Media Releases

Strategic Science Investment Fund supports new $35m genomics investment

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 - 12:19
Science and Innovation

Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce has today opened applications for the establishment of a new genomics research platform with funding of up to $5 million per year for seven years.

“Genomics is an increasingly important component of both basic and targeted research, and underpins much current activity across the life sciences including the primary, health and environmental sectors,” Mr Joyce says.

“The Government is reshaping its current genomics investment to a new cross-institutional research centre that will produce high quality research capability for the whole science sector.”

The new investment is expected to grow excellent genomics research capabilities in New Zealand by building on and growing linkages to other world-leading genomics research centres around the world, maintaining effective relationships between New Zealand’s genomics scientists and stakeholders, and by generating world-leading excellent research on genomics.

Funding will come directly from the Strategic Science Investment Fund (SSIF) announced as part of the Budget 2016 Innovative New Zealand package.

The Government invested $410.5 million over four years in science and innovation through the Innovative New Zealand package, and the SSIF – worth nearly $250 million per year – was created at the same time. This fund will support longer-term programmes of mission-led science, critical to the future of New Zealand’s economy, environment and wellbeing.

“The Government’s support for genomics will ensure that New Zealand will continue to build a strong and respected position in the international genomic research sector,” says Mr Joyce.

“This investment will have broader benefits for the New Zealand public, including improved economic, health, social and environmental outcomes. New Zealand will be in a better position to retain, attract and develop top genomics researchers, and ensure the country’s contributions to genomics research are competitive internationally.”

The Government’s investment intentions for genomics funding are outlined in the SSIF 2016 Investment Plan that the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) has developed with input from the science sector.

“The SSIF Investment Plan aligns to the vision in the National Statement of Science Investment and supports long-term, sustainable and integrated initiatives across the science system,” says Mr Joyce.

“As one of the first initiatives to be developed from the SSIF, I look forward to seeing strong proposals that respond to future opportunities in genomics for New Zealand scientists and organisations.”

The SSIF Investment Plan 2017-2024 is available here.

Read more about the genomics fund here.