Government of Canada launches new research fund to push beyond the frontiers of Canadian science
First competition stream of new fund to help emerging researchers think big
December 6, 2018, Ottawa, Ontario — Tri-agency Institutional Programs Secretariat
When Canada’s research community is given new opportunities to work together, step outside routine and think big, it rises to the challenge. This means Canadians benefit from bold, new discoveries that grow our economy, make us healthier, and help our environment and communities thrive.
That’s why today, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport, announced new funding to transform the way government supports research. This includes an investment of $275 million over the next five years, and $65 million per year ongoing, to support research that is international, interdisciplinary, fast-breaking and high-risk.
The new funding stems from Budget 2018, which included an historic investment of nearly $4 billion for research, the largest single investment in research in Canada’s history.
The New Frontiers in Research Fund represents a fundamental shift in how Canada invests in research and supports collaboration among non-traditional partners. For example, funded projects could see biomedical engineers work alongside social scientists to develop groundbreaking solutions for Canadian patients.
As part of today’s announcement, Minister Duncan launched the first stream under the new fund, which is open to emerging, early career researchers focused on shaping Canada’s future. The stream seeks to inspire researchers to be bold and bring different disciplines together.
The first stream of grant recipients will be announced in the spring following a merit review process. Future streams will be open to all Canadian researchers and focus on larger-scale, transformational research, as well as international collaborations.
“Today’s announcement is about more than funding: it is about encouraging researchers to bring diverse expertise, ideas and perspectives together to create bold, new approaches to research in Canada. We heard the research community loud and clear when it asked our government to strengthen support to shape Canada’s research ecosystem for the future.”
–Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport
“Our Government proudly supports science and innovation, and the New Frontiers in Research Fund is the latest expression of this commitment to giving Canadian scientists the tools and resources they need to succeed. This investment will position scientists to push the envelope on the research they conduct, support the next generation of Canada’s research scientists, and give a boost to international partnerships.”
-Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health
“The CRCC’s mission is to reinvigorate Canada’s support for science and to position Canada as a global leader in research excellence. Designing this new Fund was a collaborative effort coordinated by our committee with the research community. The projects funded over the next five years and beyond will transform the research enterprise and help researchers develop new knowledge, insights, technologies and ideas that will benefit Canadians.”
– Ted Hewitt, President, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and Chair, Canada Research Coordinating Committee
The Fund was designed by the Canada Research Coordinating Committee following a comprehensive national consultation that engaged 1,500 researchers, administrators, students and others from across the country.
Budget 2018 announced funding for the granting councils to improve equity, diversity and inclusion of underrepresented groups in research. Institutions applying to the New Frontiers in Research Fund will be required to demonstrate how they will support early-career researchers and support equity, diversity and inclusion.
The CRCC was created to improve the coordination efforts of Canada’s granting agencies—the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research—as well as the Canada Foundation for Innovation.