The ARC also offer additional schemes from those listed below – for more information please see their site for further information.

Under the National Competitive Grants Program, the Australian Research Council (ARC) provides funding opportunities for research and researchers.

A range of complementary schemes are provided under two main elements – Discovery and Linkage. Two other elements also provide further funding opportunities – Centres and Special Research Initiatives.


To support excellent fundamental research, enhance the scale and focus of research in the National Research Priorities, assist researchers, expand Australia’s knowledge base and research capability, foster the international competitiveness of Australian research, encourage research training in a high-quality research environment and enhance international collaboration in research.

  • Australian Laureate Fellowships (FL)
    For world-class researchers; up to 17 may be awarded in 2012, with 2 set aside for exceptional female researchers
  • Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)
    For researchers in their first 5 years; circa 200, 3 year awards on offer annually
  • Discovery Indigenous (DIA)
    For Indigenous Australian researchers & eligible organisations; 10 awarded in 2011
  • Discovery Projects (DP; also include DORA)
    For individuals and research teams; 26 DORA’s awarded in 2011
  • Future Fellowships (FT)
    For outstanding mid-career researchers in areas of critical national importance; 200 on offer annually with final round in 2012.

A web page with detail about Discovery schemes is currently being developed, as at Sept 5. Please check back soon or contact the RSO.


The ARC's Linkage funding schemes aim to encourage and extend cooperative approaches to research and improve the use of research outcomes by strengthening links within Australia’s innovation system and with innovation systems internationally.

Linkage promotes national and international research partnerships between researchers and business, industry, community organisations and other publicly funded research agencies. Linkage 2013 EOI form (DOC 301KB)

  • Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF)
    For collaborative projects with national and international research facilities; 77 awarded in 2011
  • Linkage Learned Academies Special Projects (LASP)
    For the Learned Academies to undertake projects
  • Linkage Projects (LP)
    For collaborative projects between researchers and other areas of the national innovation system; 336 were awarded over two rounds in 2011
  • Industrial Transformation Research Program (ITRP)
    For partnerships with Australian industry; new scheme.

Centres and Special Research Institutes

ARC-funded research centres support large teams to undertake focused and sustained investigations into, and find solutions to, challenging and important problems.

  • ARC Centres of Excellence
    For prestigious groups of expertise in research areas of national priority
  • Co-funded Centres
    Invited periodically

Special Research Initiatives - The ARC takes a proactive approach, in consultation with research organisations, professional associations and peak higher education bodies, to identifying new or emerging areas of research and providing funding for them under the Special Research Initiatives scheme.

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Researchers’ Network (SRI ATSIRN)
    For experienced Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers
  • Science of Learning Research Centre
    To be funded in 2012
  • Synchotron Science 
    For a cooperative initiative between higher education institutions
A web page with detail about these schemes is currently being developed, as at Sept 5. Please check back soon or contact the RSO.)