Consumers, community and professional groups are encouraged to submit proposals on a specific health issue or topic that would benefit from further health and medical research efforts.

This guide provides advice to consumers, community and professional groups intending to propose potential topics that may warrant a Targeted Call for Research (TCR). It aims to assist in the preparation and drafting of submissions made through the Community Research Priorities Portal (the Portal). This guide should be considered in conjunction with the information provided on the Targeted Call for Research page and other relevant documents, as described below.

TCR topic submissions are assessed and prioritised according to: 


Topic proposals must be developed, driven and submitted by consumers, community and/or professional groups. Submissions from, developed and/or driven by academic researchers or research institutions will not be considered.  

NHMRC encourages submitters to consult and detail links, engagements and/or collaborations with researchers, advocacy groups, consumers, medical practitioners in addition to Commonwealth, State, Territory and local agencies in preparing the submission.  

The Principles for Prioritising Targeted Calls for Research require that proposed topics must: 

  • address a significant research knowledge gap or unmet need for which there is a potential to advance our understanding of a health issue, and/or 
  • link to national, state and territory and/or community priorities, including research that has the potential to provide better health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 

Submissions should outline how a TCR on the proposed topic has the potential to: 

  • improve health outcomes for the community 
  • reduce the burden of disease on the health system and Australian economy, and 
  • contribute to the global research effort.

Submissions will not be considered if they are: 

  • from academic researchers or academic/research institutions 
  • requesting grant funding or partnership with NHMRC 

Research classifications

NHMRC research funding data related to proposed topics will be used to assist deciding whether a TCR is warranted. NHMRC identifies and extracts funding data based on keywords and phrases provided by the submitters and extracted from the submission. These analyses highlight whether the proposed topic constitutes an unmet research need when taking into account existing NHMRC funded research.  

To enable NHMRC to retrieve the necessary data, submissions must include up to ten (10) research keywords or phrases as per the standard research classification developed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. These are available on the Australian standard research classifications and research keywords page

Online form and offline template  

Submitters are strongly encouraged to use the online submission form when preparing submissions.  

Please note the online submission form on the Portal cannot be saved as a draft. Once you start a submission through the Portal, you must complete all fields on the template and select Submit at the bottom of the form.  

Where submitters are unable to access the Portal, offline submissions can be made using the template available in the Download section of the Community Research Priorities Portal page. Completed submissions should be emailed to, with the subject line - Community Research Priorities Portal submission: [ORGANISATION NAME].