veski innovation fellowship criteria and application process

In light of the current situation in Australia and the rest of world pertaining to coronavirus (COVID-19), the health and well-being of our communities remains a priority. At this stage, veski has delayed calling for applications for the veski innovation fellowships in 2020 until further notice.



The veski innovation fellowships are open to Australian and non-Australian researchers and scientists in the fields of science and innovative technology, in the areas of:

  • biotechnology;
  • biomedical;
  • advanced manufacturing (including food science and bioengineering);
  • digital agriculture;
  • cyber security;
  • environmental and energy technologies;
  • the enabling sciences; 
  • space and transportation;

and any other areas deemed a priority.

Successful individuals may receive up to AUD$50,000 per annum for a maximum of three years to undertake their research in Victoria. These funds must be matched with cash and in-kind contributions from a Victorian host organisation.

Recommendations of the veski science committee of eligible candidates for the veski innovation fellowships program are made to the veski board of directors. The funds made available and the duration of the proposed fellowships is determined by the veski board of directors.


Application process 

Applications must fully address requirements 1 - 8 in the application form. The veski science committee will only consider information provided in the application and supporting documentation.

The budget must align with the veski funding guidelines (available from [email protected]) and include a breakdown of:

  • funding per year for the duration of the proposed project; and
  • veski funding, and matched host organisation cash funding and matched host organisation in-kind funding.

An example budget and template is available here.


Evaluation and application requirements

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • provide proof of citizenship;
  • have worked outside of Australian shores for the past 12 months, and be domiciled outside of Australia at the time their submission is lodged;
  • organise matched funding (or be able to organise) from a host organisation [Victorian academic or research institution]. The host organisation must be prepared to provide annual financial [cash] funding and in-kind support; both matching the value of the fellowship and with a cash component over and above salary costs;
  • the candidate must produce a signed statement of support from the host organisation setting out these arrangements.  The candidate, if offered a veski innovation fellowship will have an agreed timeframe to finalise host organisation arrangements;
  • it is anticipated that this will be no more than 30 days from notification of the offer;
  • provide evidence of outstanding achievement and capabilities in the fields of science and innovative technology;
  • nominate three referees, not from your proposed host organisation, who can be contacted for reference and are able to assess your application (applicants should ensure that each referee has been provided with a copy of their application);
  • complete a full submission no longer than 23 pages (including publications) demonstrating why they should receive a veski innovation fellowship; how they would use the fellowship to enhance their research endeavours and what contributions and benefits this would bring to the State of Victoria;
  • the format of this application is set out in the veski innovation fellowships application form; and
  • be able to take up the veski innovation fellowship within one year of the fellowship offer. 


Assessment and key criteria

Applications will be screened for eligibility on the basis of status at the time of application.  All eligible applications for the veski innovation fellowships will be considered by the veski science committee.

This year, veski is actively encouraging applications from individuals with an industrial track record and/or proven collaborations with industry or who intend to foster stronger industry engagement to deliver innovative solutions through a multidisciplinary approach to problem solving who satisfy the key criteria.

The veski science committee will be drawn from the veski board of directors or a sub-committee of the veski board which includes leading members of Victoria’s science, technology and innovation sectors. The veski science committee may, from time to time, draw advice and seek assistance from appropriate specialists in the fields of application.

The veski science committee will assess applications against the following key criteria:

  • outstanding achievement in their field;
  • international recognition and standing in their peer group;
  • outcomes relative to opportunities;
  • potential to contribute to fostering a culture of innovators across the State of Victoria;
  • potential benefits to Victoria’s knowledge economy;
  • potential to develop relations with an industry sector;
  • ability to contribute to public benefit; and a
  • capacity to disseminate knowledge and develop a skills base across Victoria.

The veski science committee will, in its absolute discretion, select successful candidates for the veski innovation fellowships on the basis of the key criteria.

The recommendations of the veski science committee are final and challenges will not be considered.

veski reserves the right not to offer any fellowships in a given year.

Each applicant shall give permission for details contained in the application to be released to the members of the veski science committee and referees (both those nominated by the applicant and external referees) for the purposes of the selection process.

Successful applicants should note that in the event of an offer and acceptance of a veski innovation fellowship, a description of their proposed research project will be publicised.


Host organisation requirements

Applications will be screened for eligibility on the basis of status at the time of application.  All eligible applications for the veski innovation fellowships will be considered by the veski science committee.

The role of the host organisation is to provide support for the veski innovation fellow during their relocation to Australia, following the process outlined in the veski standard.

Host organisations are required to match the veski funding with both a cash and in-kind contribution. The cash component from the host organisation must be over and above any salary contributions. 

These arrangements must be outlined in a signed statement of support which, as a minimum, includes:

  • commitment to hosting a veski innovation fellow and the contribution they will make to the host organisation and Victoria more broadly;
  • details of cash and in-kind contributions;
  • position, department and the person the fellow will be reporting to;
  • definition of any professorial role;
  • committment to invite, consider and where appropriate recommend the fellow to sit on relevent committees, panels and represent the institute as an ambassador; and
  • expected date of commencement. 

An example statement of support can be requested from [email protected].


Obligations of recipients

veski’s principle objective is to enhance Victoria’s intellectual capital in science, knowledge and innovation for the benefit of the Victorian public.

veski innovation fellows are required to support achieving this objective by actively joining the veski family, which consists of veski innovation fellows, veski board members and veski fellows in an ambassadorial role.  veski innovation fellows also become members of the veski connection.

The veski innovation fellow is required to participate in veski programs, and take advantage of opportunities that present through their public role or through the media to acknowledge veski’s support and role in the Victorian community.

Award ceremony

The recipients of the veski innovation fellowship will be required to attend an Award Ceremony and be available for any associated media and communication activities.

Promotional Obligations

Successful applicants should note that in the event of an offer and acceptance of the veski innovation fellowship, a description of their research will be publicised.

Fellows will be required to include the veski innovation fellowship award in their curriculum vitae, professional biography, publications, presentations and media releases for a period of 10 years from the commencement of the fellowship.

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