Partnership Projects

NHMRC Partnerships for Better Health – Partnership Projects (Partnership Projects) will help create partnerships among decision makers, policy makers, managers, clinicians and researchers. This funding scheme provides funding and support to create new opportunities for researchers and policy makers to work together to define research questions, undertake research, interpret the findings and implement the findings into policy and practice.

Partnership Projects will answer a specific research question to influence health and well-being through changes in the delivery, organisation, funding and access to health services.

In 2016 NHMRC was invited to present an overview of the scheme at an information session on Partnership Projects at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI). The presentations are below and provide a useful overview of the scheme.

Continuous Application Process

This scheme allows applicants to apply at any time during the year rather than through just one annual round. This is to allow researchers and partner organisations to develop timely collaborations. The grant commencement date is not fixed for 1 January – it will be aligned with the timing of each peer review cycle. This allows funding to be administered more quickly after grants are awarded provided all necessary documentation is in place.

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 Partnership Project application.

Applicants, who are not yet registered on RGMS, should contact the Research Help Centre on for more information.

A complete Partnership Projects application must consist of the following:

  1. Completion of Parts A and B (including the Grant Proposal PDF) of the application form; and
  2. The relevant information in your RGMS profile and CV.

Prior to submission of an application for Partnership Project funding, applicants are to ensure they:

  • read all relevant reference material; and
  • liaise with their Administering Institution to identify any specific requirements that the Institution may have.

Key Dates

The Partnership Projects 2017 round will open on 18 January 2017. Applications can be submitted at any time during the year, up until 6 December 2017.

Peer review of applications received in 2017 will occur in three distinct cycles. The deadline for each of the Peer Review Cycles (PRC) is listed below:

Process PRC #1 PRC #2 PRC#3
NHMRC Approved Administering Institutions wavier due date 15 March 2017 20 July 2017 8 November 2017
Minimum data due 29 March 2017 2 August 2017 22 November 2017
Application due date 12 April 2017 16 August 2017 6 December 2017
Peer Review Meetings July 2017 November 2017 April 2018

Changes to Partnership Projects for 2017

Applicants should note the following changes to the Partnership Projects scheme-specific Funding Rules for 2017:

Peer Review Cycles

Applications will proceed to peer review depending on when they are submitted to NHMRC. For example, for an application to be peer reviewed in the first cycle (PRC #1); applicants must ensure minimum data requirements are met by 29 March 2017, and the application must be submitted by 12 April 2017. Applications that have met minimum data requirements but are not submitted by the application due date will remain active. The applicant may continue to work on the application and submit to the next available peer review cycle.

Any application which was started but was not submitted by the third peer review cycle deadline of 6 December 2017 will need to reapply in 2018.

NHMRC Administering Institutions Partner Waiver

NHMRC Approved Administering Institutions (Administering Institutions) cannot be named as a partner on a Partnership Project application, unless they:

  • are primarily an organisation which delivers health policy and/or health services, and
  • obtain a waiver from NHMRC.

This is consistent with the description and objectives of the scheme, which includes the aim to create partnerships among decision makers, policy makers, managers, clinicians and researchers to improve the translation of research evidence into health policy and health practice.

This policy includes organisations that falls under the “umbrella” of an Administering Institution (such as having the same ABN/CAN, falls under the same governance, or is not a legal entity of its own and falls under the auspices of an Administering Institution).

An Administering Institution that is primarily involved in delivering health policy and/or health services can apply for a waiver. Requests for waivers need to be made through the Research Administration Office of the Administering Institution that is applying for the waiver.

Completed request for wavier forms must be emailed to by the relevant date (see Partnership Projects Funding Rules). The waiver request must clearly outline why the Administering Institution should be considered as a partner organisation.

Waiver requests that fail to address each of the points within the form will be denied.

Following assessment, NHMRC will provide written advice concerning the decision. Approved waivers will be valid for any Partnership Project applications submitted for the remainder of the calendar year, commencing from the date of the written advice.

Administering Institutions that do not obtain a waiver may be listed as a participating institute, if appropriate, however any contributions will not be considered ‘partner funding’ and therefore matched funding will not be provided.

Applications that name Administering Institutions as partners (without obtaining a waiver) may be deemed ineligible.

Due dates for the submission of waivers can be found in the Partnership Projects Funding Rules.

Documentation to Apply for a Partnership Projects 2017 round

These must be read in conjunction with the NHMRC Funding Rules 2017, NHMRC Advice and Instructions to Applicants 2017 and Guide to NHMRC Peer Review 2017, which have also been revised.

Criteria for Health and Medical Research of Indigenous Australians (applicable for applicants applying for NHMRC Partnerships for Better Health – Partnership Projects in the area of Indigenous Health)

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

Minimum Data requirements

Minimum data for the Partnership Projects Grant scheme consists of the following:

•             A-PA General: Specifically, Administering Institution, Application Title, Aboriginal/Torres Strait Islander Research and Synopsis;

•             A-RC Research Classification; and

•             A-RT Research Team 

Once the minimum data date passes, applicants will not be able to create a new application in that peer review cycle. New applications will need to be created in the next peer review cycle.

Applications must meet the corresponding minimum data and submission deadlines to be reviewed in a particular cycle. Applications that do not meet minimum data deadlines will be removed from RGMS. Applications that meet minimum data requirements but are not submitted for review will be retained in RGMS as an incomplete application and may be submitted for assessment in the next cycle provided corresponding deadlines are met. After 6 December 2017, any applications not submitted will be removed from RGMS.

Applicants are also reminded to complete the recommended fields with correct information. Using placeholder text such as “text”, “synopsis” or “xx” etc. are not acceptable as minimum data.

Note that RAOs should not certify applications for the purpose of minimum data; applications should only be certified once complete and ready for submission.

Recent Outcomes

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

Documentation to Apply for a Partnership Projects 2016 round (NOW CLOSED)

Criteria for Health and Medical Research of Indigenous Australians (applicable for applicants applying for NHMRC Partnerships for Better Health – Partnership Projects in the area of Indigenous Health)

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