The government has commissioned a review of ARC outlays on the national science and research priorities (CMM February 20). The ARC has helpfully released a discussion paper to inform submissions
The paper includes bad news for politicians and reptiles of the press who enjoy implying research funding focuses on the obscurer humanities. The Australian Research Council reports the nine very applied priorities account for 60 per cent of Discovery Grants through to 94 per cent of Linkage Programme awards, averaging at 70 per cent across all the ARC. But this is not because the priorities are (ahem) top priorities – it is due to the nature of applications.
The ARC points to issues to address, including;
* should the ARC find other ways of funding the nine
* is the funding level appropriate
* what could be the costs and benefits of different funding approaches
For those yet to have the nine tattooed on their torso, they are: food, soil and water, transport, cyber security, energy, resources, advanced manufacturing, environmental change and health.