Guidelines

Applications for the Engaging Science Grants (incorporating the Queensland Citizen Science Grants) are now open—closing 1pm, Monday 15 November 2021—apply now

    About the program

    The Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy 2021–2024 was developed with a vision for an engaged and informed Queensland that values science, critical thinking and evidence-based decision making as part of everyday life.

    Embracing scientific thinking, participating in scientific activities, and engaging with the scientific community will foster a more innovative Queensland where people, businesses and governments can use science to overcome challenges and establish new endeavours.

    Equally, students need to be equipped with the latest skills so they can follow satisfying career paths and quickly adapt to a rapidly changing work landscape.

    To support the vision of the Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy, the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist is offering competitive Engaging Science Grants.

    The grants are designed to support teachers, scientists, organisations, citizen science groups and community groups to deliver STEM-based (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) events, educational activities, or citizen science projects to tackle important issues in Queensland.

    The Engaging Science Grants are open to applicants whose projects address one or more of the Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy’s goals:

    1. increase student participation in STEM subjects and promote STEM careers
    2. increase community participation in citizen science to grow scientific literacy and contribute to scientific discovery
    3. increase awareness of Queensland’s great science and grow opportunities for engagement with scientists.

    For this round, grants of up to $20,000 each (excluding GST) are available to support applicants deliver events, activities or projects for up to 12-months.

    Applications for the grants are now open—apply and close at 1pm, Monday 15 November 2021.

    Program objective

    The Engaging Science Grants are offered to increase participation in science-based activities and engagement between scientists and the community.

    Events and activities that inspire students to study STEM subjects, promote STEM careers, and engage the wider community to increase awareness of the amazing science happening in Queensland, as well as projects including citizen science that grow engagement with scientists may be submitted.

    Project eligibility criteria

    To be eligible the applicant’s project must engage Queenslanders in science – such as events, activities, educational workshops or other science engagement projects including citizen science.

    Events and projects need to be delivered within a 12-month period.

    The types of activities eligible for funding include, but are not limited to:

    • delivering student (primary, secondary and tertiary) events, activities or citizen science projects involving students, teachers and others
    • organising open houses e.g. invite the local community to a conducted tour of your scientific premises
    • providing events, seminars or workshops that connect scientists with community groups to promote Queensland scientists and science programs
    • delivering part of a new citizen science project or enhancing an existing citizen science project
    • enhancing existing technology or use of new technology by participants as part of the engagement activities
    • creating training resources and then using them in engagement activities.

    Projects that engage a wide group of stakeholders, involve Queenslanders from regional or remote areas, and show a self-sustaining component will be looked upon favourably.

    Other requirements:

    • the project must not place an unreasonable financial burden on participants nor hold activities that generate a profit
    • citizen science projects must:
      • ­ meet the definition of citizen science as “public participation and collaboration in scientific research with the aim to increase scientific knowledge”
      • ­ share results publicly, contribute to open data (where applicable) and acknowledge the contribution of citizen scientists in any publications.

    An applicant can only apply for one (1) grant per project. An applicant may lodge multiple grant applications providing these are for different projects.

    Regardless of whether an individual or organisation is the applicant, or service provider for another applicant, they are limited to one (1) application per funding round. See the FAQs for further clarification.

    Applications should be completed and submitted electronically via the Queensland Government website. The online lodgement process is hosted via a secure site and application documentation will remain strictly confidential.

    Applicant eligibility criteria

    To be eligible for a grant, an applicant must have an address located in Queensland, such as an office, chapter or campus. Applicants must also have current public liability insurance and an Australian Business Number (ABN).

    Recipients of other government or non-government grants are eligible to apply, however the applicant must report any cash contribution towards the project in the application form (budget section).

    Collaboration between institutions e.g. organisations, research institutes, media organisations or community groups will be highly regarded, as will activities that involve co-contribution (cash or in-kind) to the project.

    If we know of any groups delivering similar projects in your geographic area, we will introduce you to encourage collaboration.

    Using the Engaging Science Grants funds

    The proposed project must be delivered within a 12-month period with activities occurring from the date the Funding Agreement is fully executed (the project start date).

    It is expected that successful applicants will be notified by mid-December 2021. Only costs incurred after the Funding Agreement has been signed by all parties can be claimed as part of the project expenditure, regardless of whether the project is new or already exists.

    The grant funds may be used for the following activities:

    • staff costs – direct salary costs for employees delivering the engagement activity
    • specialist skills – fees for external guest speakers and specialist contractors engaged to deliver all or part of the activity
    • production – materials, hire fees, venue catering
    • administration – permit fees
    • in-house project design (no more than 20% of the total requested funds are to be used on this component)
    • consulting costs (external to your organisation) – project management, project design and communications (no more than 20% of the total requested funds are to be used on this component)
    • acquisition or development of equipment or software e.g. iPads, drones or teaching software (no more than 50% of the total requested funds are to be used on this component)
    • marketing, media and promotions – printing of marketing materials, website development and advertisement or social media campaigns
    • travel directly relating to the project
    • sample and data collection.

    The following items are ineligible for funding under this program:

    • organisational overheads of the applicant organisation including insurance
    • activities that generate a profit.

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

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

    To claim the 70 per cent at the start of the project, the Funding Agreement must have been signed by the department and a valid tax invoice must be sent to the department.

    To claim the final 30 per cent, you will be required to submit:

    • a short report that includes project evaluation outcomes
    • evidence of expenditure you wish to claim i.e. receipts or invoices (bank statements will not be accepted)
    • a valid tax invoice.

    Assessment criteria

    1. Well-planned project with appropriate levels of engagement, collaboration and target audience reach

    (Weight: 40%)

    Summary: Explain your project aims, how you will carry out the project, and how you will involve the community.

    Applicants must outline:

    • project approach, and communication/promotion and evaluation plans (please attach a copy of your communication plan to your application)
    • target audience and the expected number of individuals who will attend the event, participate in the activity or take part in the project
    • extent of collaboration with other organisations, citizen science groups, scientists, researchers or community groups who will provide expertise, skills or local knowledge. This may include identifying a scientific adviser e.g. for citizen science projects or a qualified teacher for STEM education activities
    • what contribution the proposed event or project will make to Queensland or Queenslanders i.e. the economic, environmental, educational, social, health and/or cultural benefits
    • what is the importance of the project to rural or regional communities, where applicable.

    2. Clear alignment with the Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy 2021–2024

    (Weight: 30%)

    Summary: Explain how your project aligns with at least one of the goals of the Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy.

    Applicants must demonstrate how the project will address one or more of the following Engaging Queenslanders in science strategy’s three goals:

    1. increase student participation in STEM subjects and promote STEM careers
    2. increase community participation in citizen science to grow scientific literacy and contribute to scientific discovery
    3. increase awareness of Queensland’s great science and grow opportunities for engagement with scientists.

    3. Your capacity, capability and resources to carry out the project

    (Weight: 30%)

    Summary: Demonstrate how you will ensure the success of your project.

    Applicants must outline:

    • the skills and experience of the applicant’s project leader and any partner organisations assisting or involved, including any track record with similar STEM projects, events or activities as well as target audiences e.g. school children, citizen scientists
    • the project budget including key expenditure items
    • why the project would not go ahead without the grant funding, or how the grant will impact the project in terms of its scope and outcomes
    • any financial or in-kind support from sponsors or partners
      • letters of support should be attached where possible confirming any commitment.

    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, education, citizen science, and/or communication backgrounds.

    The number of grants awarded will depend on the number and quality of applications received.

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

    Terms and Conditions and Funding Agreement

    The Engaging Science Grants terms and conditions (PDF, 212.5KB) will be available on the department’s website while the program is open.

    Applicants must read, understand and accept these terms and conditions before applying for funding as they will not be amended.

    The terms and conditions and accompanying schedules, together with your successful application, and the guidelines, will form the Funding Agreement between the recipient organisation and the department.

    The project start date is the date the Funding Agreement is signed by the department.

    It is expected that successful applicants will be notified by mid-December 2021.

    If the application is successful, the applicant organisation listed in the application becomes the recipient organisation under the Funding Agreement.

    The recipient organisation must acknowledge the state’s support in any material published in connection with the Engaging Science Grant funding.

    Privacy

    The Queensland Government collects and collates information from the application form to evaluate applications for the program. Only authorised Queensland Government 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 of this information may be used and published to promote funded projects.

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

    For audit and record-keeping 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

    The application consists of:

    • a completed online application form
    • scanned (PDF) letters of support or recommendations from the project leader applicant organisation and partner organisation(s), if applicable.

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

    Ensure you have read and accepted the terms and conditions (PDF, 212.5KB) of the Funding Agreement prior to submitting an application for funding, as the terms and conditions are not negotiable.

    Further information