Group of Eight Australia
Australia's Leading Universities
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About the Future Research Leaders Program (FRLP)

The Future Research Leaders Program (FRLP) was a collaborative initiative of the Group of Eight (Go8) Universities, which intended to provide consistent, high-quality training in key aspects of research management and research leadership in universities. 

The Group of Eight Limited has managed the program since 2009 and has licensed the program (which has undergone a number of revisions) to a number of non-Go8 universities for use in their research training. 

In March 2015 the Go8 Board decided that in order to maximise the impact of the program, the FRLP modules should be made freely available on the Go8 website, to anyone who may wish to use them for non-commercial purposes, subject to appropriate acknowledgement.  (See disclaimer at the end of this page)

Group of Eight (Go8) Universities

The Group of Eight (Go8) comprises Australia’s eight leading research Universities - The University of Melbourne, The Australian National University, The University of Sydney, The University of Queensland, The University of Western Australia, The University of Adelaide, Monash University and UNSW Australia.

Each of these universities has developed their own research profile and identity. However, they also have some common emphases: first, their reputation and primacy in research is a top strategic priority. Second, they are internationally recognised for their research quality and outputs. Third, they have the capacity and desire to support strong areas of research. Fourth, they are keen to recruit and retain the best researchers within their communities.

Content of the FRLP

The FRLP provides best practice training in financial management, grant administration, business planning, commercialisation and technology transfer, corporate governance, financial reporting, acquittal and audit requirements to current and emerging researchers in Go8 universities who are identified as future research leaders.

The project aims to:

  • provide development opportunities to 1,000 current and future research leaders to create a critical mass for improved researcher productivity and performance;
  • develop consistent and published sector-wide performance standards and learning materials for researchers in financial and business management of research;
  • increase awareness among researchers and the research community as to what is expected of them in relation to the efficient management of research projects;
  • involve the major funding agencies in the measurement and evaluation of the project outcomes, to drive reform at the institutional level as well as across the Go8; and
  • publicise the outcomes and findings of the program.

Program participants commence with an online induction/orientation module designed for researchers who are new to Go8 universities. The subsequent eight modules seek to prepare participants for future roles as managers of research grants and leaders of research teams. These modules explore the roles and responsibilities that researchers assume as project managers, as research supervisors, as team leaders and as centre leaders.

Each module will comprise independent-study online learning material that is completed prior to an end-of-module workshop. The total time commitment for participants will be in the order of 8 to 16 hours per module.

You are expected to devote time to reading the online materials for each module and carrying out compulsory activities before attending the workshop. Most modules take less than two hours to read although you may need to devote up to four hours reading and completing the activities for some modules.

The workshops are based on the assumption that you have completed the required reading and carried out the compulsory activities.

The online induction/orientation module Settling In: The Researcher's Guide to Your University exploring financial and resource management will comprise two elements:

  • a checklist of local practices and expectations which should be discussed with researchers during the induction process; and
  • documentation of principles and processes which should be reflected in effective research management practices.

The subsequent eight modules target the development of specific capabilities in the following areas:

  1. Research Strategy and Planning
  2. Commencement and Collaboration: Putting Ideas into Practice
  3. Conducting research responsibly: Protecting Yourself, Your Research and Your University
  4. Intellectual Property and Commercialisation
  5. Financial, Resource and Risk Management
  6. Grant and Contract Administration
  7. Managing and Leading People in a Research Context
  8. Project Closeout

You can commence the program by clicking on the Modules link at the top of the page.

The Group of Eight received $A1 million under the Australian Government's Workplace Productivity Program to develop and implement Phase 1 of a Future Research Leaders Program.


The FRLP modules may be opened or downloaded by any person (including natural persons and bodies corporate) subject to the following conditions.  By opening or downloading the modules a person is taken to have entered into a contract with the Group of Eight Limited agreeing to these conditions the consideration for which contract is the Group of Eight Limited agreeing to let you use the FRLP modules.  If these conditions are not acceptable to you do not open or download the FRLP modules.

  1. The Group of Eight Limited grants you a non-exclusive licence to use the FRLP modules for non-commercial use only.  Non-commercial use means a use whose purpose does not involve the commercial exploitation of the FRLP modules, the earning of revenue or other similar business operations.  Examples of non-commercial use include research and educational activities in not for profit organisations such as schools and public universities.
  2. You must not claim that you have any rights in respect of the FRLP modules other than the licence granted by clause 1.  You acknowledge the Group of Eight Limited is the owner of the intellectual property rights in the FRLP modules.
  3. You must not use the FRLP modules in any way which is in contravention of Australian law or the laws binding in the jurisdiction in which you are located. 
  4. The Group of Eight Limited accepts no responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the FRLP modules and accepts no liability in respect of the material contained in those modules. 
  5. You acknowledge the modules have been developed without regard to your specific circumstances.
  6. You must exercise your own skill and care and carefully evaluate the accuracy, completeness, and relevance of the FRLP modules to the purposes for which you wish to use them and where necessary obtain independent professional advice appropriate to your own particular circumstances.
  7. You agree that to the extent permitted by law the Group of Eight Limited, their members, employees, agents and officers accept no responsibility of any nature for any loss or liability (including without limitation legal costs and expenses) incurred or suffered arising out of or in connection with the use of the FRLP modules including where such loss or liability was caused by the infringement of intellectual property rights, including the moral rights, of any third person. 
  8. The Group of Eight Limited may, by notice published on its website, revoke the licence granted under this contract where the Group of Eight Limited forms the view that it ceases to be appropriate or prudent for the Group of Eight Limited to licence use of the FRLP modules.