COVID-19 Update

COVID-19: Impact on SSHRC programs, experts database and perspectives from our community.


Sport Participation Research Initiative

2020-21 competitions

A joint initiative of SSHRC and Sport Canada

Overview
Funding streams Doctoral award supplements Postdoctoral fellowship supplements Insight Grants
Value $10,000 in addition to the value of the SSHRC Doctoral Award $10,000 in addition to the value of the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship $7,000 up to $100,000 annually, to a maximum of $400,000
Duration 12 months 12 months 3 to 5 years
Application deadlineFootnote * Directly to SSHRC: October 17, 2020
Through a Canadian institution with a quota: Contact your institution
September 16, 2020 October 1, 2020
Results announced Spring 2021 Spring 2021 Spring 2021
Apply Via the SSHRC Doctoral Awards competition Via the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships competition Via the Insight Grants competition

On this page

Description

The joint Sport Participation Research Initiative (SPRI) supports the objectives of the Canadian Sport Policy by funding eligible doctoral students, postdoctoral researchers and postsecondary institution-affiliated researchers. These students and researchers conduct research on enhancing participation in sport—and its outcomes—in Canada.

The policy sets out five objectives:

  • Introduction to sport: Canadians have the fundamental skills, knowledge and attitudes to participate in organized and unorganized sport.
  • Recreational sport: Canadians have the opportunity to participate in sport for fun, health, social interaction and relaxation.
  • Competitive sport: Canadians have the opportunity to systematically improve and measure their performance against others in competition in a safe and ethical manner.
  • High-performance sport: Canadians are systematically achieving world-class results at the highest levels of international competition through fair and ethical means.
  • Sport for development: Sport is used as a tool for social and economic development, and the promotion of positive values at home and abroad.

The policy aims to increase both the number and diversity of Canadians participating in sport. Sport Canada has also allocated additional funding to support Indigenous youth and sport and to support greater inclusion of women and girls in all facets of sport.

Program objectives

The SPRI has two broad objectives:

  • to promote Canadian research that will develop better understanding, based on empirical evidence, of Canadians’ participation in sport, in order to better inform programs and policies; and
  • to build Canada’s capacity to conduct research on and related to participation in sport, specifically in the target areas described below.

To help achieve these objectives, all SPRI grant and award holders are expected to participate in an annual Sport Canada Research Initiative conference as a condition of holding their grant or award. As part of the knowledge transfer component of the SPRI funding, they also must prepare a short paper targeted at the sport policy and practitioner communities, summarizing the key findings of their research.

The initiative offers three separate funding mechanisms to support research on participation in sport in Canada.

Target areas

The SPRI partners invite proposals addressing the broad objectives and that focus on one or more of the following target areas:

1. Participation: Research that supports the sound development, and increases the number and diversity, of athletes, volunteers, coaches, officials and leaders. Priorities include:

  • strategies and interventions to increase the number and diversity of Canadians participating in all sport contexts;
  • recruitment, training and retention of athletes, volunteers, coaches, officials and leaders; and
  • effective monitoring and evaluation of participant experiences—including those of underrepresented groups and Paralympic athletes—in the sport system, in schools and in communities.

2. System performance: Research that supports the effective performance of the sport system’s structures, processes and interventions. Priorities include:

  • effective programming for underrepresented groups;
  • organizational capacity, including governance, resources and leadership; and
  • effective collaboration and partnerships (at the national, provincial or local levels).

3. Values and ethics: Research that supports and/or evaluates/monitors safe, ethical and values-based design and delivery of sport policies, programs and services. Priorities include:

  • policies and programs related to safety and injury;
  • ethical conduct, practices and behaviours; and
  • unethical conduct, practices and behaviours (especially in the areas of doping, violence, abuse and harassment).

4. Major games and events: Research that analyzes impacts on and outcomes for communities and Canadians as legacies (social, cultural, economic) of major games and events. Priorities include:

  • facilities, venues and spaces;
  • sustainable resources and outcomes; and
  • impacts specific to small-, medium- and large-scale events, as well as multisport and single-sport major games.

5. Economic and social development: Research that supports sport for development outcomes in Canadian communities. Priorities include:

  • development of community-based evaluation tools;
  • collaboration with experts in non-sport fields of development; and
  • socio-economic impacts on communities, including sport development.

Doctoral award supplements

Applicants for a SSHRC Doctoral Award who indicate their interest on the application form and who are working in one or more of the target areas will be considered for an SPRI doctoral award supplement.

Only applications that are recommended for funding at SSHRC are referred to Sport Canada. Those who already hold a SSHRC Doctoral Award are ineligible to apply for this supplement.

If interested in this supplement, contact the Research Training Portfolio.

Postdoctoral fellowship supplements

Applicants for a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship who indicate their interest on the application form and who are working in one or more of the target areas will be considered for an SPRI postdoctoral fellowship supplement.

Only applications that are recommended for funding at SSHRC are referred to Sport Canada. Postdoctoral researchers who already hold a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship are ineligible to apply for this Supplement.

If interested in this supplement, contact the Research Training Portfolio.

Research grants

The SPRI partners seek to stimulate short- and long-term research in sport participation in Canada by increasing the funding available through the Insight Grants funding opportunity.

Sport Canada considers applications referred by SSHRC adjudication committees that propose programs of research relevant to its policy priorities. These applications have already been recommended for SSHRC funding, but either did not receive an Insight Grant due to budgetary constraints or the proposed research project exceeded the Insight Grant timelines or funding.

Note: The initiative is designed to complement, not replace, existing SSHRC support for sport participation research offered through the Insight program.

Value and duration

Doctoral award supplements

SPRI doctoral award supplements are held for 12 months and are worth up to $10,000, in addition to the annual value of the SSHRC Doctoral Award.

Postdoctoral fellowship supplements

SPRI Postdoctoral fellowship supplements are held for 12 months and are worth $10,000, in addition to the annual value of the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship.

Research grants

SPRI research grants are available for Insight Grant applications and are worth up to a maximum of $100,000 annually, but not totaling more than $250,000 in a three-year period.

Insight Grant applicants who request funding for up to five years and for more than $250,000 via the Insight Grant application may also be considered for SPRI funding. Those applicants will be asked to resubmit an adjusted three-year budget.

A minimum request of $7,000 is required in at least one year of the project.

SPRI research grant supplements worth up to $20,000 are available to successful Insight Grant recipients, in addition to the value of their grant. The supplements are intended to finance conference participation at the annual Sport Canada Research Initiative conference.

Eligibility

To be eligible for and maintain SPRI funding, all grant and award holders are expected to meet and follow program funding conditions determined by Sport Canada, in addition to the eligibility requirements for each specific type of grant or award.

Proposals may involve any disciplines, thematic areas, approaches or subject areas eligible for SSHRC funding. See the guidelines on subject matter eligibility for more information.

Doctoral award supplements

Besides meeting the SSHRC Doctoral Awards eligibility requirements, applicants for a Doctoral Fellowship Supplement must be working in one or more of the target areas and affiliated with a Canadian postsecondary institution that holds institutional eligibility.

Postdoctoral fellowship supplements

Besides meeting the SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships eligibility requirements, applicants for a postdoctoral fellowship supplement must be working in one or more of the target areas and affiliated with a postsecondary institution that holds institutional eligibility .

Research grants—applicants and participants

Applications can be submitted by an individual researcher or a team of researchers (consisting of one applicant / project director and one or more co-applicants and/or collaborators) who are working in Canada in one or more of the target areas. Applicants must be affiliated with an eligible Canadian postsecondary institution at the time of application. Researchers who maintain an affiliation with a Canadian postsecondary institution, but whose primary affiliation is with a non-Canadian postsecondary institution, are not eligible for applicant status.

A researcher currently holding an SPRI grant cannot submit a new SPRI application as the applicant. A researcher cannot submit an application for an SPRI grant and another application for an Insight Grant as the applicant in the same competition.

All applicants must comply with the other eligibility criteria for an Insight Grant .

Research grants—institutions

Grant funds can only be administered by an eligible Canadian postsecondary institution. Institutions proposing to administer a grant awarded under this funding opportunity must hold or obtain institutional eligibility. See SSHRC’s list of eligible institutions.

Institutions must contact Corporate Strategy and Performance to begin the institutional eligibility application process, or if they have questions about institutional eligibility.

Application process

Applicants who meet the eligibility requirements for this stream of funding must apply through the  SSHRC Doctoral Award, SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship or Insight Grant funding opportunities by selecting the “ Sport Participation Research Initiative” option from the drop-down menu in their application form.

Applicants must also provide a one-page justification that explains how their proposed research project is related to one or more of the SPRI objectives.

Evaluation and adjudication

Doctoral award and postdoctoral fellowship supplements

Each application for an SPRI doctoral award or postdoctoral fellowship supplement is adjudicated first by the relevant SSHRC adjudication committee. The adjudication committees will refer only successful applications to the SPRI Relevance Committee.

Research grants

Each application for an SPRI research grant is adjudicated first by the relevant SSHRC adjudication committee. If the application is ranked above the fifth and sixth sextiles, it is then referred to the SPRI Relevance Committee.

The SPRI Relevance Committee is made up of the Sport Canada research coordinator and members of the academic community. This committee assesses whether the research will contribute to efforts to enhance sport participation in Canada. The committee must form a consensus on whether the proposed research adequately meets the funding opportunity’s objectives and target areas. Applications must therefore specify how the proposed research applies to the SPRI’s sport participation objectives.

The SPRI Relevance Committee’s decisions cannot be appealed.

SPRI adjudication timelines
Funding opportunity Review by SSHRC adjudication committees Review by SPRI Relevance Committee Results announced SPRI grant / award start date
SSHRC Doctoral Awards Spring 2021 June 2021 July 2021 January 2022
SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowships December 2020 June 2021 July 2021 January 2022
Insight Grants March 2021 June 2021 July 2021 January 2022

Conditions of funding

To receive and maintain eligibility for an SPRI grant or award, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • During the life of their grant and until the end of their research projects, grant and award holders must participate in the annual Sport Canada Research Initiative conference in Ottawa, to which they will be invited by Sport Canada. SPRI funding includes costs related to travel to the conference. Therefore, applicants must include costs related to attendance at the conference as part of their research proposal’s budget.
  • As part of the knowledge transfer component of the SPRI funding, grant and award holders will be required to prepare a short paper targeted at the sport policy and practitioner communities, summarizing the key findings of their research. The deadline for the submission of these knowledge transfer materials is September 30 of the final year of the grant. Sport Canada will contact grant and award holders at their funding end date to communicate the due date and SPRI knowledge transfer guidelines. Grant and award holders will be asked to follow the knowledge transfer template provided by Sport Canada in preparing their paper. Grant and award holders are encouraged to seek publication of their paper in an open source publication.

Regulations, policies and related information

SSHRC reserves the right to determine the eligibility of applications, based on the information included. SSHRC also reserves the right to interpret the regulations and policies governing its funding opportunities.

For descriptions of SSHRC terms, see Definitions of Terms.

Doctoral and postdoctoral fellowship supplements

All fellowship and scholarship applicants and holders must comply with the Regulations Governing Fellowship and Scholarship Applications and with the regulations set out in the Tri-Agency Research Training Award Holder’s Guide.

Research grants

All applicants and grant holders must comply with the Regulations Governing Grant Applications and with the regulations set out in the Tri-Agency Guide on Financial Administration .

Contact information

For more information, contact:

Tel.: 613-947-9657
Email: sebastien.demers@sshrc-crsh.gc.ca

Date modified: