Showcasing Early Career Researchers 2018 call for applications

We want to hear about your project

Tell us in 30 seconds and you could win a trip to Sydney to present your work at Collaborate | Innovate | 2018, 14‑16 May, the annual conference of the Cooperative Research Centres Association.

The five best entries will get:

  • A trip to Sydney* with airfares, transfers, conference registration and all social events, including the CRC Association’s Gala Excellence in Innovation Awards Dinner.
  • $1,000.
  • The opportunity to give a 5-minute presentation on your work at Collaborate | Innovate| 2018  for the chance to win $5,000.

*If you are from Sydney, we’ll give you a $500 travel voucher with Qantas towards your next trip.

Applications close Tuesday 20 February 2018.

 Find out more

Communicating about your research is vital

But can you tell us about it in just 30 seconds? In a research career that’s all the time you’ll get in many situations, whether it’s talking to the media, to a grant provider or to your in-laws.

What can you tell us in 30 seconds? Well, scientist-turned-filmmaker Randy Olson says you can tell us a lot. He says you should still structure your talk in Three Acts, like a film, a play or a book – just shorter.

Randy and his colleagues have written a book, Connection – Hollywood storytelling meets critical thinking. Read more at the Connection story website.

The conference

The conference of the CRC Association is the yearly gathering of member Chairs, Board Members, Directors, key CRC staff (CEOs, Business Managers, Research Managers, Communication Managers, Education & Training Managers), as well as influential people from business, government, universities, State and Commonwealth Research Institutes and the media.

In 2018 the conference will be held in Sydney from 14 to 16 May at the Aerial UTS Function Centre. The Showcasing Early Career Researchers session will be held on the opening day to be followed by the Ralph Slatyer Address on Science and Society and a welcome function.

The competition

The Early Career Researcher Showcase celebrates good research, communicated well.

Any Early Career Researcher from any member of the Cooperative Research Centres Association can enter via a 30-second video to the competition website.

We want to see you in your video, the judges are looking to see how you present your story in 30 seconds, not how good your video editing skills are. You are telling the story.

The five best entrants will be invited to give a 5-minute presentation at Aerial UTS Function Centre on Monday 14 May 2018.

Every finalist will receive a prize of $1,000, presented at the Excellence in Innovation Awards dinner on the evening of Tuesday 15 May.

The winner will be decided by audience vote at the conference.

The winner will receive an additional $5,000, presented at the Excellence in Innovation Awards dinner.


To be eligible to apply you must be, or have been, a PhD or Masters student by research in a CRC Association member organisation, and be planning to submit your thesis in the next two years, or have already submitted within the past five years. For those who have submitted and are starting post-doctoral work, the application must be based on research conducted in a CRC or other CRC Association member organisation.

There is a limit of 10 entries per CRC Association member organisation. Each application must include a letter of endorsement from your CRC’s CEO or Education Manager, or the Head of Department if you are from a supporting member University. The letter can be in the form of an email, the application form only requires the text version.

The fine print

You must not include any confidential information in your video or presentation | If you tick yes at the end of the application form you agree for us to post your photo, project description and a link to your video on the CRCA website and use it to help promote the competition | If shortlisted, you will be available to participate in Collaborate | Innovate | 2018 from 14–16 May 2018 | Judges decisions on short listing and audience decision on the winner are final | You understand that CRCA reserves the right to shortlist more or less finalists, based on the judges view of overall quality | Video entries and finalist presentations must be made in English (or Auslan with English accompaniment) | Video entries must be received by CRCA by midnight Eastern Australian Daylight Savings Time 20 February 2018 – you understand that CRCA is not responsible for any technical assistance in loading or transmitting videos | Flights for finalists will be provided by the most economical airfare from the most appropriate Australian port. International students associated with a CRCA member are welcome to enter but international flights will not be supported | Shortlisted finalists who reside in Sydney will be provided with a $500 travel voucher in lieu of travel support to the event | Shortlisted finalists will make themselves available for photos, media interviews and other events during Collaborate | Innovate | 2018 | There is a limit of 10 entries per CRCA member organisation.

Closing date

Applications will close Tuesday 20 February 2018.

Online application form

Before you fill in the online application form you will need to record your 30-second video and upload it to YouTube. Creating a YouTube account is easy and free.  Go to YouTube and click on Sign in at the top right. Then click on Create an account at the top right again. Complete the details as requested.

Once you are signed in to YouTube there is an Upload link at the top of the page. Once your video is uploaded, make sure the privacy settings for the video are set to Public or Unlisted. If you make the video unlisted, then only people with the direct link to the video can view it. The judges will be able to see the link after you enter it into our application form. If you decide to make your video public, we recommend you do not allow comments.

You need a password to open the online application form. Contact Karen at the CRCA office for the password and if you need help.

Applications have closed