10 November 2017 

Opportunities for early-career researchers 

Developing a miniaturised cochlear implant using advanced microfabrication techniques, addressing safety risks from the introduction of autonomous vehicles, and using mathematical modelling for improved conservation of Antarctic wildlife are just handful of new developments that may emerge from some of Australia’s best early-career researchers, with funding announced today.

Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Research Council (ARC), Professor Sue Thomas, has welcomed the announcement today by Minister for Education and Training, Senator the Hon. Simon Birmingham, of $70.9 million for 197 new research projects to be undertaken as part of the ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) scheme.

Professor Thomas said researchers that are early in their careers benefit from the dedicated funding support provided by the DECRA scheme.

“The DECRA scheme supports early-career researchers by providing the time and resources to focus on advancing their research, and the opportunities to build important connections and knowledge,” said Professor Thomas.

Some of the research projects that will commence in 2018 by the DECRA awardees include:

  • Dr Mohsen Asadnia from Macquarie University will lead a project to develop a miniaturised cochlear implant using advanced microfabrication techniques, to enable low-cost production for commercialisation.
  • Dr Gemma Read from the University of the Sunshine Coast will lead a project to address potential safety risks arising from the introduction of advanced autonomous vehicles, to prevent new types of road crash events.
  • Dr Sophie Bestley at The University of Tasmania will lead a project to build state-of-the art mathematical models for movement processes of Antarctic penguins, seals and whales to improve conservation management.
  • Dr Cagatay Goncu from Monash University will lead a project to present visual information in the form of audio and tactile technologies to allow for the authoring, reading and storing of tactile electronic books for people with visual impairment.

Each DECRA recipient will receive salary support for three years and up to $40,000 in additional funding per year for other costs essential to their project.

This DECRA scheme announcement is part of today’s ARC schemes grant announcements totalling $333.5 million for 859 research projects. 

For a full list of funded DECRA projects, including a snapshot of funding by state and territory, please view the media announcement kit.

Media contact: 
ARC Stakeholder Relations 
0412 623 056 or communications@arc.gov.au