Improving outcomes for upper gastrointestinal cancers

The Improving Cancer Outcomes Collaborative Research Grants are designed to support the acceleration of translational cancer research in areas of unmet need to ultimately reduce the disparities in outcomes for certain cancers and/or populations. The Grants will drive collaborative research and promote effective translation of research into health policy and/or clinical practice across Victoria.

The objectives of the Improving Cancer Outcomes Collaborative Research Grants are to:

  • provide support for teams of researchers to pursue innovative, high-quality, collaborative research and develop capacity in translational cancer research
  • bring together leading clinicians and scientists from sites across Victoria and through national and international engagement and collaboration
  • promote effective translation of research into health policy and/or clinical practice
  • foster and build capacity in the health and medical translational cancer research workforce
  • provide opportunities to expand and improve collaborations between research teams.

This Scheme will only accept applications focusing on: Improving outcomes for upper gastrointestinal cancers.

Applications may focus on one or more of cancers of the pancreas, liver, oesophagus, stomach and gallbladder. Please refer to guidelines below

 2018 Improving Outcomes for Upper Gastrointestinal Cancers Collaborative Research Grant Guidelines

Applications must:

  • focus on clinical translation of research
  • involve regional researchers, clinicians, patients and/or carers
  • involve the training and development of early career researchers
  • proposed projects must have active consumer and community involvement
  • be collaborative across organisations, health services and regions
  • demonstrate a sustainability plan.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are you accepting multiple applications from a single organisation? 
A: Yes. 

Q: What is the maximum funding available for each project? 
A: The total maximum funding available for each project is $2 million over four years (maximum of $500,000 per year).

Q: My project requires an agreement with a partner but there is currently no agreement in place. Can I still apply?  

A: You may apply. However, at the time of submission it would be expected that you will have an ‘in principle’ agreement with your partners. Please outline in your application the timeline you expect to have an agreement in place and outline the risks to the project if such an agreement cannot be finalised.


Q: If I have previously applied for VCA funding and been unsuccessful, can I apply again?
A: Yes.

Q: Can funding be used to extend an existing project?
A: Yes, as long as the proposal fits within the grant guidelines and indicates a discrete research objective with no duplication of funding from other sources.

Q: If I have previously received funding from the VCA, can I apply again?
A: Generally yes, however restrictions apply to some types of grants. Refer to individual grant guidelines.

Q: Can I provide references for the summary of proposed research in the application form?
A: References are required in the project description upload.

Q: Who can apply for VCA funding?
A: Any organisation or individual that is, or will be, involved in the conduct of cancer research in Victoria is eligible to apply for VCA funding. Applications must be made under the auspices of a Victorian hospital, research organisation or university. For specific eligibility requirements, see the guidelines provided for individual grants.

Q: How can I apply for funding?
A: When applications are open, we provide a link for you to apply online in the current funding scheme pages. We do not accept applications submitted in hard copy or by email.

Q: Who can I contact if I have any queries about applying for a specific grant?
A: For queries about the guidelines, deadlines, or questions in the form, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 1300 664 737 during business hours and quote your application number. For queries about using the application form, contact SmartyGrants on 03 9320 6888 during business hours or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and quote your application number.

Q: What is SmartyGrants?
A: The VCA uses SmartyGrants to administer our grants. SmartyGrants is an online grant management system that provides easy-to-use online application forms, as well as report management functions for successful applicants.

Q: Will you fund research in other states?
A: We will fund collaborative research across Victoria and interstate, but the lead agency must be based in Victoria.

Q: Will the VCA own the intellectual property (IP) of findings?
A: No. Under VCA agreements, funded parties retain ownership of their Intellectual Property. This policy is in line with industry best practice for the management of IP for publicly funded research. The VCA does ask that findings be commercialised, where appropriate, in a manner that ensures fair and reasonable access for the Victorian public. More information is available from the 
Victorian Cancer Agency Funding Rules (PDF 265KB). 

Q: Will there be any feedback to the applicant following the evaluation process?
A: All applicants will be notified of whether their application was successful or not. Individual feedback can be provided verbally on request. 

Q: What was the success rates for the 2017 VCA funding round?
A: In 2017, the success rate for the VCA funding round was 33%.