Higher Education Research Data Collection


About the HERDC

The HERDC comprises of research income data submitted by universities to the department annually. Each year, the department updates the HERDC Specifications in consultation with universities and other relevant stakeholders. The HERDC specifications control the collection of higher education research data and are designed to ensure the Australian Government's research block grants are allocated in a fair and transparent way and to support the policy intent of the funding.

Data collected, along with data from the Higher Education Student Data Collection, is used to determine annual allocations to universities for the research block grants.

Final 2020 HERDC Specifications

The Final 2020 HERDC Specifications (for the collection of 2019 data) are now available.

For enquiries relating to the specifications of the collection, email: RBGrants@education.gov.au with "HERDC" in the subject line

AASB Guidance Paper

The department has released a technical paper, Effect of AASB changes on research income for the 2021 Higher Education Research Data Collection (HERDC) requirements. This paper provides advice and guidance to the sector in relation to the research income data that higher education providers (HEPs) report to the department annually.

This technical paper provides further detail on previously announced changes to the 2021 Higher Education Research Data Collection (HERDC) Specifications for the collection of 2020 data in response to changes to new accounting standards issued by the Australian Accounting Standards Board.

In particular, this paper aims to reduce ambiguity surrounding the effect of accounting standards changes on the HERDC reporting requirements.

The guidance material expands on earlier information provided by the department in the initial consultation period and in the 2019 HERDC Specifications; particularly regarding the key changes set out in Issue 1 (Timing and adoption approach of AASB 15 and AASB 9) and Issue 3 (Treatment of Scholarship Income).

If you have any questions regarding material in this guidance paper, please contact Research Block Grants at rbgrants@education.gov.au.

Historical Information - HERDC Specifications

To enquire about the availability of HERDC Specifications prior to 2010, please email the department at: RBGrants@education.gov.au with "HERDC" in the subject line.