|University of Manitoba
On May 23, NSERC hosted one of its many consultation sessions in Winnipeg to talk about upcoming program changes. James Blatz, NSERC Council Member and Associate Vice-President (Partnerships) at the University of Manitoba, also attended and was able to offer a unique perspective as Co-Chair of the Committee of Grants and Scholarships. Dr. Blatz also commented on deliberations with the community that took place in 2012 that led to decisions on the scaled back Research Tools and Instruments (RTI) program. Researchers and administrators both took part in the morning session that was part of a national conversation with NSERC.
|University of Alberta
More than 50 researchers and administrators gathered at the University of Alberta campus to share their views on a wide range of topics with members of the NSERC team.
Several topics generated more than a number of particularly detailed questions and comments, including the Common CV: Participants wanted to learn more about the benefits of the tool and provided advice on how features of the CCV could be improved. They also discussed how the data contained in the CCV is presented and used by the granting agencies.
Post–Doctoral Fellowships (PDF): There were different perspectives on the PDFs and there was a discussion around the potential for top-ups for these scholars.
Overall, participants felt strongly that Discovery Grants should be promoted as NSERC’s flagship program and as a crucial part of the research continuum. The grants serve to attract top teaching talent to universities to teach the next generation of research stars and give Canada a competitive edge. It was also highlighted that Discovery Grants provide the freedom to pursue a researcher’s curiosity, and participants provided excellent examples of successes that could help NSERC promote discovery.
|Simon Fraser University
May 28 saw the NSERC team discuss some key points of interest with the research community at Simon Fraser University. Participants in the session provided their thoughts on a full range of issues, including the NSERC implementation of the new Common CV. Discussions around the Discovery Grants five-year evaluation made up the bulk of the session, where participants provided their insight into potential improvements to the peer review and selection process. The session wrapped up with some very constructive feedback from participants on the timing and activities related to the harmonization of the Master’s component of the Canada Graduate Scholarships.
Concordia hosted NSERC's second Quebec consultation in a month May 28 at its downtown campus. 50 participants had many questions and much commentary on the Research Tools and Instruments (RTI) program, Discovery Grants, the Common CV and the issue of Highly Qualified People (HQP) in general. NSERC took back practical tips on CCV data entry, uploading, migration, and customer service from the 3 hour session.