Healthy - Medical Research


  • To support the provision of equipment and capital infrastructure to support outstanding medical research groups.

Round Information


Monday 15 November 2021
Tuesday 25 January 2022 5pm AEDT

Grants Announced

early May 2022

Microscopic image of a mouse cardiac spheroid to be used as 'bio-ink' to 'print' patches to be grafted after a heart attack.
Photo Courtesy of Dr Carmine Gentile, The University of Sydney.

Funding Objectives

The Healthy Australia pillar supports organisations that strive to provide innovative solutions to improve the health of all Australians.  The Medical Research stream aims to advance understanding and improve treatment of major diseases by supporting major initiatives by leading Australian research institutes, universities and teaching hospitals in innovative biomedical research. 

In the Medical Research stream the Foundation will consider applications:

  • To support the provision of equipment and capital infrastructure to support outstanding research groups.

The Foundation also supports the Cynthia Banham Burns Fellowship to enable clinical research by an early-career researcher under the guidance of renowned burns specialist, Dr Fiona Wood at Royal Perth Hospital.


Important to know

  • You must speak with the Program Manager before submitting an application to be considered eligible to apply. Please call Lauren Monaghan direct on 03 9611 1591. If the Program Manager is unable to take your call, you can leave a voicemail with your contact details so your call can be returned.
  • In general, the recommended minimum grant amount for institutions and organisations is $100,000 in this program area.

  • The Foundation prioritises applications with evidence of collaboration. Please ensure that you have alternative providers of funding and that your application clearly considers any possible grant from the Foundation in this context.  We are unlikely to fund 100% of a project cost.
  • Applications must be accompanied by a letter from the requesting organisation's Chief Executive Officer or equivalent person (e.g. Director of Institute, University Vice-Chancellor or Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research) attesting to the value of each application to the organisation.
  • In the case of multiple applications in one or more categories, advice must also be provided as to the priority ranking of all such applications.
  • A maximum of two applications may be submitted by an organisation in a given grant round.
  • Please also refer to the Funding Principles section for further information.


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 and specific exclusions for the Medical Research program area before you apply for a grant.


Specific Exclusions

  • Purposes that are core to the operations of the organisation and should more appropriately be funded from institutional operating funds
  • Research projects for which there would be a reasonable prospect of attracting commercial funding
  • Research funding, scholarships or projects that would be awarded by the grantseeker to third parties.

General Exclusions

Projects that fall into any of the following categories will not be considered for funding:

• Retrospective funding – projects which are already underway or which will commence prior to the date indicated in our online application information are not eligible for consideration
• Recurrent expenditure for which there is no future provision
• Capital or endowment funds established to fund a chair or to provide a corpus for institutions
• Auspicing* is not permitted – the organisation applying must be the one that will run the program or project
• Applications for public charitable purposes outside the Commonwealth of Australia**
• Applications for projects that have previously been declined by the Foundation cannot be resubmitted
• Applications will not be accepted from organisations that have not successfully acquitted previous grants from the Foundation

Auspicing refers to the practice of an ineligible organisation (one that does not have DGR and TCC status) applying to the Foundation via an eligible organisation. Auspicing arrangements are excluded under the Foundation's guidelines. The organisation applying to the Foundation must be the organisation that will run the project or program for which a grant is being sought.

** Geographical constraints on grants
The Foundation is limited to providing money, property or benefits for public charitable purposes in the Commonwealth of Australia. However, the Foundation is able to provide a grant for activities outside the Commonwealth if the grant is made for a public charitable purpose in the Commonwealth. For example, a grant might be made to an Australian university to enable it to fund an overseas study tour by an Australian researcher engaged by the university.

Application Process

One-stage application process

Grant requests in the Medical Research area are via a one-stage application process. You can preview the application questions and supporting documents you will be required to submit.

Please note there are specific instructions you need to follow if you are a University.

The online application can only be accessed when a funding round is open.

Step 1: Read ALL the information on this program area page to ensure you meet the eligibility criteria and program area objectives before you begin.

Step 2: Applicants are required to speak with a Program Manager prior to submitting an application.

Step 3: Select 'Apply for a Grant' tab below. This tab will only appear when applications are open.

Step 4: You will then need to login by entering your username and password or create an account by clicking New Applicant?.

Step 5: Complete the Eligibility Quiz. If you meet eligibility requirements, you will proceed to the Application form.


Not Currently Open for Applications

Feature Case Studies

  • Advancing genomic healthcare in Australia

    There is no doubt that the 2012 establishment of the Ian Potter Centre for Genomics and Personalised Medicine advanced genomic healthcare in Victoria - and ultimately for Australia. 

    Walter and Eliza Hall Institute
    The Ian Potter Centre for Genomics and Personalised Medicine
    January 2012 - January 2016

    Read more

    ‘The Ian Potter Centre for Genomics and Personalised Medicine has coalesced many partners around Victoria and indeed Australia and has paved the way for what is now considered the future of treatment: a personalised approach to identifying therapies that are more targeted and effective. Philanthropy at its best – when a risky but good idea becomes a new standard for medical treatment.’

    Dr Alberto Furlan
    Senior Program Manager

  • Vectra aids analysis of immune system interaction with cancer

    Immunotherapy has been heralded as the latest breakthrough in cancer treatment. This approach of priming the body's own immune cells to destroy tumour cells has shown success in many different cancers. The Vectra platform facilitates the analysis of each patient's cancer and its interaction with cells of the immune system.

    Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute
    Establishment of multi-colour quantitative tissue imaging equipment
    November 2015 - November 2016

    Read more

    ‘The use of the Vectra by ONJCRI and collaborating institutes provides us with a better understanding of cancer and how therapies work - in the big picture we want to improve patient outcomes by ensuring they are on the right trial at the right time.’

    Dr Andreas Behren
    Group Leader, Cancer Immunobiology Laboratory, ONJ

  • SVI Integrated Clinical Research Facility

    The Integrated Clinical Research Facility aims to bridge the gap from medical research to clinical applications, which is vital to improving disease outcomes. This grant to St Vincent's Institute of Medical Research (SVI) supported the purchase of equipment to allow the high-throughput sorting and identification of cells. The equipment facilitates the application of research findings through clinical and commercial pathways.

    St Vincent's Institute of Medical Research
    Integrated Clinical Research Facility
    July 2013 - July 2014

    Read more

    ‘At SVI we are committed to making a difference to the treatment of common diseases and through this, to the well-being of the community. Support from The Ian Potter Foundation has enabled significant advances in understanding diseases like leukaemia and type 1 diabetes. ’

    Professor Tom Kay
    Director of SVI

  • High frequency ultrasound sets new standard

    The Victor Chang Institute is a leading heart research institute producing improvements in a numerous areas of cardiac health, including the way heart transplants are performed and streamlining drug screening for harmful cardiac effects. The purchase of a new ultrasound machine enables significant new research projects and helps the Institute attract other funders.

    Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute
    Upgrading the High Frequency Echocardiography System
    July - September 2014

    Read more

    ‘This grant is a good example of how philanthropic funds can be leveraged to secure other donations. The equipment is a key asset for the Victor Chang Institute and will increase the number, speed, accuracy and range of echocardiography studies being carried out by a number of highly regarded investigators who are addressing fundamental, important issues relating to human heart function and disease. ’

    Professor Graeme Ryan AC
    Governor of The Ian Potter Foundation


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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