Funding scheme initiatives

2020 applications have now closed.

Project LaunchPad: 2021 dates pending.

Divisional Equipment Grant Scheme (DEGS): 2021 dates pending.

Project LaunchPad

Applications have now closed.

Project LaunchPad is a new initiative which will provide seed funding for research activities in the 2020 calendar year. It was developed in consultation with researchers in STEM areas and FII, incorporating suggestions to provide more support and greater flexibility in how funding can be used.

Proposals ranging from fundamental discoveries to applied/translational research will be considered. These can be based on a new idea or represent an extension of existing research. It isn’t necessary to present a fully planned research project in order to apply. Creative applications are sought from teams with capacity to deliver research outcomes and a willingness to realign with opportunities that are identified during the process.

A maximum of 16 teams will be selected to attend a full-day workshop to be held on Friday 28 February, at Sage Hotel Adelaide, 208-226 South Terrace. All applicants are advised to save this date.

As a condition of being selected, all team leaders, team mentors and team members are expected to commit to full participation in Project LaunchPad. We have engaged an external consultant to deliver the workshop and a comprehensive development program of interactive online modules, culminating in a funding pitch. After each module, teams will work together on tasks designed to help validate their ideas and develop a plan to take the project to a point where it can attract external funding. The program will require a time commitment of approximately one day per week for 6-8 weeks after the workshop, some of which can be managed flexibly around your other commitments. The scheduling of the online program and funding pitch will be determined after consultation with the teams. Recordings will be made available for those who are unable to participate in any given online session. There is an expectation that absent team members will watch the recording and contribute to activities during the following week.

As part of the funding pitch, teams will present a plan that will put them in a position to apply for an external support within 12-18 months. After funding is awarded, teams will be required to participate in regular meetings with their advisory panel to report on their progress towards the planned milestones. This will provide a forum to present updates, ask questions and receive guidance about the next steps. By taking this approach, the support needed to help each team achieve their objectives will commence with the workshop and be ongoing for the duration of the project. It is important to stress that this phase of the project will include information gathering and analysis tasks, as well as technical milestones.

Teams that do not demonstrate sufficient progress during the program will not be permitted to pitch for funding. Therefore, we are asking everyone to carefully consider their availability before applying. This is why these additional details have been provided before the application deadline. Please take this decision seriously, as you will be letting the rest of your team members down if you are unable to contribute in a meaningful way. This is not consequence-free soft money to keep pet projects going. It is a serious development program with the aim of developing teams that can attract external income.

Due to the nature of the program, your current employment contract may impact your eligibility to apply. All team leaders, team mentors and team members listed in sections 1-3 on the application form must have a current employment contract until at least 30 June 2020. Any researcher who cannot meet this requirement but is still interested in contributing can be listed as an associate team member in section 4. If this team is selected, researchers in this category will be invited to attend the workshop and can contribute to the online program for the duration of their employment with UniSA. The reason for this decision is to ensure the team has sufficient capacity to deliver the prescribed outcomes for the entire duration of the program. We apologise for any confusion or disappointment associated with not making this clear in the guidelines that were released last year.

Please note that the schemes that were previously supported by the Research Office for research projects (New Adventures Fund, Partnership Enabling Grant Scheme, Human-Machine Interactions) will not be available in 2020. Project LaunchPad will be run once and represents the only opportunity to access seed funding for research projects from local areas in 2020. Questions about Project LaunchPad can be directed to the Grant Developer Carly Rosewarne.


Divisional Equipment Grant Scheme (DEGS)

Applications have now closed.

Applications will be considered on the basis of how they address the scheme criteria, where the purchase of the equipment:

  • aligns with a key UniSA strategic research objective
  • supports a detailed plan for further leveraging by improving our potential to secure external funding
  • supports a detailed plan for sources of alternative income (eg. consultancy, analytical testing. Please provide information about the value of projected income)
  • enhances the unit's approach to partnering.

In order to support cross-disciplinary collaborations (both within the Institute, and across the University), as well as maximise the value of any equipment purchased, applications for items which can be used by more than one research group will be prioritised.