The Foundation underwrites industry-critical research, which is conducted by leading researchers and consultants, with the oversight and support of volunteer industry practitioners and other experts. We do so because research provides our best chance to solve our industry’s most pressing problems. We depend on strong industry partnerships to help us identify these problems, but once identified, it is critical, applied research that provides the solutions.
ARBS Foundation grants program is designed to accelerate the translation of research discoveries directly into industry practice. The aim of the research program is to ensure Australia remains at the cutting-edge of research associated with airconditioning, refrigeration and building services and that we offer to support the best and brightest researchers.
The Foundation board may from time to time identify specific topics for research. Refer to the current news section for any recent pronouncements.
However, the following areas of research are encouraged:
System Types – an example is: Low Temperature Vs Medium Temperature Variable Air Volume Air Conditioning System
System Optimization – an example is: Enhancements in the Building Management and Control Systems to achieve optimum indoor comfort levels.
Sustainable Environmental Initiatives – an example is: Use of Solar Power to Operate Cooling Tower Fans.
Equipment & Materials – an example is: Utilisation of Innovative Materials and Techniques associated with Refrigeration or Lighting or Air Conditioning Equipment to achieve lower operating costs and minimization of greenhouse gas emissions.
Research may be carried out in the field – through testing and site investigations – including obtaining feedback, where appropriate, from building occupants, etc.
Research may be carried out in Laboratories equipped with the appropriate facilities. This may be at Universities or Research Centres.
Students undertaking research as part of their further education studies may consider applying for a research grant to assist with part of their study program.
Supporting Research Grant
Each grant generally will be limited to $20,000 maximum to be utilised within a period of two years maximum. Applications for grants in excess of this amount will need to demonstrate special circumstances.
Find out how to apply for funding for a research grant.
Selection and Funding Process
The Foundation’s research process is straightforward and grounded in our belief in and reliance on our many industry partners.
How Funded Research Topics Are Determined
The Trustees of the Research Fund give freely of their time to serve on the Trust. They collectively have many years of experience in the industry and have an active voice in defining Foundation’s research agenda.
- The Trustees may publish a Request for Proposals (RFP) to a mailing list of academics and industry consultants.
- Meetings with other groups of friends and partners, such as industry and professional associations can spur ideas for research topics or joint-venture research opportunities.
- Unsolicited proposals may be submitted to the Foundation. Such proposals are considered by the Trustees as to their merit and potential value to the industry. The Trustees may arrange a meeting with the applicant to further explore the proposal.
Some characteristics that might lead to successful funding by the Foundation might be:-
- “Applied” research, that is, research to solve specific problems or take advantage of specific opportunities.
- Projects that are relatively short in duration (e.g. achievable in a year), or that can be accomplished in discrete stages or phases, rather than longer projects with less definitive goals, are preferred.
- Projects are expected to include a marketing or audience distribution plan as part of the project.
- Complete and well-conceived budgets are required.
Applicants should consult the guidance notes for applicants that are available from the website.
Regardless of how and where a project idea originates, all projects that receive funding must be formally approved by the Foundation’s Trustees.
How Projects Are Delivered
- A funding agreement will arranged between the parties involved in the research project and the Foundation.
- Depending on the timing and agreed delivery date of the project, the principal may be required to present, or assist in the presentation of, the final product at an event nominated by the Trustee.
- The principal may be asked to present interim or final findings to the Trustee or other industry body.
Definitions to Apply
Following definitions will apply, unless the contrary intention appears:
- ARBS means the Air Conditioning, Refrigeration & Building Services
- ARBS Foundation means entity responsible for administration of funds for Research and Scholarships.
- Conflict of Interest means any conflict of interest, any risk of a conflict of interest and any apparent conflict of interest arising through a party engaging in any activity, participating in any association, holding an membership or obtaining any interest that is likely to conflict with or restrict that party participating in the Project
- Eligible Organisation/Individuals mean members of ARBS and associated affiliates.
- Funding Agreement means the agreement entered into by the ARBS Foundation and the Applicant for a Project
- GST has the meaning as given in section 195-1 of the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999.
- Project means an Application for a Research Grant approved by the ARBS Foundation to receive funding from the Foundation in accordance with these rules.
- Research Environment means the laboratory, department, school, centre or institute where research will be undertaken.
- Selection Advisory Committee (SAC) means a group of experts appointed to assist ARBS Foundation to identify and evaluate research excellence in Australia.
Research is defined as the creation of new knowledge and/or the use of existing knowledge in a new and creative way so as to generate new concepts, methodologies and understandings. This could include synthesis and analysis of previous research to the extent that it is new and creative. This definition of research is consistent with a broad notion of research and experimental development (R&D) as comprising creative work undertaken on a systematic basis in order to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of humanity, culture and society, and the use of this stock of knowledge to devise [innovative] applications.
- ARBS Foundation will retain ownership of any intellectual property arising out of any project it funds.
- Incomplete or Misleading Information
- It is a serious offence to provide false or misleading information.
- If the ARBS Foundation considers that a Proposal is incomplete, inaccurate or contains false or misleading information, it may in its absolute discretion decide to recommend that the Proposal not be approved for funding.
- Examples of misleading information and misconduct include:
- providing fictitious research opportunity and performance evidence;
- making false claims in publications records (such as describing a paper as accepted for publication when it has only been submitted);
- making false claims in relation to qualifications and/or appointments;
- failing to disclose to the ARBS Foundation the existence, and nature, of actual or potential conflicts of interest of any of the parties involved in the Project (such as any affiliations or financial interest in any organisation that has a direct interest in the matter or outputs of the Project).