CIFAR Call for Proposals: AI and COVID-19 Catalyst Grants

Updated Information

Added: Internal Deadline
Date: Friday March 27th, 2020 at 4:30pm.
Notes: Please submit a PDF copy of the application, along with an OR-5 Form to


Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) 


AI and COVID-19 Catalyst Grants


CIFAR is issuing a targeted call for AI and COVID-19 interdisciplinary research collaborations to spark innovative, high-risk/high-reward ideas and projects. CIFAR’s Catalyst Program provides seed funding for time-limited activities. 

Sample topics may include: pathogenicity and/or transmission of COVID-19, AI tools to accelerate vaccine development, or AI applications to advance our understanding of the economic impacts of the COVID-19, among others. 

Examples of eligible catalyst-supported activities include, but are not limited to:

  • Pilot projects
  • Interdisciplinary projects involving trainees
  • Large-scale, team-based grant proposal development


Submission Requirements:

  • Proposals must be submitted jointly by at least two Principal Investigators
  • Must not exceed one page (approx. 500 words).
  • Title and brief description of the project or activity
  • Proposed start date of the activity
  • Name(s) of co-supervised trainee(s) (if applicable/known)
  • Estimated budget (not to exceed $15,000 CAD)

Proposal should describe the potential:

  • Impact on society;
  • Understanding of an aspect of COVID-19;
  • Impact on career development for trainees; and
  • Outputs

Proposals will be reviewed and recommended for funding by CIFAR’s program advisory committee members and international college of reviewers.

Maximum Project Value

Up to $15,000.

Indirect Costs


Special Notes

Please refer to the Office of Research COVID 19 web-page for directives related to research activities at the University of Guelph.


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

Internal Deadline

Please submit a PDF copy of the application, along with an OR-5 Form to

External Deadline

Proposals due to sponsor through CIFAR's website.

How to Apply

For more information on the CIFAR AI Catalyst Grant and how to apply, please visit their website. Successful applicants will be notified on April 6, 2020.

For Questions, please contact

Canadian Institute for Advanced Research
Rachel Parker, Senior Director, Research

Office of Research

Vanessa Knox, Awards and Agreements Officer
Research Services Office
519-824-4120 x53429

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