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Exceptional Opportunities Fund
While most infrastructure projects require significant time to develop from conceptualization to implementation, there are rare instances where an exceptional research opportunity could be missed if it had to follow regular national competition processes. The CFI created the Exceptional Opportunities Fund to assist institutions and their partners in seizing such unique opportunities.
To qualify for funding, a project must take advantage of an exceptional and time-sensitive opportunity and partnership — such as the potential loss of research funding from international sources or the private sector — that justifies it being considered outside the CFI’s regular pan-Canadian competitive review process. The project must include the timely coordination and financial support of other relevant agencies for the funding of research, infrastructure and operations. Infrastructure must also be an indispensable element of the project. Projects that have already been reviewed, in whole or in part, by the CFI are not eligible.
Since the CFI expects to consider very few projects under this fund, institutions should first approach the CFI to discuss eligibility. The application process has two steps:
- The institution submits a notice of intent that addresses the exceptional opportunity, the significance of the partnership and the urgency for funding outside the CFI’s normal processes. A multidisciplinary committee will review the notice of intent and recommend whether the CFI Board should invite a proposal.
- The institution submits a proposal upon invitation. The review process will be tailored to the nature and complexity of the proposal.
The CFI will fund a maximum of 40 percent of the total eligible costs of the infrastructure project. The remainder must be provided by the institution(s) and/or eligible funding partners.