Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find which is my innovation district?  

This may be determined by your geographical proximity to an innovation district partner institution or by existing/previous connections through research projects or similar collaborative activities with that institution.

Can I apply to more than one innovation district? 

Applicants can enquire with multiple innovation district partners but must select one innovation district partner for application submission. In some cases, innovation districts may be working in collaboration, but you must nominate a lead innovation district for your project.

Can I change to another innovation district? 

Once an application is submitted, applicants cannot change their nominated innovation district partner, unless agreed to by the nominated innovation district partner and Investment NSW.

Can one innovation district refer me to another innovation district?

Yes, this is permitted.

What does this cost?  

There is no cost to participate in the challenge.

How much time is involved in the application process?  

The time involved will vary between applicants and the proposed projects. Applications involve a two-stage process: the first stage involves liaising with an innovation district partner to discuss your proposed project and eligibility; if successful, you may be invited to apply for the second stage where you will need to addresses all criteria, and provide a budget, commercialisation plan, and a video presentation up to two-minutes.

Will my information be kept confidential?  

The NSW Government may choose to publicly announce grant funding for individual applications including the organisation, project title and/or short summary, and amount funded. In addition, applicants should be aware that information submitted in applications and all related correspondence, attachments and other documents may be accessed under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW). Information that is deemed to be commercially sensitive will be withheld.

If I am unsuccessful, will I be eligible to enter future challenges in this program, or other programs under NSW Treasury? 

Unsuccessful applicants will be eligible to express interest to innovation district partners in applying for future Innovation Districts Challenges.

If I am successful in receiving a grant, what are the obligations? Are there milestones?  

Successful applicants will be required to submit progress reports at six month and 12-month intervals following receipt of the funding to the NSW Government as outlined in the funding agreement.

How are applications assessed? 

For each round, Investment NSW will lead the assessment of the 36 applications submitted by the 12 innovation district partners. Applications will be assessed and ranked against specific criteria. An assessment panel will be convened to assess applications submitted by the innovation district partners. For more information please refer to the Guidelines.

What can I use the funding for?

Funding may be used for business activities that enable the commercialisation of a product or service (which may still be in development) that directly addresses the impact of COVID-19 and that is intended to enter the market within 12 months.  Solutions designed to improve internal business processes that are unrelated to these activities is not considered a valid use of funds.

How can I learn more?  

By contacting your innovation district partner institution or by contacting Global NSW Concierge on 8222 4888 or at