Frequently asked questions about partnership funding opportunities

What is the difference between the partnership funding opportunities?

The suite of partnership funding opportunities includes:

  • Partnership Engage Grants are the smallest grants, with a value of up to $25,000 over one year. The grants are for short-term, small-scale research partnerships between an academic researcher and one non-academic partner organization. The stakeholder-driven partnerships supported through this type of grant are meant to respond to immediate needs and time constraints facing organizations in non-academic sectors.
  • Partnership Development Grants are slightly larger grants with a longer duration, up to $200,000 and three years. There is no limitation for the number of partner organizations involved. Partnership Development Grants support formal partnerships to develop and test new approaches to research and related activities with new or existing partners.
  • Partnership Grants are the largest grants and provide funds between $500,000 and $2.5 million over four to seven years. The grants are awarded to institutions, to support formal partnerships that advance research and/or knowledge mobilization activities. Partnership Grants involve a two-stage application process. Applicants successful in the Stage 1 competition are invited to submit a full application at Stage 2.
Must you have already received a Partnership Engage Grant to be eligible to apply for a Partnership Development Grant or a Partnership Grant?

No. These are each separate funding opportunities. Although some partnerships start out with a Partnership Engage Grant or Partnership Development Grant that leads to a Partnership Grants application, this is not a requirement.

What is the difference between a team of researchers and a formal partnership?

While both involve groups who have come to an agreement to work together on a project, the main difference lies in the nature of the agreement. A team of researchers consists of an individual applicant involved in an informal arrangement with other individual researchers, while a formal partnership consists of an applicant involved in a formal arrangement with institutional partner organizations.

What size partnership should I have?

Partnership Engage Grants may involve only one Canadian or international organization from the public, private or not-for-profit sector as a partner organization. There is no limit on the number of partner organizations that can be involved in Partnership Development Grants and Partnership Grants. A range of small and very large partnerships are funded involving partner organizations and institutions within and beyond academia. The quality and genuineness of the formal partnership is part of the evaluation criteria that reviewers use to assess applications to the Partnership Development Grants and Partnership Grants funding opportunities.

Are matching funds required to apply?

There is no minimum contribution required from partner organizations in Partnership Engage Grants or Partnership Development Grants, but all partner organizations support the activities of the partnership through cash and/or in-kind contributions.

Partnership Grants are expected to secure, over and above the budget requested from SSHRC, a minimum of 35 per cent in additional cash and/or in-kind contributions from sources other than SSHRC during the life of the grant (four to seven years). For more information, see the Partnership Grants—Stage 1 funding opportunity description and SSHRC’s Guidelines for Cash and In-Kind Contributions.

Can international partners get involved in a partnership funding opportunity?

International organizations from the academic, public, private and not-for-profit sectors are eligible as partner organizations. Individuals from international postsecondary institutions are eligible as co-applicants or collaborators, and individuals from international public, private and not-for-profit sector organizations are eligible as collaborators.

Can partners from the private, public and not-for-profit sectors participate in partnership funding opportunities?

International and Canadian organizations from the academic, public, private and not-for-profit sectors are eligible as partner organizations. Individuals from the Canadian not-for-profit sector and municipal and provincial government are eligible as co-applicants or collaborators. Individuals from the private sector and federal government are eligible as collaborators.

Are interdisciplinary partnerships that involve natural sciences, engineering or health eligible for funding?

While SSHRC welcomes proposals for interdisciplinary research partnerships involving natural sciences, engineering and/or health partner organizations, proposed partnerships of this nature must follow SSHRC’s policy on the eligibility of subject matter.

How are applications adjudicated?

Applications are adjudicated, and available funds awarded, through a merit review process. SSHRC bases funding decisions on the recommendations of the adjudication committee and on the funds available. Committee discussions are guided by the principle of minimum essential funding.

Applications are adjudicated by multidisciplinary committees that include relevant expertise from the academic community, as well as research expertise from the public, private and/or not-for-profit sectors. The exact number and composition of adjudication committees is determined by the number and nature of proposals received.

Applications reviewed in the Partnership Grants—Stage 2 competition involve an expert panel, interview and multidisciplinary/multisectoral committee.

Does SSHRC provide information sessions on how to apply?

Yes, SSHRC provides annual webinars for the partnership funding opportunities. Consult the Upcoming Webinars page and the Partnerships Tool-Kit for more information on how to apply.

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