Discovery Indigenous

Critical Dates

Wednesday 23 November 2022

Release of 2024 Grant Guidelines 

Wednesday 23 November 2022

IN24 Applications open in RMS

Monday 6 February 2023

IN24 Submit review ready application to RIC

9am Tuesday 14 February 2023

IN24 Request not to assess due to RIC (if applicable)

Thursday 16 February 2023

IN24 Request not to assess due to the ARC (if applicable)

9am Monday 20 February 2023

IN24 Final Application Submission due to RIC

Thursday 23 February 2023

IN24 Final Applications due to ARC

30 May 2023 - 13 June 2023

IN24 Rejoinders open and close

Fourth Quarter 2023

IN24 Outcomes


The Discovery Indigenous scheme provides funding to Administering Organisations to support research projects led by an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander researcher. It includes support for Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Awards (DAATSIAs) which are fellowships available to eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers. The scheme aims to:

  • Support excellent basic research and applied research training by Aboriginal and/ Torres Straight Island  researchers as individuals and as teams
  • Support national and international research collaboration
  • Enhance the scale and focus of research in Australian Government priority areas
  • Support and retain established  Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander researchers in Australian higher education institutions.


The scheme provides $30,000-$500,000 funding per annum for three years. Project costs can be used to hire research personnel, stipends for 1.0 FTE HDR for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students, or fund teaching relief, equipment, consumables, Field Research, Travel, and dissemination costs. A Discovery Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Awards (DAATSIA) may be requested for one researcher per proposal to devote more time to the project. DAATSIA funding may be requested at one of five salary levels. See section D of the Grant Guidelines for more information.

Establishment Grants for ARC DAATSIA Fellowship

The Establishment Grant aims to:

  • Support successful ARC DAATSIAs in establishing their research program at the University of Melbourne
  • Enhance the candidate’s competitiveness when applying for the ARC Discovery Indigenous (IN) scheme.

Faculties may set their own objectives and priorities in determining which candidates will be nominated for Establishment Grant support. IN applicants must apply to their host faculty for Establishment Grant support through whatever process the faculty deems appropriate. Establishment Grant requests must be submitted by faculties to Research, Innovation and Commercialisation (RIC), not directly by individual IN applicants. For further information refer to your Faculty Research Manager.

The Establishment Grant is only available for ARC DAATSIA Fellowships.

For the 2024 Discovery Indigenous, ARC DAATSIA Fellowships will be supported by an internal establishment grant on a 2:1 co-contribution basis, with a maximum DVC(R) contribution of $100,000 matched to a maximum of $50,000 from faculty/Department/School.


The criteria weighting is as followed:

  • Investigator(s)/ Capability: 35%
  • Project Quality and Innovation: 40%
  • Benefit: 15%
  • Feasibility: 10%


To be eligible as a Chief Investigator on a 2024 Discovery Indigenous Project you must, at 1 January 2024, and if successful, for the project activity period:
a. be an employee for at least 0.2 FTE at an Eligible Organisation; or 
b. be a holder of an honorary academic appointment at an Eligible Organisation.

Honorary academic appointment for eligibility purposes means any honorary position that gives full academic status, as certified by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) or equivalent in the application. The researcher must have access to research support comparable to employees e.g. an emeritus appointment. The researcher is not eligible to be a Chief investigator using their honorary academic appointment if they are employed by an organisation other than an Eligible Organisation for more than 0.2 FTE.

If you hold an Honorary appointment (holding no more than 0.2 FTE paid appointment at an organisation other than an Eligible Organisation) and you wish to apply as a Chief Investigator please contact as soon as possible to arrange DVCR certification.


An Active Project refers to an ARC Project that is receiving funding according to the terms of the original Funding Agreement, or has any carryover funds approved by the ARC, or an approved variation to the Project’s end date. Therefore, if a project has carried forward any funding and the end date has changed, the NEW end date determines if the project is active. Active projects can be viewed via the applicants RMS profile by selecting Person Profile > Current ARC Projects> End Date. Please note that projects with Final Reports due are not considered active projects.

The Active Project Assessment Date is a scheme-specific date which considers Active Projects (as per the above definition) and Projects under assessment. This date is important as it is used to assess applicant's cross-scheme eligibility, i.e. whether they are within the limits of the number of ARC applications and projects a participant can be named on.

The ARC will calculate active projects as at the closing time of submission of Proposals (and may calculate this rule again as other scheme rounds’ announcements are made and End of Year Reports are submitted).

The key dates for the IN24 round are:

IN24 Funding Commencement Date: 1 January 2024

IN24 Active Project Assessment Date: 1 July 2024

Note: IN candidates can apply for a IN24 while holding two DPs with Project end dates prior to 1 July 2024. However, you cannot start the IN24 until at least one of the DPs has been completed, or one DP has been relinquished or your role on one DP has been relinquished in order to meet the limit of two Discovery Program Projects.

For the 2024 Discovery Indigenous Project Round to fulfill eligibility, ALL CIs must meet the following criteria on 1 July 2024: (note applicants should review all Limits on Project and Grant Guidelines- See 4.11 - 4.17 - pages 14-15 of the Grant Guidelines)

Section 4.13:  Within the Discovery Program, a researcher can be funded for a maximum of:
a. two Projects as a CI; or
b. one ARC Fellowship and one Project as a CI; or
c.  one ARC Fellowship or project if the individual is also a Director on an active ARC Centre of Excellence  and/or a Special Research Initiative project.

Please contact RIC at

  1. If you or any of your CIs listed on your project are unsure if you meet the eligibility requirements OR
  2. If you or any of your CIs have 2 active projects as of the 1 July 2024 - please contact to discuss either formally amending your end date or arranging a Project or role relinquishment through a variation to fulfill eligibility.


Research outputs must first be added to an applicant's ARC Research Management System (RMS) profile before they can be selected for inclusion on an application. The University's recommended approach is to export research outputs from Elements as a BibTeX file and then import this file into RMS to achieve best data integrity.

Please contact your local Faculty Research Office or for help with the process or to amend data in Elements.

Further esources to assist with managing Research Outputs are available below under Supporting documents > Research Outputs.


If you have a conflict of interest with a researcher from an external institution it is possible to request that they not be considered as a potential detailed assessor for your application. More details about this can be found on the ARC Request Not to Assess webpage.

How to apply

  1. Submit a Notice of Intent (NOI)

    The NOI should be completed early to provide RIC with CIA contact details.

  2. Update RMS  profile

    All CIs and PIs must obtain access to RMS and update profile information (see RMS information)

  3. Review documentation

    Review the Discovery Indigenous Funding Rules and the Instructions to Applicants. These documents are available under the Support documents tab.

  4. Complete the draft application in RMS 2.0

    Log on to RMS to complete the draft application.

  5. Submit 'Review ready' application to RIC

    Submit application via email to RIC within the RIC internal submission period. Include the following:

    • PDF copy of the complete review ready draft application
  6. Application review

    Two RIC staff members will review the application and provide the applicant with feedback via email.

  7. Complete the application

    After taking feedback from the RIC team into consideration, complete the application in RMS. It is suggested advice is sought from colleagues, Faculty Mentors, etc. before finalising the application.

  8. Submit the UOM Authority to Submit form

    The form must be submitted to RIC electronically before 5:00pm on the final internal closing date. This form should include:

    • Complete the compliance and eligibility section
    • Signature of all CIs and PIs
    • Signature of the Head of Department for each CI
    • Signature of the CEO (or delegate) for all Australian-based PIs

    Electronic signatures are permitted.

    This is an ARC requirement and the application cannot be submitted to ARC until received.

  9. Final submission

    Before 5:00pm on the final internal Closing date, the applicant must:

    • Submit final application by clicking ‘Submit to Research Office’ in RMS.
    • Email RIC a pdf copy of the final application and a signed Authority to Submit form

    Note: Applications without a completed Authority to Submit form cannot be submitted to the ARC

  10. RIC will submit the application

    Once the application has been submitted to ARC, you will receive an email from RIC confirming submission.

Supporting documents

ARC Documents and Resources

RIC Documents and Resources

Research Outputs



Note: Assessor comments should only include details on Investigator/Capability, Project Quality and Innovation, Benefit, and Feasibility. Assessors should not be commenting on Eligibility and Compliance. If you identify an assessment that contains inappropriate elements you may wish to have this reviewed by the ARC. You can do this by completing an ARC Assessment Review Request form within 3 working days after the opening of the Rejoinder period. Please note that applicants should never contact the ARC directly. Always speak to your Faculty or RIC first.


Discovery Indigenous questions and primary email

Key contacts

Leah Sullivan+61 3  83442012
Carrie Liang+61 3 8344 0440