Funded Research

Document Currently Under Review

Current Status: Under Review - With Editor 6 September 2017

Applying for Research Funding Procedure

Policy Code: RS1925

Purpose

To outline the processes involved in applying for external research funding at Federation University Australia.

Scope

The procedure covers all categories of external research funding, including funding awarded by national and international bodies, such as the ARC and NHMRC and all levels of government, as well as private industry and the community sector. This procedure applies to all those within the University or any controlled entity, applying for external research funding, including:

  • All staff, including sessional staff, employed by the University;
  • All persons, including Honorary and Adjunct appointees of the University or any controlled entity;
  • Higher Degree by Research students who apply for external research funding or an externally funded scholarship stipend as part of their studies.

Legislative Context

Australian Code for the Responsible Conduct of Research 2007 (The Code)

Definitions

Term Definition
Research: Research is defined as 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 and understandings. This could include synthesis and analysis of previous research to the extent that it leads to new and creative outcomes. (2015 HERDC Specifications, Pg 7, Section 3)
Contract Research: Research undertaken with an agreement to provide research services under specific negotitated conditions in exchange for specific deliverables.
Controlled Entity: A Company over which the University has control within the meaning of section 3 of the Audit Act 1994 (Vic) and which has adopted this Policy.
Research Funding: Funding awarded to a staff member or Higher Degree by Research student to support their research activities.
Research Grant: The term generally refers to funding obtained through a competitive process run by govenment, corporations, industry or charitable foundations.
Mentor: An academic staff member who has been successfully awarded Category 1 funding or has extensive research experience who can provide advice and guidance to other academic staff.
Category 1 Income: Australian Competitive Grants Consists only of income from those research schemes and programs listed on the Australian Competitive Grants Register (ACGR) for that current year.
Category 2 Income: Other Public Sector Research Income

Consists of income received from other government sources, including:

  • Federal Government schemes and business enterprises NOT listed on the ACGR
  • state and local governments and partly government owned or funded bodies
  • research income from CRCs in which the University was not a core participant or signatory
Category 3 Income: Industry and Other Research Income

Any research income not meeting the definition of category 1, 2 or 4.

  • Research grants or contract research with Australian or international industry or non-Australian Government agencies.
  • Funding through donations, bequests and foundations (both Australian and international)
Category 4: CRC Research Income

A Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) is created through a Commonwealth Agreement with a higher education provider (HEP). Category 4 income consists of research income received from a CRC in which the University is a core participant (i.e. a signatory to the CRC's Commonwealth Agreement.)  If the University is hosting or is a core participant of the CRC (i.e. a signatory to the CRC’s Commonwealth Agreement), the income is classified as Category 4.

Income received from a CRC that is hosted by another institution is classified as Category 2.

ACGR Australian Competitive Grants Register
ARC Australian Research Council
NHMRC National Health and Medical Research Council
GEOI Grant Expression of Interest form – internal pre-award form used to obtain Executive Dean/Director or nominee and DVC(R&I) approval to develop an external research funding application, and to provide Research Services with preliminary notification of intention to apply.
Costing Pro Forma Used to develop research budgets.
GAC Grant Approval Coversheet – internal pre-award form used to obtain Executive Dean/Director and DVC(R&I) approval to submit a faculty/centre reviewed external research funding application, and to provide Research Services with application details for compliance and reporting purposes.

Actions

  STEPS WHO IS RESPONSIBLE? COMMENTS
1. Approval to Apply

Researcher

Executive Dean

Associate Dean Research

  • Researcher discusses potential research grant and associated project with their Executive Dean.
  • Executive Dean/ADR/Centre Director signs off the Grant Expression of Interest Form (GEOI).
  • Where the applican is the Executive Dean/Director approval must be sought from a senior signatory i.e. DVC R&I.
  • GEOI form is lodged with Research Services.
  • DVC (R&I) or delegate signs off on GEOI form.
2. Development of Proposal

Researcher

Executive Dean

Associate Dean Research

Research Services

  • Adhering to funding body guidelines and instructions to applicants Chief Investigator (CI) drafts the proposal.
  • CI may seek advice from their Faculty/Centre or Research Services during this process.
  • CIs applying for Category 1 funding may be required to participate in additional application development processes as outlined by the DVC (R&I)
3. Development of Budget

Researcher

Executive Dean

Associate Dean Research

Research Services

Finance team

  • CI submits draft project budget, along with a Costing Pro Forma, to Research Services by an agreed date.
  • Research Services in conjunction with the Finance team provides comment and advice on the draft project budget/s.
  • If required, the CI makes amendments to the draft budget, following advise provided.
  • Finance office updates costing pro-forma’s on an annual basis as required to support research funding applications.
4. Compliance Review

ADR

Mentor

Research Services

  • ADR and/or mentor reviews and provides feedback, including technical content, grammar, spelling, etc. the proposal.
  • Research Services coordinates a compliance review of the full proposal, including liaising with Finance and Legal Offices, as required.
5. Final Preparation

Chief Investigator

ADR

Executive Dean

  • CI makes final amendments to the application.
  • Executive Dean signs the Grant Approval Coversheet (GAC), which is forwarded to Research Services together with the full application and costing pro-forma.
  • Research Services coordinates a final compliance check of the full proposal before submission to the funding body.
  • The DVC (R&I) or delegate signs off on submission.
6. Submission

Chief Investigator

Research Services

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (R&I)

  • In most cases, Research Services submits the application to the funding body. In some instances, particularly for online applications, the CI will be responsible for submission.
  • At any time the DVC (R&I) has the discretion to defer applications that have not been submitted through the appropriate channels or the application has included unauthorised commitments, such as cash or in-kind support.

Supporting Documents

  • Research Funding Policy
  • Delegations – Contract, Financial, Staffing and Tender Policy
  • Delegations – Contract, Financial, Staffing and Tender Procedure
  • Grant Expression of Interest Form
  • Grant Approval Coversheet
  • Costing Pro Forma – for the relevant scheme

Responsibility

Chief Investigator

  • Drafts and finalises research funding applications, including the budget, adhering to the funding body requirements and guidelines, and to University policies and procedures.
  • Communicates with their Executive Dean and Associate Dean Research or Centre Director, as well as others on their research team, including, where appropriate, an internal or external mentor.
  • Responsible for meeting all designated internal and external funding application deadlines and requirements.

Executive Dean/Centre Director

  • As indicated by the signing of the Grant Expression of Interest Form, approves the proposed  infrastructure, resources and financial implications, including time release, of the research team should the application be successful,.
  • Through the Grant Approval Coversheet, the Executive Dean/Centre Director approves and recommends the final submission of the funding application, including any financial commitment and overheads as outlined in the Budget Costing Pro-forma.
  • The Executive Dean/Centre Director is responsible for all Faculty/Centre related matters as they relate to the proposed project.

Associate Dean of Research

  • Provides guidance to the Chief Investigator regarding research funding opportunities, such as assisting with development, reading and feedback on project drafts, etc.
  • Makes recommendations to the Executive Dean regarding the grant competitiveness and submission.

Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research & Innovation)

  • Approves the development and subsequent submission of all research funding applications. Authorises submissions and contracts/agreements as specified under the University's Delegations - Contracts, Financial, Staffing and Tenders Policy.

Research Services

  • Advise the Chief Investigator on the internal and external compliance requirements
  • Advertises all internal compliance and submission guidelines and deadlines
  • Organises review of applications and contracts/agreements from other University areas including the Legal Office to assess that applications adhere to University policies, procedures and practices
  • Records all relevant information for research data collection and reporting purposes.

Finance

  • Provide advise on the development of, and feedback on, the draft budget to Research Services and or Chief Investigator.

Promulgation

The Applying for Research Funding Procedure will be communicated throughout the University via:

  1. an Announcement Notice under ‘FedNews’ website and through the University Policy - ‘Recently Approved Documents’ webpage to alert the University-wide community of the approved Policy;
  2. inclusion on the University Policy, Procedure and Forms website; and/or
  3. distribution of e-mails to Head of School / Head of Department / University staff; and/or
  4. documentation distribution, eg. posters, brochures.
  5. Other - please describe

Implementation

The Applying for Research Funding Procedure will be implemented throughout the University via:

  1. Information Sessions; and/or
  2. Training Sessions; and/or
  3. Other - please describe

Records Management

Title Location Responsible Officer Minimum Retention Period
Grant Expression of Interest Form Research Services Director, Research Services 7 years
Grant Approval Coversheet Research Services Director, Research Services 7 years
Costing Pro Formas Research Services Director, Research Services 7 years
Funding Applications Research Services Director, Research Services 7 years
Funding Agreements, Contracts and variations Legal Office - Central Filing Systems Legal Office 7 years after contract has expired