The ARC’s overarching aim in supporting international research collaboration is to maximise Australia’s contribution to and benefits from international research collaborations, partnerships, developments and policy.  

International Research Collaboration in recent years

Since the inception of the NCGP, the ARC has actively supported international research collaboration through its various schemes. The information below provides insight into the ARC’s support of international research collaborations, including overall statistics from the commencement of the NCGP, and more recent examples of scheme-specific collaborations.

In referring to instances of collaboration, the ARC draws from information collected at the application stage—where researchers are asked to indicate an intention to collaborate with other countries. As ARC schemes allow collaborations with multiple countries on a single project, where the data refers to ‘Instances of international research collaboration’ figures must not be summed.

For more detailed statistics on funding outcomes please visit the Grants Dataset.

International collaboration on new and ongoing projects

Table 1. All ARC schemes, instances of international collaboration on new and ongoing projects, 2011 to 2019, by funding allocation year 

Country 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
United States of America 1752 1807 1829 1742 1608 1601 1547 1544 1625
United Kingdom 1061 1081 1116 1078 998 986 969 991 1042
Germany 572 596 584 554 486 516 503 539 576
China 376 385 398 395 413 421 433 453 498
Canada 391 390 391 360 339 337 345 352 370
France 418 423 416 366 324 326 326 332 357
Japan 291 280 280 254 232 229 225 221 229
New Zealand 220 226 239 211 193 192 192 200 204
Netherlands 188 200 214 203 188 184 179 181 189
Singapore 115 117 125 130 125 141 149 154 153
Switzerland 164 166 172 183 170 153 152 162 148
Italy 178 172 183 168 152 148 142 134 143
Spain 100 118 121 126 111 119 111 112 128
Sweden 140 146 146 142 128 120 123 122 124
Denmark 100 109 106 108 98 107 116 121 123
Belgium 82 70 83 82 82 80 90 85 88
Israel 65 60 58 59 56 63 59 69 70
Austria 66 67 66 55 47 44 45 54 68
Korea, Republic of (South) 67 63 61 61 65 66 59 65 67
India 95 81 87 85 83 72 68 72 66
South Africa 70 65 60 61 55 47 49 48 50
Indonesia 67 68 70 69 63 54 48 49 47
Norway 64 62 71 71 60 54 46 41 45
Brazil 36 38 43 46 53 59 57 47 43
Finland 49 51 50 52 52 48 49 42 41
other 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total 6727 6841 6969 6661 6181 6167 6082 6190 6494

*The data provided in this table refers to the top 25 countries of research collaboration on new and ongoing ARC funded projects.

**The data in this table refers to instances of collaboration and represents all new and ongoing projects that have a funding allocation in a given year. Some projects involve collaboration with more than one country and therefore are represented more than once in these figures.

***The table does not include projects that may have been funded under the Special Research Initiatives scheme and the Linkage Learned Academies Special Projects scheme.

****The information shown is limited to that which was current at the time research proposals were approved for funding and accordingly excludes any post-award variations that may subsequently have been approved.

NCGP International Collaboration by scheme

Table 2. Instances of international research collaborations on projects of different schemes, per country, commencement year 2019

Country Name Discovery Program Linkage Program Total
DP DE FT FL IN LP IH IC LE SR
United States of America 280 105 65 11 1 27 1 3 19    512
United Kingdom 170 63 37 11 1 23 1 4 11    321
Germany 104 32 18 4 1 7    2 9    177
China 82 39 19 6    10       9 1 166
Canada 56 21 18 4    10    3 4    116
France 56 23 10 7    7       6    109
Japan 38 8 12 3    3    1 7    72
Netherlands 25 9 10 4    6 1    3 3 61
New Zealand 18 19 6 2 1 9 1 1 1    58
Italy 26 6 9 3    3       4    51
Spain 19 10 4 5    3    1 5    47
Singapore 20 12 4       3       3    42
Switzerland 19 7 4 3    2       4    39
Sweden 15 10 8 1          1 1    36
Denmark 20 8 6                1    35
Austria 12 3 7 2    1       3    28
Belgium 10 12 3 1                   26
Israel 13 5 2                2    22
Korea, Republic of (South) 8 4 3 2    3       2    22
Norway 12 4 4       1       1    22
South Africa 9 5 2       1       2    19
India 7 4 2 1    1 1    2    18
Taiwan 7 4          3             14
Finland 9 2 1 1                   13
Ireland 5 5          2             12
Poland 7 2 1 1    1             12
Brazil 5 2 1 1    1       1    11
Indonesia 4 1 3 1       1          10
Portugal 4 1 2 1             2    10
Russian Federation 6 2 1                1    10
Mexico 4 1    2             1    8
Chile 1 3 3                      7
Hungary 4    2       1             7
Vietnam 4 2 1                      7
Argentina 2 2 2                      6
Czech Republic 3       1                   4
Philippines 3 1                         4
Saudi Arabia 3                      1    4
Thailand 1 2             1          4
Iceland 2    1                      3
Iran 1 2                         3
Malaysia 2       1                   3
Myanmar, The Republic of the Union of  1 2                         3
Papua New Guinea 2                1          3
Peru 1 1 1                      3
Sri Lanka 1 1 1                      3
Turkey 2 1                         3
Ecuador 1    1                      2
Estonia 1    1                      2
Fiji 2                            2
Laos 1 1                         2
Mongolia 1 1                         2
Romania 2                            2
Slovakia 1    1                      2
Slovenia       1 1                   2
Solomon Islands    1 1                      2
South Sudan    2                         2
Afghanistan    1                         1
Cook Islands       1                      1
Cyprus 1                            1
Ethiopia    1                         1
French Polynesia    1                         1
Greece 1                            1
Jamaica    1                         1
Jordan       1                      1
Kenya    1                         1
Luxembourg 1                            1
Maldives 1                            1
Marshall Islands       1                      1
Monaco                         1    1
Namibia    1                         1
Nepal 1                            1
New Caledonia 1                            1
Nigeria    1                         1
Pakistan 1                            1
Senegal          1                   1
Serbia       1                      1
Timor-Leste 1                            1
Tonga    1                         1
Uganda 1                            1
United Arab Emirates       1                      1
Vanuatu       1                      1
Total 1121 459 284 81 4 128 8 16 106 4 2211

Key

Discovery Projects DP
Discovery Ealry Career Researcher Award DE
Future Fellowships FT
Laureate Fellowships FL
Discovery Indigenous IN
Linkage Projects LP
Industrial Transformation Research Hubs IH
Industrial Transformation Training Centres IC
Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities LE
Special Research Initiatives SR

Linkage Program

Table 3. Comparison of total proposal numbers, proposal numbers involving instances of international research collaborations, Linkage Projects from 2010 to 2019

For funding commencing in 2019, the ARC approved 137 proposals for funding.

Funding Year Total Proposals considered Total Projects approved Success rate Proposals involving international research collaborations considered Projects involving international research collaborations approved
2010* 982 429 44% 356 187
2011* 933 405 43% 331 159
2012* 922 336 36% 361 136
2013 785 306 39% 325 133
2014 699 251 36% 333 127
2015 710 252 35% 342 134
2016 754 235 31% 354 119
2017 220 87 40% 121 49
2018 416 135 32% 237 83
2019 449 137 31% 250 77

*In 2010, 2011 and 2012 two Linkage Projects selection rounds were held per year. For the purposes of this data analysis, data collected have been combined for both selection rounds per year.

**Since 2016, Linkage Projects scheme has been continuous for receiving applications for consideration of funding. Data in this dataset is based on batch commencement year of the applications each year.

Table 4. International research collaboration for the ARC Centres of Excellence 2020, by country of collaboration

International collaboration is an important component of ARC Centres of Excellence. Overall, the approved applications indicate collaboration with 26 countries. 

Country Number of approved applications with international collaboration
Belgium 1
Brazil 2
Canada 2
China (excluded SARs and Taiwan) 7
Denmark 3
England 9
Fiji 1
Finland 2
France 2
Germany 6
Hong Kong (SAR of China) 1
India 1
Ireland 2
Israel 1
Italy 1
Japan 2
Korea, Republic of (South) 2
Luxembourg 1
Netherlands 2
New Zealand 2
Norway 1
Scotland 1
Singapore 5
Spain 1
Sweden 4
United States of America 9
Total 71

Discovery Program

Table 5. Discovery Projects 2019, comparison of total proposal numbers and proposal numbers involving international research collaboration

For funding commencing in 2019, the ARC approved 654 projects for funding with a funding allocation of over $262 million, over the life of the projects. Of the approved projects, 543 foreshadowed 1121 instances of international research collaboration with researchers in 82 overseas locations.

Funding Year Total Proposals considered
(no.)
Total Projects approved
(no.)
Success Rate Proposals involving international research collaborations considered
(no.)
Projects involving international research collaborations approved
(no.)
2013 3425 732 21% 1948 462
2014 3534 703 20% 2027 443
2015 3689 665 18% 2279 452
2016 3584 635 18% 2441 476
2017 3540 630 18% 2538 488
2018 3136 594 19% 2381 472
2019 2921 654 22% 2293 543

Discovery International Awards (DIAs) awarded under the Discovery Projects scheme, aim to enhance opportunities for collaboration among researchers, research teams and/or research centres in Australia and overseas, and to build Australia’s international research capability.

Table 6. Number of Discovery Projects approved for one or more Discovery International Award (DIA) since 2015

Funding year Proposals submitted requesting one or more DIAs Projects approved for one or more DIAs
2015 755 100
2016 688 126
2017 653 97
2018 584 100
2019 594 111

Table 7A. Citizenship/residency status of DECRA 2019 Candidates and approved Awardees

Citizenship/residency status Proposals considered (no.) Percentage of Proposals considered Projects approved
(no.)
Success rate
Foreign National 374 32% 63 17%
Resident Australian 745 64% 131 18%
Returning Australian 43 4% 6 14%
Total 1162 100% 200 17%

Table 7B. Citizenship/residency status of Future Fellowships 2019 Candidates and approved Awardees

Citizenship/residency status Proposals considered (no.) Percentage of Proposals considered Projects approved
(no.)
Success rate
Foreign National 71 12% 8 11%
Resident Australian 493 84% 90 18%
Returning Australian 25 4% 2 8%
Total 589 100% 100 17%

Table 7C. Citizenship/residency status of Australian Laureate Fellows 2019 Candidates and approved Awardees

Citizenship/residency status Proposals considered (no.) Percentage of Proposals considered Projects approved
(no.)
Success rate
Foreign National 9 6% 2 22%
Resident Australian 136 91% 14 10%
Returning Australian 4 3% 1 25%
Total 149 100% 17 11%