What has been funded – Research Projects Program

This Program incorporates the Emerging Research, Strategic Research and Supporting Research Special Purpose Areas. Apart from the initial grant which were made in fulfilment of CSIRO’s wishes expressed in the conditions of the first gift, the grants are awarded through open rounds, assessed competitively.

Initial Round

In keeping with the conditions of the initial Gift from CSIRO to the Science and Industry Endowment Fund (SIEF) of October 2009, the Trustee made the following inaugural grant:

Grant Recipient Project Title Project Description SIEF funds
(life time years)
CSIRO CSIRO Ngara – Rural Wireless Broadband ProgramICT (Ngara) CSIRO Rural Wireless Broadband Network. Addressing the national challenge of providing high speed internet access in rural Australia targeting the 10% of Australians not served by the National Broadband Network (NBN) fibre to the premises (FTTP) solution. $10,000,000
(2 years)COMPLETED

Round One (closed June 2010)

Grant Recipient Project Title Project Description SIEF funds
(life time years)
CSIRO, Edith Cowan University, Mental Health Research Institution, National Aging Research Institute The Australian Imaging, Biomarket and Lifestyle study of Ageing (AIBL2) Australian Imaging Biomarkers and Lifestyle Flagship Study of Ageing (AIBL 2): Research into the early detection and preventative measures for Alzheimer’s Disease. $5,150,000
(3 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO New Methodologies in Plant Breeding for Creating and Perpetuating Major Yield Increases (Plant Breeding) New methodologies in plant breeding for creating and perpetuating major yield increases. Gain understanding of the epigenetic basis of heterosis to enhance crop production (hybrid vigour) and identify the molecular basis for initiation of apoptosis (asexual seed formation). $4,500,000
(3 years)COMPLETED
Bioplatforms Australia, CSIRO, Curtin University, Director of National parks, The University of Western Australia, State of WA through Dept. of Environment Conservation Two Jump Start Projects for the Global Ecosystem Assessment Initiative (GEAI) The Global Ecosystem Assessment Initiative: Development of an ecogenomics toolbox focused on two ‘jumpstart’ projects for invertebrate species and soil microbial diversity. $1,500,000
(3 years)COMPLETED
Australian Institute of Marine Sciences, CSIRO, Great barrier Reef Foundation eReefs – Transforming the Science and Management of the Great Barrier Reef (eReefs) ‘e-Reefs’: Transforming the science and management of the Great Barrier Reef: Research to create an operational information modelling and forecast system to support the management of the Great Barrier Reef. $4,000,000
(5 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO, University of Melbourne Appropriate health diagnostic tools for developing countries using mobile phones and inexpensive sensors (Health Diagnostics) A proof of concept project to produce a low cost and robust device for medical practitioners in developing world. Using the emerging field of metablomics, analyse the complex fingerprint of molecular metabolites from the body to understand and detect disease. $2,534,000
(2.3 years)COMPLETED

Round Two (closed August 2010)

Grant Recipient Project Title Project Description SIEF funds
(life time years)
ANSTO, CSIRO, The University of Adelaide, The University of Melbourne, Monash University,  University of NSW, The University of Sydney Energy Waste Roadblock (Energy Waste) Solving the Energy Waste Roadblock: Addressing one of the foremost challenges for reducing greenhouse gas emissions on a national and international scale, namely, the development of new materials and processes for the capture and utilisation of carbon dioxide. $6,000,000
(5 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO, CSL, Walter & Eliza Hall Institute Understanding normal and aberrant stem cell biology to improve human health (Stem Cell Biology Conduct extensive cellular, molecular and functional analyses of blood stem cells, their progeny and their bone marrow environment. This information will be used for the generation of research tools, identification of new drug targets, which will in turn be utilized to develop new medicines to mobilise blood stem cells improving the outcomes of bone marrow transplantation, as well as to generate mature blood cells for transfusion. $6,000,000
(5 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO, Cochlear, (University of Washington), O’Brien Institute (University of Melbourne), RAFT for Biomedical Applications (RAFT) RAFT for Biomedical Applications: Developing technology platforms based on the versatility of the RAFT process to help deliver the next generation of polymer based materials for the Australian biomedical industry. $4,000,000
(4 years)COMPLETED

Round Three (closed March 2011)

Grant Recipient Project Title Project Description SIEF funds
(life time years)
CSIRO, University of Melbourne, Monash University Genomic Basis of Adaptation to Climate Change (Adaptation to Climate Change) To identify the genomic characteristics of species with various capacities to adapt to climate change, test these signatures across multiple groups and environments, and build this knowledge into predictive models of biodiversity responses to climate change. $3,500,000
(4 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO, University of Sydney Advanced Catalytic Processes for Renewable Chemicals Manufacture (Renewable Chemicals) Develop low energy/sustainable materials platform technologies that utilise renewable resources to produce bulk chemicals, intermediates, fine and specialty chemicals. These technologies have the potential to greatly invigorate the Australian agriculture, forestry and manufacturing industry sectors, linking them via innovative biorefinery technologies. (Formally known as PROFIT-21C:Processes and Feedstocks in the 21st Century) $5,000,000
(5 years)COMPLETED
CSIRO, Garvan Institute, University of SA Women’s and Children’s Health Research Institute Early Nutrition, the Epigenome and the Prevention of Disease (Early Nutrition) To identify epigenetic signatures associated with development of obesity and to characterise at a genome-wide level, the effects of early nutritional environment on the epigenome, with the aim of developing biomarkers to guide intervention and in the longer term to identify new approaches for prevention and treatment of obesity. $4,999,125
(4 years)COMPLETED

Round Four (closed July 2012)

Grant Recipient Project Title Project Description SIEF funds
(life time years)

Swinburne University of Technology, CSIRO

High performance solar cell technology with integrated nanoplasmonic thin film and thermal management systems (Solar Cells) Solar energy is a green energy source. Despite the tremendous effort, the efficiency for the commercial solar cells has just increased by ~10% during the last 30 years (i.e. from 16% in 1980 to 26% in 2010).
This project aims at solving this bottle-neck issue by developing the integration of the nanoplasmonic thin film solar cell and thermal management systems thus improving the current recovered thermal efficiency up to 10%.
$4,000,000
(4 years)COMPLETED

CSIRO, University of Western Australia,
Curtin University, Geological Survey of Western Australia

The Distal Footprints of Giant Ore Systems: UNCOVER Australia (Distal Footprints) Australia is an old continent with much of its remaining mineral wealth masked by a thick cover of weathered rock and sediments that pose a formidable challenge for future mineral exploration.
This project aims to develop a toolkit with a workflow to identify the distal footprints of the Giant Ore Systems to address a fundamental limitation in current exploration methodologies.
$4,000,000
(4 years)COMPLETED

The Australian National University, The University of Western Sydney, CSIRO

Forests for the future: making the most of a high CO2 world (Forests for the Future) This project aims to develop a  novel strategy that rapidly identifies tree species that exhibit a strong, positive growth response to elevated [CO2] (e[CO2]), and the genetic attributes underlying these responses, thereby avoiding currently very expensive and labour-intensive procedures that have limited commercial application. $4,000,000
(5 years)

COMPLETED

Monash University,
Deakin University,
CSIRO,
Microturbo

Manufacture of a small demonstrator aero-engine entirely through additive manufacturing (Aero-engine) This project brings together Australia’s leading materials, design and additive manufacturing R&D capabilities, alongside industries across the materials and aero-space supply-chain, to manufacture a small aero-engine using entirely additive manufacturing technologies. $4,000,000
(4 years)COMPLETED

NICTA,
Macquarie University,
University of Sydney, SIRCA Ltd

Big-Data Knowledge Discovery: Machine Learning meets Natural Science (Big Data) This interdisciplinary research initiative focuses on the scientific challenges and opportunities presented by very large data sets and the emergence of new tools and techniques to create, manage, analyse and interpret massive amounts of scientific data. $4,000,000
(3 years)COMPLETED