Critical incident 21/09/21
Ballarat and Berwick campuses are closed until Thursday 23 September. Click here for more information.

Cooperative Research Centres (CRC)

In most cases, a Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) stems from a successful bid (application) to the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) run by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (DIIS). A CRC bid involves a broad pitch to justify the creation of a CRC and commitments from interested higher education provider (HEP) and industry participants.

Following the establishment of a CRC via a Commonwealth Agreement, HEP and industry collaboration terms are confirmed via a Participants Agreement. Other parties may also be involved in a CRC as non-Participants.

Once a CRC is up and running and the Participant Agreement and other relevant agreements are in place, Projects can be initiated under that CRC via pre-approved Project Agreements. Selected Participants and non-Participants are involved in CRC Projects based on their areas of expertise and the focus of the Project.

For the purposes of HERDC government reporting, any CRC research income received by a CRC HEP Participant (as per the Commonwealth Agreement) is captured as Category 4 income (see HERDC Specifications for Category definitions and further information).

Process for CRC Bids

As CRCs are different to other research funding applications and projects, Research Services and the DVCRI have articulated how best to fit CRC administration and processes into our existing Research Funding policy and procedures.

The following steps are very broad and it may be required to adjust these on a case by case basis. Generally, if your school/centre proposes to participate in a CRC bid these are the steps to take:

Pre-award CRC Programme bid

  1. Internal school/centre processes (i.e., researcher(s) and ADR discuss opportunity and go through any relevant school approvals)
  2. Lead FedUni Project Manager/Chief Investigator/Researcher (Lead CI) notifies the Research Funding Team (RFT) at of their intentions to participate in a CRC bid and confirms school support.
    1. No internal Research Funding paperwork is required at this stage
    2. The Lead CI liaises with RFT as required throughout the application process.
  3. Any DIIS, other HEP or funding body paperwork that requires institutional approval and/or sign off for a CRC bid must be submitted to in the first instance.
    1. RFT will arrange DVCRI, VC or COO sign off as required.
  4. RFT works with Lead CI and other relevant parties to assist with the bid submission where required.

Post-award CRC Programme bid

  1. Lead CI notifies RFT of award of CRC or vice-versa
  2. RFT coordinates Participant Agreement negotiations and sign off for FedUni
    1. Including liaising with relevant parties ie. Legal Office, DVCRI, School/Centre and Lead CI.

Once the CRC Commonwealth and Participant Agreements are fully executed, processes for individual Projects to be funded by the CRC can commence.

Pre-award CRC Projects

3. Lead CI submits Dean or nominee signed FEOI form to RFT for all CRC Projects that FedUni are involved in as they arise (within 15 business days if possible). Early submission is appreciated.

4. Business as usual and as per Research Funding policy and procedures (i.e., RFT arrange DVCRI approval of FEOI, Lead CI submits FSC and budget for Project, RFT coordinate Project Agreement review and sign off, etc)

Post-award CRC Projects

5. Research Finance arrange invoicing for Projects as per usual and coordinate with School/Centre Business Manager regarding CRC contributions.

Please contact the Research Funding Team (RFT) at for any queries about CRCs.