This is the highest award given for use of NeSI Services, where the Research Project is funded by a New Zealand funding agency, and the Project Owner (PO) is a named investigator on the Research Project and is employed by a New Zealand institution. Successful project members have priority access to the HPC Compute and Analytics, and Computational Science Services.
Proposals must meet the following criteria for consideration for a Merit Allocation:
- Eligibility: The Applicant must be a named investigator on the Research Project grant (or contract) that is used to meet the Research Quality assessment.
- Research Quality: NeSI does not directly assess Research Quality, rather the PO provides evidence that the research underpinning the Proposal meets the requirements of the Access Policy. A primary test is the source of the funding for the research that the Proposal supports. Any of the following meet the Research Project “peer review” standard:
- It is a component of an MBIE funded research grant
- It is a component of an HRC funded research grant
- It is a component of an RSNZ funded research grant
- It is a component of an SSIF funded project
- It is a component of a National Science Challenge research plan
- It is a component of a Centres of Research Excellence research plan.
- In each case the PO must indicate the contract number (where applicable), the relevant objective (or programme) title that the Proposal addresses, and the Abstract for that objective (or programme).
- In the case where the research is being directly funded by an Institution for example as a result of some internal research evaluation process, the PO should indicate the authorising entity (e.g. Dean, CRI Science Award, etc.) and provide the title and abstract of the related internal research proposal that the Proposal addresses.
- The Research Project must support the Government’s Science Goals
- Evidence of Experience: The PO must describe the HPC experience of the research team (i.e. PO and Co-Investigators (CO-Is). This may be through the successful completion of a Proposal Development project.
- Platform Recommendation: Using informed fitness-for-purpose criteria, and availability of the software specified in the Proposal, the TQP will recommend the most suitable Platform(s) to support the HPC Allocation.
- Support required: If the research team does not have sufficient skills to make use of an Allocation (even if the research meets the other criteria) then, NeSI will consult with the PO and the Proposal may be placed on hold (or withdrawn) while a Proposal Development application is completed – possibly in conjunction with relevant training.
- Number of Allocations: The PO may have no more than two (2) simultaneous Merit Research Projects active.
If the PO is affiliated with a Collaborator or Subscribing Institution/Agency, and the Collaborator or Subscribing Institution’s NeSI allocation is not exhausted, the Applicant will be given an Institutional Allocation.