Early Career Researcher (ECR) Foundation grantees now eligible to apply for Project Grants

January 7, 2019

As noted in the Foundation Grant eligibility guidelines, a Foundation grantee in the role of program leader is not eligible to apply to the Project Grant competition as a Nominated Principal Applicant or a Principal Applicant. This restriction has applied to all Foundation grantees, including those funded as Early Career Researchers (ECRs).

Feedback from the research community has highlighted unintended challenges for ECR Foundation grantees, particularly given the desire to grow their programs of research during this critical stage of their careers. These challenges factored into CIHR's decision in July 2017 to withdraw ECR eligibility from the Foundation Grant program, starting with the 2017-18 competition, and then equalize the success rate of ECRs in the Project Grant program. This decision did not, however, adequately address the challenges of existing ECR Foundation grantees.

Given this and to ensure that ECR Foundation grantees are not disadvantaged from career development, all Foundation grantees originally funded as ECRs are now eligible to apply for Project Grants in the role of Nominated Principal Applicant or Principal Applicant, starting with the Spring 2019 Project Grant competition.

The eligibility restriction for senior and mid-career Foundation grantees in the role of program leader remains in place (i.e., these grantees are not eligible to apply to the Project Grant competition as a Nominated Principal Applicant or a Principal Applicant but may participate as Co-Applicants or Collaborators).

Furthermore, this decision does not affect the ongoing discussions about the Foundation Grant program overall. No decisions have been made regarding the continuation or design of the program, but CIHR's Science Council and Governing Council will continue their deliberations on this front in early 2019. We expect that there will be news to share in the early spring. 

If you have any questions, please get in touch with the CIHR Contact Centre at support-soutien@cihr-irsc.gc.ca.

Dr. Tammy J. Clifford
Vice-President, Research Programs
CIHR

Dr. Michael J. Strong
President
CIHR

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