AgriFutures™ Pasture Seeds Program Open Call

AgriFutures Australia investments are driven by five-year research, development and extension (RD&E) plans that address the needs of industries and stakeholders, and ensure our priorities are industry and government-driven. Our aim is to increase knowledge that fosters sustainable, productive new and existing rural industries and further understanding of national rural issues through research and developing in government-industry partnership.

AgriFutures Australia is inviting applications from suitably qualified research providers for projects addressing objectives 2, 3 and 4 from the AgriFutures™ Pasture Seed Program‘s five year RD&E Plan.

This targeted open call for research proposals commences Monday 12 August 2019 and closes 12 noon (AEDT) Wednesday 18 September 2019.

Open call overview

AgriFutures Australia investments are driven by five-year research, development and extension (RD&E) plans that address the needs of industries and stakeholders, and ensure our priorities are industry and government-driven. Our aim is to increase knowledge that fosters sustainable, productive new and existing rural industries and further understanding of national rural issues through research and developing in government-industry partnership.

AgriFutures Australia is inviting applications from suitably qualified research providers for projects addressing the following objectives from the AgriFutures™ Pasture Seed Program‘s five year RD&E Plan:

  • Objective 2: Sustainable certified temperate pasture seed production
  • Objective 3: Connectivity and communication
  • Objective 4: Building industry capability and capacity.

The Pasture Seeds Program Advisory Panel is particularly interested in projects that have a related PhD student who is looking for a scholarship or top-up payment.

In planning and submitting proposals for AgriFutures Australia-funded projects, prospective researchers need to familiarise themselves with the application procedure, the Corporation’s overarching goals and strategies, the goals and strategies of the relevant R&D program and the specific priorities for R&D for the year for which the proposal is being submitted.

We also welcome and encourage your collaboration with other research providers to build the critical research mass necessary to meet our objectives.

This targeted open call for research proposals commences Monday 12 August 2019 and closes 12 noon (AEDT) Wednesday 18 September 2019.

Targeted research open call

AgriFutures Australia reserves the right to make the final decision on investment. Any proposals that do not address the identified priorities may be rejected or deferred at the discretion of AgriFutures Australia.

Where numerous proposals are received to address a single priority during an open call, AgriFutures Australia will undertake a preliminary assessment to determine which proposals will progress to the Advisory Panel for review. Proposals that are deemed to insufficiently address the priority will be rejected or deferred at the discretion of AgriFutures Australia.

To improve industry engagement with the research, and ultimately improve the adoption of research outcomes, contracted projects may have a steering committee selected by AgriFutures Australia.

Within the AgriFutures™ Pasture Seeds Program interest is limited to projects that address the following strategies:

Objective 2: Sustainable certified temperate pasture seed production

2.1. Develop and implement improved disease, weed and pest management for leviable temperate pasture seed species by supporting the development of integrated pest management (IPM) and integrated weed management (IWM) strategies.

2.4. Investigate and facilitate the use of alternative chemicals. 8

2.5. Support the industry’s capacity and capability to respond to urgent issues that have the potential to affect its sustainability, through quick-response RD&E projects.

Objective 3: Connectivity and communication

3.2 Develop networks to improve connections between and facilitate input and feedback from growers, through initiatives that might include facilitating participatory research opportunities between growers and researchers to improve adoption and feedback; or motivating growers to adopt research outputs, make changes, and/or provide information on the impacts of funded projects (agronomic, economic, environmental, social).

3.3 Improve engagement with and leverage of funding from other sources, through developing collaborations with allied industries including those that are pasture seed end-user groups (e.g. Meat and Livestock Australia, Dairy Australia, Australian Wool Innovation).

Objective 4: Building industry capability and capacity

4.1. Support initiatives that encourage growers and service providers (e.g. agronomists) to complete professional development and industry training courses.

4.2. Upskill and encourage growers to become involved with every aspect of the industry e.g. take on leadership roles.

4.3. Promote network building by funding growers’ attendance at industry workshops and conferences.

4.4. Foster international linkages across the industry for the identification and promotion of world’s best practice.

The Pasture Seeds Program Advisory Panel is particularly interested in projects that have a related PhD student who is looking for a scholarship or top-up payment.

Key Research Focus areas include:

  • Further development of research that has previously been funded by AgriFutures
  • Key issues of levy payers around Lucerne Seed Wasp, including but not limited to the use of crop oils spring PCR tests and parasitoid wasps,
  • Other concerns include varieties for seed production, growth regulators as a crop flowering tool, pollination and weed control.
  • Extension and adoption of research
  • Capacity building for levy payers focussing on younger growers. Industry skill building as outlined in Objective 4.

Proposals should clearly indicate the following:

  • The project benefits for growers
  • The objectives and outcomes of the proposed project and the link to the R&D objectives
  • Who will be undertaking the majority of the work, including statistical analysis (it must be clear if new staff and/or students are to be employed to undertake the work)
  • The plan for extension of research outcomes from the project activity work, i.e. beyond distribution of summaries and conference presentations
  • Where relevant, proposals should include collaboration with experts in the field, which may not be located in Australia
  • The researcher’s understanding of past research in this field.

Researcher submission checklist

The researcher must complete the checklist prior to the submission being accepted:

  • If the project requires statistical analysis, has a qualified statistician been engaged to undertake project design and data analyses?
  • Is the Principal Investigator an early career researcher (less than five years since postgraduate study completion)?
  • Has the proposal been discussed with AgriFutures Australia?
  • Has the proposal been discussed with people in the Program industry?
  • Does the proposal address the objectives and strategies for objectives 2,3, and 4 as outlined in the AgriFutures™ Pasture Seeds Program five year RD&E plan?
  • Does the proposal identify if the work potentially relates to the Program objective?
  • Does the proposal clearly identify who will be undertaking the bulk of the work (might not necessarily be the Principal Investigator)?
  • Does the proposal clearly articulate what the applied outcome for industry will be? (even if it is a long-term applied project there should still be a focus on an applied outcome).
  • Does the proposal clearly outline what the potential process might be for identifying extension opportunities? (Excluding publications and opportunities for presenting the work at conferences).
  • Does the proposal take into consideration where the international expertise is in the area of research?
  • The Principal Investigator must comply with the application process within Clarity.

Submitting a Preliminary Research Proposal

AgriFutures Australia business with research providers is facilitated by the online project management system Clarity. This system manages all stages of project administration.

Preliminary Research Proposals must be submitted online using Clarity.

Request new user: Clarity

Users must create a Clarity account before submitting a proposal. To set up a secure account before submitting a proposal, contact the AgriFutures Australia helpdesk for a username and password: helpdesk@agrifutures.com.au

Usernames and passwords will only be issued while the applicable round is open.

For further assistance with navigating Clarity during your project, refer to the Clarity resources and templates in the first instance.

Submit a proposal: Clarity login

Research contracts

AgriFutures Australia uses a standard form contract for RD&E projects (Research Agreement), which sets out the terms on which AgriFutures Australia will engage successful applicants to carry out the project.

Applicants must be familiar with the Research Agreement before lodging Preliminary Research Proposals (PRPs), and are advised to seek legal advice on it before lodging a PRP.

Read Research Agreement

 

The Research Agreement has been developed to reflect AgriFutures Australia’s statutory and other responsibilities in funding projects. AgriFutures Australia will generally not negotiate substantive amendments to any clauses of the Agreement unless:

  • It is satisfied that exceptional circumstances exist that require amendment to the standard form
  • The applicant completes a statement of non-compliance for each of those clauses.

Applicants will be taken to have agreed to all clauses in the Research Agreement that are not referred to in a statement of non-compliance. The extent of any non-compliance will be a factor in AgriFutures Australia’s evaluation of the application.

If you require further information regarding the Research Agreement, contact Louise Heaslip, General Manager, Corporate: louise.heaslip@agrifutures.com.au

Contact

It is strongly advised that researchers contact the Program Manager prior to submitting a proposal.

Annelies McGaw
Manager, Research
02 6923 6913
0407 987 738
Annelies.McGaw@agrifutures.com.au

The AgriFutures™ Honey Bee and Pollination Program open call closes 12 noon (AEDT) Wednesday 18 September 2019