NSERC Alliance Grants - Option 1 Now Fully Operational

Updated Information

NSERC Alliance Option 1 Faculty Session - January 20, 2020 presentation slide deck available below.  


Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)



For More Information

Alliance Grants Webpage


The NSERC Alliance Option 1 Program is now fully operational. 

Alliance grants encourage university researchers to collaborate with partner organizations, which can be from the private, public or not-for-profit sectors. These grants support research projects led by strong, complementary, collaborative teams that will generate new knowledge and accelerate the application of research results to create benefits for Canada.

Research supported by Alliance grants will:

  • generate new knowledge and/or technology to address complex challenges;
  • create economic, social and/or environmental benefits;
  • contribute to Canada’s long-term competitiveness;
  • support public policy;
  • train new researchers in areas that are important to Canada and to the partner organizations;
  • draw on diverse perspectives and skill sets to accelerate the translation and application of research results

For Option 1 specifically, please note the considerations below:

Size of partner organization Type of partnership NSERC Contribution to Project Costs

Large organizations, including private, public and not-for-profit organizations

(500 or more employees globally)

As a sole partner organization or in partnership exclusively with other large organizations

(1:1 leverage)

As a partner with small and medium-sized enterprises such as in a value- or supply-chain relationship, or with other sectors (private, public or not-for-profit)

(2:1 leverage)

Small and medium-sized private, public or not-for-profit organizations

(fewer than 500 employees globally)

As a sole partner organization. or in partnership with other sectors (private, public or not-for-profit)

(2:1 leverage)


If you are a Canadian university researcher who is eligible to receive NSERC funds, you can apply on your own or as a team with co-applicants who are also eligible academic researchers. You must have at least one partner organization (in the private, public or not-for-profit sector) whose cash contributions will be recognized for cost-sharing (see Alliance grants: Role of partner organizations) but you may include other partner organizations who play an important role in your research project whether or not their cash contributions are recognized for cost sharing.

Alliance grants support projects of varying scale and complexity, from short-term smaller projects involving one researcher to long-term projects involving researchers across several universities, and from one-on-one collaborations with one partner organization directly involved in the research to projects involving many partner organizations across multiple sectors.

Maximum Project Value

$20,000 to $1 million per year

Indirect Costs

0% on industry partner funds that are directly leveraged for the NSERC grant and are declared at the time of application submission.

Project Duration

1 to 5 years


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

Internal Deadline

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. OR-5 and full application must be submitted to the Office of Research (research.services@uoguelph.ca) a minimum of two (2) weeks prior to the intended submission date to NSERC. Please be sure to "submit" the application online as well.  

External Deadline

The Office of Research Services will submit the full application on behalf of the applicant to NSERC through their online system. 

How to Apply

  • Fill out the proposal template and the supporting documents, following the instructions for NSERC’s online system.
  • Ask the representative at each of your partner organizations to complete a Partner Organization Form.
    • Applicants must invite their partner organization representative to complete the information online. When completing the Application for a Grant (Form 101), the applicant will provide an email address for the partner organization representative. An invitation with a personalized URL will then be sent to that email address. Once completed by the partner organization representative, the form will be automatically linked to the application. This change will enable:
      • The confirmation of contributions to the project and agreement with the proposal by the partner organization representative;
      • Questions that are tailored to the organization’s sector;
      • The collection of information about the organization directly from the partner organization representative;
  • Submit your completed application, including your Common CV, and the Common CV of any co-applicants, through NSERC’s online system.

The Office of Research Services will review your submission, provide feedback, and work with you to finalize the application for submission to NSERC.

When developing your application, please pay close attention to NSERC's Top Tips document (attached), as well as the Frequently Asked Questions. 

Information For Co-applicants

If you need to meet a deadline set by the lead institution for this opportunity, please ensure that you provide the Office of Research with at least five days in advance of the lead institution’s deadline to review the application, or your proposed component of the project. Please be in touch with the Office of Research (contact information below) ahead of the deadline if it looks like it will be difficult for you to submit all the required documentation on time (i.e. budget, proposal, OR-5 Form).


For Questions, please contact

Contact NSERC at:

Office of Research

Amy Bossaer, Senior Grants and Contracts Specialist
Office of Research, Research Support Services
519-824-4120 x58613

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