Supporting leading-edge research

The National Data Assets initiative enables the ARDC, through strategic partnerships, to establish a portfolio of national scale data assets that support leading-edge research. 

It will consist of a number of programs to ensure a balanced range of:

  • data types
  • beneficiaries
  • asset maturities
  • research system policy outcomes.

There are six initial programs and they include partnerships with research consortia, national infrastructure facilities, research institutions, emerging collections as well as public and private sector stakeholders. The programs will be staggered over the 2019-2022 planning period.


The assumption, underpinning this initiative, is that collections of data can be national research infrastructure when they:

  • support leading edge research (research excellence, impact, priorities)
  • are national in scale (multi-organisational aggregation, use, and governance).

The ARDC’s deliberate approach is to operate in partnerships with research communities and institutions to create long-lived data assets that leverage existing research and administrative investment. Sector contributions will be matched by the ARDC in terms of funds, infrastructure, services, expertise as well as capability and community development.

Our programs

There are six initial programs proposed under the National Data Assets initiative and they are described below.

As a general principle there will be open calls for participation in these programs, and each of program will have their own expression of interest (EOI) and request for proposals (RFP) definitions (eligibility, strategic outcomes and criteria). It is envisaged that each program will result in a number of projects.

Cross-NRI Collections

The ARDC will partner with clusters of NCRIS (and other NRI) facilities to establish cross-facility collections to support multi-domain science and research translation.

National Data Partnerships

The ARDC will partner with coalitions of data stewards, institutions, research communities, and research beneficiaries (industry, public sector) to establish and develop national data assets to support leading edge research and broader impact.

Public Sector to Research Sector Bridges

The ARDC will partner with public sector data stewards and their research users to optimise use of and access to public sector data for specialised research purposes beyond the agencies’ core business.

Emerging Collections

The ARDC will partner with research communities and research organisations to incubate the development of emerging national scale collections.

Institutional Underpinnings

The ARDC will partner with research institutions and other data custodians to catalyse system-wide good institutional practice for FAIR data and support of distributed national scale assets

Health Studies Australian National Data Asset

The ARDC will partner with consortia of health studies research institutions to build a distributed national data asset from the outputs of NHMRC funded health studies to enable meta analysis, guideline development and data linkage. Read more about the program.

Related topics

Health studies: data development EoI

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