ARC funding

The Australian Research Council (ARC) supports the highest quality research and research training through national competition in all fields of science, social sciences and the humanities.

The ARC brokers partnerships between researchers and industry, government, community organisations and the international community.

ARC funding schemes are divided into two categories:

  • Discovery Program (Discovery Projects, Discovery Early Career Researcher Award, Discovery Indigenous, Future Fellowship and Australian Laureate Fellowships schemes)
  • Linkage Program (Linkage Projects, ARC Centres of Excellence, Co-funded Centres, Industrial Transformation Research Program, Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities, Linkage Learned Academies Special Projects and Special Research Initiatives schemes).

Funding schemes

Linkage projects

Linkage Projects support collaborative research and development projects between higher education organisations and other organisations (including industry).

You can read more about the objectives of the Linkage Projects Scheme on the ARC website.

ARC information for applicants

Information and assistance for completing the application form and associated documents is available under the heading for key documents and information on the ARC website.

Internal ARC process

In 2016 the Office for Research introduced a new ARC & NHMRC application process. Find out about the new process.

Documents to be completed in the final stage of the ARC application process:

  • ARC Linkage Projects Compliance Checklist (forthcoming)
  • ARC Linkage Certification Page (forthcoming).

Reporting requirements

Discovery Projects

ARC Discovery Projects are research projects that can be undertaken by individual researchers or research teams. Classified as Category 1, this scheme is one of the most competitive research funding schemes in Australia.

You can read more about the objectives of the Discovery Projects Scheme on the ARC website.

ARC information for applicants

Information and assistance for completing the application form and associated documents is under the heading for key documents and information on the ARC website.

The closing date for Discovery Projects applications are listed on the ARC important dates.

Internal ARC process

In 2016 the Office for Research introduced a new ARC & NHMRC application process. Find out about the new process.

Documents to be completed in the final stage of the ARC application process:

  • ARC Discovery Projects Compliance Checklist (forthcoming)
  • ARC Discovery Projects Certification Page (forthcoming).

Reporting requirements

Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)

The Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) is a separate element of the Discovery Program.

The DECRA provides more focused support for researchers and creates more opportunities for early career researchers in both teaching and research, and research-only positions.

You can read more about the objectives of the DECRA Scheme on the ARC website.

Eligibility

  • PhD award date to be eligible for a DECRA, without career interruption: on or after 1 March 2012
  • PhD award date to be eligible for a DECRA, with career interruption: on or after 1 March 2008

ARC information for applicants

Information and assistance for completing the application form and associated documents is available under the heading for key documents and information on the ARC website.

Internal ARC process

In 2016 the Office for Research introduced a new ARC & NHMRC application process. Find out about the new process.

Documents to be completed in the final stage of the ARC application process:

  • ARC DECRA Compliance Checklist (forthcoming) 
  • ARC DECRA Certification Page (forthcoming).

Discovery Indigenous Scheme

The Discovery Indigenous Scheme provides funding to Administering Organisations to support research programs led by an Indigenous Australian researcher and build research capacity of higher degree research and early career researchers.

You can read more about the objectives of the Discovery Indigenous Scheme on the ARC website.

ARC information for applicants

Information and assistance for completing the application form and associated documents is available under the heading for key documents and information on the ARC website.

Internal ARC process

In 2016 the Office for Research introduced a new ARC & NHMRC application process. Find out about the new process.

Documents to be completed in the final stage of the ARC application process:

  • ARC Discovery Indigenous Compliance Checklist
  • ARC Discovery Indigenous Certification Page.

Future Fellowships

The Future Fellowships Scheme was introduced to promote research in areas of critical national importance by giving outstanding researchers incentives to conduct their research in Australia.

The key aim of the Future Fellowships Scheme is to attract and retain the best and brightest mid-career researchers.

Although international experience is important for Australian researchers, it is also important they have the opportunity to return home to continue their work. Future Fellowships aim to encourage outstanding Australian researchers currently based overseas to return to Australia.

One call for proposals is made each year.

Funding overview

The Future Fellowships Scheme provides four-year fellowships to outstanding Australian and international mid-career researchers.

In addition, the ARC may award the Administering Organisation up to $50,000 of non-salary funding per annum which may be used for infrastructure, equipment, travel and relocation costs directly related to the Future Fellow’s research.

ARC information for applicants

Information and assistance for completing as fully and accurately as possible the application form and associated documents is available on the ARC website.

Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy

The new ARC Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy (version 2014.1) has been released. This policy is applicable to all individuals engaging with the ARC.

Indigenous Cultural Protocols

The ARC recommends that ARC-funded research projects conform to the Australia Council for the Arts, Indigenous Cultural Protocols for Producing Indigenous Australian Music, Writing, Visual Arts, Media Arts and Performing Arts; Arts (2007), when accessing, using or reproducing music, literature, arts, images or ceremonies of Indigenous peoples, or Indigenous cultural materials.

ARC Medical Research Policy

In January 2014, the ARC revised its definition of Medical and Dental Research. This definition aims to further clarify the eligibility of Proposals seeking ARC funding for research within this area.

Medical and Dental Research means research and/or training primarily and substantially aimed at understanding or treating a human disease or health condition.

Multi-institutional collaboration protocol

VU encourages their researchers to collaborate on research projects with their colleagues at other Universities and Research Institutes. However, as research projects have a resource implication for both the researcher and the University, it is essential that VU researchers ensure that the funding resources to undertake their component of the project come to the University.

Such negotiations with external colleagues can be challenging but it is only reasonable to expect that funds be provided to the University as part of a VU researcher's contribution and participation involvement in the research project. The Office for Research can provide researchers with advice and support for any such negotiations.

VU Researchers who are collaborating on a research project where the application will be submitted through another institution should be aware that the Certification Page must be signed by both their College Dean or nominee and Director, Office for Research (on behalf of the PVC Research & Research Training and the University). The College Dean or nominee needs to ensure that all committed resources for the project are available.

Please note that it is in the researcher's interest to receive funding - so it can contribute to the researcher's Measurement of Individual Research Activity (MORIA) and the University's research block grant funding.

Contact us

If you have any queries regarding any of the ARC funding schemes, please email Palmina Fichera.

Email: palmina.fichera@vu.edu.au
Phone: +61 3 9919 4707