It’s that time of year when we’re sending out our feelers for potential R&D project proposals from our membership.

For us, it’s crucial that our chosen R&D focuses are industry driven. This is because we 100% want to deliver you value from the outcomes – and we can’t do that if you we don’t know what you need help with!

We’re seeking ideas that fall into the following categories:

  1. Quick wins- smaller projects (less than $50K) and intended to take less than six months to complete. This is open to all our SME members with less than 20 employees only, and
  2. Panel projects – these are R&D projects with longer time-frames, and are open to all members.

Quick wins

This is a new initiative we’re trialling based on feedback that our SMEs feel under-represented by us. That’s why we’ve created a special category just for you!

To apply, simply email me your idea and give me a bit of background about what the problem is that you need solved with R&D.

Our lead team will then review to determine if it’s feasible (in terms of resources to solve that problem quickly). If we get many ideas coming through that we think we can deliver on, we’ll send out a list of these to our ‘less-than-20-employees’ companies to vote on. By doing this we aim to democratise the process so we’re solving problems that matter to our membership.

One thing to bear in mind is that these are for projects commencing in July 2019, so there’ll be a six-month lag.


Please send through your project ideas by 30 January 2019.



Panel projects

We plan to continue evaluating larger and longer-term research projects through our Panels.

Panel projects are ranked against three criteria:

  1. research quality (30%);
  2. research impact (40%); and
  3. alignment with HERA strategy (30%).


Our ‘Guidelines for Panel Assessments provide guidance on how the projects will be ranked.

To apply, you’ll need to complete a Project Proposal Form and send it through to the relevant HERA lead team Panel representative:

  • Steel Research Panel: HERA General Manager Structural Systems, Stephen Hicks
  • Welding Centre Panel: HERA General Manager Welding Centre Michail Karpenko; and
  • Industry Development Panel: General Manager Industry Development, Boaz Habib.


Of course, feel free to contact me if you’re uncertain which Panel should assess your project.


Project Proposals must be sent through to our HERA General Managers by 30 January 2019 to meet the Panel review deadlines. As we operate to an annual budget, project proposals are generally approved at the March/April HERA Executive meeting – so the Panel reviews need to happen earlier!

Approved projects will commence in the financial year starting 1 July 2019



Responding to your needs

We’re very excited to have closer engagement with our members and to actively focus on problems that our industry is facing. We want to deliver a mix of quick wins, more impactful R&D and leading-edge transformational research.

For us, this is about ensuring we respond to your feedback and continually look for ways to improve our membership engagement and research outcomes.

Please keep your ideas coming! We want to make sure we’re not missing any opportunities to help our members and industry solve problems that are commonly being experienced.

Update shared by our CEO Troy Coyle.