Strong demand for student R&D grants

  • Steven Joyce
Science and Innovation

More than 200 future Kiwi innovators and 126 hi-tech companies will be able to benefit from research and development student grants announced today by Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce.

Up to $1.5 million will be made available through Callaghan Innovation to enable 126 businesses to employ up to 233 students to gain important work experience in New Zealand’s fast-growing hi-tech sector over the 2015/16 summer break.

“R&D Student Experience Grants allow students with science, technology, engineering, design, or business qualifications to advance their skills and understanding of commercial R&D within New Zealand companies,” Mr Joyce says.

“The Government is investing in these grants to help keen, qualified Kiwis obtain work experience in New Zealand’s fast-growing hi-tech sector. The companies also gain by employing smart, ambitious young people to help advance their R&D projects.”

Some of the projects to be funded this year include:

  • Development of harvesting handling systems for fruit
  • Novel organic solvent technologies for agricultural chemicals
  • Software development for virtual reality content production
  • Software development to improve the accuracy of GPS fleet tracking
  • Improving the nutritional benefits in dairy products for lactose-intolerant consumers

Changes are currently being made to a related Grant Scheme that supports businesses to hire a new graduate on a permanent basis, Mr Joyce says.

“Callaghan is developing a process that better matches businesses with graduates who have completed their study. An improved, on-demand R&D Career Grant will be available later this year.”

More information on the eligibility criteria for students and businesses, timelines and how to apply for Student Grants can be found at


The R&D Student Experience grant provides businesses undertaking R&D in New Zealand with up to $6400 for 400 hours’ work for a qualifying student.

Qualifying businesses must have an ongoing R&D programme, dedicated R&D staff, a head office in New Zealand, and be New Zealand incorporated or have a New Zealand-based director.

Qualifying students must have completed their penultimate or final year of undergraduate or graduate study in science, technology, engineering, design or business at a New Zealand university or tertiary institute.

Regional breakdown:

Strong demand for student R&D grants