NSERC Alliance - OCE VIP Partnership for Industry (SME)-Academic Collaboration


Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE)


NSERC Alliance and Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) Voucher for Innovation and Productivity (VIP)

For More Information

A summary is included below and, for full details on eligibility and guidelines, please refer to the VIP program website, NSERC Alliance/VIP website


In partnership, NSERC Alliance / Engage grants and OCE’s Voucher for Innovation and Productivity (VIP) will support post-secondary R&D collaborations with the highest potential for regional economic development and commercialization in Ontario. The streamlined joint application and decision process enables companies to quickly undertake new research collaborations with Ontario-based researchers and have their cash contribution leveraged by both NSERC and OCE. The mutually beneficial projects are expected to result in economic benefits to the company and to Ontario and build impactful longer term collaborations between the researcher and the company. 


  • You must meet NSERC’s eligibility criteria when you apply and when funding is released.
  • You must be a faculty from an eligible Ontario-based university with an active OCE or NSERC peer-reviewed grant.
  • You are encouraged to collaborate with experts in fields other than the natural sciences and engineering, where appropriate, since implementing policy or applying the research results can depend on socioeconomic considerations as well as scientific understanding. Academic researchers outside the natural sciences and engineering may participate in proposals as co-applicants if they meet NSERC’s eligibility requirements for the type, duration and nature of the appointment. Research costs for these collaborations may account for up to 30 percent of the project costs and must be identified in the project budget.
  • Industry partner must be a SME, 2 yr incorporated in Ontario, with 5-499 FTE

Maximum Project Value

$75,000 over 12 months

Contribution: OCE:  $20,000 - 30,000; NSERC: $20,000 - 30,000

Industry Partner Matching (minimum): $20,000 - 30,000 (minimum 50% must be spent at the post-secondary institution)

Sector: All

Indirect Costs

0% - indirect costs will be waived only on industry funding that has not been spent more than three (3) months prior to the date the application is submitted to the sponsor (or according to the applicable sponsor program guidelines for the eligible matching funding)

Project Duration

up to 12 months

How to Apply

The opportunity will undergo an initial vetting and due diligence assessment by OCE Business Development Manager to ensure that opportunities fulfill all eligibility criteria and are suitable. If the opportunity is selected as eligible and suitable, you will be sent the required Proposal template for VIP Alliance.

Next, fill out the VIP Alliance proposal template provided by OCE using a maximum of 6 pages and following the instructions for completing an Alliance grant application. Submit your completed application and supporting documents, including the Personal data form with Common CV attachment for the applicant and all co-applicants, through NSERC’s online system. Your contact person will be invited through the online system to provide information about the partner organization following the partner organization instructions. A letter of support is not needed. For assistance with the partner documents and facilitation with the industry partner, please reach out to Vanja Banks, Industry Liaison Manager (vbanks@uoguelph.ca) or Blake Helka, Industry Liaison Officer (bhelka@uoguelph.ca) at the research Innovation Office.

Consult the Alliance grant application checklist for a summary of information that needs to be addressed in a completed application.

For Questions, please contact

For further questions regarding program guidelines, eligibility, and submitting the online application, please contact OCE Business Development Manager:

John Chiappetta
Business Development and Commercialization Manager

Office of Research

Gregor Lawson, Senior Grants and Contracts Specialist
Office of Research Services
519-824-4120 x54807

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