Queensland-Chinese Academy of Sciences Collaborative Science Fund – Frequently asked questions 2022 Round

    How to apply

    1. How do I apply?

    Read Guidelines and application requirements at the Queensland Government website for the Queensland-Chinese Academy of Sciences (Q-CAS) Collaborative Science Fund 2022 program.

    2. What is the closing date for applications?

    Applications for the QCAS 2022 Round have closed.

    3. Can I apply for funding if my research proposal does not address one of the Q-CAS Collaborative Science Fund identified priority areas?

    No. Your application will be deemed ineligible if it does not address one or more of the identified priorities in environmental sciences. The project is required to contribute to developing solutions relevant to

    • climate change
    • environmental pollution
    • ecological safety
    • natural disaster
    • environmental monitoring
    • health hazards.

    4. Is there a requirement to submit an application to the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS)?

    Yes, an equivalent application must be submitted by the China-based participant to CAS.

    For further information on CAS requirements contact Chinese Academy of Sciences:

    5. The online Application Form will not allow me to provide my full response to a question.

    The text fields contained in the Application Form have been restricted to the word limits considered appropriate for each question and these limits cannot be extended.

    6. Why am I required to complete the Project Summary in plain English?

    Information provided in this section of the Application Form will be used to inform a wide range of people about the proposed project. It is therefore important that it is clear and easy to understand by a person with a limited scientific background. Do not use scientific jargon or technical terms.

    The overview of the project should include simple statements outlining: what the project aims to do and how it will be done; how the project will address the identified challenge/opportunity; the significance of the collaboration between the project partners; and a summary of the key outcomes for Queenslanders.

    7. The online Application Form only allows for the upload of one letter of support / resume and I need to upload multiple.

    Multiple documents (letters of support or resumes) should be combined into one PDF file before uploading.

    8. How do I demonstrate that I am aware of other research that has been, or is being, undertaken in the proposed space?

    In demonstrating this you should detail your awareness of similar/comparable research undertaken by academia and industry, including the undertaking of patent searches, as appropriate.

    9. How should I complete the Milestones, Activities and Research Outcomes section?

    Detail the key project activities to be completed, split into six-monthly reporting periods. You also need to detail the expected outcomes of these activities (i.e. how you will measure the success of the project at the end of each six-monthly reporting period).

    While it is appreciated that scientific milestones are usually highly technical in nature, they should, as far as possible, be described in clear, non-technical language that will enable understanding and meaningful verification by non-scientific personnel. As a guideline, each milestone should be three to five dot points describing the key activities and outcomes for the particular stage of the project with numbers, targets or rates of completion, where possible.

    Should your application for funding be successful this milestone table will form the basis of your progress reporting.

    10. My Application Form contains confidential information; is it safe to upload this online?

    The online lodgement process is hosted via a secure site and application documentation will remain strictly confidential.

    11. How will applications be assessed?

    All applications will be assessed by a panel of independent assessors that will assess the applications against the assessment criteria, and rank applications in order of merit.

    The Queensland Government will then consider this order of merit along with a range of variables including value for money and balancing the portfolio of investment in order to make the final recommendations for funding to the Minister for Science.


    12. How much can I apply for?

    Grants of $125,000 (over a maximum of two years) are available from the Queensland Government under this Fund. Successful applicants will also receive equivalent amount of funding from the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

    13. How many projects are likely to be funded?

    The 2022 Round will fund up to four projects. The number of projects to be funded in future rounds is to be agreed between upon the Queensland Government and the CAS.

    14. How will the total funding allocation be split between research priorities?

    Whilst an allocation of funding to each priority area is preferable, the actual award of funding will be based on the volume and quality of applications received.

    15. What are “organisational overheads”?

    For the purpose of this funding program organisational overheads are the institutional and administrative overhead costs attributed to a position, such as facilities and accommodation-related costs, ICT costs, general administrative support costs. In some organisations this is calculated as a percentage of the salary costs. These on-costs are not eligible for Queensland Government funding.

    16. Are salary on-costs eligible for funding?

    Costs directly associated with the employment of an individual, such as superannuation, workers compensation, payroll tax and leave loading are eligible.

    Organisational eligibility

    17. How is a ‘Queensland-based organisation’ defined?

    The organisation must be operating its business in a physical location in Queensland which must be maintained for the duration of the project.

    18. How is a ‘research organisation’ defined?

    The organisation must conduct research as its primary business. Research organisations include: higher education institutions, cooperative research centres, research institutes and relevant government agencies.

    19. How is a ‘partner organisation’ defined?

    A partner is an organisation that is materially contributing to the project and its outcomes, as demonstrated by a cash contribution.

    20. Are private businesses eligible to apply for funding?

    A private businesses/companies who does not conduct research as its primary business are not eligible to apply for funding from the program. They are eligible to participate in the project as partner organisations.

    21. Are Queensland Government departments eligible to be project partners?

    Yes, however, applicants would need to demonstrate the value for money in a project application that cites Queensland Government as the major funder.

    22. Can I apply if I have a Chinese project partner that is not a CAS institute?

    No. To be eligible, projects must include a China-based lead participant that will be a CAS-affiliated institute for the duration of the project. Further information on CAS institutes can be found on the CAS website.

    23. How much funding is required from the applicant organisation and the partner organisation(s)?

    The Queensland-based applicant organisation must contribute at least AUD$75,000 in cash to the project.

    The CAS-affiliated institute (and any China-based partner/s) must contribute at least AUD$75,000 to match the Queensland applicant (and any partner/s) contribution.

    (Total project value will be a minimum of AUD$400,000 comprising AUD$125,000 each from the Department of Environment and Science (DES) and CAS and AUD$75,000 each from the Queensland applicant and CAS lead participant.)

    You are not required to detail any in-kind contributions to the project.

    24. How is ‘cash’ defined?

    For the purposes of this funding program cash is either, or a combination of:

    • cash as raised directly by the applicant organisation and/or leveraged from project partners
    • salary* costs attributed to the project of dedicated researchers who are employed by the applicant organisation and/or the project partners, and who are assigned directly to the core business of the project.

    In relation to salary costs, by definition:

    • researchers must have at least 20% of their work responsibilities assigned directly to the core business of the project
    • researchers can be full-time or part-time
    • if it transpires that a researcher’s time has been charged or allocated to more than one project (that is, where a researcher’s time has been double counted) DES will withdraw funding for the project.

    25. Can salaries of researchers be counted as cash for matching funding purposes?

    Yes - if the researcher is spending at least 20% of his/her time working on the project.

    Conditions of award

    26. If my application is successful, when would my project start?

    Successful projects must commence within six months of being advised that funding has been approved.

    27. Are the Terms and Conditions of the financial incentive agreement negotiable?

    No. If you are offered funding from the Q-CAS Collaborative Science Fund, you will be required to execute the standard financial incentive agreement within 15 business days of receipt, or the offer of funding will lapse.

    28. If my application is successful am I under any obligations regarding communication/publicity?

    Funding recipients will be required to proactively communicate the research project’s aims, progress and outcomes through activities such as publications, conferences, the media and science education activities. The support of Queensland Government should be acknowledged in all public communications. Recipients will be required to evidence these communications throughout the lifetime of the project.

    29. How the funding is paid?

    Funding is paid in instalments throughout the lifetime of the project. Generally, payments are made following the submission of satisfactory reports detailing the progress and outcomes of the project against the research plan.

    Further information

    Email: science.grants@des.qld.gov.au

    Phone: 13 QGOV (13 74 68)

    Chinese partners can obtain more information from the Chinese Academy of Sciences:

    Email: yzsong@cashq.ac.cn

    Phone: +8610 6859 7569