15 October 2003

The University of Queensland topped the nation’s universities in funding from the first round of Australian Research Council’s Linkage Projects announced today (October 15).

UQ's Linkage Projects for 2004 are worth $19 million, made up of $8.7 million in ARC funding and $10.3 million in industry partner contributions, ensuring UQ remains one of the nation's leaders in the Commonwealth Government's funding allocations, announced by Federal Minister for Education, Science and Training Dr Brendan Nelson.

“It is an outstanding result and UQ is clearly the leader in Linkage Projects around the country,” said Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor David Siddle.

The Linkage Projects program funds collaborative projects between university researchers and partner organisations.

UQ has also attracted another $19 million in the ARC Discovery Projects scheme including two grants worth almost $2 million each.

UQ’s ground-breaking research into scramjet engines, through its Hyshot program, was awarded one of the largest-ever ARC grants of $1.805 million over five years (2003-2007).

Led by Professor Allan Paull from UQ’s Centre for Hypersonics, and joined by Professor Richard Morgan, Dr David Mee and Dr Tim McIntyre, the funding will go towards furthering research into this field.

In particular the Professor Paull’s team will look at developing an engine that can operate at 10 times the speed of sound, something that could revolutionise air and space travel.

Professor David Craik from UQ’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience and Associate Professor Marilyn Anderson, from La Trobe University, were awarded $1.75 million to develop the next generation of drug design and insecticides.

Professor Craik is researching the unique structure and function of circular proteins that has exciting prospects to be applied in pharmaceuticals and agriculture.

Circular proteins have no ends, making them exceptionally stable and resistant to enzyme digestion, which is perfect for the development of drugs and insecticides.

The University also performed well nationally in the three fellowship categories that are integrated into the Discovery grants.

It received the second highest number of Australian Research Fellowships (2) and equal-second highest number of Australian Professorial Fellowships (3), and 11 Australian Postdoctoral Fellowships, fourth highest in the country.

The University performed well again in the Linkage Infrastructure, Equipment and Facilities grants with $1.84 million in ARC funding and $2.79 million from its partners to have $4.63 million in total devoted to five large infrastructure projects.

Nationwide the ARC’s funding commitment is over five years (2004-2008) and totals more than $248 million in 965 separate grants.

Media: For further information contact Andrew Dunne at UQ Communications (telephone 07 3365 2802 or email: a.dunne@uq.edu.au).