AAMRI e-news | October 2020

AAMRI e-news | October 2020

8th October, 2020

In this issue

  1. AAMRI news – AAMRI Federal Budget Analysis
  2. Government update – Consultations currently open
  3. Sector news –  Australia’s first Antimicrobial Resistance Network
  4. NHMRC update – Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Report Card
  5. MRFF update – Comprehensive list of all opportunities closing soon
  6. Other funding & award opportunities – National science week grants open
  7. Reports & resources – COVID-19 Impact on the MTP Sector – second edition
  8. Events and conferences – AAHMS Scientific Meeting 2020

Do you have something that you would like featured in a future newsletter? Send it through to communications@aamri.org.au

1. AAMRI news

2020-2021 Federal Budget – what’s in it for medical research?

The biggest funding announcement of the 2020-21 Budget was an additional $1B in research funding for universities provided through the Research Support Program (the university research block grant). 

This one-off funding will be provided in 2020-21 and will help assist universities bridge the funding gap caused by the downturn in international higher education revenue. Also assisting the university sector is additional funding for undergraduate places, and continued funding in line with expectations for the Research Training Program. Read our full analysis on the AAMRI website.

AAMRI Convention 9-10 December 2020 – online event

In the coming weeks we will be announcing the program, speakers and complete format for this year’s event. The AAMRI Convention is a free, member only event consisting of strategy meetings, guest speakers, the presentation of the CSL Florey Next Generation Award and AAMRI’s AGM.

AAMRI Member Networks

AAMRI operates a variety of member networks in key business areas that discuss issues, share ideas and network at an annual event.

How to join our Networks

AAMRI’s staff networks connect professional staff at AAMRI member institutes with their counterparts to discuss common challenges and issues facing the medical research sector. There are currently ten active AAMRI staff networks – HR, Research Governance, Research Strategy, IT, Research Administration Officers (RAO), Philanthropy & Fundraising, Operations Network, Legal Counsel, Finance, and COVID-19. For information on AAMRI Networks, upcoming network events and how to join, visit the AAMRI website.

2.  Government update 


Inquiry into approval processes for new drugs and novel medical technologies in Australia

This inquiry will look at the approval processes for new drugs and novel medical technologies in Australia, and will have a particular focus on those for the treatment of rare diseases and conditions where there is high and unmet clinical need. Closes 13 Oct 2020.

Consultation on National Priorities and Industry Linkage Fund (NPILF)

NPILF, introduced under the Job-ready Graduates Package, will allocate block grants to universities to support enhanced engagement with universities and industry to produce job-ready graduates. Closes 30 Oct 2020.

Data Availability and Transparency Act

The Australian Government is consulting on an exposure draft of the new Data Availability and Transparency Act. This Act will manage how the Government makes datasets available, including to researchers. Closes 06 Nov 2020.

Amendments to the Poisons Standard in Relation to Nicotine

You are invited to comment on the interim decision on nicotine and the proposed amendments to the Poisons Standard. Closes 06 Nov 2020.

Commercial Supply of a Genetically Modified Cholera Vaccine

The vaccine will be made available for adults and children aged 2 years or older who will be travelling overseas or to places where they could be infected with cholera. Closes 17 Nov 2020.

Public consultation on Section 4 and Section 5 of the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research

Section 4 addresses the impact of research on participants at various life stages and in the context of their life circumstances. Section 5 addresses the responsibilities of institutions, ethics review bodies and researchers. Closes 30 Oct 2020.

3.  Sector news

Update to ARC Conflict of Interest policy

The ARC Conflict of Interest and Confidentiality Policy has been updated to clarify the types of personal interests that researchers are required to identify and disclose. Read more on the ARC website.

Australian manufacturing receives $1.5B to rebuild the economy

$1.5 billion in new funding will be invested over the next four years in the Modern Manufacturing Strategy, including medical manufacturing. The plan aims to make Australian manufacturers more competitive, resilient and able to scale-up to take on the world.

Australia’s first Antimicrobial Resistance Network

Announced by MTPConnect, The Australian Antimicrobial Resistance network – AAMRNet – has been established following recommendations in a new report, ‘Fighting Superbugs: A Report on the Inaugural Meeting of Australia’s Antimicrobial Resistance Stakeholders’.

South Australia’s Health and Medical Industries sector to reach $5B by 2030

SA’s Health and Medical Industries sector is set to more than double by 2030 to reach $5 billion, according to the Health and Medical Industries Sector Plan. The sector plan is the result of collaboration between the SA’s Government, industry, and academic leaders.

Greens announce new party room lineup

The reshuffle is the most significant since Adam Bandt MP was elected leader, reflecting the rapidly shifting political context in the age of COVID-19. Senator Rachel Siewert will take charge of the Health portfolio, formerly held by Richard Di Natale. More details on the Greens’ website.

Funding announcements:


4.  NHMRC update

Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies Grants

NHMRC Clinical Trials and Cohort Studies Grants 2020 scheme dates are as follows:
• Minimum data due by 5pm AEDT, 4 Nov 2020
• Round closes at 5pm AEDT, 25 Nov 2020

NHMRC Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Report Card of Achievements for 2019

This is an interactive report that highlights the research achievements and initiatives in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health, capacity building and strengthening work, and the workshops, events and awards throughout 2019.

Applications are now open for NHMRC’s Indigenous Internship Program

NHMRC are looking for Indigenous students enrolled in the health or medical research fields to join their Indigenous Internship Program. Closes 30 Oct 2020.

5.  MRFF update

MRFF funding opportunities

We’ve made a handy table to help you keep track of what funding schemes are open and where to go for further information.

Upcoming MRFF opportunities:

Funding announcements:

Register on GrantConnect to receive MRFF funding alerts

MRFF funding opportunities are advertised through GrantConnect. Make sure you register so you receive the latest funding updates.

6.  Other funding & award opportunities

Suicide Prevention Research Fund PhD Scholarships

The funding is for a three year full-time equivalent position with provision for up to five years for career disruption. The total grant value is up to $108,000. Closes 15 Oct 2020.

FHRI Focus Grants – COVID-19

The first program to be funded under the WA Future Health Research & Innovation Fund (FHRI) is now open and calling for proposals with a COVID-19 focus. Closes 1pm, 16 Oct 2020.

2021 National Science Week engagement activities grants

The National Science Week Grants 2021 provides individuals and organisations with up to $20,000 to support the delivery of science engagement activities during National Science Week 2021. Closes 28 Oct 2020.

NSW Innovation Districts Challenges

The Innovation Districts Challenges are designed to accelerate the commercialisation of research products that address the impacts of COVID-19 by businesses in partnership with universities and CSIRO in NSW. Closes 11 Nov 2020.

Industrial Transformation Research Hubs for funding commencing in 2021

This scheme aims to engage Australia’s best researchers to develop collaborative solutions to Industrial Transformation Priorities and to train the future research workforce. $500k – $1m available. Closes 18 Oct 2020.

Industrial Transformation Training Centres for funding commencing in 2021

This scheme aims to foster close partnerships between university-based researchers and other research end-users to provide innovative Higher Degree by Research (HDR) and postdoctoral training, for end-user focused research industries that are vital to Australia’s future. $650k – $1m available. Closes 18 Nov 2020.

NHMRC-NIHR Collaborative Research Grant Scheme 2019 priorities for funding 2020 – Round 3

This scheme supports Australian participation and collaboration in leading international collaborative research through the United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment Programme. Total of $3m available over 5 years. Closes 20 Nov 2020.

Healthcare Sector Female Leader’s Scholarship

From Women & Leadership Australia (WLA), partial scholarships of $1,000 – $5,000 are available for women to take part one of WLA’ career building leadership courses. EOI’s close 04 Dec 2020.

7.  Reports and resources

Victorian cancer plan 2020-2024: improving cancer outcomes for all Victorians

The plan identifies priorities to prevent cancer, increase survival, improve participation in cancer screening and the experience of the cancer treatment and care system, and achieve equitable outcomes for all Victorians with cancer.

COVID-19 Impact on the MTP Sector – Second Edition Launched

This updated this report  focuses on the COVID-19 response and recovery efforts undertaken by the sector during June to September 2020.

Report: Stimulating the Science and Research Ecosystem Creates Jobs and Investment

Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) latest report shows that there has never been a more crucial time to invest in science, research and innovation.

New website released as part of Australia’s first suicide and self-harm monitoring system to improve knowledge and responsiveness

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare together with the NMMHC released a website which is part of Australia’s first suicide and self-harm monitoring system to support the national goal of working towards zero suicides.

Evidence brief: After the bushfires: Addressing the health impacts

The brief was written jointly with the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences (AAHMS), informed by contributions from Fellows from both Academies as well as other experts, including through a roundtable organised by AAHMS.

Reports from the Australian Institute of Health & Welfare:

8.  Events and conferences

AAHMS Scientific Meeting 2020 – Oct 15 – 16 (online live from Sydney)

Registration is free and open to all. The theme is ‘Progressing precision medicine, disease prevention and control’ and the program includes dedicated sessions to reflect on the COVID-19 pandemic to date.

AusBiotech Conference – Oct 28-30 (online live)

AusBiotech + Invest 2020 is Australia’s largest life science conference. It is delivered for industry, by industry, and will be online live 28 – 30 October and on-demand. This biotech event engages current and future biotech leaders to pitch, partner, exchange & engage.