Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships frequently asked questions

Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships frequently asked questions

How to apply

  • Who can apply for a Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowship?

    Applications are open to Queensland agencies that employ staff who work in an area of interest to one or more Smithsonian Institution agencies. The proposed fellowship project must be aligned to one or more of the target investment area outlined in the program guidelines.

    The applicant organisation nominates the proposed Fellow, who must be one of their employees. The proposed Fellow can be employed in a part-time or full-time capacity with the applicant organisation.

  • How do I apply for a Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships?

    Applications must be submitted online. The link to the application form is available on the Advance Queensland website. Applicants must:

    • complete an online application form
    • submit a scanned (PDF) signed letter of endorsement from the applicant organisation supporting the proposed fellowship, and confirming that they will continue to pay the proposed Fellow’s salary while he/she undertakes the fellowship
    • submit scanned (PDF) evidence of support from the hosting Smithsonian Institution agency/agencies clearly stating their support for the proposed fellowship, and their commitment to host the proposed Fellow’s visit (e.g. signed letter, fax or email)
    • submit a signed Financial Incentive Agreement Terms and Conditions declaration page. The declaration must be signed by nominated Fellow and an authorised representative from the applicant organisation.
  • Can a Smithsonian Fellowship be used to undertake a project on any topic?

    No. The project must address one of the target investment areas outlined in the guidelines.

  • Can a PhD student be a Queensland-Smithsonian Fellow?

    No. The Fellow must be employed by the applicant organisation.

  • Should the nominated Fellow’s curriculum vitaé (CV) or resumé be submitted with the application form?

    No. The nominated Fellow’s CV/resumé is not required, as all of the necessary information is provided in the online application form.

  • Can the application be revised after submission?

    No. However applicants must advise the Queensland Government of any changes that are likely to affect eligibility.

Available funding

  • How much funding is available per fellowship?

    Queensland Government funding of up to $25,000 (excluding GST) is available for each fellowship, depending on the duration of the proposed overseas visit(s).

  • Must applicants apply for a $25,000 fellowship?

    No. $25,000 is the maximum amount of funding available for overseas visits totalling 16 weeks. Projects supporting international visits of 8 to 16 weeks can be supported, and the duration of the travel determines the funding entitlement.

  • How is the fellowship funding paid?

    The fellowship funding is paid to the applicant organisation, that is, the Queensland agency that employs the Fellow.

  • How is the fellowship funding paid?

    There are two payment instalments (excluding GST):

    • Payment 1: the total approved funding less $2000.
    • Payment 2: $2000 if applicable.
  • Does the fellowship cover the Fellow’s salary?

    No. The Fellow’s salary must be paid by the applicant organisation.

  • What if the applicant organisation cannot pay the Fellow’s salary while they are overseas?

    The application must outline how the proposed Fellow will support themselves while overseas. These applications will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

  • What can the fellowship funding be used for?

    • Travel costs of up to $5,000 (excluding GST) are available to support one return international economy airfare and associated travel costs. This includes domestic travel costs to secure visas, and internal flights while overseas (if applicable). The applicant organisation will be required to supply evidence of the travel expenditure, e.g. eligible receipts and/or a financial acquittal statement, and will have to return any unused funds to the Queensland Government.
    • Living allowance of $1,250 per week (excluding GST) to cover the costs of living expenses, including accommodation, meals and incidental costs. Funding is available for a minimum of 8 weeks and a maximum of 16 weeks duration ($20,000 maximum).The living allowance funding does not have to be acquitted. However, the Fellow will have a reduced entitlement to living allowance if they spend less than the approved travel time in the USA. For example, if a Fellow is approved for 11 weeks travel but only travels for 10 weeks, the original travel entitlement will be reduced by one week accordingly and $1,250 would have to be returned to the Queensland Government or withheld from the final fellowship payment.
  • Is additional Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships funding available if the travel costs or living costs rise?

    No additional Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships funding is available from the Queensland Government. Any additional costs incurred must be borne by the Fellow and/or the applicant organisation.

  • Is the Fellow entitled to additional funding if the standard travel allowances in the applicant organisation exceed that of the fellowship award?

    The Fellow must negotiate any additional funding with the applicant organisation, if applicable.

Other conditions

  • Is there an obligation to acknowledge the Queensland Government’s funding support?

    Yes. The Recipient and Fellow will initially be asked to keep the details of the award confidential until the award is announced by the Queensland Government. Following the announcement of the award the Fellow will be able to publicly talk about the fellowship project, and attend media/promotion events if requested. The Queensland Government’s Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships funding must be acknowledged in all relevant published material, media releases and public statements.

  • What is a Financial Incentive Agreement?

    The Financial Incentive Agreement (FIA) is the legally binding document that outlines the conditions of the Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships, including the payment schedule and the reporting requirements. The FIA is comprised of the Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships application, the Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships Financial Incentive Agreement Terms and Conditions (PDF, 306KB) (version 2019), and the Queensland-Smithsonian Fellowships Guidelines (PDF, 166KB). The applicant organisation automatically signs the FIA by submitting a signed Financial Incentive Agreement Declaration (PDF, 173KB) page with the application form online, but the FIA is not finalised until the Queensland Government's authorised officer signs a separate FIA execution page.

    Applicants must ensure that they have read, understand, and accept the Terms and Conditions prior to commencing an application for funding.

  • Who signs the declaration page?

    The Financial Incentive Agreement Terms and Conditions declaration page must be signed by the nominated Fellow and the authorised representative from the Applicant Organisation. The submission processes for the declaration page is outlined below:

    1. Print the declaration page.
    2. The nominated Fellow signs the top section of the declaration page; scans the signed page (PDF) and emails it to the officer in the Applicant Organisation who is authorised to sign the declaration.
    3. The authorised officer in the Applicant Organisation signs the appropriate section of the declaration page; scans the fully signed page (PDF) and returns it to the nominated Fellow.
    4. The nominated Fellow provides the scanned copy of the fully signed declaration page with the online application form.