The datasets on this page are updated annually to include each year’s new awards and to refresh the data for continuing grants

These data represent a snapshot of the NHMRC‘s research funding activity at the time that the data was extracted from our systems. These data were last updated 22 May 2020.

Changes to previously reported data

Our funding data have undergone cleaning to improve data quality. The method for collecting and collating application and grant data by disease, health and research topic was recently updated to ensure a more robust output for past, present and future reporting. As such, dollar amounts, application and grant totals for a number of topics have been adjusted to include not only new results, but also past applications and grants not identified using older forms of data collection.

NHMRC Funding for major diseases, conditions or health areas

The majority of NHMRC funding is investigator-initiated and is not directed by NHMRC to any specific disease, health or research topic. The subject matter of each application is determined by the applicants. Additionally, a proportion of NHMRC funds is directed to specific topics primarily through the Targeted Calls for Research and International Collaboration schemes, or priorities identified in the NHMRC Corporate Plan.

Funding decisions are the outcome of a competitive process that relies on the collective judgement of independent peer reviewers. There is strong demand for NHMRC funding and the process is very competitive, so not all high quality research proposals are able to be funded.

For reporting purposes, NHMRC classifies applications against disease, health and research topics based on information provided at the time of application including an application’s title, keywords, media summaries and other research classifications where appropriate.

This process results in the classification of applications to more than one topic. NHMRC does not apportion funding when more than one topic is indicated and the full value of the grant is attributed.

Relevance to the topic may be either a direct focus or a broader focus such as a longer term potential benefit. The resulting datasets may include a broad range of research from discovery science through to clinical research, health services and public health research.

If the below tables do not provide the information you seek please contact nhmrc.statistics@nhmrc.gov.au

COVID-19 impacts

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is committed to supporting national and international efforts, including NHMRC funded experts, to address the COVID-19 pandemic and its consequences.

Read more information on COVID-19.

NHMRC and other Australian Government priorities

The following table summarises our expenditure into the priority area of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s health and the Australian Government’s National Health Priority Areas.

NHMRC expenditure by priority areas 2013 to 2019

National Health Priority Areas

2013

$ million

2014

$ million

2015

$ million

2016

$ million

2017

$ million

2018

$ million

2019

$ million

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health

41.5 49.1 55.8 51.7 49.6 50.0 54.4

Arthritis and Osteoporosis

23.7 22.7 24.7 19.3 18.9 17.5 18.3

Asthma

21.5 23.6 22.7 15.3 13.3 15.7 13.8

Cancer

179.2 188.3 191.4 170.6 175.8 178.9 181.6

Cardiovascular Disease

117.1 129.4 130.0 114.9 111.4 105.3 112.6

Dementia1

24.9 31.5 33.4 45.6 50.2 60.9 71.2

Diabetes

65.2 70.2 70.3 65.0 57.7 50.7 46.5

Injury

45.4 58.4 61.5 45.8 44.2 49.9 51.1

Mental Health2

85.1 95.9 100.0 91.1 93.4 104.9 110.2

Obesity

41.7 40.7 39.0 28.1 27.6 23.0 23.5

1 Funding for Dementia excludes research activities that are outside the Medical Research Endowment Account (MREA) such as the Clem Jones Centre for Ageing Dementia Research and the Dementia Collaborative Research Centres.

2 Includes research into addiction. 

Other disease, research and health areas

The following table provides summary expenditure by a range of different disease, health and research areas.

NHMRC expenditure for Disease, Health and Research Topics 2013 to 2019

Disease, Health or Research Topic3

2013

$ million

2014

$ million

2015

$ million

2016

$ million

2017

$ million

2018

$ million

2019

$ million

Balance, Eye and Hearing Diseases

25.6

27.5 28.9 26.3 22.2 21.8 21.3

Blood Diseases

23.5

26.3 24.6 23.8 24.8 20.0 23.3

Cancer

179.2

188.3 191.4 170.6 175.8 178.9 181.6

Cardiovascular Disease

117.1

129.4 130.0 114.9 111.4 105.3 112.6

Congenital and Genetic Diseases

93.4

106.7 117.9 112.6 102.1 104.3 112.6

Endocrine, Metabolic and Nutritional Diseases

129.9

137.5 139.9 120.2 111.5 104.3 117.5

Environmental and Occupational Health

16.9

20.4 18.2 17.8 15.2 17.2 16.9

Gastrointestinal Diseases

39.1

39.3 41.7 35.7 34.9 37.5 42.2

Genitourinary Diseases

38.2

41.6 41.0 38.6 39.0 40.0 41.4

Immunological Diseases

94.6

107.7 112.3 96.8 84.7 94.4 94.6

Infectious Diseases

143.8

158.2 167.4 148.7 148.7 159.4 168.0

Injury

45.4

58.4 61.5 45.8 44.2 49.9 51.1

Mental Health4

85.1

95.9 100.0 91.1 93.4 104.9 110.2

Musculoskeletal Diseases

52.5

58.5 61.9 49.3 49.2 51.9 49.7

Neurological Diseases

167.0 196.2 214.0 198.8 190.1 204.3 214.6
Orofacial Diseases 7.0 7.2 6.8 3.9 3.4 3.3 3.4
Reproductive Health 72.6 77.8 83.6 66.6 62.8 65.2 69.5
Respiratory Diseases 56.4 63.5 68.3 51.2 46.4 50.8 55.8
Skin Diseases 15.4 20.0 16.6 12.8 9.5 10.9 11.2

3 These disease, health and research topics are based on the International Classification of Disease (ICD) produced by the World Health Organisation. For further information about these Disease, Health or Research Topics please email NHMRC.Statistics@NHMRC.gov.au

4 Includes research into addiction.

NHMRC expenditure for research relevant to specific populations 2013 to 2019

Population

2013

$ million

2014

$ million

2015

$ million

2016

$ million

2017

$ million

2018

$ million

2019

$ million

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health

41.5

49.1 55.8 51.7 49.6 50.0 54.4

Adolescent Health

22.7

23.5 26.2 20.3 18.9 20.2 21.9

Aged Health

32.1

42.3 40.7 36.2 36.6 39.5 45.9

Child Health

95.7

101.1 112.2 98.3 96.7 103.3 111.3

Maternal Health

50.3

52.8 60.0 47.2 45.4 46.0 48.2

Men’s Health

21.8

19.7 20.5 17.0 17.0 18.6 18.7

Women’s Health

92.6

93.8 100.7 84.4 83.0 83.4 86.5

Outcomes of NHMRC Grant Application Rounds

A full list of grants awarded each year is available here.

NHMRC Analysis of Australian Health and Medical Research Publications

We regularly publish reports on the scientific publication output and the citation impact of NHMRC-funded research and of Australian health and medical research more broadly.

Governance Reporting

In accordance with our reporting obligations, further data on our grants is available at the below link.