NSERC Discovery Horizons Webinar


NSERC invites interested applicants to their upcoming webinar for the NSERC Discovery Horizons pilot program. No registration is required and interested applicants may join the webinar via the Microsoft Teams links below.

A short presentation of the program will precede a Q&A session. 

Furthermore, NSERC would like to share with you some answers to frequently asked questions:

Can applicants who hold a Discovery Grant submit a LOI to Discovery Horizons? Given the hyper competition seen in the first 2 years of the Discovery Horizons pilot (842 and 411 Letters of Intent received in year 1 and year 2 respectively) and the overall goals of the program, we aligned the Discovery Horizons pilot with the Discovery Grants program in year 3. Active DG holders are therefore not eligible. However, if their DG expires in 2025 or are automatically extended without additional NSERC funds, they can apply to DH.

Can applicant and co-applicant who hold a Discovery Horizons grant since 2022 and 2023 apply to Discovery Grants in future years? The change in eligibility is forward facing only, meaning that grantees from the 2022 and 2023 DH competition are still eligible to apply to the DG program while holding their DH grant.

Can applicants who are applying for a Discovery Grant in Fall 2024 submit a LOI to Discovery Horizons? Individuals can apply to both programs, i.e. submit an LOI to DH and a NOI to DG, but those invited to submit a full proposal to DH will have to choose which program they would like to submit a full application, depending on the nature of the proposed research.

Can applicants who hold a Discovery Development Grant submit a LOI to Discovery Horizons? Yes, those holding a Discovery Development Grant are eligible to apply for Discovery Horizons.

Can co-applicants be from non-NSE disciplines (Economics, Sociology …)? As long as the faculty members meet all eligibility requirements they can be from any departments. However, in the Discovery Horizons proposal, they must work towards advancing knowledge in the NSE.

Can outstanding Discovery Grant installments be declined to accept Discovery Horizons funding? DG holders must terminate their DGs before the June 14th deadline for submission of a Letter of Intent to DH. Termination of a grant is final, should their DH LOI or application not be successful, they will not be able to reinstate their DG grant, nor will they be able to apply to the current DG competition. They will have to wait till next summer to apply to either DG or DH program again.

Can applicants hold a Discovery Horizons and a Discovery Grant, Subatomic Physics (SAP) individual or SAP project fund? SAP Individual and SAP Project funds holders are not eligible to apply for DH.

Is it mandatory for applicants to have research activities involving Indigenous peoples and communities? Applicants are welcome to submit applications involving Indigenous peoples and communities, but it is not a mandatory requirement for Discovery Horizons.

Does the application need to have all three components: (1) social sciences and humanities, (2) natural sciences and engineering, and (3) health and wellness? No, Discovery Horizons applications must be rooted in the NSE and integrate elements from the social sciences and humanities and/or health and wellness.

How does the Discovery Horizons Program and the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review process differ from the interdisciplinary research funded under the New Frontiers in Research Fund? Although the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF) was also created to fund interdisciplinary research in response to the Fundamental Science Review’s recommendations, it is focused on high-risk, high-reward, and fast-breaking research and supports research that proposes novel interdisciplinary approaches that bring together disciplines that do not traditionally work together. Please see the New Frontiers in Research Fund website for more details. Discovery Horizons, as well the other funding opportunities reviewed by the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee will complement NFRF by focusing instead on investigator-initiated interdisciplinary research projects that are aligned with the core funding programs at each of the three major funding councils, including research projects that use existing interdisciplinary approaches.

Can I submit the same application to more than one of the funding opportunities participating in the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee? No, applicants may not submit identical or essentially identical applications to more than one funding opportunity participating in the pilot of the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee, NSERC’s Discovery Horizons, SSHRC’s Insight Grants and CIHR’s Project Grants. In addition, all applications must meet the eligibility requirements and guidelines of the funding opportunity to which they apply, including those related to multiple applications. As a result, it is important to consult the funding opportunity’s web page.

How do I determine which funding opportunity to apply in order to have my application reviewed by the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee? Applicants should apply to the agency funding opportunity that supports the dominant research area of the proposal.

Will interdisciplinary applications that fall entirely within the research areas of one agency be considered by the Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee? No, applications that fall entirely within the research areas of one agency should be directed towards existing committees or evaluation groups, based on the practice and criteria of each agency. For example, interdisciplinary research solely within the natural sciences and engineering, with no social science, humanities, health, and/or wellness components should be directed towards another NSERC program, such as the Discovery Grants Program.

Can a non-NSE applicant be the lead applicant on the Discovery Horizons Application? Assuming that they meet all the eligibility criteria, yes, a non-NSE researcher together with NSE researcher(s) may be eligible to apply for an NSERC Discovery Horizons grant as long as the research activities proposed respond to the three objectives of the NSERC Discovery Horizons pilot Program. For eligibility related questions you may contact ELIGIBILITY@NSERC-CRSNG.GC.CA

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