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May 2013 - Volume 37 No. 2

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In this issue

Connect with NSERC: Community Engagement Visits

Isabelle Blain, Vice-President of Research Grants and Scholarships Directorate at NSERC, along with other grants and scholarships representatives, have begun travelling to regions across Canada to engage with researchers, students, administrators and other stakeholders. These Connect with NSERC: Community Engagement Visits will provide our community with an opportunity to share feedback and ask questions about some of NSERCís key activities and programs.

A list of upcoming visits are presented on the Connect with NSERC Web page and any comments or questions about this tour can be directed to

Upcoming NSERC deadlines

Janet Walden, Chief Operating Officer of NSERC

One month into the role of Chief Operating Officer, Janet Walden is strategically promoting NSERC's investments in people, discovery and innovation. She is also responsible for managing all aspects of the Council's staff and operations, assuming all duties of the President as outlined in the This link will take you to another Web site Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Act.

You may continue to reach the President's Office via e-mail at and by telephone at 613-995-5840.

Please visit the President's Desk and Executive Team pages on NSERC's Web site to learn more. Stay tuned for an interview with Janet Walden to be posted in the coming weeks.

While Janet Walden fulfills the role of Chief Operating Officer, Barbara Muir will act as Vice-President, Research Partnerships Programs, until July 15, 2013. Pamela Moss will then occupy the role for the remainder of Janet Walden's reassignment.

Submission Process Made Easy with New Research Portal

Following the official release of the NSERC Common CV (CCV) template on April 24, 2013, the This link will take you to another Web site Research Portal is now available to the research community for:

  • the Notification of Intent to Apply for a Discovery Grant (Individual and Team); and
  • the Notification of Intent to Apply for the following elements of the Subatomic Physics Grants suite:
    • Discovery Grants (Individual, Team and Project);
    • Research Tools and Instruments (Categories 2 and 3); and
    • Major Resources Support.

Deadline information and application instructions are available on NSERCís Web site. These changes apply to applicants and co-applicants.

Full applications for the 2014 Discovery Grants and all Subatomic Physics Grants competition (submissions in Fall 2013) will also use the This link will take you to another Web site Research Portal and the NSERC CCV.


We are confident that together, the This link will take you to another Web site Research Portal and the CCV will improve the application and peer review processes, and provide students, researchers and partners with a better way to manage their interactions with NSERC. The new portal also:

  • Provides a single point of entry for all of NSERCís interactions with applicants, reviewers, committee members, institutions and partners.
  • Manages application and peer review processes, acceptance of awards, notification of results and reporting.
  • Uses a proven software platform that has been tailored to the needs of NSERCís community.
  • Complies with the Government of Canadaís standards for accessibility, usability and interoperability.

Other NSERC Programs

  • Other funding opportunities will continue to use the On-line System and Form 100 until they are migrated to the Research Portal and the CCV.
  • Applicants will be notified in advance of the dates when other NSERC programs will migrateóall are expected to be integrated by late 2015.
  • In the meantime, applicants to multiple NSERC programs will use both the Research Portal and the On-line System as necessary, and maintain their Form 100 and NSERC CCV.


Contact the On-line Services Helpdesk by e-mail at or by telephone at 613-995-4273 for support with the Research Portal and/or the NSERC CCV.

Your Feedback

We are committed to providing quality service and thank you for your collaboration as we work to modernize our systems. Visit the Research Portal page on NSERCís Web site for more information, including frequently asked questions.

Award for Science Promotion Winners

NSERC recently announced both the individual and group winners of the Awards for Science Promotion. Thomas Keenan from the University of Calgary and the Tomatosphere Project were recognized for their outstanding contribution to the promotion of science in Canada through activities encouraging popular interest in science among youth. For more information on the winners, visit the Current Winners 2012 NSERC Awards for Science Promotion page.

Update on the Five-year Evaluation of the Discovery Grants Program

As you may know, NSERC has launched the next five-year review of the Discovery Grants (DG) program. To date, we have surveyed DG holders, applicants and highly qualified personnel and have sought input from scientific societies and university administrators across the country. Next steps will include a survey and interviews with Evaluation Group members and chairs, followed by a thorough analysis of data, statistics and bibliometric information. These activities will culminate with a meeting of an international panel of experts to review the findings and with a report on the evaluation in early 2014.

Roundtable on the July 2012 CCA Report - Informing Research Choices: Indicators and Judgment

NSERC recently hosted a roundtable discussion with stakeholders from the research community to review This link will take you to another Web site the report , the input gathered from the on-line survey and the briefs received from discipline-based groups and other stakeholders. The goal of the roundtable was to provide concrete advice to NSERC relative to key policy issues and questions about allocating the budget of the Discovery Grants program among Evaluation Groups.

Strategy for Partnerships and Innovation Interim Progress Report

NSERC recently released a report on the progress achieved over the last three years by the Strategy for Partnerships and Innovation. To learn more, visit our This link will take you to another Web site Strategy for Partnerships Web site.

Update on the Harmonization of the Canada Graduate Scholarships Program

As you may know, CIHR, NSERC and SSHRC have formed a Tri-Agency Harmonization Team to redesign the Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS) Master's and Doctoral Programs.

The team has been actively engaging stakeholders including deans, students, researchers, research administrators and student liaison officers. It has also been working closely with relevant groups and associations to gather their feedback on plans to harmonize the CGS Program. In fact, a survey geared at research administrators and student liaison officers was recently launched, allowing them to chime in on the design and implementation of a new model for the CGS Program. A summary report of the consultation will be available through our Web site in the spring.

In addition to these outreach activities, the team established an Advisory Committee that will provide advice on issues related to the design and implementation of a new model of delivery for the CGS Program.

If you have not had an opportunity to provide feedback and would like to, we invite you to review the National Consultation Paper, and respond via e-mail to the questions at the bottom of the document. Send us your comments and feedback at

Women in Science and Engineering: Training on Generating Media Coverage

In Canada, fewer than 20 percent of mainstream media opinion and editorial articles are penned by women. Print and television mediums are constantly searching for female specialists from various fields of expertise to weigh-in on issues of the day and to put forward considered and scholarly views.

As part of the Maximizing Opportunities for Women Science and Engineering Leaders initiative, NSERC has partnered with op-ed writer and former Editorial Board member Shari Graydon to host a series of one-day, regional workshops that will help women researchers hone their skills and learn how to promote their research to inform and heighten the public dialogue on key issues that affect us all.

NCE launches competition to fund new CECR commercialization centres

The Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) has launched a competition for new funding under its innovative Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program. The program funds centres that bridge the challenging gap between innovation and commercialization. CECRs match clusters of research expertise with the business community to share the knowledge and resources that bring innovations to market faster. Notifications of Intent, the first stage of the three-part review process, are due June 14, 2013. Visit the This link will take you to another Web site NCE Web site for more information, or contact Danielle Arsenault at or at 613-947-4501.