FoR and SEO Codes

The Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) is a set of three related classifications developed to measure and analyse research and development (R&D) activity in Australia and New Zealand. The three classifications consist of:

  • Type of Activity (ToA)
  • Fields of Research (FoR) codes
  • Socio-Economic Objectives (SEO) codes

Following an extensive review, the ANZSRC classifications were updated in 2020. The changes most relevant to research grants include updated FoR and SEO codes.

Field of Research (FoR) codes

FoR codes are part of The Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) system, which was designed to measure and analyse research and development statistics in Australia and New Zealand.

FoR codes categorise research activity according to the field in which research is undertaken and based on the processes and techniques used in the research and development. They are organised into a hierarchical structure:

  1. Division (2-digit)
  2. Group (4-digit)
  3. Field (6-digit).

A new set of FoR codes was released in 2020, following an extensive review across Australia and New Zealand.

Transitioning to the new codes

  • Our university is transitioning to the 2020 FoR codes, which requires updating various research information systems such as RIMS, NURO, researcher web profiles, etc.
  • Funding bodies are also transitioning, with most of the major grant schemes in Australia looking to adopt the new codes by the end of 2021.

Accessing the New Codes

  • An easy-to-use listing of the 2020 FoR codes can be found on the NZ Stats website.
  • You can also see how the 2020 FoR codes correspond to the 2008 version by:
    • visiting the Australian Bureau of Statistics web page about the 2020 classifications
    • going to the ‘Data Downloads’ section of the page
    • downloading the excel spreadsheet titled ‘ANZSRC 2020 correspondence to ANZSRC 2008’.
  • Unless otherwise advised by our Research Grants team or a specific funding body, please start using the 2020 FoR codes for your grant activity from June 2021.
  • When entering FoR codes into the Grant Establishment Form (DOC), ensure you select a 6‑digit number which does not end in "0".

Updating your FoR codes in the university’s research information systems

If you need advice on how to update your FoR codes in University of Newcastle research information systems, visit the Research Wrap Up SharePoint site for staff and search ‘FoR Codes’ in the search bar.


Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) codes

SEO classification allows R&D activity in Australia and New Zealand to be categorised according to the intended purpose or outcome of the research, rather than the processes or techniques used in order to achieve this objective.

The purpose categories include:

  • industries
  • processes
  • products
  • health
  • education
  • other social and environmental aspects that R&D activity aims to improve.

Accessing the New Codes

  • For the current SEO codes, visit the ‘Data Downloads’ section Australian Bureau of Statistics web page.
  • You can also see how the 2020 SEO codes correspond to the 2008 version by:
    • visiting the Australian Bureau of Statistics web page about the 2020 classifications
    • going to the ‘Data Downloads’ section of the page
    • downloading the excel spreadsheet titled ‘ANZSRC 2020 correspondence to ANZSRC 2008’.

Unless otherwise advised by our Research Grants team or a specific funding body, please start using the 2020 SEO codes for your grant activity from June 2021.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.