The FRDC encourages R&D project applications that address one or more of the following People Development Program priorities:

Enhance industry leadership within, and across, all sectors

Of high priority is the need to develop leaders at all levels of industry and across all sectors, and improve communication between them. While the FRDC invests significant amounts in leadership programs and scholarships, research is also needed to identify and address impediments to individuals taking on representational & leadership roles at local and sector levels.

Build industry capacity to drive change to achieve goals

Of high priority is the need for capacity building projects that support industry to determine and access the knowledge, abilities, skills, and resources to address their goals and challenges; and in the process build capability and independence to meet future challenges and opportunities beyond the life of the project.

For the purpose of the FRDC people development program, capacity building projects may include research and development initiatives that aim to:

  • strengthen governance and representational capabilities of industry organisations
  • increase the capacity of industry organisations to represent the views of members
  • enhance industry’s ability to contribute to debate and policy development
  • build industry committee member competence and confidence
  • identify and build skills for business profitability and sustainability

Provide opportunities for knowledge transfer and R&D adoption

Of high priority is the need for projects that develop networks and mechanisms to make more effective use of scientific and community resources, knowledge and skills. Experience shows that it is valuable for individuals in the fishing industry to link with other stakeholders in the system. This often means developing relationships that extend across industries, supply chains, regions or jurisdictions. Networks may include groups of businesses, associations, organisations, researchers, training and education providers, agri-business, or fisheries management agencies. An emphasis will be on adoption of knowledge and innovative practices, and engagement with industry.

Build workforce capability

Of high priority is the need to undertake research and development that aims to understand the fishing / seafood industry’s workforce needs and build workforce capability. Identified needs include:

  • Undertake an evaluation of the economic impact of implementing wage-based employment and Australian Apprenticeships in the wild catch sector
  • Identify and address reasons for poor uptake of training and education in the fishing industry
  • Undertake research to understand and profile the workforce capability needs of the fishing industry sectors
  • Undertake research to identify the training needs and preferred delivery to improve industry profitability and sustainability

National People Development opportunities

All sectors of Australian fishing and aquaculture need strong, effective, connected leadership to respond well to the challenges and opportunities before them.

The FRDC invests in leadership development at the national level through:

Sectoral People Development opportunities

At the sector and regional level, people development needs can be identified by our Industry Partnership Agreements (IPAs), Research Advisory Committees (RACs), and Subprograms, and actioned through their sector and jurisdictional strategic plans. Should you identify a people development opportunity, for yourself or someone in your sector that could be supported by FRDC funding, you are encouraged to speak to the relevant IPA, RAC or Subprogram contact.

For more information on how to apply for people development opportunities, contact

Project Number
Bursaries to fund three South Australian Recreational Fishing community members to attend the National Recreational Fishing Conference 2019
Presentation at World Congress of Aquaculture and Fisheries (Xiamen, China) on Biosecurity and Aquatic Animal Health
Attendance at the Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations, Tenure and User Rights Conference in Yeosu, Korea 10 to 14 September 2018
Attendance to the 2019 New Zealand Seafood Conference and the Trans-Tasman Rock Lobster Conference, Queenstown, NZ
Strategic management of the Australian Prawn Farmers Association RD&E portfolio
2019 Bi-Annual Seafood Industry Awards
Developing primary school teacher kits for use by the Professional Fishers Association (NSW)
Travel bursary: Symposium on Responsible Fishing Technology for Healthy Ecosystems and Clean Environment
Women in Seafood Australasia - Understanding, supporting and promoting effective participation by women within the Australian seafood industry
2019 review of the FRDC investment in People Development