Growing interest in seeds

There was an enthusiastic reception from researchers around the country when the SfTI Challenge Management team hit the road in April 2016 to promote SfTI Challenge seed projects.

The SfTI Challenge recently issued a call for proposals for seed projects seeking new science ideas that could create economic growth for New Zealand. Applications closed at the end of May 2016.

More than 150 researchers attended to find out how they could contribute to our vision of a vibrant, prosperous, technology driven New Zealand.

Don Cleland, who is Materials, Manufacturing and Design Theme Leader for the SfTI Challenge, led several presentations and says it was a very worthwhile exercise.

“The SfTI Challenge is still a very new part of the science system so it was great to get out and about and talk to researchers about what we are trying to achieve with our seed projects.”

Don says the seed projects are an important part of the SfTI Challenge as they will help bring new talent into the researcher community and help us to refresh our focus over coming years.

“They will also bring in new ideas and balance the top-down approach of our research portfolios and spearheads, which are cornerstones of the SfTI Challenge. It is expected that some of the seed projects could become new spearheads.”

In 2016 the Challenge will fund 8-10 seed projects with up to $100,000 a year for up to three years.

Successful projects will involve novel stretch science, be aligned to SfTI Challenge themes and have the potential to contribute to New Zealand’s economic growth.

Don says the workshops were well attended with people asking lots of questions.

“I’d like to thank all the researchers who turned up and wish them well in their applications. I would also like to thank the staff in university research offices who promoted the roadshow.”

More about seed projects