Full STEAM ahead: ABARES’ Science & Innovation Awards 2021

The Australian Government Department of Agriculture has opened its (virtual) doors to nominations for the 2021 Science and Innovation Awards for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

It’s a competitive grant program that seeks to advance the careers of young researches, scientists, producers and innovators aged between 18 and 35 years by funding research projects that benefit Australia’s primary industries.

The annual Science and Innovation Awards, coordinated by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES), comprise 10 industry Award categories including biosecurity and digital innovation, cotton, eggs and poultry, forest and wood products, grains, horticulture, red meat processing, wine and wool.

This time around, CRC participant and Australian peak horticulture industry body Hort Innovation is the official Science Award partner, offering $22,000 (incl. GST) through its leadership fund to the applicant it judges as ‘the most innovative’ research idea benefiting the horticultural sector.

The winner of the horticulture category can in turn apply for the Minister of Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management’s Award, which throws an additional $22,000 (incl. GST) for project extension the way of whichever category award-winner nets it.

Now open, applications close Friday 2 October 2020 at 5pm AEST.

ABARES will announce the winners at the next ABARES Outlook conference, scheduled for March 2021.

Eligibility criteria

Applicant criteria

Applications are open to anyone aged between 18 and 35 years who is working, employed or studying in an industry related to agriculture, fisheries or forestry in Australia, including food and sustainable natural resource management.

Young producers, scientists, researchers, extension officers, students, industry advisers and those ‘actively engaged in the agriculture sector’ are encouraged to apply.

Research project criteria

The project needs to

  • relate to a ‘significant, longstanding or emerging’ issue; and
  • demonstrate dedication to the future of rural and regional industries.

It could include further study, research activities, industry visits, conference/workshop presentations at conferences, and/or papers published in academic journals.

Application and further information

Applications close Friday 2 October 2020 at 5pm AEST.

For more information, visit the event web page on Commonwealth Department of Agriculture site.

Watch this video for all the detail you’ll need to apply for the award.

For comprehensive details of grant guidelines and assessment criteria, click here.


Science and Innovation Awards for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry 2021 I Australian Government Department of Agriculture

Horticulture grants on offer for young Australians I Hort Innovation