|Value||$1 million per year for four years|
|Application Deadline||December 10, 2010 – Letter of Intent
January 14, 2011 – Invitation to Apply
March 18, 2011 – Application, if invited to apply
|How to Apply||See below|
|Program Contact||See below|
Note: Discovery Frontiers (DF) grants are part of the NSERC Frontiers initiatives that identify and capitalize on emerging opportunities where Canada can benefit from its world-class capacity to take a leadership role in key areas of research and innovation. NSERC Frontiers address national research priorities and global challenges by supporting a small number of major new transformative and integrative initiatives.
Discovery Frontiers grants support a limited number of large international activities, opportunities or projects that are of high priority in the context of advanced research in Canada. These will be led by world-class Canadian researchers and will comprise teams that will generate substantial impact, for the benefit of Canada.
This initiative will bring together groups of researchers in new ways to address a major research challenge. The groups will incorporate new and emerging ideas, and combine their complementary expertise to conduct transformative, paradigm-changing research.
The first Call for Proposals is in the area of Northern Earth System Research. The Earth System is defined as the unified set of physical, chemical, biological and social components, processes and interactions that together determine the state and dynamics of the Earth, including its biota and its human occupants.1 NSERC is soliciting collaborative research proposals from teams of NSERC-eligible researchers, with recognized expertise in their current fields, to work in an integrated manner to tackle broad problems defined with input of the northern community, aimed at identifying and understanding the inter-relationships that exist in northern earth systems (e.g., fresh water, sea level, permafrost, atmosphere, cryosphere, marine, weather patterns, biodiversity) and to research solutions-based approaches to climate change adaptation.
NSERC plans to award one DF grant through this call, at a funding level of $1 million per year for four years.
It is expected that this DF grant will:
Approaches used will emphasize bold initiatives and interdisciplinary thinking, with potential to create new research fields which will elucidate how changes in any given system connect to and affect other systems. Research must be aimed at exploring general principles, broad theories and fundamental concepts. International linkages will be required.
Other than the general eligibility criteria found in the main program description, there are no additional criteria that apply to this call for proposals.
Applicants begin by submitting a Letter of Intent. This can be up to five free-form 8.5 x 11 pages long and should include:
Applicants who are invited to submit a full proposal will be given further instructions on submission details and a logistics plan.
NSERC’s Committee on Grants and Scholarships (COGS) will review the Letters of Intent. This assessment will be made on the basis of the following factors:
COGS is also responsible for the evaluation of the proposals and recommendation to NSERC. COGS’ assessment may be supported by external experts as required. The outcome and impacts of DF grants should be transformative, not merely incremental. Discovery Frontiers grants will be one-time opportunities and NSERC will not accept re-application by a group that has previously been funded.
Selection criteria will include excellence of, and synergy between, the applicant, co-applicants and collaborators; merit of the proposal; training of HQP; and strength of the organizational, budgetary, project and data management structure. Selection criteria will be used to rank competing applications following a call for proposals.
Refer to the Use of Grant Funds section of the Tri-Agency Financial Administration Guide for details on eligible expenses.
Reporting format, schedules and required information will be available at the time of award.
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