This program area has been permanently closed. See our announcement here.

Round Information

Not Currently Open for Applications


The sharing, exchange and dissemination of knowledge is another important aspect of the Foundation’s commitment to excellence and to our desire to build capacity within Australia’s not-for-profit sector. The Ian Potter Foundation’s Conference program area supports the exchange and dissemination of ideas and knowledge across a global stage. The Conference program assists organisations to bring keynote speakers of international renown to Australia. The speakers impart their knowledge and expertise to conference delegates in Australia to inspire new thinking and foster learning.

Conference grants are a great example of how relatively small grants can have a significant impact. A new approach or way of thinking can make a significant difference to a not-for-profit organisation, and that ripple effect can inspire a fresh focus, spark new research and create networks and knowledge-sharing frameworks.

Grants are made through this program area to assist with the travel and accommodation costs of hosting an international keynote speaker.

The subjects of the supported conferences range from areas of public interest, such as suicide prevention, which was the focus of a conference hosted by Suicide Prevention Australia in 2013, through to specialised scientific gatherings such as the International Symposium on Agami Lizards hosted by Museums Victoria.

Further details of our Conference grants can be found in our Grants Database. Potential applicants should refer to the Funding Objectives section for more information about current funding priorities.

Funding Objectives

To develop knowledge and learning by supporting symposia and conferences of international standing being held in Australia.

Conference grants are awarded to a maximum amount of $20,000 and the request can only be for funding towards the travel and accommodation costs associated with hosting international keynote speakers.

It is expected that 50% of the cash costs of bringing the one or more invited keynote speakers has been secured by the conference organisers. 

We do not cover speakers' appearance fees.


The Ian Potter Foundation can only make grants to organisations with BOTH Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) Item 1 and Tax Concession Charity (TCC) status.

It is important that you check the Eligibility section to ensure your organisation meets these Australian Tax Office requirements.

Under the terms of the deed of The Ian Potter Foundation and Australian taxation laws, The Ian Potter Foundation can only make grants to organisations with BOTH Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) Item 1 and Tax Concession Charity (TCC) status.

Please make sure you read the funding objectives for the Conference program area before go through the Apply for a grant process on the website.

Application Process

Grant requests in the Conference area are via a one-step application process. You can preview the application questions for Conference Grants and download a Conference Budget template.

Grants requests in for the Conference program need to take into account the Program start dates for the particular Funding Round. For example, if the funding round closes in June then the conference speaker’s intended travel must be after September. Travel can be undertaken within 12 months from the Program Start date.

Our flexibility with program start dates is very limited. The reason we set project start dates is to allow sufficient time after our Board has taken decisions to gather any additional information required for us to be able to release the funding. All awarded grants must be assessed and approved by the Foundation’s Board so we cannot consider out of round grants. However, if the conference speaker’s travel falls only a few days before the project start date noted in the application please contact the Program Officer on 03 9650 3188 to discuss whether your application can be considered.

To further improve your chance of success, check out:

Application process

An online application can only be started while the funding round is open.

Step 1: Check organisation eligibility.

Step 2: Check the conference fits with program area objectives, meets specific eligibility and exclusions criteria. See below for application dates as well as date after which travel can be undertaken.

Step 3: Select Apply for a grant.

Step 3: You will then need to login by entering your username and password or create an account by clicking New Applicant?.

Step 4: Complete the Eligibility Quiz. If you meet eligibility requirements, you will proceed to the Application form.

After you save and close you can re-access your Application via the My Account Icon minilink using your username and password. 

Step 5: Complete your online application form. Ensure your Application is submitted by 5pm EST on the closing date.

We require a hard copy including all supporting documents as well as the online application. Both must be received by the 5.00pm EST deadline on the closing date. Applications postmarked with the closing date will not be accepted. Note that applications may be sent by courier or hand-delivered.

What happens next?

Step 6: All grant applications are considered at the Foundation’s board meetings, which are held three times a year.

Step 7: Once reviewed, the Program Manager will advise you if your grant has been successful. 

Please click Apply for a Grant below to begin the online application process.

Not Currently Open for Applications

Feature Case Studies

  • Charge Syndrome

    CHARGE Syndrome Association of Australasia aims to improve the quality of life for children and adults with CHARGE syndrome. The Foundation contributed towards the costs of three US-based keynote speakers at the CHARGEability conference.

    CHARGE Syndrome Association of Australasia Ltd
    CHARGEability conference, Penrith, NSW, September 2012
    September 2012

    Read more

    ‘I know of no identifiable sub-group within the population of people with multi-sensory impairment who have so many medical problems, of such complexity and severity, and with so many hidden or delayed difficulties. And yet no sub-group has shown such a consistent ability to rise triumphantly above these problems, admittedly with massive help from the medical professionals, therapists, educationalists and above all their families’

    David Brown

  • Shaping the Future of Palliative Care

    Professor Ilora Finlay, Professor of Palliative Medicine at Cardiff University in Wales was brought to Melbourne as keynote speaker at the Eighth Biennial Palliative Care conference.

    Pallaitive Care Victoria
    August 2012

    Read more

    ‘People facing the close of their lives fear what lies ahead, often fearing things that just won’t happen. They need to feel confident that they will not be abandoned, but will be supported to live as fully as possible in whatever time is left as their horizons are changed by disease.

    Professor Ilora Finlay
    Keynote Speaker, PCV Conference 2012


Support Australia's most innovative projects through a donation to The Ian Potter Foundation. Your donation will support projects that address areas of particular need or opportunity, managed by credible organisations with solid track records in their particular fields.

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