For over 50 years the Otago Medical Research Foundation has provided Otago-based researchers with the opportunity to conduct research into a very wide variety of medical and health-related subjects.

From small beginnings, it has grown into an organisation which is able to provide significant amounts of research funding to a large number of individuals and research groups working at the University of Otago.

The projects it has supported include many summer studentships, usually in excess of 20 each year, which enable our brightest research-minded undergraduates to work with academic staff within the University on discreet, 10-week projects during their summer “vacations”. At the other end of the support scale, the Research Foundation also provides grants of up to $40,000 for a period of one year to fund working expenses, staff salaries and small items of equipment. These funds provide much needed boosts to individual researchers and their departments, often enabling them to develop new and exciting lines of investigation.

Applications for all of these grants and awards are made to the Scientific Committee of the Otago Medical Research Foundation, at various times during the year.


The Foundation thanks the following individuals and organisations for helping us launch our latest research grants and scholarships:

Howard and Jane Fraser
Murray and Jennie Hughes
Dr Ailsa Goulding
Mr Ron Lewis
Dr Jenny McMahon
Mr Simon McMahon
Mr Andrew Swan
Mr Ian Thomson

ACE Shacklock Charitable Trust
Aotea Group Holdings
Armstrong Prestige
Grand Casino Charitable Trust
JN Lemon Charitable Trust
Kingston Sedgfield Charitable Trust

Lions Club of Dunedin South
OceanaGold New Zealand
Otago Community Trust
Otago Service Clubs Medical Trust
PwC Foundation
RD Petroleum
Aotearoa Gaming Trust

The OMRF makes a commitment to openness on the use of animals in health research

The Otago Medical Research Foundation is a signatory of The Openness Agreement on Animal Research and Teaching in New Zealand ANZCCART Openness Agreement.The Foundation recognises the important contribution that animal research has made to the advancement of modern medicine.  Some of the research projects funded by the Foundation may involve animals and we are committed to only supporting studies that maintain high standards of animal welfare and adhere to the ethical tenants of refinement, reduction and replacement.