Australian Studies Competitive Projects
2013-14 round of the Australia-China Council’s Australian Studies Competitive Projects Funding scheme is now open.
The closing date for applications to be submitted is 20 September 2013.
The Program offered by the Australia-China Council (ACC) provides funding to individuals or collaborative teams for the following Australian Studies activities to be undertaken in the forthcoming year:
- Research: At least half of the annual Competitive Projects funding is reserved for projects which include research in Australia. Graduate students are encouraged to apply for funding support to enable research in Australia.
- Curriculum and Faculty Development: awards for the development of Australian studies courses and/or professional development of academic staff. Applications must provide evidence of support from the relevant School/Faculty, stating that courses will be offered.
- Publishing Subsidies: applications must be accompanied by a letter from a recognised publisher stating their agreement to publish and any attached conditions.
- Australian Studies Initiatives: awards for special events, public activities, web developments, and other initiatives to promote Australian Studies.
Some minor changes have been made to the form, so it is important you pay close attention to the questions asked and that you use this year’s form.
Note that if your research involves travel to Australia it is your responsibility to contact scholars or institutions in Australia and to submit a Host Institution acceptance form with your application.
This is compulsory for student applications and strongly recommended for academic staff applications.
- Competitive Projects covering letter [DOC 441 KB]
- Competitive Projects funding application form [DOC 145 KB]
- Competitive Projects funding conditions [DOC 419 KB]
- Competitive Projects funding acceptance form [DOC 423 KB]
- Competitive Projects host institution acceptance form [DOC 418 KB]
Individual researchers in China and Australian Studies Centres in China may submit applications.
At least half of the ACC's total Competitive Projects funding budget will be reserved for projects which include research in Australia.
Competitive Projects funding is not available for Chinese students enrolled at Australian higher education institutions.
Note that requests for purchasing resources (books and other research or teaching materials) can be included in Competitive Project applications. These requests must be linked to a specific research project, curriculum development initiative, or similar activity, and once the research is completed the resources must be placed in a Centre, Faculty or University library rather than belonging to the individual researcher exclusively. Building a targeted collection of books in a designated area could also be an appropriate item for funding (e.g. a project studying the development of Australian cities could make a case for the need to build a small collection of relevant up to date books in this area). The ACC's Book Gifts Program now only applies to major library collections.
Graduate students should remain enrolled in their home institution in China. It is essential that graduate students applying for funding for research in Australia include with their application a letter/email from the proposed Australian host institution confirming support. This is also strongly recommended for academic staff, as the Selection Committee takes into account the support a researcher will get when making its decisions.
The Competitive Projects Application Form asks applicants to indicate which of the ACC’s goals, themes and funding priorities their project supports. The applicant’s project must support at least one of the ACC’s goals and at least one of the themes.
- to foster perceptions of contemporary Australia in China as scientifically, technologically and educationally advanced, economically enterprising and culturally diverse;
- to increase awareness and understanding in China of Australian society and culture; and
- to increase Australians’ capacity to effectively engage with China.
- Education and Science;
- Economics and Trade; and
- Society and Culture.
Preference will be given to projects that fall under at least one of the funding priorities:
- Intercultural communication
- Sustainability and the environment
- Health and safety, and
- Cultural heritage.
Projects that do not fall under these funding priorities, however, will not be rejected and will be considered by the Selection Committee.
Grants are decided on a competitive basis and on the basis of merit. A Selection Committee comprising members of the ACC, representatives of the management committee for the Australian Studies in China Program, and independent academics, looks at every application and after discussion produces a ranking. The maximum number of projects that can be funded within the limits of the Program’s budget are awarded Competitive Project grants. All funding decisions will be made by the Australia-China Council.
All funds will be paid in CNY (in China) or AUD (in Australia). All payments must be made before 30 June 2013, unless special circumstances exist.
- The applicant’s project must support at least one of the ACC’s goals and at least one of the themes.
- Merit is the major criterion for ranking and selection, and all applications are considered on their merits: on the quality of the research project and the application; the track record of the applicant; the likelihood of positive outcomes from the project (e.g., publications, a new course, a significant public activity); the contribution the project will make to Australian Studies in China.
- All applicants must use the 2012-2013 Australian Studies Competitive Projects Application Form and provide sufficient information for the Australia-China Council's selection committee to make an assessment.
- Applications must provide an adequate budget justification for the project.
- Preference will be given to applications which show evidence of an informed knowledge of previous research published in China in areas relevant to their project.
- Preference will be given to projects that fall under at least one of the funding priorities but projects that do not fall under a funding priority will not be rejected by the Selection Committee.
- Preference is given to applications showing evidence of collaboration. Projects showing evidence of significant collaboration with an Australian institution are also favoured. Evidence of such collaboration includes indication of support from a partner or host institution in Australia.
- The project should add value to Australian Studies in China and to the Australia-China relationship.
- Priority is given to applications channelled through an Australian Studies Centre formally recognised by its host institution in China.
- Applicants should display a solid track record (qualifications, performance, publications) relevant to the Program. Special consideration is given to Australian Studies graduate students.
- Secondary consideration may be given to other issues to ensure a more even distribution of grants among institutions, regions and disciplines, and among senior academics and graduate students.
It is important to remember that a good project is not the same as a good application. The Selection Committee will be reading around 60 applications, so you need to make a strong case for your particular project. A strong application will explain clearly what the research project is (its aims and scope), why it is significant, how it will be conducted (this should be related to the requested budget), and what its outcomes are expected to be. The application form also asks you to relate your project to the objectives of the ACC. A good knowledge of existing research in the field (where relevant), strong support from your School, Centre or Faculty, and strong support from an Australian host institution, if you are travelling to Australia, are also important.
The closing date for 2013-14 applications is 20 September 2013.