The Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities scheme provides funding for research infrastructure, equipment and facilities to eligible organisations.  

The scheme enables higher education researchers to participate in cooperative initiatives so that expensive infrastructure, equipment and facilities can be shared between higher education organisations and also with industry.

The scheme also fosters collaboration through its support of the cooperative use of international or national research facilities. 

Under the scheme, applicants may seek funding for:

  • infrastructure, equipment and facility purchases, construction and installation
  • salaries directly associated with creating and installing infrastructure, equipment or facilities
  • consortium membership costs, in the case of Australia's participation in the use of significant international-scale or national research facilities
  • specialised computing/data facilities and software
  • compilations, catalogues, clearing houses or bibliographies.

Objectives

The objectives of the Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities scheme are to:

  • encourage Eligible Organisations to develop collaborative arrangements with other Eligible Organisations and/or Partner Organisations to develop and support research infrastructure;
  • support large-scale national or international cooperative initiatives allowing expensive research infrastructure to be shared and/or accessed;
  • support areas of existing and/or emerging research strength; and
  • support and develop research infrastructure for the broader research community.

Applications for funding under the Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities scheme are processed once a year. 

Australian Government Investment into Research Infrastructure

Quality research infrastructure is a critical component of Australia’s research and development system. The Australian Government provides a variety of funding for research infrastructure necessary to deliver high quality research and innovation outcomes, to improve national wellbeing, and to enable Australian researchers to address key national and global challenges.

In most cases Government funding requires that the funded infrastructure be operated in a collaborative manner and made accessible to all researchers.

In addition to the Australian Research Council’s (ARC) Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) scheme, the Australian Government has funded research infrastructure projects across Australia through a range of sources, including the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy (NCRIS), the Super Science Initiative, the Education Investment Fund (EIF) and the Collaborative Research Infrastructure Scheme (CRIS). The NHMRC has provided infrastructure support grants through the Independent Research Institute Infrastructure Support grants and Equipment Grants.

The Australian Research Council’s (ARC) Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities (LIEF) Scheme

The ARC’s LIEFscheme provides funding for research infrastructure, equipment and facilities to eligible organisations.

LIEF funding recipients are required to plan for the use of the proposed research infrastructure, including proposed arrangements for broader access to individuals not named on the funded LIEF Proposal, and the alignment of this planned use with other similar existing infrastructure within Australia and/or internationally. 

LIEF Register

The LIEF Register summarises the infrastructure, equipment and facilities which have been funded under the LIEF scheme.  The register will aid researchers interested in requesting funding under the LIEF scheme to prevent duplicative proposals by identifying any already existing infrastructure, and will facilitate the coordination of access to equipment through direct contact with the relevant organisation.

Researchers who are interested in applying for funding under the LIEF scheme for new infrastructure should first refer to the LIEF Register to ascertain whether the infrastructure is warranted, either due to non-existence or non-availability.

Researchers interested in obtaining access to specific existing infrastructure should contact the relevant organisation directly.

To assist researchers in identifying infrastructure, equipment and facilities funded by other Government agencies, links to other initiatives are provided below.*

The Department of Education and Training Infrastructure initiatives

Through the Department of Education and Training, the Australian Government has provided a series of funding initiatives to deliver world-class research infrastructure of national significance, including:

A list of projects funded as part of these initiatives is available on the Department of Education and Training website

The National and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Infrastructure Support and Equipment Grants

To build Australia’s future capability for research and translation and to support the infrastructure required to complete health and medical research in Australia, the NHMRC has provided infrastructure support grants through:

To help researchers identify facilities that they may be interested in using, a list of research facilities and networks funded through the NHMRC can be found using the National Research Facilities and Networks list.

*Please note that the ARC does not maintain the content of these websites and cannot verify the accuracy or completeness therein. Interested parties are recommended to contact each responsible agency/organisation to confirm any information.