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Partnering for impact

We partner with other funders, government agencies and charities to deliver targeted pieces of health research for New Zealand.

HRC's Partnership Programme

HRC collaborating

The HRC forms partnerships with funders and stakeholders to commission mission-led health research through Requests for Proposals (RFPs).

The Partnership Programme aims to deliver research that effectively meets the knowledge and evidence needs of next users or end-users, such as policy-makers, planners, communities and those involved in health-care delivery.

Partnerships are formed with the following strategic intent:

  • Fund excellent research and innovation that makes a difference to the health and wellbeing of New Zealanders
  • Meet the evidence needs of government and our partners
  • Strengthen the links between evidence, policy and practice
  • Align and contribute to our partners’ success.

RFPs are released by the HRC throughout the year. As with all our health research investment, the HRC provides its expertise and robust assessment processes, to ensure the highest-quality evidence is funded and delivered. All partnership funding opportunities offered by the HRC can be found here in HRC Gateway.

Our current New Zealand funding partners

  • ACC
  • Breast Cancer Cure
  • Breast Cancer Foundation NZ
  • CatWalk - Spinal Cord Injury Research Trust
  • Healthier Lives National Science Challenge
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ministry of Social Development
  • Precision Driven Health
  • WorkSafe NZ

Our international partnerships

The HRC partners with organisations internationally so that New Zealand researchers have the opportunity to develop and strengthen international relationships and access opportunities, expertise and infrastructure that is not available here. This also ensures that our funding supports New Zealanders to influence global research efforts and make international and national contributions. Our current international partnerships include:

  • Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases (GACD): This Alliance targets lifestyle-related or chronic problems such as heart disease, diabetes, cancers, lung diseases and mental health. New Zealand, represented by the HRC, is one of 14 countries that’s part of the GACD. Together, GACD members collectively manage over 80% of all public health research funding worldwide.
  • Tripartite Collaboration for Improving Indigenous Health: This partnership between the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (NHMRC), the HRC, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) is focused on improving the health and wellness of indigenous peoples within the three countries.
  • NZ-China Strategic Research Alliance: Established through the Catalyst Crown Fund created by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, this fund enables the creation and sharing of knowledge, insights, networks and commercial partnerships between NZ and China.
  • E-Asia Joint Research Programme: This multi-national, multi-organisation funding initiative is designed to support joint research projects among the ASEAN +8 countries. Funding in scientific or technological fields is prioritised to support innovation and economic development in the region, as well as solutions to environmental and societal challenges.
  • National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC): A Memorandum of Understanding between the HRC and NSFC has facilitated new scientific partnerships between the two countries and aims to deliver breakthroughs and connectivity in biomedical research.

How to work with us

  • Are you a New Zealand Government agency looking for specific evidence or innovations to advance Government priorities and health/social sector policies and practices?
  • Are you a national or international health research funder or charity looking to establish a strategic research partnership in a key area of need?

If so, then you are welcome to discuss our Partnership Programme with our Strategic Relationships Manager: Zoe McKechnie or +64 9 303 5210.


Delivering our partnership initiatives
Our Partnership Research Investment Managers work closely with funding partners and research teams and lead the delivery of partnership initiatives and RFPs. 


If you have any questions about current initiatives, you can contact the relevant Research Investment Manager: 

Fiona Kenning, Research Investment Manager, International 

Scott Aitken, Research Investment Manager, Research Partnerships

Lea Narciso, Research Investment Manager, Research Partnerships

Potesia Cocker, Administrator, Research Partnerships.


Researchers and research providers
Are you a researcher or research provider wanting to actively work with government agencies, charities and global networks to ensure New Zealand health research makes a tangible difference?


If so, we encourage you to keep an eye on our Partnership Programme funding opportunities via our e-newsletter, HRC Update. In addition, all current Partnership Programme RFPs and International funding opportunities offered by the HRC can be found in Gateway