Are you a federal employee applying for Tri-Agency funding?

While collaboration between Canada’s granting agencies, the public sector, and the academic sector is important for strengthening the Canadian research ecosystem, government policy stipulates that there are limits on awarding grants to applicants who are employed by the federal government.

The Tri-Agency policy states that:

  • If the applicant’s proposed research falls outside their federal employer’s mandate and will not be performed using federal facilities or resources (i.e., a space that uses federally funded equipment, research personnel, or other resources), it will be deemed eligible;
  • If the applicant’s proposed research falls within their federal employer’s mandate and is performed using federal facilities or resources, it will be assessed by the agencies and funding may be allocated for support of students only (salaries or stipends and travel costs).

Questions?

Visit science.gc.ca to learn more about the Tri-Agency policy on the use of funds for federal government employees applying to granting agency programs. Visit the CIHR Application Administration Guide for more information on the roles and responsibilities and overarching requirements that govern the administration of CIHR funding applications, or reach out to the CIHR Contact Centre at support-soutien@cihr-irsc.gc.ca.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who does this policy apply to?

    This policy applies specifically to Nominated Principal Applicants (NPAs) on CIHR grant funding applications who are employed by the federal government. It does not apply to trainees seeking scholarship or fellowship support.

    Federal employees may continue to be included on applications in other roles without restriction (e.g. Principal Applicant, Co-Applicant).

  • Does my research fall within my federal employer’s mandate?

    Many Government of Canada science-based departments and agencies include health research within their mandates. If you work at one of these departments or agencies, a health research proposal is considered to fall within your federal employer’s mandate whether or not the proposed work is within your assigned duties and responsibilities.

  • I hold an affiliated academic position. Which institution should I list on my application materials?

    You must list your federal employer as your Primary Affiliation on the Common CV (or equivalent) included in your funding application. Your affiliated academic institution may be listed as the Institution Paid. Failure to observe these guidelines may result in the rejection of your application.

  • Does my research proposal use federal facilities and resources?

    If your proposed research is to be performed in a space that uses federally funded equipment, research personnel, or other resources, whether shared with an academic institution or some other organization, it will be deemed to be using federal facilities and resources. CIHR may request confirmation from an official at the department or agency that the research proposal does not use federal facilities or resources.

  • What is the rationale for this policy?

    This policy ensures that CIHR aligns with Government of Canada rules that prohibit one federal department or agency from transferring goods and services (including grants) to another. The policy is flexible so that government grant funding can continue to benefit trainees and provide access to high-quality training environments found in federal facilities.

  • Can federal employees continue to hold existing CIHR grants?

    Yes. Existing CIHR grants may continue to be held until their expiry date. Please reach out to the CIHR Contact Centre if you have any questions: support-soutien@cihr-irsc.gc.ca

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