Summertime and the living is easier (for med researchers)

The NHMRC has new dates for grant applications –  they don’t make a mess of summer

“After receiving feedback from the sector” the National Health and Medical Research Council has made the summer an application free zone.

From next year, major grant applications will close in November, April or May.

The council appears to be responding less to feedback than a long-standing chorus of concern about people having to spend the holiday-season working on applicants, instead of mucking about with their kids.

Back in 2014 Danielle Herbert (then QUT) with colleagues from Monash and Flinders U surveyed researchers about grant deadlines, (CMM April 2 2014) and found;

“the process of preparing grant proposals for a single annual deadline is stressful, time consuming and conflicts with family responsibilities. The timing of the funding cycle could be shifted to minimise applicant burden, give Australian researchers more time to work on actual research and to be with their families.”

The Association of Australian Medical Research Institutes is certainly pleased with the change, telling CMM, “feedback from our members is that their pleased with the change, particularly as far fewer people will need to be working on grant applications during the Christmas/school holiday break. This was always particularly difficult for those with caring responsibilities. … The other important change that we’re pleased to see is that the schemes closing dates less clustered and bit more spread out.”


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