Budget development and resources

The development of a comprehensive research budget that reflects the true cost of the research is the first crucial step when applying for external research funding. The following resources and information support budget development.

  • Key contacts

    The Grant Development Team provides advice on the interpretation of funding rules and budget requests to ensure what is being requested is appropriate. The Teamalso help with:

    • possible access to exemplar applications
    • completing and approving the Budget Approval Form
    • advice regarding internal approval processes for accessing leverage funding from the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research Development and Industry).

    Discipline Experts

    Discipline Experts are part of your network of colleagues who have previous experience in creating budgets and applications directed at specific funding organisations or for a specific purpose.

    Where possible researchers are encouraged to seek the input of a discipline expert or previously successful applicant to the same funding body who will be a good resource to review your application and provide valuable support.

  • Budget Approval Form

    The Budget Approval Form (referred to as the BAF) is designed to help you develop your budget at the application phase. The BAF can help you:

    • cost your project into separate funding years
    • incorporate income and expenditure items from several internal and external sources either as a cash or in-kind investment to the project
    • calculating budget expenditure, such as:
      • academic and professional salary expenses
      • travel expenses
      • computer shop expenses
      • catering
      • printing
      • current scholarship rates

    For all funded projects, researchers need to complete the BAF. This should match the project budget approved under the research agreement.

    The BAF also facilitates the creation of the project budget in the University finance system. For assistance in completing the BAF researchers can contact the Grant Development Team at research-preaward@csu.edu.au.


  • Employment Cost Calculator

    The Employment Cost Calculator is an interactive excel spreadsheet.

    The staff costing builder allows the user to add positions of an area/unit (except of Executive positions) into a sheet, which then calculates the staffing costs including salary rates, leave loading, workers compensation and payroll tax where applicable to an individual appointment. It can also be used to simply cost a single position.

  • University leverage support

    University leverage is used to support research costs or demonstrate in-kind commitment to a project above what you are requesting from the funding organisation. Requests for leverage support are considered on an individual project basis and should be deemed necessary budget requests that enable the conduct of the research. Eligible leverage costs are outlined in the Guidelines.

    TIMING - Requests for leverage are to be submitted in alignment with the Research Project Request (RPR) form. The leverage request requires a minimum 3-week turnaround.

    How to request university leverage support

    STEP 1 - Review the Leverage Support Guidelines

    Leverage Support Guidelines

    STEP 2 - Determine which area aligns with the project.

    Applications for cash leverage are to be submitted to the area that aligns with the project FoR codes.

    Refer to the table of University Priority FoR Codes to determine area of alignment.

    STEP 3 - Submit your completed Leverage Support Request Form.

    Leverage Support Request Form

    A completed BAF, even in the draft stage, must accompany the Leverage Support Request Form.

    Submit the completed form with BAF and any relevant documents via email with the Subject line convention – ‘Leverage | <Your Name>’

    STEP 4 -  If approved, upload leverage approval to the RPR Form

    If you have any difficulties with the RPR Form please contact the Grant Development Team at research-preaward@csu.edu.au.

  • Cost Recovery (Indirect)

    As of the 1 May 2023 the University applies a Cost Recovery (Indirect) procedure  to ensure sufficient funding is available to enable the University to continue to provide a high quality research environment.

    For more information, please refer to the Cost Recovery (Indirect) - Division of Finance