June 2014 – by Judith Hall

The Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) is Canada’s federal health research granting agency, and supports more than 13,000 health researchers. The way that CIHR funds and administers operational grants is changing. Until recently, there have been 2 open operational project grants (OOPGs) each year, with deadlines in March and September. These grants provided operational funding to support defined projects. However, because of the short duration of these grants and the requirement to apply for new funding with each new project, leading to a constant cycle of grant-writing and review, CIHR has decided to administer these funds in a different way. Starting this summer, the pool of funds previously allocated to OOPGs is being divided roughly equally to support two new types of grants:

–  Project Scheme (55%) > this scheme will continue to provide funding to support specific projects.

–  Foundation Scheme (45%) > this scheme will support an entire research program

Here are 10 things you need to know about the new funding schemes:

Project Scheme

  1. The funding limit is $750,000 per year
  2. Grants can last up to 5 years
  3. There will be 2 competitions per year, but you may only submit the same project once each year
  4. If you are a Project Leader on a Foundation grant, you may not apply as a Project Leader on a Project grant (but you can be a collaborator)
  5. The first pilot Project grant will be available in 2015 (March 2015 will be a “transitional” OOGP)

Foundation Scheme

  1. The funding limit is $1.5 million/year
  2. Grants can last up to 7 years, or 5 years for new investigators
  3. You can’t hold more than one Foundation grant
  4. The first deadline for the pilot Foundation Scheme is June 23 (registration) and September 15, 2014 (stage 1 application): https://www.researchnet-recherchenet.ca:443/rnr16/vwOpprtntyDtls.do?prog=2011&tag=1
  5. There is a new review process for both Project and Foundation grants, which involves “colleges of reviewers”, and more remote review. More information can be found here:http://www.cihr-irsc.gc.ca/e/46805.html

For more information, you may review the information posted online at: http://www.cihr-irsc.gc.ca/e/46102.html or contact Roadmap-Plan.Strategique@cihr-irsc.gc.ca