The Linnean Society of NSW



The Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences

Grants from the Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences were made for the first time in 1998.

A PDF of the information on this page plus details of previous awards can be downloaded HERE.

Awards from the Fund are governed by the following rules:

1. The Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences has been established to provide financial assistance to support short term original research projects in all aspects of geology, including (but not necessarily restricted to) the fields of regional geology, tectonics, structural geology, stratigraphy, sedimentology, geomorphology, palaeontology, biostratigraphy, igneous and metamorphic petrology, geochemistry, mineralogy, economic geology and meteoritics.

2. Applications will be accepted from postgraduate students at recognised Australian Universities who are undertaking full-time or part-time higher degree studies with a geological emphasis. Students enrolled in Honours degree courses at recognised Australian Universities, whether full- or part-time, may also be considered for an award. Applications are also encouraged from amateur or professional geologists, whether in employment as such or not, who can demonstrate a level of achievement in original research in Earth Sciences, for example through a record of publications on the subject.

3. Projects proposed for support do not have to be restricted to Australian locations or specimens, but, given the Society's interests in the natural history of Australia, they must demonstrate a strong Australian context.

4. In awarding grants, the Council of the Society will assess:

  • the quality of the project
  • the applicant's ability to carry it out
  • a realistic costing and timetable
  • the likelihood that the successful completion of the research will lead to publication.
5. Applicants need not be members of the Society, although all other things being equal, members will be given preference.

6. The total amount of Fund money available for awards in any year will depend on interest income received by the Fund over the preceding year. Not more than 50% of this income will be distributed as grants; the remainder will be capitalised to increase the Fund. Individual grants will not normally exceed the level of equivalent awards from the Joyce W. Vickery Scientific Research Fund (currently $2000 for members and $1200 for non-members, subject to Council review). Money awarded must be used for research purposes, which may include the purchase of equipment, laboratory, photographic or other consumables, and fieldwork or travel within Australasia. Requests for subsistence, travel to conferences, or thesis preparation expenses, will not be supported.

7. The Council will take into account other sources of research funds currently held or applied for by the applicant. While financial support from other sources will not ordinarily exclude award of a grant from the Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences, a grant from this Fund cannot be held concurrently with one from the Joyce W. Vickery Scientific Research Fund.

8. Applications must be made on the form specific to the Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences available from this website, obtainable from the Secretary of the Society by telephoning 0490 542 524, by email at, or by writing to the address below. The form must also include references and a list of the applicant’s relevant publications over the previous five years.

9. Successful applicants are required to make a written report to the Society no later than 12 months from receipt of their grant, detailing progress of the project, briefly outlining research results, and justifying expenditure of the award money. Any publication arising from studies supported by the Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences must acknowledge that support. Type material, representative sample collections, relevant analytical data, and figured or mentioned thin sections, must be lodged in a state or national museum or university collection.

10. Intending applicants are strongly urged to seek assistance from their supervisor or an appropriate colleague with experince in writing research proposals, and to have their application reviewed before submission.

11. The Council's decision in regard to the award or non-award of grants from the Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund for Earth Sciences is final, and no correspondence will be entered into.

12. Deadline: The deadline for applications will be 1st March each year; however, in exceptional circumstances, applications for genuine emergency support may be considered at any time. However, considerations for such applications are entirely at Council discretion and will only be awarded if funds are available.

13. Applicants should email their signed applications to

Click here to download the Mayne Application Form

However, considerations for such applications are entirely at Council discretion.

Appeal For Donations

The Council of the Linnean Society of NSW is keen to increase this form of direct financial support to the scientific community - to professionals, students and amateur researchers alike. The only way it can do this is by increasing the capital of the BETTY MAYNE SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH FUND for Earth Sciences, thus augmenting the interest earned, and disbursed for support of scientific research.

The Linnean Society seeks donations from individuals, institutions or organisations sympathetic to the purposes for which the fund is currently being used. All such donations, which are tax-deductible, will be gratefully received by the Linnean Society of New South Wales and used to support original scientific research in Australasia. Give yourself a tax break and help a struggling research student, as most of the funds go to students. Please make cheques payable to the "Linnean Society of NSW". 
Click here to download a donation form.


Betty Florence Mayne (1930-1991)

Betty Mayne was born in Young, NSW, on 13 April 1930. She was educated at the Presbyterian Ladies College, Pymble, prior to joining the nursing profession in which she served for some years.

In 1982, Betty retired from nursing and undertook extensive overseas travel. On returning to Sydney she became interested in the study of earth science and soon became a very keen and knowledgeable amateur mineralogist. She joined what was then the Friends of the Geological and Mining Museum (FOGAMM) Inc, serving as Vice President and in other executive positions. Betty was also a member of the Mineralogical Society of NSW Inc; she became its President in 1990, and organised the very successful Annual Seminar for the Mineralogical Societies from the rest of Australia.

Betty was a keen collector of minerals from worldwide locations, as well as gathering fossils and petrological specimens from around Australia. She was actively adding to her extensive collection up until her untimely death in July 1991.

Betty's will stipulated that her collection was to be sold at auction, with the proceeds to be evenly divided between the 2 societies so closely associated with her earth science interests. The Mineralogical Society of NSW has used its share of these funds to purchase mineral specimens for the Australian Museum collections.

The Friends of the Geological and Mining Museum, more recently The Earth Exchange Museum Society (TEEMS), also purchased specimens for the collection of the latter museum. However, with closure of the Earth Exchange in September 1995, TEEMS invested its share of the Betty Mayne bequest pending winding up of the society. After consideration of various options, the TEEMS council decided that donation of the accumulated capital to the Linnean Society of NSW to establish "The Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund", the purpose of which is to assist students of the earth sciences, would be a fitting memorial to perpetuate the memory of their fellow geologist.

The Betty Mayne Scientific Research Fund commenced with a donation of $36,216.05 from TEEMS, which the Linnean Society of NSW has supplemented with an additional $35, 000 from reorganisation of its own funds. These amounts have been invested, with the intention of 50% of interest earned to be disbursed in the form of research grants to be first awarded in 1998.

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