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Engaging Science Grants guidelines

About the program

Advance Queensland focuses on growing the economy and creating jobs. This includes investing in science and innovation in order to:

  • build Queensland’s reputation and capacity to conduct innovative research and development
  • deliver new products and services for Queenslanders
  • establish new industries that will provide jobs for the future.

The Advance Queensland Engaging Science Grants are part of the Advance Queensland Engaging Queenslanders in Science—a strategy with vision to create a Queensland population that engages in and recognises, supports and advocates for science.

The grants are designed to support scientists, researchers, science communicators, journalists, teachers, organisations and community groups to deliver science engagement and communication

projects, events and activities that align with this vision.

A recent survey, Queenslanders’ Perception and Attitudes to Science, commissioned by the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist (OQCS) demonstrates that 74% of Queenslanders are interested in science and 72% believe that science is critical for the state’s economy.

However, 45% believe there is not enough information or news about science available and 47% expressed their concern about the limited science-based activities in their area.

Queenslanders are eager for more activities and this is particularly prominent in regional and remote areas. Grant applications for events or activities in regional areas will be highly regarded.

Grants up to $10,000 (excluding GST) are available for projects, events and activities delivered within a 12 month timeframe.

Program objective

The Engaging Science Grants are offered to increase the reach of science in Queensland. To help achieve this objective applicants may like to consider delivering one the following activities:

  • a school community event/activity/research project involving students, teachers and parents
  • a citizen science project, e.g. a scientist or researcher engages and collaborates with the local community to gather data for a scientific project (this project can also be instigated by an individual or community group)
  • an open house, e.g. invite the local community to a conducted tour of your scientific premises
  • a media or social media campaign e.g. animation/video production and distribution via social media channels
  • an event, seminar or workshop e.g. science communication training for researchers of an activity connecting scientists with community groups to promote Queensland scientists and science programs.

All ideas will be considered, however, funding will not be provided in cases where a similar project with similar outcomes is already underway. Applicants can check for existing projects, events or activities by conducting an Internet search or by viewing a list of STEM engagement and communication activities on the OQCS website.

Funding can also be used to expand existing programs.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for an Engaging Science Grant applicants must be Queensland-based with an ABN.

Using the Engaging Science Grants funds

The Engaging Science Grants funds will be used only on eligible costs such as:

  • labour—fees for guest speakers and specialist contractors
  • production—materials, hire fees, venue catering
  • marketing, media and promotions—printing of marketing materials and advertisements
  • administration—permit fees, insurance
  • other associated and relevant costs directly attributable to the delivery of the science engagement and communication project, event or activity.

The Engaging Science Grants funds cannot be used for operational overheads at the applicant organisation.

Funding for successful projects will be paid following the approval of successful applications on the following basis:

  • 70% at start of the project
  • 30% on project completion.

A short report, inclusive of supporting project evaluation and acquittal of project funds, is required to claim the final 30%. A template of the report will be provided for this purpose when the grant is awarded.

Assessment criteria

1. Well planned project that will deliver and communicate information on an important science topic that is beneficial to the target audience.

(Weight: 50%)

Applicants must demonstrate that:

  • the proposed project will communicate information on an important and timely science topic that is beneficial to the target audience
  • the proposed project will involve subject matter experts and/or expert presenters who will provide informative and entertaining content.
  • the applicant is aware that there are no similar projects being undertaken in Queensland with your target audience.

If applicable, applicants must also give details of the following as these elements will be highly regarded:

  • Collaboration
  • Applicants should provide the names of persons, organisations and institutions (e.g. schools, research institutes, media organisations and community groups etc.) that the applicants will collaborate with to develop and deliver the project, event or activity.

    Applicants should demonstrate that the collaborators, partners and presenters have the capability and complementary expertise to successfully deliver the project, event or activity.

  • Support from sponsors or partners
  • Applicants should demonstrate the cash contributions from sponsors or partners through submission of the letters of support towards the delivery of the project, event or activity.

  • Regional delivery
  • Applicants should provide the details of the venue or location where the project, event or activity will be held or carried out.

2. Clear outcomes and alignment with the Engaging Queenslanders in Science strategy.

(Weight: 30%)

Applicants must demonstrate that the proposed project:

  • will address one or more of the following Engaging Queenslanders in Science strategy’s four goals:
    • STEM participation: To increase the number of students participating in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects.
    • Public engagement: To increase engagement and participation of the Queensland community in science-based activities.
    • Scientist engagement: To increase the number of scientists directly engaging with the Queensland community.
    • Public awareness: To increase awareness and understanding of the great science taking place in Queensland.
  • will deliver clear outcomes that align with the goals of the Engaging Queenslanders in Science strategy.

3. Effective promotion of the proposed project and evaluation of its success.

(Weight: 20%)

Applicants must demonstrate that the proposed project:

  • will use effective promotional activities to attract the maximum number of people within the target audience
  • will use an evaluation mechanism that will generate quantitative and qualitative feedback to measure the success of the project.

Assessment process

Applications will be assessed:

  • through a competitive, merit-based process, against the program’s eligibility and assessment criteria
  • by a panel of assessors with relevant scientific, research and/or engagement and communication backgrounds.

The number of grants awarded will depend on the number and quality of applications received and the available funding pool at a given time.

Applicants may be contacted during the assessment process to clarify information provided in the application and/or to request additional information to enable the appropriate consideration of the application.


The Queensland Government collects and collates information from the application form to evaluate applications for the program. Only authorised departmental officers and approved grant assessors have access to this information under the Financial Accountability Act 2009 for the purpose of assessing the application for funding.

Applicants should note that broad details of successful proposals, agreed outcomes, progress and the level of funding awarded may be published by the Queensland Government.

Some information may be used to promote funded projects.

Your personal information will not be disclosed to any other third party without your consent, unless required by law or for the purposes of Information Privacy Act 2009 .

For audit purposes, the Queensland Government is required to retain the applications and other supplied support material.

The provisions of the Right to Information Act 2009 apply to documents in the possession of the Queensland Government.

How to apply

An application for funding can be submitted at any time, however applications will be assessed at periodic intervals. Please refer to the Advance Queensland website for assessment timeframes.

The application consists of:

  • a completed on-line application form
  • scanned (PDF) letters of support from the applicant organisation and partner organisation(s), if applicable
  • a signed Financial Incentive Agreement Terms and Conditions declaration page. The template is available on the Advance Queensland website and must be printed and signed by a delegated representative from the applicant organisation, scanned in PDF, and uploaded with the application form.

All scanned documents can be submitted as part of the online application process.

Further information

Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Australia (CC BY-ND 3.0)
Last updated
27 April, 2017

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