Innovation Fund

Through our 2017 Innovation Fund competition, we will support promising and innovative research or technology development in areas where Canada currently is, or has the potential to be, competitive on the global stage. We will do so by assisting research institutions to capitalize on their achievements and improve their standing in the global research enterprise.

Striving for global leadership and reaping the benefits

We are challenging institutions to propose transformative infrastructure projects that will underpin cutting-edge, globally competitive research. Institutions should continue to be guided by their strategic research plans and establish priorities that build on their distinct advantages. We will support initiatives that allow institutions and their researchers to build on established capabilities to accelerate current research and technology development or to enhance emerging strategic priority areas.

The objectives of the 2017 Innovation Fund are to enable institutions and their best researchers to:
  • Strive for global leadership by conducting world-class research or technology development activities in areas of strategic institutional priority;
  • Enhance research capacity by forging productive partnerships within and among institutions, sectors and disciplines for the effective and sustainable use of the research infrastructure and facilities;
  • Generate social, health, environmental and/or economic benefits for Canadians, including better training and improved skills for highly qualified personnel, through appropriate pathways.

Up to $425 million in infrastructure costs are available through this competition. We will fund up to 40 percent of a project’s eligible infrastructure costs. We contribute to the operating and maintenance costs of the funded infrastructure through our Infrastructure Operating Fund.

There is an upper limit on the total value of funding that each eligible institution may request, calculated at 2.75 times the available budget of $425 million. Institutions are encouraged to use their envelopes to foster and develop multi-institutional projects. Institutions should manage their envelope strategically and be in a position to support participation in, and active contribution to, collaborative opportunities.

Important dates

Dates

Activities

June 23, 2016

Deadline for the submission of notices of intent

October 11, 2016

Deadline for the submission of proposals

November 2016 to February 2017

Expert Committee meetings

April 2017

Multidisciplinary Assessment Committee meetings

May 2017

Special Multidisciplinary Assessment Committee meeting

June 2017

CFI Board decisions

Application process

Institutions must use the CFI Awards Management System (CAMS) to prepare and submit Notices of Intent and the proposals.

The deadline for the submission of Notices of Intent is June 23, 2016. Each institution must submit by email a list of all Notices of Intent in which it participates as administrator or collaborator and a cover letter signed by the President/CEO or designate. A list of the Notices of Intent received will be published on our website.

The deadline to submit proposals is October 11, 2016. Each institution must submit by email a list of all the proposals in which it participates as administrator or collaborator and a cover letter signed by the President/CEO or designate.

Review process

Proposals will be subject to a three-stage review process:

1. Expert Committees

The first stage of review involves the assessment of proposals by Expert Committees who review small groups of related proposals. Expert Committees assess the strengths and weaknesses of the proposals in relation to the six assessment criteria:

  • Institutional capacity and track record
  • Research or technology development
  • Team
  • Infrastructure
  • Sustainability
  • Benefits to Canadians

2. Multidisciplinary Assessment Committees

The second stage of review involves the assessment of proposals by Multidisciplinary Assessment Committees (MACs). The MACs will review proposals grouped with others of similar size and/or complexity, on the basis of the three competition objectives:

  • Objective 1: Strive for global leadership by conducting world-class research or technology development activities in areas of institutional strategic priority.
  • Objective 2: Enhance research capacity by forging productive partnerships within and among institutions, sectors and disciplines for the effective and sustainable use of the research infrastructure and facilities.
  • Objective 3: Generate social, health, environmental and/or economic benefits for Canadians, including better training and improved skills for highly qualified personnel, through appropriate pathways.

3. Special Multidisciplinary Assessment Committee

The third stage of review involves a review and integration of the MAC assessments by a Special Multidisciplinary Assessment Committee (S-MAC). The S-MAC is charged with ensuring consistency among the MACs, and in instances where MAC recommendations exceed the available resources, the S-MAC recommends to the CFI Board of Directors the proposals that most effectively support the CFI’s mandate, meet the objectives of the competition and represent the most effective portfolio of investments for Canada.

Collaboration with provinces

To coordinate the review processes and avoid duplication of review efforts, we will coordinate with the relevant provincial and territorial funding authorities throughout the review process. We encourage institutions to work with relevant provincial and territorial funding authorities as key partners at an early stage in the planning and development of proposals.

Decision process

All funding decisions will be made by our Board of Directors at its June 2017 meeting. Following this meeting, the applicant institutions will receive the review materials for their proposals.

Public announcement

We will make national funding announcements related to the funding we provide. The results of the competition will remain confidential until after the national funding announcement.

Documents & resources

Whether you’re applying for funding, or participating in the review process for this competition, the resources and documents you’ll need are consolidated below for easy reference. If you are a reviewer, either on an Expert Committee or a Multidisciplinary Assessment Committee, the review materials are all provided on our award management system (CAMS).

2017 Innovation Fund: Call for Proposals

Application process

2017 Innovation Fund: Guidelines for completing Notices of Intent and proposals

Envelope calculation tool for the 2017 Innovation Fund competition

List of Notices of Intent received to the 2017 Innovation Fund competition

Proposal submission letter – additional information

Review process

2017 Innovation Fund: Guidelines for Expert Committees

2017 Innovation Fund: Guidelines for Multidisciplinary Assessment Committees