Insight Development Grants
Applicant Instructions

SSHRC recommends clearing your browser cache to ensure the most up-to-date instructions are consulted. Check the date at the bottom of this webpage to ensure these instructions are for the latest funding cycle.

Note: For these instructions, “applicant” and “project director” refer to individual applicants and the person acting on behalf of an institutional applicant.

On this page

Documents to read before applying

Helpful tips

Write your proposal in clear, plain language. Use non-technical terms that can be understood by a range of audiences with varied areas of expertise.

SSHRC advocates for the practices listed below when applicable in your application. In addition, costs related to these activities are eligible:

  • responsible research data management strategies;
  • open access publishing activities;
  • dissemination in both official languages;
  • promotion and support of official language minority communities; and
  • effective research training.

Note: If you experience technical difficulties, contact the helpdesk as early as possible in the application process. The helpdesk has a higher volume of requests during peak periods (i.e., September 1 to December 1) and on deadline days.

Application process

Accommodations and accessibility

If you need help completing online application forms due to circumstances arising from a disability, contact your institution (scholarship liaison officer, research grant office or other applicant support office) as early in the application process as possible to investigate available supports. If your institution cannot provide help, or needs SSHRC to collaborate on a solution, contact You can also contact SSHRC if you have questions or are seeking specific adaptation arrangements. You do not need to share your medical or sensitive personal information, and, to protect your privacy, should avoid doing so.

Frequently requested accommodations include, but are not limited to:

Applicant or project director responsibilities

By clicking “Submit,” the applicant or project director certifies that all information is accurate. They are also responsible for:

Research or financial administrator responsibilities

By clicking “Forward” (Forward to SSHRC), the research administrator or financial administrator (institutional approval) certifies:

Electronic submission process and acknowledgement of receipt of applications

Applicants must allow enough time for their institution’s or organization’s internal approval process, as specified by the relevant authorities. SSHRC will acknowledge receipt of your electronic application form and will assign you an application number. Cite this number in all correspondence with us.

Applications remain available for download via the SSHRC online system for 30 days after the deadline, after which they are deleted.

Eligible postdoctoral fellows and doctoral candidates can submit their application directly to SSHRC. See Administering organization for more information.

Attaching a document

Many modules in your application will require you to attach a PDF document. You must follow the specified requirements for margins and font size, or your application will be deemed ineligible. An error message will appear if the file you are trying to attach does not meet the required specifications for page length and file size. Once you have attached the electronic file, we recommend you view the attached file to ensure you have the proper file and it is not corrupted.

Identification (mandatory)


This information has automatically been transferred from the User Profile page. To modify the information in this section, you must update the User Profile page.

Application title

Provide a short, descriptive title for your proposal in non-technical terms. Restrict the use of acronyms (e.g., UN, NATO). Use uppercase for only the first word of the title, proper nouns and acronyms.

Language of the application

Indicate the language in which the application will be submitted. The main body of your application should be written in either English or French, rather than in a mix of both official languages.


Select the committee representing the research field most appropriate to the subject and discipline of your proposal. If you are unsure which merit review committee to choose, contact SSHRC before submitting your application.

If you select “24 – Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee,” you must also upload a one-page Request for Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Review. Please note, the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee (Committee 24) uses a harmonized peer review process, including evaluation criteria, that differs from the usual Insight Development Grants process. More information is available on the committee landing page.

Joint initiatives

See the funding search tool for a complete list of joint initiatives that may be relevant to your application.

If you want your project to be considered for one of these initiatives, select it in the drop-down list in the “Joint or special initiative” field in the Identification module.

Research-creation proposals

Before you select “Yes,” refer to the definition of research-creation for more information and examples of fields involving research-creation.

If you select “Yes,” see the Guidelines for Research-Creation Support Meterials for instructions about creative outputs and support material.

You should also complete the Research contributions and relevant experience module.

Does your proposal involve Indigenous research, as defined by SSHRC?

Select “Yes” if you wish to signal to the merit review committee that your application should be reviewed in the context of SSHRC’s definition of Indigenous research and its Guidelines for the Merit Review of Indigenous Research.

Joint or Special Initiative—Department of National Defence

If you have selected the Department of National Defence research initiative in the Joint or Special Initiative field on the Identification screen, you must clearly explain how the proposed research meets the joint initiative’s objectives.

Scholar type

Select whether you are an Emerging Scholar or an Established Scholar. You will be asked to answer questions in the form and the confirmed scholar type will be indicated in the field of “Confirmed Scholar Type”.

Established scholars: proposed versus ongoing research

Explain how the proposed research is distinct from your previous/ongoing research. Proposed projects should be clearly delimited and in the early stages of the research process.

Administering organization (individual grants) or lead organization (institutional grants)

Only an eligible Canadian institution or organization can administer grant funds. Institutions interested in administering SSHRC individual or institutional grants must meet the institutional eligibility requirements for the administration of grants and awards, which is independent of this application process.


If you are a doctoral student or postdoctoral fellow who is submitting an application directly to SSHRC, leave this field blank. To pass the validation process, ensure your Person Profile indicates that your current position is either “Student” or “Postdoctoral researcher/fellow.”


Select one option from the drop-down list. Postdoctoral fellows and doctoral students can leave this field blank.

Activity details

Certification Requirements (mandatory)

State whether or not your proposal involves human beings as research subjects. If it does, select “Yes” and consult the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans and submit your proposal to your organization's research ethics board.

Impact assessment (mandatory)

The Impact Assessment Form (PDF document, 139 Kb) must be completed and submitted with grant applications ONLY if at least one of the following situations applies to your research or research-related activities, as per the Impact Assessment Act, 2019 (IAA):

The first two points apply only to designated projects / physical activities listed in the Physical Activities Regulations (e.g., projects that involve physical work / alterations to the land or environment). The Impact Assessment Form will appear if you answer “Yes” to any of the four questions. If none of these situations apply to your research or research-related activities, the form is not needed.

For more information, see SSHRC’s Guidelines on Impact Assessment.

Keywords (mandatory)

List up to 10 keywords that best describe the proposal.

Disciplines (mandatory)

Indicate and rank each entry relevant to your proposal, with Entry 1 as the most relevant and the last entry the least relevant.

Areas of Research (mandatory)

Indicate and rank each entry relevant to your proposal, with Entry 1 as the most relevant and the last entry the least relevant. If you select “Not Subject to Research Classification” in Entry 1, the system will automatically remove any other areas of research when you save this page.

Temporal periods, geographical regions and countries

Indicate and rank each entry relevant to your proposal, with Entry 1 as the most relevant and the last entry the least relevant.

Revisions since previous application

Maximum 3800 characters

Applicants may outline the revisions made since their previous application.

Note: Merit review committees are not bound by the deliberations or scores of previous committees. Members of the current committee will not be given copies of the earlier application(s).

Summary of proposal (mandatory)

Maximum 3800 characters

Provide a summary of your proposal written in clear, plain, nontechnical language understandable to scholars with varied areas of expertise. Clearly indicate:

Applicants who have selected either Committee 22 or Committee 23 must provide a brief explanation of how the project will integrate intellectual resources (theories, methodologies, perspectives, etc.) to help assess the proposal.

Applicants who have selected Committee 24 do not need to provide an explanation for their committee selection in this module; instead, they must upload a justification for selecting the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee in a separate one-page PDF attachment.

Note: If your proposal is funded, this summary might be used by SSHRC for promotional purposes.

Roles and Responsibilities (mandatory)

Maximum 7600 characters

Applicants must describe the following:

  1. the relative roles, responsibilities and contributions of the applicant, and of any co-applicants and collaborators (if applicable, clearly outline the rationale for international collaborations);
  2. for team applications: the relative proportion (in percentage) of each member’s contribution to the proposed project;
  3. the proportion of the time to be spent on this project in relation to any other ongoing research projects or programs (excluding prospective grants); and
  4. if the project involves community participants such as knowledge users, the support provided by the community, and the applicant’s ties with said communities.

Note: For team applications, if the merit review committee determines that the applicant is not responsible for, or equipped to exercise, the leadership of the research, the committee may lower the Feasibility score.

Roles and training of students (mandatory)

Maximum 3800 characters

Clearly describe the specific roles and responsibilities of students and research assistants, and indicate the duties, especially with respect to research, that they will be undertaking, as well as how these will complement their academic training. Consult the Guidelines for Effective Research Training in preparing this section of the application. These guidelines will also be provided to reviewers.

Knowledge Mobilization Plan (mandatory)

Maximum 2000 characters

In planning your research project, consider the ways in which merit reviewers assess knowledge mobilization activities. For example, reviewers are advised to evaluate, under the Feasibility criterion, the “quality and appropriateness of knowledge mobilization plans, including effective dissemination, exchange and engagement with stakeholders within and/or beyond the research community, where applicable.”

SSHRC encourages its funding recipients to disseminate research knowledge in both official languages, whenever feasible and/or appropriate.

Include a plan to increase knowledge uptake by target audiences, and anticipated outputs, outcomes and/or impacts of social sciences and humanities knowledge among various appropriate audiences or participants (academic and/or non-academic), including:

Open access and data management

Grant holders must follow the Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications. To the extent possible, and in keeping with this policy and SSHRC’s endorsement of open access forms of knowledge dissemination, grant holders should make their research results openly available, through, e.g., open access publications, websites, publicly accessible databases and/or institutional repositories. To learn more, see Frequently Asked Questions

Expected outcomes (mandatory)

The project’s expected outcomes are essential for the merit review of the proposal and are part of the Challenge evaluation criterion. Elaborate on the potential benefits and/or outcomes of your proposed project. You will be able to share how your outcomes have evolved in follow-up achievement reports.


Research and related outcomes include enhanced curriculum and teaching material, enriched public discourse, improved public policies, enhanced business strategies and increased innovations in every sector of society, as well as graduate supervision opportunities. Research outcomes, which are facilitated by the effective mobilization of knowledge, then permeate daily life in the form of new thinking and behaviour that lead to improvements in our economic, social, cultural and intellectual well-being.

Scholarly benefits

Indicate and rank selections in order of importance. If the information is not listed, select “Other” from the list and type the information in the box provided.

Summary of Expected Scholarly Outcomes

Maximum 1000 characters

Describe the potential long-term scholarly benefits and outcomes (e.g., evolution, effects, potential learning and implications) that could emerge from the proposed project as a result of knowledge mobilization activities.

Societal Benefits

Indicate and rank selections in order of importance. If the information is not listed, select “Other” from the list and type the information in the box provided.

Summary of Expected Societal Outcomes

Maximum 1000 characters

Describe the potential long-term societal benefits and outcomes (e.g., evolution, effects, potential learning and implications) that could emerge from the proposed project as a result of knowledge mobilization activities.


Indicate up to five potential target audiences for the proposed project.

Summary of Benefits to Potential Target Audiences

Maximum 1000 characters

Describe the potential benefits the project’s expected outcomes will have for the identified target audiences. If not applicable, enter n/a.

Funds requested from SSHRC (mandatory)

For each budget year, estimate the costs you are asking SSHRC to fund. All budget costs must conform to the rates and regulations of the applicant’s or project director’s institution and take into account the Tri-Agency Guide on Financial Administration’s principles governing the appropriate use of funds. All costs must be justified in terms of the needs of the project, including costs for organizing and integrating team activities and for communicating results to audiences, stakeholders and the public. The budget will be reviewed according to the appropriateness of the requested budget and the justification of other planned resources (e.g., time, human and financial), including cash and in-kind support already or to be secured from partner organizations.

Click “Calculate Totals” to complete the budget form.

Note: SSHRC provides the following guidelines to committee members regarding the merit review of the budget subcriteria of the overall feasibility score.

Enter amounts rounded to the nearest dollar without any spaces or commas (e.g., 2000). For blank entries, leave the “0” value.

Specific rules for the use of grant funds:

Personnel costs

For each of the categories below, enter the number of students and non-students you plan to hire, whether as salaried employees or as recipients of stipends.

Student and non-student salaries and benefits

For each applicable category, enter the number of students and non-students to be hired. Specify the total amount to be paid. When students are paid by wage, the amounts should follow the institution's collective agreement or policy.

Student stipends

You may request stipends for graduate students and postdoctoral researchers. Stipends must be justified in terms of the research, research training and/or research-related objectives. The work performed by stipend recipients should be an integral part of the project. Stipend rates are set by the institution concerned.

Professional/Technical Services

Consulting fees for professional and technical services are eligible expenditures if the budget justification shows expert advice is needed.

Travel and subsistence costs

Enter, by budget year, the total amounts requested for travel abroad and within Canada for both the research team and student personnel.

Travel and subsistence costs must be based on rates approved by the institution or organization that will administer the funds.

Other expenses


You may include other supply items (e.g., software, stationery, postage and telephone calls) only if they directly relate to the research and are not provided by the administering institution to their research personnel or by the employer.

Non-disposable equipment—computer hardware

Purchase or rental of computers and associated hardware is allowable only if these are not provided by the administering institution to their research personnel or by the employer.

Funds from other sources

List all contributors (e.g., host institution or organization, individuals, not-for-profit organizations, philanthropic foundations and private sector organizations), that are providing cash and/or in-kind contributions for the proposal. Indicate whether or not these funds have been confirmed.

If a funding source is not listed, you must:

If you have received more than one contribution of the same type from a single funding source (i.e., cash or in-kind) and same confirmation status, you must combine these into one entry (e.g., two confirmed $20,000 cash contributions from a university become one confirmed $40,000 cash contribution). Enter amounts rounded off to the nearest dollar―in Canadian currency―without spaces or commas (e.g., 40000). For blank entries, leave the “0” value.

Reviewer exclusion (if applicable)

List individuals, collaborators or organizations you wish to exclude from the review of the application. Enter the information and click “Add.” If an organization is not listed, you can type the name in the field.

This information will not be provided to members of the merit review committee. Any request for exclusion should be renewed with any subsequent applications, if still relevant.

Detailed description (mandatory)

Maximum 5 pages

Using the following headings, address the Challenge and Feasibility evaluation criteria of the funding opportunity. Describe the proposed research in enough detail to allow informed assessment by committee members. Avoid jargon, acronyms and highly technical terms.




Contingency plans related to the potential impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on your research project may be described in this section, if appropriate. This is not mandatory, but it may assist the merit review committee in assessing the feasibility of your proposal if your research plans are significantly disrupted, e.g., if international travel is not possible.

Timelines (mandatory)

Maximum 1 page

Describe the timelines for conducting the proposed project. Charts and tables are strongly encouraged as very effective tools for presenting concise details for project components and research activities.

List of references (mandatory)

Maximum ten page

List all references cited or works referred to in your proposal. SSHRC recognizes and allows the use of different referencing styles.

Research-creation support material

Maximum one page

If you are submitting a proposal involving research-creation, you must attach a research-creation support material document to provide samples of creative work that best illustrate the qualifications of the team and/or the nature of the proposed research-creation. See SSHRC’s Guidelines for Research-Creation Support Materials for more information. Please ensure you closely review SSHRC’s definition of research-creation and artist-researcher.

When including a website link:

Note: SSHRC reserves the right to remove this section from the application if it does not relate to research-creation. SSHRC assumes no responsibility in cases where links provided are broken or the server is unavailable during the merit review period. Reasonable efforts will be made to view or listen to support material; however, due to technical challenges, SSHRC cannot guarantee the samples will be accessed. Reviewers will have very limited time per application to view, read or listen to samples of work. Only links provided in the support material attachment will be used by merit reviewers.

Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Committee

Maximum 1 page

If you selected the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee, you must provide a justification for doing so. Explain how your research will meet the definition of “interdisciplinary” on the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee landing page by integrating intellectual resources (e.g., theories, methodologies, perspectives) drawn from disciplines and subject areas pertaining to two or more of the (1) social sciences and humanities; (2) natural sciences and engineering; and (3) health and wellness. Clearly articulate the integration of interdisciplinary approaches.

Note that the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee uses a harmonized merit review process, including evaluation criteria, that differs from the usual Insight Development Grants process. For more information, see the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee landing page, the committee’s Peer Review Guide and evaluation criteria

Note: SSHRC reserves the right to remove this section from the application if it does not relate to Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review.

Canadian Common CV Upload

If you don’t already have a SSHRC Canadian Common CV (CCV) to upload, see the SSHRC CCV instructions . Once you have uploaded your SSHRC CV, it will be visible in the application.


  • Note: To successfully upload your CCV, the first name and family name used to create your CCV site account must be identical to those used to create your Research Portal account. As well, the email address used to create your Research Portal account must be identical to at least one of the emails you listed on the CCV site (i.e., the email used to create your CCV account or any of the emails you included in the Email section of your CCV).
  • Research Portal: To change your family name, first name and/or email address, go to Person Profile.
  • CCV: To change your family name, first name and/or email address, log into the CCV and click “Account” in the top menu bar. To change any other email addresses included in your CCV, go to the Email section of the relevant CCV template.

Participation Invitations

Manage invitations

Invitation status

Invitation status
Status Definition

Invitation sent but not yet accepted

Email invitation has been sent to the participant. Participant has not actioned the email.

Invitation accepted but not yet completed

Participant has clicked on the invitation email, accepted the invitation and started to work on their form.

Invitation accepted and completed

Participant has clicked on the invitation email, accepted the invitation and completed their form (including the attachment of their CCV).

Invitation declined

Participant has clicked on the invitation email and declined the invitation.

Add Participant

Please enter the email address, family name and, if applicable, the role of each participant. When you click “Invite,” an email will be sent inviting them to participate in the application.

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