellowships scheme are:

a.              expanded knowledge base and research capability in Australia; and

b.             economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia.

A1.9               Preference will be given to researchers who will play a significant, sustained leadership and mentoring role in increasing Australia’s internationally competitive research capacity.

A2.         Grant amount and grant period

A2.1               We may award up to 17 Australian Laureate Fellowships in a grant opportunity, including the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship and Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship.

A2.2               We provide a salary supplement and project funding as detailed in Table 3. Salary and/or project funding will not be awarded separately.

A2.3               Table 3: Australian Laureate Fellowships funding and grant duration.

Category

Details

Australian Laureate Fellow salary supplement

$166,172 per year (including 30 per cent on-costs) towards a Professorial Level E (or equivalent) salary

Australian Laureate Fellow salary supplement duration

Five consecutive years on a full-time basis

Postdoctoral Research Associate (PDRA) salary support

$102,026 per year (including 30 per cent on-costs) for each of two PDRAs for five years each

Postgraduate Researcher (PGR) stipend

$27,609 per year for each of two PGRs for four years each

Project funding

Up to $300,000 per year, which may include a request for funding for additional postdoctoral researchers and postgraduate students

Project funding duration

Five consecutive years on a full-time basis

Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship

Additional funding of up to $20,000 per year for use as part of the ambassadorial role to promote women in research

The salary and stipend figures in this section are based on the 2019 price levels of funding and will be subject to variation (for example, due to annual indexation). Updated levels will be available on the ARC website.

A2.4               You must provide an Australian Laureate Fellow with a Level E professorial appointment (or equivalent) and salary in line with Your organisation’s normal arrangements for the duration of the Australian Laureate Fellowship. The salary supplement provided by the ARC contributes to that salary.

A3.         Grant eligibility criteria

A3.1               The organisation role available under the Australian Laureate Fellowships grant opportunity is an:

a.              Administering Organisation.

A3.2               The named participant role available under the Australian Laureate Fellowships grant opportunity is an:

a.              Australian Laureate Fellowship candidate.

Applications

A3.3               To be eligible, Your Australian Laureate Fellowship application must:

a.              nominate only one Australian Laureate Fellow candidate; and

b.             request funding for a minimum of two PDRAs and two PGRs.

A3.4               An individual must not be nominated for more than one Australian Laureate Fellowship in a grant opportunity.

A3.5               You may submit an application for an Australian Laureate Fellowship on behalf of an Australian or international researcher.

Australian Laureate Fellowship candidates

Eligibility to apply

A3.6               A previous recipient of an Australian Laureate Fellowship is not eligible to apply for another Australian Laureate Fellowship.

Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellowship or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship

A3.7               Candidates for a Kathleen Fitzpatrick or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship will be assessed for an Australian Laureate Fellowship prior to being assessed for a Kathleen Fitzpatrick or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship.

A3.8               To be eligible for either the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship the candidate must:

a.              be female;

b.             meet the eligibility criteria for Australian Laureate Fellow; and

c.              include a brief outline of proposed activities for the relevant ambassadorial role within their application.

A3.9               Candidates for a Kathleen Fitzpatrick or Georgina Sweet Australian Laureate Fellowship will be assessed against the same selection criteria and will be subject to the same conditions and obligations that apply to all Australian Laureate Fellowship candidates. Preference will be given to candidates who are able to demonstrate outstanding mentoring and capacity building qualities.

A3.10            We may decide not to award one or both of these named fellowships.

A4.         The assessment criteria

A4.1               The assessment criteria for the Australian Laureate Fellowship are:

a.              Investigator/Capability                                                                                                            40%

Describe the:

-            Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE) including:

-            outstanding research outputs and achievements taking into account research opportunity;

-            evidence for and/or potential to undertake ground-breaking research;

-            leadership ability and plans to build world class research capacity and diverse teams; and

-            potential to create an enduring legacy.

-                 extent to which the candidate will build collaborations across research organisations and/or industry and/or with other disciplines both within Australia and internationally.


 

b.             Project quality and innovation                                                                                             25%

Describe the:

-            contribution to an important gap in knowledge or significant problem;

-            novelty/originality and innovation of the proposed research (including any new methods, technologies, theories or ideas that will be developed);

-            clarity of the hypothesis, theories and research questions;

-            cohesiveness of the project design and implementation plan (including the appropriateness of the aim, conceptual framework, method, data and/or analyses);

-            extent to which the research has the potential to enhance international collaboration; and

-            extent to which the research will be cost-effective and represents value for money.

If the project involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research describe:

-            the strategies for enabling collaboration with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where appropriate (for example, dialogue/collaboration with an Indigenous cultural mentor); and

-            any existing or developing, supportive and high quality research communities.

c.              Benefit                                                                                                                                            10%

Describe the potential benefits including the:

-            new or advanced knowledge resulting from outcomes of the research;

-            economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia and international communities; and

-            potential contribution to capacity in the Australian Government’s National Science and Research Priorities and other priorities identified by government.

d.             Mentoring and capacity building                                                                                         25%

Describe:

-            Mentoring, including the extent to which the candidate demonstrates:

-            exceptional ability to supervise and mentor postdoctoral researchers and other early-mid career researchers; and

-            they will be providing a suitable environment for postgraduate students and postdoctoral researchers.

-            Capacity building, including:

-            the extent to which the project will build new teams and create world-class research capacity, collaboration and innovation;

-            the extent to which the candidate demonstrates exceptional leadership and the organisational ability to ensure the development of scale and focus in research;

-            evidence of the project’s and researchers’ potential to attract financial resources to enhance research capacity; and

-            the extent to which this research builds new international research collaboration or links between research and industry.

A5.         Successful grant applications

Fellow responsibilities

A5.1                The Australian Laureate Fellow must:

a.         obtain a legal right to work and reside in Australia, prior to the commencement of the project, if the candidate is not an Australian citizen;

b.         meet residential, time commitment and relinquishment requirements as specified in the grant agreement.

A5.2               The grant agreement includes further information on the requirements and expectations for the Australian Laureate Fellow.

Your responsibilities

A5.3               It is expected You will employ the Australian Laureate Fellow full time (1.0 FTE) for the project activity period.

A5.4               You must ensure the Australian Laureate Fellow has access to the following leave entitlements in line with Your normal practice:

a.              maternity leave;

b.             partner/parental leave;

c.              recreation leave;

d.             sick leave; and

e.             additional leave of up to twelve months using accrued leave or leave without pay.

A5.5               The grant agreement includes further information on leave entitlements. Funding for paid leave, and suspension of the project to undertake such leave, must be requested from Us via a Variation as detailed in the grant agreement.

A6.         How We monitor Your grant activity

A6.1               In addition to the reporting requirements described in Section 12, Australian Laureate Fellows are required to submit mid-term case studies for their research project.



Part B            Future Fellowships

B1.         About the scheme

B1.1                This part of the document sets out the specific requirements for the Future Fellowships scheme. This part must be read together with the general Discovery Program requirements detailed in Sections 1-14 of these grant guidelines.

Important dates

B1.2                The grant commencement date and active project assessment date for each Future Fellowships grant opportunity will be available on the ARC website.

Description

B1.3                Future Fellowships reflects the Australian Government’s commitment to excellence in research by supporting excellent mid-career researchers to undertake high quality research in areas of national and international benefit.

Objectives

B1.4                The Future Fellowships scheme objectives are to:

a.              support excellent basic and applied research and research training by outstanding mid-career researchers to be recruited and retained by universities in continuing academic positions;

b.             support national and international research collaboration; and

c.              enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas.

B1.5                The intended outcomes of the Future Fellowships scheme are:

a.              expanded knowledge base and research capacity in Australia; and

b.             economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia.

B1.6                Preference will be given to Australian researchers.


 

B2.         Grant amount and grant period

B2.1                Up to 100 Future Fellowships may be awarded funding in a grant opportunity.

B2.2                We provide salary and project funding for the Future Fellowships grant opportunity as detailed in Table 4. Salary and/or project funding will not be awarded separately.

B2.3                Table 4: Future Fellowships funding and grant duration.

Category

Details

Fellowship salary

Requested and/or awarded at one of three salary levels including on-costs (see Table 5)

Fellowship salary duration

Four consecutive years on a full-time basis. A Future Fellowship may be undertaken on a part-time basis not exceeding eight consecutive years

Project funding

Up to $60,000 per year

Project funding duration

Four consecutive years full time

B2.4                Table 5: Future Fellowship Academic Salary Levels.

Current Academic Salary Level
(or equivalent)

Future Fellowship salary level to be requested

Total

Level A and B

Level 1 (1.0 FTE)

$157,863 (including 30 per cent on-costs)

Level C

Level 2 (1.0 FTE)

$191,101 (including 30 per cent on-costs)

Level D and E

Level 3 (1.0 FTE)

$224,332 (including 30 per cent on-costs)

The salary figures in this section are based on the 2019 price levels of funding and will be subject to variation (for example, due to annual indexation). Updated levels will be available on the ARC website.

B2.5                A Future Fellowship salary must be requested and will be awarded at one of three levels, which provide salary and salary-related (on-cost) funding. You should select the level according to the Future Fellowship candidate’s academic level (or equivalent) at the grant opportunity closing date (Table 5). For example, a researcher who is currently an Academic Level C must apply for a Future Fellowship Level 2.


 

B2.6                The requested level must align with the Future Fellowship candidate’s current academic level unless:

a.              the Future Fellowship candidate is not employed at an Australian university at the time of application, or is an international researcher, in which case the academic level applicable must be fully justified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent; or

b.             the Future Fellowship candidate has experienced significant interruptions to their academic career, due to family responsibilities as primary care giver and/or due to working with a relevant industry, in which case they may choose the most appropriate salary level. The circumstances of the career interruption and chosen salary level must be justified and certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent.

B2.7                We have absolute discretion in determining the relevant salary level for Future Fellowship candidates.

B3.         Grant eligibility criteria

B3.1                The Organisation role available under the Future Fellowships grant opportunity is an:

a.              Administering Organisation.

B3.2                The named participant role available under the Future Fellowships grant opportunity is a:

a.              Future Fellowship candidate.

Applications

B3.3                To be eligible, Your Future Fellowship application must:

a.              nominate only one Future Fellow candidate; and

b.             have the correct Future Fellowship salary level selected for the candidate.

B3.4                An individual must not be nominated for more than one Future Fellowship in a grant opportunity.

Future Fellowship candidates

Eligibility to apply

B3.5                A previous recipient of a Future Fellowship is not eligible to apply for another Future Fellowship.

B3.6                An individual who has been nominated for a Future Fellowship on three previous occasions, over the period in which the candidate is eligible, is not eligible to apply for another Future Fellowship. This includes applications that were withdrawn after the grant opportunity closing date and applications that We deemed ineligible.


 

B3.7                To be eligible, the candidate must, as at the grant opportunity closing date:

a.              have an award of PhD date on or between the grant opportunity eligibility dates listed on the ARC website; or

b.             have an award of PhD date together with an allowable period of career interruption that would be commensurate with an award of PhD Date on or after the grant opportunity eligibility dates listed on the ARC website. The allowable career interruptions set out, and the period allowed for each are in Table 6.

B3.8                Where the Future Fellowship candidate holds a higher research degree that is not a PhD, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent must certify that the qualification meets the level 10 criteria of the Australian Qualifications Framework Second Edition.

B3.9                Where the Future Fellowship candidate holds a professional equivalent to a PhD which is relied upon as the relevant qualification, this must be certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent.

B3.10            The allowable career interruptions, and the period allowed for each are set out in Table 6. Each period of career interruption must be:

a.              significant and not overlapping;

b.             for a period of greater than one month; and

c.              certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research).

B3.11            Table 6: Allowable career interruptions and timeframes for Future Fellowships.

Reason for Career Interruption

Time which can be claimed

Disruption due to international relocation

A period of time commensurate with the interruption not exceeding three months per international relocation

-       Carer’s responsibilities

-       Medical condition or disability

-       Maternity or parental leave

-       Unemployment

-       Non-research employment not concurrent with research employment

A period of time commensurate with the interruption

Being the primary carer of a dependent child (inclusive of carer’s responsibilities and any maternity or parental leave)

Two years per dependent child, inclusive of any period of maternity or other parental leave, with no maximum identified

A primary carer who has had extensive caring responsibilities for a dependent child may be granted a further extension (in addition to the two years) with justification. This may be due to the child being ill or having a disability


 

B4.         What the grant money can be used for

B4.1                The grant money can be used for the activities set out in these grant guidelines and the grant agreement including travel costs essential to the project up to $100,000 over the project activity period. Travel and accommodation costs related to carrying out field research or carers’ costs are not included in this $100,000 limit.

B5.         The assessment criteria

B5.1                The assessment criteria for the Future Fellowship candidates are:

a.              Investigator/Capability                                                                                                            50%

Describe the quality of the candidate as per the relevant section in Table 7.

Table 7: Future Fellowship candidate.

Future Fellowship Level 1

Future Fellowship Level 2

Future Fellowship Level 3

-       Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE) including record of high quality research outputs appropriate to the discipline/s;

-       evidence of research training, mentoring and supervision;

-       evidence of leadership capability and national research standing; and

-       capability of the candidate to build collaborations across research organisations, industry and other disciplines both within Australia and internationally.

-        Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE) including record of high quality research outputs appropriate to the discipline/s;

-       evidence of research training, mentoring and supervision;

-       evidence of leadership capabilities and national and emerging international research standing; and

-       capability of the candidate to build collaborations across research organisations, industry and other disciplines both within Australia and internationally.

-          Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE) including record of outstanding research outputs appropriate to the discipline/s;

-       evidence of experience in initiating and managing large research projects;

-       evidence of international research standing;

-       evidence of excellence in research training, mentoring and supervision; and

-       capability of the candidate to build collaborations across research organisations, industry and other disciplines both within Australia and internationally.


 

b.             Project quality and innovation                                                                                             25%

Describe the:

-                contribution to an important gap in knowledge or significant problem;

-                novelty/originality and innovation of the proposed research (including any new methods, technologies, theories or ideas that will be developed);

-                clarity of the hypothesis, theories and research questions;

-                cohesiveness of the project design and implementation plan (including the appropriateness of the aim, conceptual framework, method, data and/or analyses); and

-                extent to which the research has the potential to enhance international collaboration.

c.              Benefit                                                                                                                                            15%

Describe the potential benefits including the:

-                new or advanced knowledge resulting from outcomes of the research;

-                economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia and international communities; and

-                potential contribution to capacity in the Australian Government’s National Science and Research Priorities and other priorities identified by government.

d.             Feasibility and strategic alignment                                                                                     10%

Describe the:

-                cost effectiveness of the research and its value for money;

-                extent to which the Future Fellowship candidate aligns with and/or complements the core or developing research strengths and staffing profile of Your organisation;

-                availability of the necessary facilities to conduct the research;

-                resources You will provide to support the Future Fellowship candidate during her/his Future Fellowship; and

-                capacity within Your organisation to transition the candidate at the end of the Future Fellowship to a continuing position.

If the project involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research describe:

-                the strategies for enabling collaboration with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where appropriate (for example, dialogue/collaboration with an Indigenous cultural mentor); and

-                any existing or developing, supportive and high quality research communities.

B6.         How to Apply

Attachments to the application

B6.1                In addition to the requirements in Section 7, You must include a statement within Your application which:

a.              outlines the area of core or emerging areas of research strength and describes the level of resources to be provided to support the candidate (for example, include project costs, PhD students, or salary top-up);

b.             outlines plans to retain the successful Future Fellow in a continuing position, subject to appropriate performance during the Fellowship;

c.              describes how the salary that was previously provided by You to the candidate will be used where the Future Fellowship candidate is Your existing employee; and

d.             is signed by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent.

B7.         Successful grant applications

Fellow responsibilities

B7.1                The Future Fellow may be undertaken on either a full-time, or a part-time basis subject to Your organisation’s employment conditions and provided that the Future Fellowship does not exceed eight years from the project start date (excluding any approved periods of suspension).

B7.2                The Future Fellow:

a.              must obtain a legal right to work and reside in Australia, prior to the commencement of the project if the candidate is not an Australian citizen;

b.             must meet residential, time commitment and relinquishment requirements as specified in the grant agreement;

c.              cannot begin another ARC Fellowship until the Future Fellowship has been completed; and

d.             may not engage in other professional employment during the project activity period without prior approval from Us.

B7.3                The grant agreement includes further information on the requirements and expectations for the Future Fellow.


 

Your responsibilities

B7.4                You must employ the Future Fellow for the project activity period.

B7.5                You are responsible for managing changes to the Future Fellow’s working hours. You are required to notify Us of any changes to working hours through submission of a Variation.

B7.6                You must ensure the Future Fellow has access to the following leave entitlements in line with Your normal practice:

a.              maternity leave;

b.             partner/parental leave;

c.              recreation leave;

d.             sick leave; and

e.             additional leave of up to twelve months using accrued leave or leave without pay.

B7.7                The grant agreement includes further information on leave entitlements. Funding for paid leave, and suspension of the project to undertake such leave, must be requested from Us via a Variation as detailed in the grant agreement.


Part C             Discovery Early Career Researcher Award  (DECRA)

C1.         About the scheme

C1.1                This part of the document sets out the specific requirements for the DECRA scheme. This part must be read together with the general Discovery Program requirements detailed in Sections 1-14 of these grant guidelines.

Important dates

C1.2                The grant commencement date and the active project assessment date for each DECRA grant opportunity will be available on the ARC website.

Description

C1.3                The DECRA grant opportunity provides focused research support for early career researchers in both teaching and research, and research-only positions.

Objectives

C1.4                The DECRA scheme objectives are to:

a.              support excellent basic and applied research by early career researchers;

b.             support national and international research collaboration;

c.              enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas;

d.             advance promising early career researchers and promote enhanced opportunities for diverse career pathways; and

e.             enable research and research training in high quality and supportive environments.

C1.5                The intended outcomes of the DECRA scheme are:

a.              expanded knowledge base and research capacity in Australia; and

b.             economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia.


 

C2.         Grant amount and grant period

C2.1                Up to 200 DECRAs may be awarded funding in a grant opportunity.

C2.2                We provide a salary and project funding for the DECRA grant opportunity as detailed in Table 8. Salary and/or project funding will not be awarded separately.

C2.3                Table 8: Discovery Early Career Researcher Award funding and grant duration.

Category

Details

Salary funding level

$104,316 (including 30 per cent on-costs).

Salary funding duration

Three consecutive years on a full-time basis.  A DECRA project may be undertaken on a part-time basis not exceeding six consecutive years.

Project funding level

Up to $50,000 per year.

Project funding duration

Three consecutive years.

The salary figures in this section are based on the 2019 price levels of funding and will be subject to variation (for example, due to annual indexation). Updated levels will be available on the ARC website.

C3.         Grant eligibility criteria

C3.1                The organisation role available under the DECRA grant opportunity is an:

a.              Administering Organisation.

C3.2                The named participant role available under the DECRA grant opportunity is a:

a.              DECRA candidate.

Applications

C3.3                To be eligible, Your DECRA application must nominate only one DECRA candidate.

C3.4                An individual must not be nominated for more than one DECRA in a grant opportunity.


 

DECRA candidates

Eligibility to apply

C3.5                A previous recipient of a DECRA is not eligible to apply for another DECRA.

C3.6                An individual who has been nominated for a DECRA on two previous occasions, over the period in which the candidate is eligible, is not eligible to apply for another DECRA. This includes applications that were withdrawn after the grant opportunity closing date and applications that We deemed ineligible.

C3.7                To be eligible, the candidate must, as at the grant opportunity closing date:

a.              have an award of PhD date on, or after the grant opportunity eligibility dates listed on the ARC website; or

b.             have an award of PhD date together with an allowable period of career interruption that would be commensurate with an award of PhD date on or after the grant opportunity eligibility dates listed on the ARC website. The allowable career interruptions set out, and the period allowed for each are in Table 9.

C3.8                If a DECRA candidate has more than one PhD, the earliest awarded PhD must fall within this timeframe.

C3.9                Where the DECRA candidate holds a higher research degree that is not a PhD, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent must certify that the qualification meets the level 10 criteria of the Australian Qualifications Framework Second Edition.

C3.10            The allowable career interruptions, and the period allowed for each are set out in Table 9. Each period of career interruption must be:

a.           significant and not overlapping;

b.           for a period of greater than one month; and

c.            certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research).

C3.11            Table 9: Allowable career interruptions and timeframes for DECRA.

Reason for Career Interruption

Time which can be claimed

Disruption due to international relocation.

A period of time commensurate with the interruption not exceeding three months per international relocation

-       Carer’s responsibilities

-       Medical condition or disability

-       Maternity or parental leave

-       Unemployment

-       Non-research employment not concurrent with research employment

A period of time commensurate with the interruption

Being the primary carer of a dependent child (inclusive of carer’s responsibilities and any maternity or parental leave)

Two years per dependent child, inclusive of any period of maternity or other parental leave, with no maximum identified

A primary carer who has had extensive caring responsibilities for a dependent child may be granted a further extension (in addition to the two years) with justification. This may be due to the child being ill or having a disability

C4.         What the grant money can be used for

C4.1                The grant money can be used for the activities set out in these grant guidelines and the grant agreement including travel costs essential to the project up to $50,000 over the project activity period. Travel and accommodation costs related to carrying out field research or carers’ costs are not included in this $50,000 limit.

C5.         The assessment criteria

C5.1                The assessment criteria for the DECRA grant opportunity are:

a.              Investigator/Capability                                                                                                            50%

Describe the:

-                Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE) including record of high quality research outputs appropriate to the discipline/s.

-                capability of candidate to build collaborations both within Australia and internationally.

b.             Project quality and innovation                                                                                             25%

Describe the:

-                contribution to an important gap in knowledge or significant problem;

-                novelty/originality and innovation of the proposed research (including any new methods, technologies, theories or ideas that will be developed);

-                clarity of the hypothesis, theories and research questions;

-                cohesiveness of the project design and implementation plan (including the appropriateness of the aim, conceptual framework, method, data and/or analyses); and

-                extent to which the research has the potential to enhance international collaboration.


 

c.              Benefit                                                                                                                                            15%

Describe the potential benefits including the:

-                new or advanced knowledge resulting from outcomes of the research;

-                economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia and international communities; and

-                potential contribution to capacity in the Australian Government’s National Science and Research Priorities and other priorities identified by government.

d.             Feasibility                                                                                                                                      10%

Describe the:

-                cost-effectiveness of the research and its value for money;

-                feasibility of the research (including contribution of the project’s design, participants and resources to the timely completion of the project);

-                supportive environment for the DECRA candidate and their project, and for HDR students where appropriate; and

-                availability of the necessary facilities to complete the project.

If the project involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research describe:

-                the strategies for enabling collaboration with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where appropriate (for example, dialogue/collaboration with an Indigenous cultural mentor); and

-                any existing or developing, supportive and high quality research communities.

C6.         How to Apply

Attachments to the application

C6.1                In addition to the requirements in Section 7, You must include a statement within Your application which:

a.              indicates that this area is a core or emerging research strength and describes the level of resources to be provided to support the successful DECRA candidate (for example, project costs, PhD students, or salary top-up);

b.             details opportunities for the DECRA candidate to demonstrate the level of independence required to be competitive for research and/or research and teaching pathways at Your organisation during and after the project; and

c.              is signed by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent.

C7.         Successful grant applications

DECRA responsibilities

C7.1                The DECRA may be undertaken on either a full-time, or a part-time basis subject to Your organisation’s employment conditions and provided that the DECRA does not exceed six years from the project start date (excluding any approved periods of suspension).

C7.2                The DECRA:

a.              must obtain a legal right to work and reside in Australia, prior to the commencement of the project if the candidate is not an Australian citizen;

b.             must meet residential, time commitment and relinquishment requirements as specified in the grant agreement;

c.              must work all of their employed time on the project;

d.             cannot begin another ARC Fellowship until the DECRA has been completed; and

e.             may not engage in other professional employment during the project activity period without prior approval from Us.

C7.3                The grant agreement includes further information on the requirements and expectations for the DECRA.

Your responsibilities

C7.4                You must employ the DECRA for the project activity period.

C7.5                You are responsible for managing changes to the DECRA’s working hours. You are required to notify Us of any changes to working hours through submission of a Variation.

C7.6                You must ensure the DECRA has access to the following leave entitlements in line with Your normal practice:

a.              maternity leave;

b.             partner/parental leave;

c.              recreation leave;

d.             sick leave; and

e.             additional leave of up to twelve months using accrued leave or leave without pay.

C7.7                The grant agreement includes further information on leave entitlements. Funding for paid leave, and suspension of the project to undertake such leave, must be requested from Us via a Variation as detailed in the grant agreement.

Grant Agreement Variation

C7.8                DECRA salary funding may be used for other purposes to support the project in changed circumstances with Our approval and without extension to the project activity period. These purposes will not include supporting the DECRA recipient to begin another ARC Fellowship.

C7.9                The use of DECRA salary funding for other project purposes does not confer an exemption from the limits applicable to budget items and personnel for project limits eligibility.



Part D            Discovery Indigenous

D1.         About the scheme

D1.1               This part of the document sets out the specific requirements for the Discovery Indigenous scheme. This part must be read together with the general Discovery Program requirements detailed in Sections 1-14 of these grant guidelines.

Important dates

D1.2               The grant commencement date and active project assessment date for each Discovery Indigenous grant opportunity will be available on the ARC website.

Description

D1.3               The Discovery Indigenous scheme provides grant funding to support research projects led by an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researcher.

D1.4               Discovery Indigenous grants include support for Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Awards (DAATSIAs) which are fellowships available to eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers.

Objectives

D1.5               The Discovery Indigenous scheme objectives are to:

a.              support excellent basic and applied research and research training by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers as individuals and as teams;

b.             support national and international research collaboration;

c.              enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas; and

d.             support and retain established Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers in higher education institutions.

D1.6               The intended outcomes of the Discovery Indigenous scheme are:

a.              expanded knowledge base and research capacity in Australia; and

b.             economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia.


 

D2.         Grant amount and grant period

D2.1               We provide project funding and DAATSIA salary funding for the Discovery Indigenous grant opportunity as detailed in Table 10. You may not request funding for a DAATSIA without project funding.

D2.2               Table 10: Discovery Indigenous funding and grant duration.

Category

Details

Project funding

Between $30,000 and $500,000 per year

Project funding duration

Up to five consecutive years

DAATSIA salary

Requested and/or awarded at one of five salary levels as specified in Table 11. The DAATSIA salary is counted towards the $500,000 maximum level of funding per year

DAATSIA salary duration

Up to five consecutive years on a full-time basis. A DAATSIA may be undertaken on a part-time basis not exceeding eight consecutive years

D2.3               DAATSIA salary funding may be requested at one of five salary levels, as per Table 11, including salary-related on-costs. The salary level must be either equivalent to or higher than the salary level of the CI as at the grant opportunity closing date.

D2.4               Table 11: Salary levels for DAATSIAs.

DAATSIA salary levels

Total

DAATSIA Level 1 (1.0 FTE)

$104,316 including 30 per cent on-costs

DAATSIA Level 2 (1.0 FTE)

$122,726 including 30 per cent on-costs

DAATSIA Level 3 (1.0 FTE)

$159,543 including 30 per cent on-costs

DAATSIA Level 4 (1.0 FTE)

$184,090 including 30 per cent on-costs

DAATSIA Level 5 (1.0 FTE)

$220,907 including 30 per cent on-costs

The salary figures in this section are based on the 2019 price levels of funding and will be subject to variation (for example, due to annual indexation). Updated levels will be available on the ARC website.


 

D3.         Grant eligibility criteria

D3.1               Organisation roles available under the Discovery Indigenous grant opportunity are:

a.              Administering Organisation;

b.             Other Eligible Organisation; and

c.              Other Organisation.

D3.2               The named participant roles available under the Discovery Indigenous grant opportunity are:

a.              CI;

b.             DAATSIA candidate; and

c.              PI.

Applications

D3.3               To be eligible, Your Discovery Indigenous application must:

a.              nominate at least one CI or DAATSIA candidate. The first-named CI or the DAATSIA candidate must be an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researcher. The first named person on the application will be the Project Leader; and

b.             request a minimum level of funding of $30,000 per year in project costs in Your application. This must be requested in addition to the DAATSIA salary (if requested), which is detailed in Tables 10 and 11. The $500,000 maximum level of funding per year includes the DAATSIA salary.

D3.4               You may include one or more CI and/or PI in Your application.

D3.5               An individual must not be nominated for more than one DAATSIA in any grant opportunity.

Chief Investigators

D3.6               CIs must meet at least one of the following criteria as at the grant commencement date, and for the project activity period:

a.              be an employee for at least 20 per cent of full time equivalent at an Eligible Organisation; or

b.             be a holder of an honorary academic appointment (as defined in the Glossary) at an Eligible Organisation.

D3.7               CIs must reside predominantly in Australia for the project activity period. Any significant absences including fieldwork or study leave directly related to the project must have approval from You and must not total more than half the project activity period. In extraordinary circumstances, changes must be approved via a Variation.

DAATSIA candidates

Eligibility to apply

D3.8               To be eligible to be a DAATSIA candidate, the nominated individual must:

a.              be an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researcher; and

b.             meet all the eligibility criteria to apply as a CI.

D3.9               An individual who has previously been awarded a DAATSIA may apply for another DAATSIA, but can only hold one at a time.

Partner investigators

D3.10            PIs must not meet the eligibility criteria for a CI as at the grant commencement date or during the project activity period.

D3.11            Researchers who do not meet all of the eligibility criteria for being a CI may be PIs. An employee of an Eligible Organisation who will not reside predominantly in Australia for the project activity period may be a PI.

D4.         What the grant funds can be used for

Eligible Expenditure

D4.1               The grant funding can be used for the activities set out in these grant guidelines and the grant agreement including:

a.              if relevant, salary and on-costs for the DAATSIA recipient; and

b.             project costs as detailed in Section 5 of these grant guidelines, subject to the following limitations:

i.           teaching relief for CIs up to a total of $50,000 per CI per year.
A CI awarded a DAATSIA will not be awarded teaching relief;

ii.         HDR stipends may be supported at a rate of $27,609 per year (up to two per application) for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students enrolled at an Eligible Organisation; and

iii.        travel costs essential to the project may be supported up to $50,000 over the project activity period. Travel and accommodation costs related to carrying out field research or carers’ costs are not included in this $50,000 limit.

D4.2               Stipends may be requested to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Honours students, subject to Your policies.


 

D5.         The assessment criteria

D5.1               The assessment criteria for the Discovery Indigenous grant opportunity are:

a.              Investigator(s)/Capability                                                                                                       35%

Describe:

-            Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE);

-            time and capacity to undertake the research;

-            evidence of experience in research training, mentoring and supervision (where appropriate); and

-            the capability of the investigator or team to build collaborations both within Australia and internationally.

b.             Project quality and innovation                                                                                             40%

Describe the:

-            contribution to an important gap in knowledge or significant problem;

-            novelty/originality and innovation of the proposed research (including any new methods, technologies, theories or ideas that will be developed);

-            clarity of the hypothesis, theories and research questions;

-            cohesiveness of the project design and implementation plan (including the appropriateness of the aim, conceptual framework, method, data and/or analyses);

-            extent to which the research has the potential to enhance international collaboration; and

-            enhancement of project quality by DAATSIA.

c.              Benefit                                                                                                                                            15%

Describe the potential benefits including the:

-            new or advanced knowledge resulting from outcomes of the research;

-            economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia and international communities; and

-            potential contribution to capacity in the Australian Government’s National Science and Research Priorities and other priorities identified by Government.

d.             Feasibility                                                                                                                                     10%

Describe the:

-            cost-effectiveness of the research and its value for money;

-            quality of the environment for the DAATSIA candidate and their project, and for HDR students where appropriate;

-            availability of the necessary facilities to complete the project; and

-            how the design of the project and the expertise of the participants is sufficient to ensure that it can be completed within the proposed budget and timeframe.

 If the project involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research describe:

-            the strategies for enabling collaboration with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where appropriate (for example, dialogue/collaboration with an Indigenous cultural mentor); and

-            any existing or developing, supportive and high quality research communities.

D6.         How to Apply

Attachments to the application

D6.1               In addition to the requirements in Section 7, You must include in Your application information on why the project quality would be enhanced by a DAATSIA and detail the ways in which the additional research time would be utilised (for example, undertaking sustained field research, archival research or laboratory work).

D7.         Successful grant applications

DAATSIA recipient responsibilities

D7.1               The DAATSIA may be undertaken on either a full-time, or a part-time, basis subject to Your organisation’s employment conditions and provided the DAATSIA does not exceed eight years from the project start date (excluding any approved periods of suspension).

D7.2               The DAATSIA recipient must meet residential, time commitment and relinquishment requirements as specified in the grant agreement.

D7.3               The grant agreement includes further information on the requirements and expectations for the DAATSIA recipient.

Your responsibilities

D7.4               You must employ the DAATSIA recipient(s) for the project activity period.

D7.5               You are responsible for managing changes to the DAATSIA recipient’s working hours.
You are required to notify Us of any changes to working hours through submission of a Variation.

D7.6               You must ensure the DAATSIA recipient has access to the following leave entitlements in line with Your normal practice:

a.              maternity leave;

b.             partner/parental leave;

c.              recreation leave;

d.             sick leave; and

e.             additional leave of up to twelve months using accrued leave or leave without pay.

D7.7               The grant agreement includes further information on leave entitlements. Funding for paid leave, and suspension of the project to undertake such leave, must be requested from Us via a Variation as detailed in the grant agreement.



Part E             Discovery Projects

E1.         About the scheme

E1.1                This part of the document sets out the specific requirements for the Discovery Projects scheme. This part must be read together with the general Discovery Program requirements detailed in Sections 1-14 of these grant guidelines.

Important dates

E1.2                The grant commencement date and active project assessment date for each Discovery Projects grant opportunity will be available on the ARC website.

Description

E1.3                The Discovery Projects scheme provides grant funding to support research projects that may be undertaken by individual researchers or research teams.

Objectives

E1.4                The Discovery Projects scheme objectives are to:

a.              support excellent basic and applied research and research training by individuals and teams;

b.             support national and international research collaboration; and

c.              enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas.

E1.5                The intended outcomes of the Discovery Projects scheme are:

a.              expanded knowledge base and research capacity in Australia; and

b.             economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia.

E2.         Grant amount and grant period

E2.1                Table 12: Discovery Projects funding and grant duration.

Category

Details

Project funding

Between $30,000 and $500,000 per year

Project funding duration

Up to five consecutive years


 

E3.         Grant eligibility criteria

E3.1                Organisation roles available under the Discovery Projects grant opportunity are:

a.              Administering Organisation;

b.             Other Eligible Organisation; and

c.              Other Organisation.

E3.2                The named participant roles available under the Discovery Projects grant opportunity are:

a.              CI; and

b.             PI.

Applications

E3.3                To be eligible, Your Discovery Projects application must nominate at least one CI. The first named CI will be the Project Leader.

Chief Investigators

E3.4                CIs must meet at least one of the following criteria as at the grant commencement date, and for the project activity period:

a.              be an employee for at least 20 per cent of full time equivalent (0.2 FTE) at an Eligible Organisation; or

b.             be a holder of an honorary academic appointment (as defined in the Glossary) at an Eligible Organisation.

Partner Investigators

E3.5                Researchers who do not meet all of the eligibility criteria for being a CI may be PIs. PIs must not meet the eligibility criteria for a CI as at the grant commencement date or during the project activity period.

E3.6                An employee of an Eligible Organisation who will not reside predominantly in Australia for the project activity period may be a PI.

E4.         What the grant funds can be used for

Eligible expenditure

E4.1                The grant funds can be used for the activities set out in Section 5 of these grant guidelines, subject to the following limitations:

a.              teaching relief for CIs may be supported up to a total of $50,000 per CI per year
per project; and

b.             travel costs essential to the project may be supported up to $50,000 over the project activity period. Travel and accommodation costs related to carrying out field research or any carers’ costs are not included in this $50,000 limit.

E5.         The assessment criteria

E5.1                The assessment criteria for the Discovery Projects grant opportunity are:

a.              Investigator(s)/Capability                                                                                                       35%

Describe:

-            Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE);

-            time and capacity to undertake the research;

-            evidence of experience in research training, mentoring and supervision (where appropriate); and

-            the capability of the investigator or team to build collaborations both within Australia and internationally.

b.             Project quality and innovation                                                                                             40%

Describe the:

-            contribution to an important gap in knowledge or significant problem;

-            novelty/originality and innovation of the proposed research (including any new methods, technologies, theories or ideas that will be developed);

-            clarity of the hypothesis, theories and research questions;

-            cohesiveness of the project design and implementation plan (including the appropriateness of the aim, conceptual framework, method, data and/or analyses); and

-            extent to which the research has the potential to enhance international collaboration.

c.              Benefit                                                                                                                                            15%

Describe the potential benefits including the:

-            new or advanced knowledge resulting from outcomes of the research;

-            economic, commercial, environmental, social and/or cultural benefits for Australia and international communities; and

-            potential contribution to capacity in the Australian Government’s National Science and Research Priorities and other priorities identified by Government.

d.             Feasibility                                                                                                                                      10%

Describe the:

-            cost-effectiveness of the research and its value for money;

-            suitability of the environment for the research team and their project, and for HDR students where appropriate;

-            availability of the necessary facilities to complete the project; and

-            extent to which the project’s design, participants and requested budget create confidence in the timely and successful completion of the project.


 

If the project involves Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research describe:

-            the strategies for enabling collaboration with Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities where appropriate (for example, dialogue/collaboration with an Indigenous cultural mentor); and

-            any existing or developing, supportive and high quality research communities.

 


15.          Glossary

15.1.              For the purposes of the Discovery Program grant guidelines, acronyms have the meanings defined below.

Acronym

Description

ARC

Australian Research Council

ARC Act

Australian Research Council Act 2001

CGRGs

Commonwealth Grants Rules and Guidelines 2017

CEO

Chief Executive Officer

CI

Chief Investigator

DAATSIA

Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award

DECRA

Discovery Early Career Researcher Award

FOI

Freedom of Information

FTE

Full Time Equivalent

GST

Goods and Services Tax

HDR

Higher Degree by Research

HECS

Higher Education Contribution Scheme

HELP

Higher Education Loan Program

KPI

Key Performance Indicator

NCGP

National Competitive Grants Program

ORCID ID

Open Researcher and Contributor Identifier

PDRA

Postdoctoral Research Associate

PGR

Postgraduate Researcher

PhD

Doctor of Philosophy

PI

Partner Investigator

RMS

Research Management System

ROPE

Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence

SAC

Selection Advisory Committee

 


 

15.2.              For the purposes of the Discovery Program grant guidelines, terms have the meanings defined below.

Term

Definition

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person

a person of Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent who identifies as an Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person and is accepted as an Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person by the community in which they live or have lived.

active project

a project that is receiving funding according to the terms of an existing Funding Agreement or grant agreement, or has any carryover funds approved by the ARC, or an approved variation to the project end date.

active project assessment date

the date on which active project eligibility will be considered for project and application limits per named participant.

Administering Organisation

an Eligible Organisation which submits an application for a grant and which will be responsible for the administration of the grant if the application is approved for funding.

applicant

the Administering Organisation.

application

a request for funding submitted through RMS by an Administering Organisation seeking grant funding under an ARC grant program. It includes the specifics of a proposed grant activity as well as the administrative information required to determine the eligibility of the application.

ARC assessor community

the Australian and international assessors that assess applications submitted to the ARC that are within their areas of expertise.

ARC College of Experts

the body of experts of international standing appointed to assist the ARC to identify research excellence, moderate external assessments and recommend applications for funding. Its members are specialist and generalist experts in their knowledge fields drawn from the Australian research community.

The ARC website provides information on who is a member of the College of Experts.

ARC Fellowship

a named Fellowship position within any ARC grant program where the salary is funded wholly or partly by the ARC.

ARC website

the website accessed using www.arc.gov.au.

assessment criteria

the specified principles or standards, against which applications will be considered. These criteria are also used to assess the merits of applications and, in the case of a competitive grant opportunity, to determine application rankings.

Australian researcher

an Australian citizen, permanent resident or New Zealand Special Category Visa holder.

award of PhD date

the date of conferral of a PhD, not the date of submission of the thesis, nor the date the thesis was accepted by the examination board.

bench fees

fees that an organisation charges for an individual to use infrastructure which would normally be provided by the organisation for their employees. This infrastructure may vary and could include, for example, an office or laboratory space with appropriate equipment, or access to non-specialised equipment owned by the organisation.

candidate

the person nominated in an application for a Discovery Early Career Researcher Award, Future Fellowship, Australian Laureate Fellowship or Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Researcher Award.

Chief Executive Officer

means the person holding the position of ARC CEO in accordance with the ARC Act or any person acting in that position.

Chief Investigator

a participant who satisfies the eligibility criteria for a CI under these grant guidelines.

Commonwealth

the Commonwealth of Australia.

Commonwealth Fellowship

a position held by a participant where the salary is funded wholly or partly by the Commonwealth.

date of effect

the date on which a grant agreement is signed or a specified starting date.

Detailed Assessors

assessors drawn from the ARC assessor community who are assigned applications to review for their specific expertise in a field of research.

Discovery Program

a program within the NCGP which comprises: Australian Laureate Fellowships, Discovery Early Career Researcher Award, Discovery Indigenous, Discovery Projects, Future Fellowships and other grant opportunities as updated from time to time.

eligibility criteria

the mandatory criteria which must be met to qualify for a grant. Assessment criteria may apply in addition to eligibility criteria.

Eligible Organisation

an organisation listed in Section 4 of these grant guidelines.

Fellow

the holder of a research fellowship, such as the Australian Laureate Fellowship, Future Fellowship, Discovery Early Career Researcher Award or Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award.

field research

the collection of information integral to the project outside a laboratory, library or workplace setting and often in a location external to the participant’s normal place of employment.

General Assessors

the members that make up a relevant grant opportunity’s Selection Advisory Committee. General Assessors utilise knowledge of their disciplinary areas and a broad understanding of intellectual and methodological issues and good research planning. Each application has a lead General Assessor (known as Carriage 1) who is typically close to the academic field of the application, and one or more General Assessors (known as Other Carriages) with supplementary expertise.

grant activity

the project/tasks/services that the grantee is required to undertake. A project consists of a number of grant activities.

grant agreement

the agreement entered into by the ARC and an Administering Organisation when an application from that organisation is approved for grant funding. This was previously referred to as a ‘Funding Agreement’.

grant commencement date

the date on which grant funding may commence.

grant offer

the details listed in the ARC’s RMS under ‘Funding Offers’ showing the project details and grant amount.

GrantConnect

the Australian Government’s whole-of-government grants information system, which centralises the publication and reporting of Commonwealth grants in accordance with the CGRGs.

grantee

the Administering Organisation which has been selected to receive a grant.

grant opportunity

the specific grant round or process where a Commonwealth grant is made available to potential grantees. Grant opportunities may be open or targeted, and will reflect the relevant grant selection process.

grant opportunity closing date

the last day on which applications for a grant opportunity will be accepted for consideration for a specific grant opportunity.

grant opportunity opening date

the first day on which applications for a grant opportunity will be accepted for consideration for a specific grant opportunity.

GST

the meaning as given in Section 195-1 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999.

Higher Degree by Research (HDR)

a ‘Research Doctorate or Research Masters course, for which at least two-thirds of the student load for the course is required as research work’ as defined by the Commonwealth Scholarships Guidelines (Research) 2017.

honorary academic appointment

any honorary position that gives full academic status, as certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) (or equivalent) in the application. For ARC purposes this relationship must include access to research support comparable to employees e.g. an emeritus appointment. The person would not be considered to hold an honorary academic appointment for the purposes of these grant guidelines if they hold a substantive, paid position elsewhere.

in-kind contributions

A contribution of goods, services, materials and/or time to the project from an individual, business or organisation. Values should be calculated based on the most likely actual cost, for example, current market, preferred provider or internal provider rates/valuations/rentals/charges (that is in the financial year of the date of the application) of the costs of labour, work spaces, equipment and databases. The calculations covering time and costs should be documented by the Administering Organisation. The ARC may require these calculations to be audited.

Instructions to Applicants

a set of instructions prepared by the ARC to assist applicants in completing the application form.

Key Performance Indicators

a set of quantifiable measures that the ARC uses to monitor and report on progress of research outcomes.

legislative instrument

a law on matters of detail made by a person or body authorised to do so by the relevant enabling legislation.

medical research

medical research as defined in the ARC Medical Research Policy available on the ARC website.

Minister

the Minister responsible for the administration of the ARC Act.

named participants

individual researchers nominated for particular roles in an application.

national interest

the extent to which the research contributes to Australia’s national interest through its potential to have economic, commercial, environmental, social or cultural benefits to the Australian community.

officials

officials of a Commonwealth entity. An official of a Commonwealth entity is an individual who is in, or forms part of the entity (see Section 8 of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act).

ORCID Identifier

a persistent digital identifier for an individual researcher available on the ORCID website, www.orcid.org.

Other Eligible Organisation

an organisation listed in Section 4 of these grant guidelines which is not the Administering Organisation on an application.

Other Organisation

an organisation that is not an Administering Organisation or Other Eligible Organisation that contributes to the research project.

participants

all named participants on an application (ie. CIs, PIs, candidates); and all unnamed researchers such as postdoctoral research associates and postgraduate researchers working on a project. 

Partner Investigator

a named participant who satisfies the eligibility criteria for a Partner Investigator under these grant guidelines.

PhD

a qualification that meets the level 10 criteria of the Australian Qualifications Framework Second Edition January 2013.

Postdoctoral Research Associate

a postdoctoral research associate funded by the Commonwealth through the Administering Organisation, who will be employed on the project.

Postgraduate Researcher

a postgraduate research student funded by the Commonwealth through the Administering Organisation, who will undertake a HDR through the project.

project

an application approved by the Minister to receive funding from the ARC through an application.

project activity period

the period during which a project is receiving grant funding according to the original grant offer, or has any carryover funds approved by the ARC, or an approved variation to the project’s end date. During this period, the project is known as an active project.

project end date

the expected date that the project activity is completed and by which all grant funding will be spent.

Project Leader

the named participant from the Administering Organisation who is the first-named CI on an application.

recipient

an individual or organisation who has received grant funding from the ARC.

research

for the purposes of these grant guidelines, the creation of new knowledge and/or the use of existing knowledge in a new and creative way so as to generate new concepts, methodologies, inventions and understandings. This could include synthesis and analysis of previous research to the extent that it is new and creative.

This definition of research is consistent with a broad notion of research and experimental development comprising “creative and systematic work undertaken in order to increase the stock of knowledge – including knowledge of humankind, culture and society – and to devise new applications of available knowledge”
OECD (2015), Frascati Manual 2015: Guidelines for Collecting and Reporting Data on Research and Experimental Development (p.378).

research infrastructure

the assets, facilities, services, and coordinated access to major national and/or international research facilities or consortia which directly support research in higher education organisations and more broadly and which maintain the capacity of researchers to undertake excellent research and deliver innovative outcomes.

Research Office

a business unit within an Eligible Organisation that is responsible for contact with the ARC regarding applications and projects.

Research Opportunity and Performance Evidence (ROPE)

an ARC policy framework used to consider and assess the quality and research excellence of a named participant within the context of the participant’s career and life experiences. One key element is that the assessment process takes into account the quality rather than simply the volume or size of the research contribution.

research output

all products of a research project.

Science and Research Priorities

those priority research areas identified by the Australian Government, and available on the Australian Government’s
Science website.

Selection Advisory Committee (SAC)

a group of experts from academia and industry appointed to assist the ARC to evaluate applications and to provide a recommendation for funding to the CEO. A SAC may be drawn from the ARC College of Experts.

selection criteria

the eligibility criteria and assessment criteria.

selection process

the method used to select potential grantees. This process may involve comparative assessment of applications or the assessment of applications against the eligibility criteria and/or the assessment criteria.

Special Condition

a condition specified in a grant offer which governs the use of the funding provided by the ARC.

technical workshop services

the specialised construction and maintenance activities carried out by a technician, often within a dedicated facility for working with materials such as wood, glass, metal, plastics or electronics.

travel costs

the domestic and international economy travel costs associated with the project, including to foster and strengthen collaborations between researchers in Australia and overseas.

value for money

‘value for money’ is a judgement based on the grant application representing an efficient, effective, economical and ethical use of public resources determined from a variety of considerations: merit of the proposal, risk, cost and expected contribution to outcome achievement.

Variation of Grant Agreement (Variation)

a request submitted to the ARC in RMS to agree a change in the grant agreement.

We

the Australian Research Council (ARC). ‘Us’ and ‘Our’ are also used in this context.

You

the Eligible Organisation that submitted the application. ‘Your’ is also used in this context.