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Research Award funding rule changes

Australian Indigenous Awards

After consultation, the Australian Indigenous Scholarship has been redesigned for greater impact. It is now called the  Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Award which  is be designed to encourage more applicants by being an expression of interest model.  Individuals and research groups, who can demonstrate that they will be making a difference in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cardiovascular health sphere/community, will be invited to submit an expression of interest which could include, but is not limited to, travel or training grants, scholarships, and fellowships. The expressions of interest will be reviewed by a committee of predominately Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to determine who will receive funding. The Research Program will look to promote this program through multiple avenues including regional Indigenous networks. 

Vanguard Grant

In 2018, the Heart Foundation’s Research Committee reviewed the breadth of opportunity of the Vanguard Grants, and unanimously decided to extend this award to include basic and/or biomedical research. In 2019, we welcome applications in biomedical, clinical, public health or health services research.

Research Portal

We are excited to introduce you to our new Research Portal in 2019. Some institutes will have already received details if they had researchers eligible to apply for our 2018 Collaboration and Exchange Award. This was a great testing opportunity for our program and we thank all who have been involved. All remaining institutes will receive login details early in the new year, along with instructions on the endorsement process. In 2019, it is expected that all awards will operate through this process and in the new year we will be updating our website with instructions for researchers on how to access the portal. For anyone who has been involved so far, we encourage your feedback on the process. 2019 will be a year of continual improvement to ensure that this process is as user friendly as possible.

Ethics Requirements

For all new Heart Foundation awardees, we will no longer be requesting Ethics documentation be submitted with applications. It will now be the responsibility of the Administering Institution to ensure Ethics are in place as required and copies are on file and easily accessible to provide to the Heart Foundation upon request. You will note this change reflected in the funding agreements, which state that whilst Researchers are not required to provide this documentation, that the Heart Foundation reserves the right to request proof of ethics at any stage of the funding process. When endorsing an application, there will be a check-box for Administering Institutes to advise they are aware of the ethics required in the application.

Proof of PhD status (applicable to specific awards)

Much the same as ethics, we will no longer be requesting PhD documentation be submitted with applications. Again, this will be the responsibility of the Administering Institution to ensure applicants met the requirements of this eligibility aspect and copies are on file and easily accessible to provide to the Heart Foundation upon request. When endorsing an application, there will be a check-box for Administering Institutes to advise they are aware of the PhD required in the application.

CPI Increase to stipend amounts

Effective 2019, all stipend amounts will be subject to CPI increases. Annual adjustments will be communicated each February, once the CPI rate is confirmed and publicly released. Please note that this is a point in time increase for all current and new awardees, with no retrospective payments for current or previous awardees.

Contacting us

You can contact the Research Team by email or by calling us on (03) 9321 1581. 

Annual reporting

All awards must have an annual financial acquittal and an annual progress report submitted to the Heart Foundation. The progress report summarises the research progress for the calendar year. For the year ending 31 December 2018, these are due from 1 January 2019 (received no later than 31 March 2019) and must be submitted via the administering institution’s research office.

Please note: For some awards, due dates and reporting may vary. Please check the funding agreement for details. 

As these forms are regularly updated, please use the forms below: 

Requesting changes to existing awards

Please be advised that requests may take up to three months to be approved, depending on the complexity of the request.


Extension requests

Extension requests must be made three months prior to the award end date and will not be considered if there are outstanding milestones against the award. Requests made after the end date will not be considered.

Scholarship extensions can be granted for a maximum of six months, and may cover both time and stipend. Fellowships and grants may be extended in time only.

Leave of absence requests

Requests to take leave of absence (e.g. maternity leave, carer’s leave, health leave), must be made four weeks prior to the first day of the proposed leave and must be made while the award is still tenable. 

Changing Administering Institutions

Transferring an award between institutions must be approved by the Heart Foundation and a number of conditions need to be met, for example, the new administering institution must be able to provide the facilities and services necessary to carry out the award. The awardee must have agreement from both institutions involved and a new funding agreement must be signed by the new institution. If you are co-funded by the NHMRC, any request to transfer to another administering institution must be made to the NHMRC.

Change of Full Time Equivalency (FTE)

Change in FTE applies to scholarships and fellowships only. The minimum FTE is dependent on the award and is stipulated in award Instructions. If there is a change in budget, please see Budget and project variations below.

Budget and project variations

If you think you may need to request a variation to your agreed budget or project, please contact the Research Team for an initial discussion as soon as possible.

Keeping us up-to-date

Public awareness is crucial to our role in funding research. The Heart Foundation’s ability to fund research is dependent on raising money through public donation. Let us know in advance if there is going to be any publicity surrounding your research, including the publication of research articles or presenting at conferences. The Heart Foundation is always looking to assist researchers in promotion of this publicity via media and social media platforms..

Acknowledging Heart Foundation Support

The support of the Heart Foundation must be acknowledged in any publications or presentations arising from research we have supported. 

The Heart Foundation logo must not be used without prior written consent from the Research Program. 

Examples of appropriate wording for acknowledgements:

‘[Title] [Surname] was supported by a [Award Name] [Award ID No.] from the National Heart Foundation of Australia.’


‘This work was supported by a [Award Name] [Award ID No.] from the National Heart Foundation of Australia.’

Where applicable, co-funding partners must also be acknowledged. Please check your funding agreement for details.