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Contact Newsletter

October 2011 - Volume 35 No. 5

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In this Issue

Upcoming NSERC deadlines

October 31, 2011 Full applications (invitation only) for NSERC/NRCan/AECL Generation IV Energy Technologies grants
November 1, 2011 Applications for Discovery Grants (including Subatomic Physics projects below $500,000 per year)
November 1, 2011 Applications for Northern Research Supplements
November 2, 2011 Applications for Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships
November 9, 2011 Applications for Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships
November 30, 2011 Applications for Industrial Research Chairs for Colleges Grants
December 15, 2011 Applications for Summer Programs in Japan or Taiwan
January 9, 2012 Applications for Idea to Innovation grants
January 25, 2012 Applications for Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Postdoctoral Fellowships
January 27, 2012 Full applications (invitation only) for the G8 Research Councils Initiative on Multilateral Research Funding

Budget 2011 additional funds allocated to Discovery Grants and partnerships

The additional funding allocated to NSERC in Budget 2011 (see the June 2011 issue of Contact for the complete list) included $15 million "to support outstanding research in the natural sciences and engineering fields, such as the Strategy for Partnerships and Innovation (SPI)." NSERC plans to devote half of this money to enhance the Discovery Grants of early career researchers (ECR) in the form of supplements to their grants. ECRs were identified through consultations as the group that would most benefit from additional resources, kick-starting their research by allowing them to assemble strong teams early on and establish high-quality programs. The other half of the new funding will be used for SPI-related partnership initiatives, in particular Engage Grants, Collaborative R&D Grants and Industrial Research Chairs.

New general inquiries line for NSERC

A toll-free general inquiries line has been implemented to make NSERC more accessible. Callers can now reach NSERC free of charge by calling 1-855-275-2861. The Contact Us page of the NSERC Web site has been updated to reflect this new information. The new telephone number offers the option of hearing NSERC's mailing address or being redirected to one of the following areas: On-line Services Helpdesk, Research Grants and Scholarships Directorate, or Research Partnerships Programs Directorate. This service is consistent with the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, which requires federal institutions to be visible, accessible and accountable to their constituents.

Discovery Grant application numbers rise again

NSERC expects the number of applications submitted for Discovery Grants to increase again this year. Almost 3,900 Notification of Intent forms were received by the August 1 deadline. In the 2011 and 2010 competitions, NSERC received 3,482 applications and 3,300 applications, respectively.

Communications Resource Centre updated

NSERC has recently updated and improved its on-line Communications Resource Centre to better serve our communications colleagues at universities and colleges across Canada. The Centre provides communications professionals with an opportunity to share information, stories and ideas with NSERC's communications staff and with their colleagues at other universities and colleges. It is designed as a platform to support communications efforts and to help share news about the exciting research being conducted by scientists and engineers at Canadian institutions. To access the Centre, please contact

Call for applications: New Industrial Research Chairs for Colleges

NSERC is now accepting applications for the new Industrial Research Chairs for Colleges (IRCC) Grants. These Chairs support applied research leaders at colleges who will help deliver innovative solutions to local companies. The initiative will also help enhance faculty and staff participation in applied research, increase opportunities for students to gain industrial problem-solving experience, and increase knowledge and technology transfer between colleges and companies.

Chair candidates can be an existing faculty member, staff member, or an external individual—such as an applied research leader in business, whom the college intends to hire once awarded an IRCC grant. These grants will range from $100,000 to $200,000 annually and will be offered in five-year terms. The deadline for applications is November 30, 2011.

For more information, please review the IRCC Grants description.

Framework on responsible conduct of research expected in December

The consultation period for the draft Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research has ended, and the agencies are reviewing the submissions received from the community. A final version of the Framework is expected to be available by December 2011. NSERC, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council thank all those who provided their feedback on the draft document.

Partnership Web site revamped

Researchers who are involved in, or considering, research partnerships with industry are invited to visit NSERC's revamped partnership Web site, The site contains resources and links to help facilitate and sustain successful relationships between post-secondary institutions and industry. The improved navigation and updated stories provide easy access to information about the mutual benefits of partnerships, descriptions of the various types of grants offered by NSERC, and impact stories that illustrate successful partnerships.