The FRDC has developed a more flexible approach to how it funds projects to align with the FRDC Research Development and Extension (RD&E) Plan principles of 'Lead, Collaborate and Partner'.

Nationally, the FRDC will LEAD and target investment towards three national research priorities: 

  • ensuring that Australian fishing and aquaculture products are sustainable and acknowledged to be so; ensuring that Australian fishing and aquaculture products are sustainable and acknowledged to be so; 
  • improving productivity and profitability of fishing and aquaculture; and 
  • developing new and emerging aquaculture growth opportunities.

PARTNERING involves devolving some authority to jurisdictions through research advisory committees (RACs) and industry sectors through Industry Partnership Agreements (IPAs) – to allow them greater ownership of how and where to invest.

The FRDC has a RAC for each fishery jurisdiction:  Commonwealth, all states and the Northern Territory.  Each RAC consists of a chair and members who provide expertise in the areas of commerical wild catch, commerical aquaculture, recreational fishing, resource management, processing, post-harvest and marketing, environmental, RD&E execution and management, indigenous and people development, and is management by an FRDC project manager.

IPAs are in place with 11 different industry sectors, and allow industry groups to identify and prioritise issues that relate to their sector and ensure RD&E investment against those priorities. Each IPA is managed by an FRDC project manager (see contacts, below) and an industry executive officer who reports to their governance committee.

Stakeholder priority setting

In September and October the RACs and IPAs will meet to discuss and set priorities for the coming year. Following these meetings the FRDC will convene a workshop of advisory groups around October each year to discuss the developed priorities, align them and identify areas for potential collaboration.

RACs and IPAs will also be able to further develop their priorities when they meet in March, July and October each year, or should a major issue arise, they will be able to progress research to deal with that issue.

Submitting Your Application

To ensure that your project is eligible for funding, please consider the following documents:

It is important to consider these documents in the preparation of your application. You will also need to consider the priorities of the relevant stakeholders.

To access FishNet please go to

All applications for funding from the FRDC must be submitted via FishNet.

FishNet instructions are available at