Development Grants

The Development Grants scheme provides financial support to individual researchers and/or research teams to undertake health and medical research within Australia at the proof-of-concept stage that specifically drives towards a commercial outcome within a foreseeable timeframe.

Early stage research or knowledge creation research (this is fundable through the NHMRC Project Grants scheme) will not be funded through the Development Grants scheme.

The Development Grants scheme supports the commercial development of a product, process, procedure or service that, if applied, would result in improved health care, disease prevention or provide health cost savings.

Research supported by this scheme must, via a commercial business plan, have detailed feasible strategies for commercialisation that takes into account the regulatory pathway, protectable IP, commercial barriers and potential routes to market.

Apply for funding

The NHMRC’s Research Grants Management System (RGMS) must be used to access/update your CV and profile and to submit your Development Grant application. If they have not already done so, applicants are advised to gain an RGMS log on and commence their CV and profile.

Applicants who are not yet registered on RGMS, can request an account from the RGMS webpage. For assistance please refer to the Research Help Centre.

A complete Development Grant application must consist of the following:

  • completion of Parts A and B (including the Grant Proposal PDF template) of the application form
  • the relevant information in your RGMS profile and CV.

Prior to submission of an application for Development Grant funding, applicants need to ensure they have:

  • read all relevant reference material
  • liaised with their Administering Institution to identify any specific requirements that the Institution might have.

Note: Applicants are required to, as part of their grant proposal, provide a business case for commercialisation of proposed research. See section 5.3 of the Development Grants Scheme-Specific Funding Rules and section 3.2 of the Development Grants Scheme-Specific Advice and Instructions

The requirement for a letter of support from an Industry/Commercial partner has been removed from the 2017 Round.

Minimum Data requirements

For each application, it is mandatory that minimum data requirements be entered in RGMS by 5:00pm AEDT on 18 January 2017 to allow the NHMRC to start sourcing suitable assessors. Applications that fail to satisfy this requirement will not be accepted. Applicants are also reminded to complete the recommended fields below with correct information. Using placeholder text such as “text”, “synopsis” or “xx” etc. are not acceptable as minimum data.

Minimum data for the Development Grants scheme consists of the following:

  • General: Specifically, Administering Institution, Application Title, Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander Research and Plain English Summary
  • A-RC Research Classification.

Key Dates

The key dates for the Development Grants 2017 funding round are as follows:

16 November 2017 Applications open in RGMS
18 January 2017 at 5:00pm AEDT Deadline for entering minimum data requirements in RGMS
1 February 2017 at 5:00pm AEDT Applications close in RGMS
Mid 2017 Completion of Peer Review
Late 2017 Funding Announcement

Key changes to the Development Grants scheme for 2017

Applicants should note the following changes to the Development Grant scheme-specific Funding Rules for 2017:

  • amendment to section 5.2: Exclusion Criteria as part of Eligibility
  • new section 5.3 Business Case. Letter of support requirement removed
  • new section 6.3 Industry/Commercial experience: Track Record criterion
  • removed previous section 6.3 Industry/Commercial Partner/s
  • career disruption, including sensitive career  disruption, has moved from the Grant Proposal to the CV

Documentation to Apply for a Development Grant

Research Classifications Guides including Broad Research Area, Fields of Research and NHMRC Keyword ⁄ Phrases

Development Grants Applications in Indigenous Health and Well-being

Not for Further Consideration (NFFC) Process

The Not for Further Consideration (NFFC) process was introduced into the peer review of Development Grants in 2014. This process identifies and removes the least competitive applications received by NHMRC based on scores provided by the commercial and scientific expert peer reviewers (Phase 1 Assessors). Please refer to Guide to NHMRC Peer Review 2017 incorporating the Development Grants Scheme-Specific Peer Review Guidelines for additional information.

Recent Outcomes

Details of awarded 2017 Development Grants and associated data.

Further information

If you require more information, direct your inquiry to your Research Administration Office in the first instance. If you require assistance and are unable to satisfy your concern by seeking assistance through your administering institution:

Contact the Research Help Centre on 1800 500 983, or email