Research Process

AFMA does not undertake research in house. Rather, it outsources research through the following process:

  • Resource Assesment Groups (RAGs) and Management Advisory Committees (MACs) identify the research needs for the  financial year in an annual research plan after reviewing the five year strategic fishery research plans.
  • The AFMA Research Committee evaluates proposals submitted against AFMA’s Five Year Strategic research plan for their need, feasibility and likelihood of contributing to improved management for the relevant fishery.
  • All applications for AFMA Research Committee (ARC) funding must be submitted to research.secretary [at] () using the AFMA research application template.
  • Download the AFMA Research Report template (DOCX)
  • Download the AFMA Visual Style Guide (PDF)


Research Timeline


ARC (12 month funding cycle)

More flexible approach.
Now three calls a year with closing dates: (15 Feb, 15 June, 15 Sept)

Mid-December - January

Research providers submit initial Expressions of Interest (EOI) for potential AFMA funding in response to AFMA’s November call for applications.

Full research proposals submitted are circulated to AFMA fisheries managers/ RAGs & MACs for comment;


Early February

AFMA Management meets to assess proposals and Management/RAG/MAC comments and to recommend the final research budget for AFMA CEO approval.


Research providers submit applications by 15 February to FRDC for funding in response to FRDC’s call in Nov/ Dec


Applicants advised of the outcome of AFMA’s evaluation of their project proposals.


AFMA Research Committee meets to:

  •  review research proposals submitted in response to FRDC’s December call, provide comments for the Commonwealth Research Advisory Committee (COMRAC) consideration and note the final AFMA research budget recommended by AFMA Management for CEO approval; and
  • Engage with RAG Chairs/AFMA fisheries managers to discuss progress with implementation of more strategic projects and future investment needs.

ComRAC meets to assess applications and review further identified priorities for FRDC’s call.



FRDC publishes its call for applications


AFMA CEO approves the AFMA research budget for the new financial year.




New contracts for essential research projects prepared and finalised

Research providers submit applications by 15 June in response to FRDC’s call in May.


ARC meets to:

  • Assess he results from AFMA’s strategic stakeholder meeting on strategic directions for research relevant to AFMA’s information needs and for potential FRDC funding and other funding sources such as NESP
  • Provide advice through FRDC on priorities and research proposals for ComRAC consideration for potential FRDC funding via AFMA Commission membership on ComRAC.


RAGs/MACs commence review of their fishery 5 Year Research Plans to IDENTIFY THEIR RESEARCH NEEDS for AFMA/FRDC funding in the following financial year by completing an Annual Research Plan following review of their 5 year plans.

ComRAC meets to assess applications and review further identified priorities for FRDC’s August call.



FRDC conducts the RAC/IPA Workshop to consider priorities and opportunities for co-investment.


RAGs/MACs submit their individual fishery’s Annual Research Plan to research.secretary [at] ()

Research providers submit applications by 15 Sept in response to FRDC’s call in July


AFMA Management meets to consider RAG/MAC identified research priorities and agree on priorities for AFMA’s call for applications in November.

ComRAC meets to assess applications and agree on priorities for FRDC’s call.


The ARC’s annual research call opens in November

FRDC publishes its call for research.