Rob Pierce Grant in Aid

This Grant commemorates Professor Rob Pierce who was tragically killed whilst defending his home in St Andrews, Victoria during the Black Saturday bushfire in February 2009. Rob was one of a handful of clinicians in Australia who recognised the importance of the burgeoning field of sleep medicine at an early stage. He developed clinical and investigative services and fostered research and training in sleep medicine at Heidelberg in Victoria, where he became the Director of Respiratory and Sleep Medicine at Austin Health with a Professorial appointment at the University of Melbourne.

Rob established the Institute for Breathing and Sleep, was a founding member of the Australasian Sleep Trials Network, and collaborated nationally and internationally on numerous projects in the field. Rob was always generous with his time and encouraged and supported new investigators to pursue their ideas and passions.

The purpose of this annual Grant in Aid, which was first awarded in 2009, is to facilitate a project in the field of sleep research for a new investigator who is a member of ASA or ANZSSA. Applicants should be training in sleep research or a clinical sleep discipline and be less than five years post doctorate (PhD or equivalent). The grant could be used as seed funding for a project, to collect pilot data or for equipment. It should not be used for travel. The work must be undertaken in Australia or New Zealand. The successful applicant will provide a report at the completion of research project for which this grant was used for inclusion in the newsletter of the ASA. The award cannot be made to an individual more than once. The maximum amount awarded for each project is AUD10,000.

Successful applicants are encouraged to present any research resulting from the Rob Pierce Grant in Aid at the Annual Meeting for the ASA and ANZSSA. Acknowledgement of support on any presentations or publications arising from the Rob Pierce Grant in Aid is required.

Applicants should submit the following details below, for consideration by the ASA Research Committee:

  1. Brief CV of applicant including contact details, publications and presentations, ASA or ANZSSA membership number and year of initial membership.
  2. Proof of early career status. The Certification by Supervisor Form (below) must be completed by your supervisor/Head of Department and submitted with your application. You must:

(i) be actively training in the fields of sleep health or sleep science and/or undertaking sleep related research and/or involved in a clinical sleep discipline;
(ii) not have received competitive research funding of greater than $50,000 as a chief investigator (CIA) or equivalent from any source apart from local institutional funding (holding a competitive fellowship that supports the applicant’s salary is allowable).
(iii) not be more than five years since being awarded post doctorate degree, except in extenuating circumstances, as per NHMRC Guidelines.

  1. Brief description (maximum 2000 words) of the project for which the funds will be used including (where applicable): background; aims and hypotheses and research plan.
  2. Brief budget with justification including description of how the funds will be used. Funds for this Grant in Aide should go directly to support the recipient’s research and be exempt from any Institutional Levy.

Applications will be judged according to the following criteria:
1) scientific merit,
2) significance, and
3) track record. Length of ASA /ASTA membership may also be taken into consideration.

Only full applications with all requested materials submitted prior to the closing date will be considered. All applications should be submitted by 5pm, 30 April.

Submit Application

After the selection process, recommendations for the grant are submitted to the ASA Board of Directors for approval. The award will generally be announced and awarded at the Annual Scientific Meeting.


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