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Engaging Science Grants guidelines

About the program

The Advance Queensland Engaging Science Grants are part of the Advance Queensland Engaging Queenslanders in Science strategy. The strategy outlines a vision to create a Queensland population that engages in, 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.

Grants up to $10,000 (excluding GST) are available.

A recent survey, Queenslanders’ Perception and Attitudes to Science, commissioned by the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist (OQCS) revealed 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.

Program objective

The Engaging Science Grants are offered to increase the reach of science in Queensland.

Projects, events and activities that will increase awareness of science and engage the wider community should be submitted.

Examples of the type of submissions that are sought include:

  • 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.

Funding can also be used to expand existing programs.

The following activities will not be considered under the program:

  • cases where similar activities are already being delivered within the geographical location
  • the delivery of curriculum-based classroom lessons, however the grant can be used to enhance curriculum-based learning through an ancillary event, activity or project
  • the provision of events or activities such as workshops delivered by service providers where the attendees will be charged to attend
  • proposals that centre largely around the acquisition of equipment or software e.g. iPads, drones or teaching software (no more than 60 per cent is to be spend on equipment or software).

Eligibility criteria

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

In this case, Queensland-based means the Australian Business Register must designate the organisation’s main business location as Queensland.

Other criteria

Regardless of whether an individual or organisation is the applicant, or service provider for another applicant, they are:

  • limited to one application per funding round
  • limited to receiving up to two Engaging Science Grants per financial year.

Using the Engaging Science Grants funds

The proposed project, event or activity must be delivered within 12 months from the date the Financial Incentive Agreement is fully executed.

Only costs incurred after a recipient has been formally advised that they have been successful can be claimed as part of the project expenditure.

The grant funds can be used only on eligible costs such as:

  • 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 engagement activity
  • 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 grants funds cannot be used for organisational 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%. An online template of the report will be provided to the funding recipients.

The acquittal of the grants must be evidenced by invoices or any proof of payments made on the actual expenditures.

Assessment criteria

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

(Weight: 50%)

Applicants must outline:

  • the proposed project, event or activity
  • the target audience and the expected number of individuals engaged in/exposed to the activity
  • why the event, activity or project is unique for the target audience
  • the extent of collaboration with subject matter experts and/or expert presenters who will provide informative and entertaining content (e.g. schools, research institutes, universities, researchers, media organisations and community groups)
  • the appropriateness of the budget
  • any financial support from sponsors or partners. Letters of support should be attached where possible confirming any commitment.
  • where relevant, the importance to a remote/regional community and the lack of access to such events.

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

(Weight: 30%)

Applicants must demonstrate:

  • the expected outcomes of the activity and in particular, how the activity will increase awareness of and engagement in science
  • how the activity 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.

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

(Weight: 20%)

Applicants must demonstrate that the proposed project will be:

  • promoted to attract the maximum number of people within the target audience
  • evaluated and obtain 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 must be submitted online. Please refer to the Advance Queensland website for funding round dates.

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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