Funding Opportunity

Applications for AURIN High Impact Projects for 2020/21 are now closed

Projects will run for up to one year.

AURIN will contribute a maximum of $150,000.00 to each funded project.

AURIN funding cannot be used to fund research, for example, projects funded by the ARC.  AURIN-funded projects must deliver new infrastructure (data, tools, methodologies) that add to/expand/enhance those currently offered by AURIN.

AURIN funding cannot be used to cover indirect university administrative activities (‘overheads’).

In consideration of the impacts of COVID-19, there is no requirement to secure matched funding to participate in the 2020/21 AURIN High Impact Projects program. It is expected that, in future years, AURIN funding will be leveraged in cash co-contributions and in-kind co-investment.


The objectives of the AURIN High Impact Projects program are to:

Extend the existing AURIN Platform with new datasets, tools, services, and methodologies

Demonstrate the value and potential of the AURIN Platform

Improve our understanding of complex urban and regional planning issues in Australia

To achieve these objectives, AURIN will engage with Australian urban and regional planning communities, including researchers, planners and policy makers from academic, government, NGO/NFP and private sector organisations, through collaboration and co-investment in high-quality, high-priority, high impact projects.

This page provides a summary of the AURIN High Impact Projects program. For full details, please read the Guidelines and Proposal form.

2020/21 Eligibility & Criteria

Who should apply (eligibility)

The Project Lead should be an early to mid-career researcher (within 15 years of PhD conferral, considering parental leave or other leave) from an Australian University or Research Organisation, with a valid contract up until 30 April 2022.

Ideally the project team will include collaborators from multiple research organisations, government, NGO/NFP and industry.

Project proposals will be evaluated by AURIN’s Scientific Advisory Committee

The full application and assessment process is detailed in the Guidelines. The Committee will evaluate proposals on the information provided in the submitted Project Proposal form against the proposed project’s ability to meet the objectives of the program (above) and funding will be prioritised towards project proposals that best demonstrate an ability to meet the following criteria.


  • Outcomes: the extent to which the project will expand and enhance AURIN with new datasets, derived datasets or new tools/services/methodologies that will be shared with and re-used by the AURIN Community.
  • Relevance to AURIN community: as measured by the extent to which the project is aligned with AURIN strategy, such as alignment with AURIN’s Key Thematic priority areas for sustainable Cities and Regions (Housing, Transport, Industry, Employment, Population Health, Liveability etc) and/or technology focus areas (Digital Twins/real-time data).
  • Need: the extent to which the project will enable future research by the AURIN community to investigate significant challenges, such as National or State/Territory research priorities.
  • Impact: The extent to which the project will have impact beyond its scope and completion. For example:
    • Impact beyond research, such as economic, societal wellbeing, or policy impact (you should consider who will benefit (e.g. populations, organisations)).
    • The adoption of novel, innovative approaches to reveal new insights and outputs (e.g., new indicators, datasets, models).
  • Feasibility: the project proposal must demonstrate that the project approach, available resources and team expertise is sufficient to ensure that the project can be completed, and deliverables met, within the proposed budget and timeframe.
  • Collaboration: the extent to which the project or its outcomes will enhance collaboration between the project participants, AURIN and/or other organisations in research, government or industry, both within Australia and internationally.
  • Scalability and Extensibility: the ability of the project to be applied to larger datasets, greater spatio-temporal extents or to other regions across Australia or nationally; and the potential for the project to lead to a larger project proposal to be funded by the ARC, NHMRC, ARDC, CRC, State or Commonwealth Governments or other funding programs.

Before preparing your proposal, you should:


This schedule is subject to change.

2 Nov 2020 Call for Proposals for AURIN High Impact Projects for 2020/21 opened
11 Jan 2021 Call for Proposals for AURIN High Impact Projects for 2020/21 closed at 5:00PM AEDT
12 Jan to 18 Jan 2021 AURIN High Impacts Projects team evaluation proposals
19 Jan to 12 Feb 2021 AURIN Scientific Advisory Committee evaluation of proposals
Coming soon Announcement of projects to be funded by AURIN – updated to accommodate number of proposals
29 Apr 2021 Project funding agreements finalised
1 May 2021 Project implementation begins


Can you tell me if my idea is good / will be successful?


We strongly advise that you read the Guidelines and AURIN’s Strategic Plan thoroughly. Your proposal needs to be strongly aligned with our strategy.

The High Impact Projects team is available to help you and can offer guidance and clarity around your ideas and how they fit the criteria.

However, proposals will be evaluated by an independent Scientific Advisory Committee who will decide which projects, if any, AURIN should fund.

Is there a requirement for letters of support?


You do not need to submit anything but a completed proposal form to be considered.

The High Impact Projects team may seek further information and supporting documentation from those projects that are selected to receive AURIN funding.

Do I have to have partners/collaborators for my project?


Collaboration is a criterion against which proposals will be assessed and a key strategic area for AURIN. You will need to decide if your proposal may be strengthened by the addition of partners/collaborators, but they are not essential.

Can my company or agency apply?


AURIN regularly collaborates with commercial, industrial, government, and not-for-profit partners.

Do take care to ensure your proposal is strongly aligned with AURIN’s purpose and strategy.

The outputs of your proposed project must be able to be made freely available to Australia’s academic research sector.

As an NCRIS facility, AURIN’s primary purpose is to provide research infrastructure for Australia’s academic research sector and as such, we most commonly collaborate with this sector. If you feel that having an academic partner on your proposed project would strengthen your submission but don’t know who or how to contact, the High Impact Projects team may be able to help you.

What if I don’t have an employment contract to April 2022?

You can still submit a proposal.

AURIN will seek a guarantee from your institution at the time of contracting if your proposal is selected to receive AURIN funding (successful).

What can the funding be used for?

The funding can only be used for those items specified in the 2018 NCRIS Guidelines.

The funding can be used to cover salaries.

The funding cannot be used to cover university administrative activities that are not directly applicable to, and additionally incurred for the operation of the project. Specifically, this includes costs such as enterprise information technology, human resources, accounting, legal overheads, depreciation or other routine expenses for universities or publicly funded research agencies.

For the purpose of clarity, any general ‘administrative charge’ (however calculated) not supported by evidence of services being provided, or the like is excluded.

Why is the word limit smaller than indicated in the form?
The measure is actually a character count or word average, so it won’t be exact. It should match the word count in MS Word. We appreciate this may be frustrating if you have prepared a submission using some other format and we will make it clearer in future documentation.
The intention is to have very brief submissions.


Guidelines and Proposal form: provides full details of the AURIN High Impact Projects 2020/21 program and the Project Proposal form (application).

Example Project Funding Agreement: it is critical to note that funding agreements will vary with the specifics of each funded project. This example is included to assist you in determining if the AURIN High Impact Projects 2020/21 program is right for you. This document includes example project plans and reports, which are also subject to change.

AURIN Strategic Plan: projects must be aligned with AURIN’s strategic objectives.

NCRIS Guidelines: projects must comply with the NCRIS Guidelines and funding conditions.

FAQs: frequently asked questions will be added to this page as and when they arise.

Submit Project Proposal

Applications for AURIN High Impact Projects for 2020/21 are now closed

Download the AURIN High Impact Projects 2020/21 Guidelines and Proposal form (one document).

Submit your completed form to the AURIN High Impact Projects team before 5:00 PM AEDT, 11 January 2021 via outreach@aurin.org.au.

Queries regarding AURIN High Impact Projects should be directed to the AURIN High Impact Projects team via outreach@aurin.org.au and FAQs will be added to this page as they arise.