Up to $3M is available from AUSMURI to strengthen Australian university research capacity, skills and global networks in research topics of priority to Defence future capabilities.


US-Australia International Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (AUSMURI)

The United States-Australia International Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (AUSMURI) is a $25 million non-competitive grant program for Australian universities undertaking research in collaboration with United States based universities on designated topics aligning with Australian interests in future defence capability.



The AUSMURI program forms part of the Next Generation Technologies Fund that was announced as part of the 2016 Defence White Paper. For each round of AUSMURI the designated topic will relate to one of the following nine priority areas as defined in the 2016 Defence Industry Policy Statement.

  • integrated intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance
  • space capabilities
  • enhanced human performance
  • medical countermeasure products
  • multidisciplinary material sciences
  • quantum technologies
  • trusted autonomous systems
  • cyber
  • advanced sensors, hypersonics, and directed energy capabilities.

For round 2 the designated topic is:

  • Active perception and knowledge exploitation in navigation and spatial awareness. AUSMURI is open only to Australian universities involved in a successful MURI submission on a designated topic

AUSMURI is open only to Australian universities involved in a successful MURI submission on a designated topic.



AUSMURI supports the Australian Government’s commitment to:

  • strengthening Australian university research capacity, skills and global networks in research topics of priority to Defence future capabilities
  • embed capability in Australian defence innovation research and build expertise in critical technological priority areas.

Collaboration between universities and disciplines within universities is an important objective of the program, and therefore we strongly encourage applications that demonstrate collaboration across Australian universities and disciplines.

The program’s intended outcomes are to:

  • produce transformational research and innovation that leads to significant advancement of capabilities and knowledge that have potential to be game-changing for Defence capability
  • develop relationships and link Australian research strengths to build critical mass with new capacity for inter-disciplinary, collaborative approaches in fields of high potential for future Defence needs
  • build networks with US universities to strengthen research and achieve global competitiveness in fields of high potential for future defence capabilities
  • build Australia’s human capacity in a range of research areas of priority to Defence future capabilities by attracting and retaining, from within Australia and abroad, researchers of high international standing as well as the most promising research students
  • provide high quality postgraduate and postdoctoral training environments for the next generation of researchers to support the future capabilities of defence.



The AUSMURI program will provide 100 per cent of eligible project costs up to a maximum of AUD$1 million per year over 3 years. Projects may be extended for a further two years, subject to approval, with additional funding of A$1 million per year.


Eligible Projects

To be eligible your project must:

  • be approved through MURI on a designated topic
  • include eligible expenditure
  • be undertaken in Australia.


Eligible Activities & Expenditures

Eligible activities must:

  • directly relate to the project
  • be approved as part of your MURI submission
  • be undertaken in Australia.

You can only spend grant funds on eligible expenditure you have incurred on your AUSMURI project as defined in your grant agreement.

Eligible expenditure items are:

  • salaries for Australian employees or contractors including:
    • Australian principal investigator and Australian co-investigators
    • research associates
    • research assistants
    • technicians
    • laboratory assistants
  • salary on-costs of up to 30 per cent – where direct Australian salary costs have been included in the budget
  • stipends for postgraduate students in Australia at the appropriate rate for the university
  • domestic and international travel costs (economy) for Australian employees directly related to the project
  • materials and supplies necessary to undertake the project
  • equipment and facilities necessary and to be used exclusively for the project
  • other direct costs – for example publication costs.

The Program Delegate, an AusIndustry general manager responsible for the program, makes the final decision on what is eligible expenditure and may give additional guidance on eligible expenditure if required.

To be eligible, expenditure must:

  • be a direct cost of the project, or
  • be incurred by you for approved project audit activities.

You must incur the project expenditure between the project start and end date for it to be eligible unless stated otherwise.


Eligible Applicants

To be eligible for AUSMURI you must:

  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • be a higher education provider listed at Table A or Table B of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 (Cth)
  • be party to an approved MURI submission on a designated topic.



Applications close 30 July 2019.


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