Organizational structure


The CIHR Act outlines a framework for the organizational establishment of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), its governance infrastructure, responsibilities of the President and Governing Council and establishment of the CIHR Institutes.

CIHR is led by its President. Overall strategic directions are set by its Governing Council, which has a mandate to oversee the direction and management of the property, business and affairs of CIHR.

The Science Council (SC) is a management committee that develops, implements and reports on CIHR's research and knowledge translation strategy, in accordance with the CIHR Act and the overarching strategic directions set out by Governing Council. This includes approving funding for all research and knowledge translation initiatives.

Day-to-day management of CIHR is led by the Executive Management Committee.

CIHR has created a University Delegates' Network to keep the health research community informed of directions, initiatives and decisions of CIHR, and solicit their active participation or awareness.


CIHR consists of 13 "virtual" institutes and three business portfolios. The Institutes and the portfolios work together to deliver our mandate.


CIHR's institutes bring together all partners in the research process – the people who fund research, those who carry it out and those who use its results – to share ideas and focus on what Canadians need: good health and the means to prevent disease and fight it when it happens. Each institute supports a broad spectrum of research in its topic areas and, in consultation with its stakeholders, sets priorities for research in those areas.

Each of CIHR's 13 Institutes is led by a Scientific Director, supported by an Institute Advisory Board.


CIHR has three business portfolios:

  • Research, Knowledge Translation and Ethics (RKTE) is responsible for the design, development and administration of CIHR's funding programs and corporate science policies. RKTE consists of the following Branches:

    • Program Design and Delivery
    • Initiative Management and Institute Support
    • Science Policy
    • Operations Support
  • Governance and External Relations (GER) engages stakeholders, builds partnerships and supports CIHR's Institutes in order to maximize the impact of Canadian health research. GER consists of:

  • Resource Planning and Management (RPM) oversees CIHR's finances, human resources, and information technology and monitors and reports on our performance. RPM consists of:

    • Human Resources
    • Finance and Administration
    • Information Management, Technology and Security
    • Performance and Accountability
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