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Instructions for completing an application for an Applied Research and Technology Partnership grant (ARTP)

General information

About the program

Read the program description before completing your application.

Who completes the application?

The applicant must hold a remunerated position at an eligible Canadian college at the time of application. They create and complete the application in the Convergence Portal (Portal) and are responsible for administering the grant on behalf of the institution. The applicant should not be the college’s research grants officer.

For Option 2, the applicant from the lead college creates and completes the application on behalf of the group of colleges. Letters of support from partners are not required.

The co-applicant(s) must have a remunerated position at or be affiliated with an eligible Canadian college or university. They are typically faculty or professional/technical staff affiliated with the participating institutions. The applicant will invite the co-applicant(s) via the Portal. Those invited will receive an email with the sign-up steps and must complete their own profile in the Portal.

The contributor must have a remunerated position at an eligible Canadian college or university. The contributor has access to edit the application and typically helps the applicant complete the application, if needed. The applicant will invite the contributor via the Portal. The person invited will receive an email with the sign-up steps.

Note: Only the applicant and co-applicant(s) must provide part II of form 103CV.

Who approves and submits the application?

The research grants officer (RGO) is the designated institutional liaison officer. They approve and submit the grant application on behalf of the college.  

Whom should I contact for help?

Collection and use of personal information

The information you provide in your application is collected under the authority of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Act and stored in a series of NSERC data banks described in This link will take you to another Web site Information about programs and information holdings. Details on the use and disclosure of this information are described on the Use and disclosure of personal information provided to NSERC page, in the NSERC program literature and below. The information is used in accordance with the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act.

Self-identification information

You are required to complete the self-identification form to apply for NSERC funding; however, you may select “Prefer not to answer” for any or all questions. NSERC appreciates your participation, which supports the granting agencies in monitoring the equity of their programs and strengthening equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in the research enterprise.

The self-identification information is collected as part of your user profile when you register in the Convergence Portal. It is not part of your application and is neither accessible to, nor shared with, external reviewers and/or selection committee members.

Application deadline

Your application must be received at NSERC by 8:00 p.m. (ET) on the deadline date. The application will not be accessible to edit once it has been submitted. Material or updates received under separate cover (before or after the deadline date) will not be accepted.

Instructions

You must complete and submit your application using the Convergence Portal. The Portal is only supported on the latest versions of Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox.

Follow the instructions provided in the Portal to complete your application. Details on the information needed to complete an application are outlined below.

You must complete all sections of the full application and submit it via your institution’s research grants officer. Co-applicants must each complete their own profile in the Portal before you submit the application. Co-applicants will be able to see all sections of the application, but will not have edit access.

You must verify the page lengths and formatting of any uploaded attachments to the application. Should a submitted application contain one or more attachments that do not comply with the page length or formatting standard, the application may be withdrawn from the competition.

Instructions for attachments

Prepare the documents

Prepare your attachments following the requirements below.

  • Any acronyms and abbreviations must be explained.
  • Pages must be 8 ½" x 11" (216 mm x 279 mm).
  • Text must be single-spaced, with no more than six lines of type per inch.
  • All text must be in black, using the 11 pt Arial font; condensed fonts will not be accepted.
  • Margins must be set at a minimum of ¾" (1.87 cm).
  • In multi-page attachments, pages must be numbered sequentially.
  • Your name must appear outside the set margins of the page, at the top right corner of every page.
  • The name of the document must appear at the top (e.g., Proposal, Budget justification).

Convert the documents

All attachments must be converted to portable document format (PDF) before they can be attached to the application. The conversion process varies with the operating system and word processing or spreadsheet software you are using. If you have questions about converting your documents to PDF, contact your institution’s technical support staff.

If you do not have a PDF conversion program, you may download a free version of PrimoPDF. Macintosh users have a PDF conversion option in the Macintosh system "print" function.

Create your application

  • Sign in to the Convergence Portal. If you have an account on NSERC’s Research Portal, please use your existing credentials.
  • Select Funding Opportunities.
  • Select the Applied Research and Technology Partnership grant funding opportunity labelled Stage: Application and select Create Application.

Participant eligibility

If you have previously completed an eligibility profile in the Convergence Portal, some fields will be pre-populated. You will be asked to review each page and will have the opportunity to update any information you have previously provided.

Step 1 – Participant eligibility: Answer the question confirming the eligibility of your position.
Step 2 – Affiliations: List all of your current affiliations and identify your primary affiliation. Select the organization that will administer the grant.
Step 3 – Equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI): Complete the self-identification form, as required in order to apply for funding. You may select “Prefer not to answer” for any or all questions; see the self-identification section above for more information. 
Step 4 – Fields of research: List your fields of research and indicate at least one as a primary area of research. These do not need to be directly related to the application.
Step 5 – Keywords: Provide a minimum of five keywords that best describe, overall, your areas of research. They do not need to be directly related to a specific application and will not be used for evaluation purposes.
Step 6 – Summary: Review the content submitted and click Create Application.
Step 7 – Terms and conditions: Accept the terms and conditions to begin the application process.

CV documents (attachment)

You only need to attach part II of form 103CV. This is free-form text limited to five pages, which should be used to list relevant experience and contributions to applied research and innovation. See the instructions for completing the College and Community Innovation program personal data form (form 103CV) for more information.

Note: Only the applicant and co-applicant(s) must provide part II of form 103CV.

Complete your application

Application details

Provide the application title and language of application. The main body of your application should be written in either English or French, rather than in a mix of both official languages.

Invitations

Click on Invite Participant to invite co-applicant(s) and/or the contributor to access the application. Collaborators are not to be invited as they will be listed in the Collaborator section.

For Option 2, participants from other colleges should be invited as co-applicants.

Participants

This section lists the co-applicant(s) and the contributor who have successfully signed up in the Convergence Portal. If an individual has not accepted your invitation, follow up with them to confirm they have received it. If an invited co-applicant is listed as Pending Eligibility, they have accepted your invitation, but not yet completed their eligibility profile.

Collaborators

List the collaborators that will contribute to the execution of research activities, but who will not have access to grant funds. Collaborators’ biographical sketches or CVs may be uploaded in the Other documents section.

Socioeconomic objectives

Provide at least one primary socioeconomic objective. You may add up to a maximum of three socioeconomic objectives.

Note: Socioeconomic objectives were previously referred to as “Areas of application.”

Fields of research

List at least one primary field of research that best describe this specific application. You may list up to a maximum of five fields of research.

Keywords

List a minimum of five keywords that best describe this specific application. You may list up to a maximum of ten keywords.

Summary of proposal

The summary is intended to explain the proposal in language that the public can understand. Using simple terms, briefly describe the nature of the research and activities, the overall goal and the objectives of the proposal. Indicate why the project(s) are important, and how the anticipated outcomes will help businesses seize new opportunities by applying innovative research and technologies or developing them into useful new products and services. This plain-language summary will be available to the public if your proposal is funded.

The maximum character count is 2500.

Certification, licenses and permits

Complete the Certification requirements module. For more information on the various certification requirements, please consult the Requirements for certain types of research web page.

Proposed budget

Enter the yearly amounts requested. Additional details must be provided in the Supporting documents section.

Supporting documents (attachments)

Impact assessment (appendix A)

If applicable, download a copy of appendix A and, once completed, uploaded it to the Supporting documents section of your application. For more information, consult NSERC’s Guidelines on impact assessment.

Budget table (PDF)

Before completing this section, read the Specific rules for the use of grant funds under the ARTP funding opportunity literature.

Download a copy of the budget template and enter the planned amount of expenditures for each category (direct and indirect costs) for each year of the project. Note: Overhead and administration costs equivalent to 20% of the annual grant amount are automatically calculated within the template.

Do not alter the template (font type and size, margins or line spacing), as the budget table must fit in a letter size page (portrait orientation).

Save the completed budget table in portable document format (PDF) and upload it to the Supporting documents section.

Budget justification

In a maximum of three pages, provide a detailed explanation and justification for each budget item identified in the budget table. Provide sufficient information in the Budget justification pages to allow reviewers to assess whether the resources requested are appropriate and to allow reviewers to easily understand the items requested on the budget table. There should be a clear link between the description of the funds requested and the items and numbers entered on the budget table. These pages should only contain information pertinent to the budget.

Salaries and benefits

Give the names (if known), categories of employment and proposed salaries (with explicit indication of the non-discretionary benefits) of research team members and students. Briefly describe the responsibilities for each position and indicate the amount of time they will be spending on this project over its lifespan.

Operating and equipment

Provide a breakdown of the items requested and details on models, manufacturers, prices and applicable taxes. Justify the need for each item requested. Fees to be paid for the use of equipment or a facility should be described (e.g., hours and rate).

Equipment, operating, supplies, and consultant fees may not exceed 20% of the total project costs.

Research and technology transfer support services

Provide details on and explain major items with regard to research and technology transfer support services. Eligible expenses are limited to costs attributable to specific projects or activities to be undertaken.

Knowledge dissemination and networking

Provide details on travel, training workshops and other major items related to knowledge dissemination and networking. Expenditures should be limited to costs attributable to specific projects or activities to be undertaken.

Overhead and administration

Overhead and administration costs equivalent to 20% of the annual grant amount are automatically calculated in the budget table.

Provide general information on the overhead and administration costs attributable to the grant in the Budget justification.

Research proposal

Describe the proposal using the headings below within a maximum of 10 pages for Option 1 and 12 pages for Option 2. This page limit includes references.

Refer to the Selection criteria section in the Applied Research and Technology Partnership grants program description for a list of criteria that will be considered by reviewers when evaluating applications. Write the proposal in clear, plain language. Avoid jargon, acronyms and highly technical terms.

Using the headings below, describe the proposed research in enough detail to allow an informed assessment by the review committee members. Applicants are expected to address each criterion and sub-criterion.

Relevance and impact

  • Outline the proposed research themes and explain how the research and activities supported by the grant will address the needs of business partners organizations in the context of their region or at a national level.
  • List the business partners that will participate meaningfully in the project(s) and describe their capability to implement and/or use the project results, leading to impact within their organization and near-term economic benefits.
  • Describe the plan to effectively integrate additional business partners over the grant duration to respond to evolving needs. 

For Option 2 only: Explain the rationale for the national or sectoral challenge focus and how the group of collaborating colleges is appropriate to address it.

Ability of the college

  • List the applicant, any co-applicants and key staff of the business partner(s).
  • Explain how the knowledge, experience and achievements of these individuals provide the expertise needed to accomplish the project’s objectives.
  • Discuss the role of each individual and how their contributions, including those of staff from the business partner(s), will be integrated into the project.
  • Describe how the current research strengths of the college align with the proposed focus of the application and the availability of expertise and equipment at the college to respond to partner needs.
  • Present the college’s track record and accomplishments in applied research areas relevant to the proposed research themes.
  • Identify at least one concrete practice that will be implemented to ensure that EDI is being intentionally and proactively considered in the identification, selection, recruitment, and/or integration of research personnel into the research team. Do not provide personal information on team members or information about the composition of the research team. In developing this grant application, the privacy of individuals must be respected. Do not request that past, current or potential team members share individual self-identification data with you, and do not make assumptions on the self-identification information of others.

For Option 2 only: Describe the complementarity of the participating colleges’ research strengths.

Quality of the proposal

  • Describe a research plan that details how the college(s) will undertake a set of projects that address the program objectives.
  • Indicate approximate timelines for the activities to lead to milestones and deliverables using a Gantt chart, table or diagram.
  • Describe the plan to mobilize the necessary resources on timelines appropriate to the set of project(s) and call for proposals.
  • Describe how the business partner(s) will participate and contribute to the project(s).

For Option 2 only: Describe the plan for the effective management and coordination of a large-scale, complex, multi-institutional project.

Training

  • Describe a training plan for students* and other trainees. This includes opportunities for enriched training experiences to develop relevant research skills, as well as professional skills such as leadership, communication, collaboration and entrepreneurship.
  • Identify at least one concrete practice that will be implemented to promote the participation of a diverse group of students and other trainees, including those from underrepresented groups, as well as to promote an equitable, inclusive and accessible training environment. Do not provide personal information about the composition of the group of students and other trainees. In developing this grant application, the privacy of individuals must be respected. Do not request that past, current or potential students and other trainees share individual self-identification data with you, and do not make assumptions on the self-identification information of others.

For Option 2 only: Highlight any multi-institutional training opportunities that will complement student and trainee outcomes.

*Student involvement is mandatory, and the proposed training plan must be appropriate to their level of knowledge and experience.

References

Use this section to provide a list of the most relevant literature references. Do not refer readers to websites for additional information on the proposal. Do not introduce hyperlinks in the list of references.

Note: These pages are included in the Research proposal page count.

Other documents

Letters of support

For Option 2, support letters from other participating colleges are mandatory. Each letter of support must not exceed two pages. Letters of support from partners are not required.

CV – collaborators

Colleges may attach a biographical sketch for collaborators/staff from the business partner(s) whose expertise is essential in meeting the research objectives of the proposal. In a maximum of two pages for each collaborator, provide the individual’s name/affiliation, education/training, employment/affiliations, and up to five significant contributions related to the project. Alternatively, a two pages CV may be provided for each collaborator.

All letters of support and collaborator biographical sketches or CVs, if applicable, must be saved into one PDF document and uploaded to the Other documents section of the application.

Submit your application

Review the application to ensure that it is complete.

From the Finalize and Submit section, follow the prompts to submit your application.
After you accept the terms and conditions, the status of your submission will change to Received by Administrator. If you want to make any changes at this point, you may request that your research grants officer return the application to you.

Once your research grants officer has approved and submitted your application, the application status will change to Received by Agency. No changes can be made at that point.

Submitting the application as the research grants officer

When you (RGO) receive an application submitted by an applicant at your institution, you will be asked to approve the application and submit it. By submitting it, you are confirming that

  • the participants meet the eligibility requirements
  • the proposed research project meets the eligibility requirements

By submitting the application, you, on behalf of your institution, will also be certifying that the applicant

  • is affiliated with the institution
  • has the necessary time and resources to carry out the activity
  • will email colleges@nserc-crsng.gc.ca if there are any changes during the tenure of the grant, including changes in the composition of the partnership, such as the addition of new co-applicants, collaborators, etc.