Internationalization of CIHR funding policy and program tools
Grants and Awards Guide Update
CIHR wishes to clarify the ways in which funded researchers and awardees can participate in international collaborations and global health research. The Act that created CIHR requires it to have a perspective and sphere of action that transcends national boundaries. It provides for "the improvement of people's health in Canada and the world" and of "support for the participation of Canadian [researchers] in international collaboration and partnerships".
In addition, while Canadian health research is of the highest quality, it corresponds to only 5% of world's published literature – Canadian researchers must remain connected to the world.
The global trend towards greater collaboration in research has become a key ingredient for success in all sectors, including health research. A bibliometric study by Science-Metrix shows that international scientific collaborations yield publications with significantly more impact than publications produced by single-nation teams. Canada already performs remarkably well in this regard, with international co-authorship in published scientific articles having tripled between 1985 and 2005.
In its recently released Strategic Plan - Health Research Roadmap: Creating innovative research for better health and health care, CIHR sets out a vision to secure Canada's place on the world stage for years to come. International collaboration is emphasized in Strategic Direction One through attracting and retaining the best international scholars and experts; connecting Canadian researchers and trainees with top health researchers in the international community; leading the development of international health research consortia; facilitating health research capacity building in low- and middle-income countries; addressing internationally recognized global health priorities; and, proactively responding to emerging health threats.
Having recognized the importance of working at an international level, CIHR will continue to maintain organizational excellence as a core aspect of this engagement, through explicit updates in CIHR's policies and processes to support international collaborations and global health research.
The following provisions of the recently released Grants and Awards Guide highlights this international thrust:
- CIHR encourages applications in the field of global health, which demonstrate that the proposed research project has the potential to improve the health of the global community;
- CIHR contributes to, and supports international research projects and international collaborations to address a range of research areas (not limited to established "global health priorities");
- CIHR contributes to the development of health-research capacity both internationally and at home;
- CIHR Nominated Principal Applicant, when participating in an international collaboration, may apply for CIHR funds for the Canadian components only;
- CIHR Nominated Principal Applicant and project researchers may work in research centers both in Canada and abroad; and
- CIHR Nominated Principal Applicant may transfer funds to project researchers (i.e., researchers, trainees, knowledge-users, etc.) based in other countries through a transfer of funds from a primary institution to a secondary institution subject to approval from the Institution Paid. Consult Schedule 9: Transfer of Funds From a Primary Institution to a Secondary Institution of the Tri-Agency (CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC) Memorandum of Understanding on the Roles and Responsibilities in the Management of Federal Grants and Awards.
- Can a foreign researcher be a Principal Applicant on a grant? (see "February 2010")
For more detailed information please consult the CIHR Grants and Awards International Collaborations Section (section 1-A1-1) and the Global Health Research Section (section 1-A3).