NHMRC Development Grants

Up to $15M is available from NHMRC Development Grants to support researchers to undertake health and medical research within Australia.


NHMRC Development Grants

The NHMRC 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.



NHMRC is the Australian Government’s key entity for managing investment in, and integrity of, health and medical research. The Development Grant scheme is a component of the Portfolio Budget Statement Program 1.1: Health and Medical Research, which contributes to Outcome 1: Improved health and medical knowledge. NHMRC works with stakeholders to plan and design the grant program according to the National Health and Medical Research Council Act 1992 (NHMRC Act) and the CGRGs.

The Development Grant scheme is distinct from the Ideas Grant scheme and other NHMRC schemes. While an Ideas Grant or other NHMRC grants, including those focused on research translation, may ultimately generate new knowledge that results in protectable Intellectual Property (IP) with the potential to be commercialised at a future point in time, a Development Grant specifically drives towards a commercial outcome within a foreseeable timeframe.



The objectives of the NHMRC Development Grant scheme are to:

  • Increase, facilitate and expedite the translation of health and medical research outcomes through to commercialisation, within a foreseeable timeframe
  • Support proof-of-concept research with a feasible commercialisation pathway and a high likelihood of producing protected IP.
  • Provide a potential mechanism through which research outcomes can be progressed to a stage that makes them competitive to receive industry investment through other government schemes or from the private sector.
  • Encourage collaboration between health research, the private sector and industry (domestic and international).

The intended outcome of the Development Grant scheme is increased rates of translation of health and medical research into commercial outcomes, resulting in improved health and medical knowledge.



The estimated provisional funding allocation for the Development Grant scheme is $15 million. NHMRC’s Research Committee annually reviews and recommends indicative budget amounts to be awarded across individual funding schemes.

The amount of funding awarded will be based on an assessment of the requested budget. Applicants are required to clearly justify their requested budget, explaining how it will support the proposed outcomes of the research and demonstrate value for money. Peer reviewers will consider this information and may reduce project duration and/or budget to ensure the research aims and objectives can be achieved, whilst ensuring value with money. A reduced budget does not reduce the scope of the proposed research activity.


Eligible Projects

Funding provided by NHMRC for a Research Activity must be spent on costs directly incurred in relation to that Research Activity. Further guidance on the expenditure of funding for a Research Activity is available in the Direct Research Costs Guidelines (DRC) on the NHMRC website.

Applicants must provide the total value of requested items on a yearly basis and justify all budget items, paying particular attention to any requests that may be atypical for the particular field of research.


Eligible Applicants

Applications are subject to the eligibility requirements set out in the Development Grant Scheme Guidelines 2019.

Applications will only be accepted from NHMRC-approved Administering Institutions. A list of NHMRC-approved Administering Institutions and NHMRC’s Administering Institution policy are available on NHMRC’s website.



Applications close 6 February 2019.


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