Factsheet - National Competitive Grants Program
The ARC is responsible for administering the National Competitive Grants Program (NCGP) which supports research across all disciplines.
Through the NCGP the ARC supports the highest-quality fundamental and applied research and research training through national competition. The NCGP aims to support:
- the highest-quality research leading to the discovery of new ideas and the advancement of knowledge;
- facilities and equipment that researchers need to be internationally competitive;
- training and skills development of the next generation of researchers; and
- incentives for Australia’s most talented researchers to work in partnership with leading researchers throughout the national innovation system and internationally, and to form alliances with Australian industry.
In 2011–12 NCGP funding will total around $810.172 million. The NCGP comprises two Programs: Discovery and Linkage. Under these, the ARC funds a range of complementary schemes to support researchers at different stages of their careers, build Australia’s research capability, expand and enhance research networks and collaborations, and develop centres of research excellence.
Discovery funding schemes recognise the importance of fundamental research to Australia’s innovation system. A strong capability in fundamental research (sometimes called discovery, basic or blue sky research) will result in the development of new ideas, the creation of jobs, economic growth, and an enhanced quality of life in Australia.
The Discovery schemes are: Discovery Projects; Future Fellowships; Australian Laureate Fellowships; Discovery Indigenous; Discovery Early Career Researcher Award and Super Science Fellowships.
Linkage funding schemes 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. By supporting the development of partnerships, the ARC encourages the transfer of skills, knowledge and ideas as a basis for securing commercial and other benefits of research.
The Linkage schemes are: Linkage Projects; Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities; ARC Centres of Excellence; Special Research Initiatives; and Learned Academies Special Projects.