Pre-announcement: Healthy Cities Implementation Science Team Grants

The launch of the Healthy Cities Implementation Science Team Grants was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is now anticipated to launch in Spring 2021. Sign up for our mailing list to be notified when the competition launches.

Dear colleagues,

As outlined in our first message and on the Healthy Cities Research Initiative (HCRI) website, the HCRI is made up of several foundational funding opportunities and two marquee funding opportunities. One of these latter opportunities – the Healthy Cities Research Training Platform – launched this past summer. The second opportunity, our Healthy Cities Implementation Science Team Grants, is anticipated to launch in the next few months. Given the size and scope of this funding opportunity, we wanted to share some of the details right away to give potential applicants as much time to prepare as possible.

The Healthy Cities Implementation Science Team Grants are focused on the interdisciplinary field of implementation science, which studies different methods and strategies to promote the successful adoption, integration and scale-up and out of evidence-based interventions. To put it simply – we are looking to support research on what works in which urban contexts, for whom, how and why. Successful implementation of solutions that have a positive impact on health, well-being and health equity remains a substantial challenge in healthy cities research, and this opportunity aims to support the implementation of evidence-based interventions across various real-world settings that will improve the health of Canadians.

The team grants will have six areas of focus: 1) healthcare systems, services and policies; 2) healthy aging; 3) musculoskeletal health (including skin and oral health); 4) population and public health; 5) type 2 diabetes; and 6) urban Indigenous health. For each area of focus, there will be one grant available of up to $3 million each over 6 years. Teams will be expected to identify an intervention that has already been successfully piloted and plan an ambitious research project to study the roll-out of that (or a similar) intervention in a minimum of two Canadian municipalities using an implementation science approach. As for the application process, there will be two stages: a Letter-of-Intent (LOI) stage and a full application stage. Principal applicants at the LOI stage must include two scientific leads who, combined, have expertise in implementation science and their chosen thematic area, as well as one knowledge user representing at least one municipality involved in the project. In addition to the principal applicants, there must be two co-applicants at the LOI stage: an early career researcher, and a sex and gender champion.

In order to facilitate the building of the teams that will be necessary to undertake this type of implementation science research, we have created the HCRI linkage tool. Researchers, implementers, community organizations, municipalities and more can use this tool to indicate their area of work and their interest in participating in the development of team grant proposals. We hope this tool will make it easier for interested researchers and municipalities to connect, enabling a more efficient building of teams.

As mentioned above, successful applicants will be expected to conduct their research in a minimum of two municipalities. Although this is more challenging than working in one geographical area, we believe it is necessary to achieve the goal of better understanding how context is relevant to the successful implementation of various interventions and the likelihood that they result in positive and equitable health outcomes. This includes understanding how specific interventions can be better adapted to different regions, ages, cultures, genders, or conditions, and, if applicable, how the interventions can be scaled-up within and across cities given each city’s unique social, political, economic and cultural context.

We will release more specific information about this funding opportunity when we formally launch it in the near future. In the meantime, we encourage researchers, municipalities and other interested parties to connect through the linkage tool.

Thank you,

Steven J. Hoffman JD PhD LLD | @shoffmania
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Population & Public Health

Carrie Bourassa, BA MA PhD@goaliegirlmom31
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Indigenous Peoples' Health

Rick Glazier MD MPH CCFP FCFP@RickGlazier1
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Health Services and Policy Research

Karim Khan MD PhD MBA@KarimKhan_IMHA
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis

Norman Rosenblum MD FRCPC@normrosenblum
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism, and Diabetes

Jane Rylett PhD@j_rylett
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Aging

Cara Tannenbaum MD MSc@CIHRIGH
Scientific Director, CIHR Institute of Gender and Health

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