CCS: Challenge Grants


Canadian Cancer Society (CCS)

For More Information

For additional information, please visit the Canadian Cancer Society site for

  • Program guidelines
  • Application forms
  • Evaluation criteria


The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) is proud to launch a new funding program in support of cancer research across Canada. The Challenge grant program will support cancer research projects across the cancer continuum and across disciplines, with an ultimate goal of solving a problem (i.e. a ‘challenge’) in cancer that will be meaningful to people affected by or at risk of cancer.  Whether culminating in outcomes that have immediate impact (such as a tool, therapeutic, program, policy, or practice change), or those that are more long term in scope (such as an important finding relevant to the biology or etiology of cancer that could eventually be applied to improve outcomes), applicants must clearly articulate the anticipated contribution of their proposed project towards solving the identified challenge, as well as an estimated timeline for success.

Applications from the four pillars of health research (i.e. biomedical; clinical; health services; and social, cultural, environmental and population health) are encouraged, and diversity across career stage, geography, gender and other dimensions of diversity will be a component of the evaluation process. Applications will be rated on inclusive research excellence and relevance to cancer – particularly the likelihood that a project will (eventually) lead to a solution for a relevant problem in cancer.

Applications focused on breast cancer and prostate cancer are encouraged.


An applicant must hold a firm academic position (as a primary appointment) which allows the individual to engage in independent research activities for the duration of the project and includes the ability to supervise trainees and publish research results.

A researcher designated as the Principal Investigator must be based in, or formally affiliated with, an eligible Canadian Host Institution such as a university, research institute or health care agency. Graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research associates, Adjunct Professors or Status only appointments (except where they hold a firm academic position at another Canadian institution), technical support staff, or investigators based outside of Canada are not eligible to be a Principal Investigator. Both the Principal Investigator and executive authorities of the Host Institution are required to agree to the terms of the Host Institution/Canadian Cancer Society Agreement included as part of the application, thereby acknowledging and agreeing to all the responsibilities and obligations outlined in that Agreement.

The person named as the PI remains the PI on a grant for the duration of the grant unless given express permission by the Canadian Cancer Society.

Funding Availability

The approximate funding envelope for this competition is $5.25M per year, or enough to fund at least 35 grants.

Maximum Project Value

$150,000 per year to a maximum of $450,000 per grant

Indirect Costs


Project Duration

Three years

Special Notes

Please note that research activities carried out in the context of COVID-19 need to adhere to the University of Guelph COVID-19 research principles, policies, guidelines and processes as they may be updated from time to time and communicated on the Office of Research web-page.


If College-level review is required, your College will communicate its earlier internal deadlines.

External Deadline

Registration is mandatory: Applicant to create and submit Registration through on line portal EGrAMS

See the abstract registration guide for more details.

Internal Deadline

Application: Applicant to submit a copy of application along with a complete OR5 form to:

External Deadline

Application: Applicant to complete and submit application via EGrAMS 

For Questions, please contact

Contact CCS research staff at

Office of Research

Ornella McCarron, Grants Officer
Research Services Office
519-824-4120 x52832

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