Australia-China Council

Australian Studies Competitive Projects

2014-15 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 19 September 2014.

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:

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.

Forms

Eligibility

Individual researchers in China, collaborative teams 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 must be enrolled in their home institution in China not in an Australian institution. It is essential that graduate students applying for funding for research in Australia include with their application a completed and signed Host Institution form 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 and priorities.

Strategic Goals

  1. To strengthen the foundations of engagement - China literacy, business and cultural capabilities of Australian institutions and people
  2. To seek and foster new areas of engagement between Australia and China across business, knowledge and creative sectors
  3. To enhance understanding in China of Australian society, economy, politics and culture through the Australian Studies in China Program
  4. To showcase Australian creativity, entrepreneurship and innovation in China
  5. To generate, disseminate and make accessible high-quality, relevant and up-to-date information about Australia-China relations
  6. To facilitate dialogue, develop professional and institutional networks between Australia and China and harness the leadership of Australian communities in strengthening bilateral connectivity

Funding Priorities

The Australia-China Council's grant-making and program priorities for the 2014-2018 period are centred on four areas – Education, Economic Diplomacy, Arts and Culture and Australian Studies in China and are underpinned by three cross-cutting themes - Mobility, Technology and Capabilities and New Areas of Engagement.

  1. Education: Support practical and effective solutions to enhance China literacy, business and cultural capabilities of Australian institutions and people to effectively engage with China, and promote education, science and innovation connectivity between Australia and China
  2. Economic Diplomacy: Promote diversity, growth and innovation of Australia's trade and investment relationship with China
  3. Arts and Culture: Showcase Australian arts and creative industries to Chinese audiences and build closer and broader cultural and artistic partnerships
  4. Australian Studies in China: Consolidate and strengthen the Australian Studies in China Program

The Council's grant-making and program activities in the above-mentioned areas will focus on the following three cross-cutting themes:

  1. Mobility: Encouraging greater and more diverse professional mobility between Australia and China, including through support of the New Colombo Plan
  2. Capabilities: Building capabilities of organisations and individuals to enter into partnerships and work effectively with their Chinese counterparts; investing in information resources (including new digital and mobile platforms) that inform Australian communities and relevant sectors about opportunities, practices and risks in engaging with China
  3. New Areas of Engagement: Identifying and seeking practical solutions to develop new niche areas of engagement between the two countries

Projects that do not fall under these funding priorities, however, will not be rejected and will be considered by the Selection Committee.

Goals

Project Selection

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.

Funding

All funds will be paid in CNY (in China) or AUD (in Australia). All payments must be made before 30 June 2015, unless special circumstances exist.

Selection Criteria

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 applicants need to make a strong case for their 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 applicants to relate the 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 the applicant(s) are travelling to Australia, are also important.

Closing Date

The closing date for 2014-15 applications is 19 September 2014.

Further Information

Please contact Marilyn Barton at austudies.china@uq.edu.au