Ontario Genomics: Genomics in Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams (GiSIRT)

Updated Information

Please note the following changes:

External deadline for submitting registration has changed from Thursday, May 30, 2019 - 9:00am to Thursday, May 16, 2019 - 10:00am to submit a draft registration
External deadline for submitting Final Registration by Monday, May 27, 2019 - 10:00am has been added 
Internal deadline has changed from Monday, August 26, 2019 - 4:30pm to Thursday, August 8, 2019 - 4:30pm
External deadline for submitting full application has changed from Wednesday, September 11, 2019 - 9:00am to Friday, August 23, 2019 - 10:00am

Genomics in Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams webinars are being held on March 22 & 25 (English only).​ RSVP links available under "For More Information".



Genome Canada (c/o Ontario Genomics)


Genomics in Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams (GiSIRT)

For More Information

Genomics in Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams webinars are being held on March 22 & 25 (English only).

Program guidelines and access to registration and application forms is available at the following links:


To ensure the effective and responsible translation of innovative genomic applications, Genome Canada has developed the Genomics in Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams Program to facilitate collaborations and dialogue between researchers and other key stakeholders whose sectors stand to be transformed by genomics advances. The uptake of genomic-based innovations can be affected by various social, economic and environmental factors, including legal and regulatory requirements, especially when they represent significant changes to current practices. Thus, this program aims to strengthen the connections between researchers, users and other stakeholders on issues that could impact the uptake and application of genomic technologies, including commercialization. The goal of the team program is to support and enhance GE3LS (Genomics and its Ethical, Environmental, Economic, Legal and Social aspects) research that addresses important and overarching challenges that affect the adoption and uptake of the outcomes from genomics research and/or accelerate the synthesis and dissemination of research pertinent to users, including policy-makers within a sector.

This Request for Applications (RFA) supports proposals under the following three streams with the goal of funding at least one team in each stream:

  • Stream 1: proposals mainly impacting the human health sector.
  • Stream 2: proposals mainly impacting the agriculture/agri-food and/or aquaculture/fisheries sectors.
  • Stream 3: proposals mainly impacting the natural resource (forestry, energy, mining) and/or environment sectors.

Cross-sectorial proposals that address multiple sectors across two or three streams are also eligible to apply.


Eligible research topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Uptake of genomics technologies for mitigation of, and adaptation to, climate change (e.g., risk/benefit analysis of effects of climate change; identification of management strategies for wildlife conservation; development of management frameworks that address related safety, environmental, and regulatory issues).
  • Incorporation of traditional knowledge with local Indigenous stakeholders to gain social license for research activities; implementation of research in a way that recognizes rights, respect, cooperation, and partnership with local Indigenous communities.
  • Challenges and opportunities facing the application of ‘omics technologies to help ensure food security, food safety and sustainable production practices as the world’s population grows (e.g., community well-being, resource management, sustainable development, climate change adaptation; Understanding effects of regulation on new breeding techniques; access and benefit sharing, crop yield models, international treaty frameworks)
  • Exploration of the societal implications of novel technologies such as CRISPR/Gene-editing and Synthetic Biology (e.g., public perception and understanding, public trust, regulatory guidelines, policies and government oversight of these technologies).
  • Examining the barriers and opportunities related to translation of genomics into the clinic (e.g., understanding the health economic evidence for clinical implementation of whole-exome sequencing (WES) and whole-genome sequencing (WGS) for cancers and rare diseases).

To be eligible for this competition, projects must:

  • Respond to the objectives of the Genomics Society Interdisciplinary Research Teams program.
  • Take an interdisciplinary approach to address topics related to the implications of genomics in society (GE3LS research) that will have an impact nationally.
  • Include at least three researchers from different disciplines at the Leader or Co-Investigator level.
  • Demonstrate engagement and integration of appropriate genomic scientists and users. Teams that bring together researchers and users from different regions of the country could have a bigger impact nationally; while this approach is encouraged it is not a requirement.
  • Incorporation of new researchers into the team is encouraged.  New researchers include those that are new to genomics and society as well as early stage investigators (defined as being within five years of their first appointment allowing them to be an eligible individual as per Genome Canada Guidelines). 

All applications must describe, with supporting evidence, the concrete deliverable(s) that will be realized by the end of the funding term that have the potential for subsequent translation into significant social and/or economic benefits for Canada. Deliverables should have practical applicability in as short a time as possible after the end of the funding period and lead to benefits for Canada, taking into consideration what is reasonable for the proposed deliverables. Applications must include a strong plan for knowledge translation and development of benefits. 

While genomic scientist(s) must be included as part of the team, salaries, benefits and associated costs for the performance of wet lab work (defined as activities such as DNA sequencing or protein analysis that generate ‘omics data) are not eligible.

Funding Availability

There is approximately $3 million available from Genome Canada. This will be invested equally in each of the 3 streams defined above with the goal of funding at least one team in each of the three teams.

At least 50% of the project's eligible costs must be obtained through co-funding. Further, at least 50% of that co-funding must be secured by January 2020, with a feasible plan to be submitted describing how the remaining co-funding will be obtained over the term of the project.

Genome Canada’s guidelines for funding must be adhered to throughout the competition and post-award management processes.

Maximum Project Value

Total Genome Canada funding for a project: $500,000 to $1,000,000. Projects requiring less than a total of $500,000 from Genome Canada will not be considered.

There is no limit on the amount of co-funding.

Indirect Costs

0% for funding requested from Genome Canada; indirect costs may apply to Receptor (i.e. industry) collaborator(s). Please contact the Office of Research Services.

Project Duration

Successful teams will be awarded funding for a term of up to four (4) years.

Special Notes

The team will be expected to demonstrate active collaboration with the relevant genomics scientific and User communities in the planning of the research as well as its conduct, and project findings are expected to have the potential to enhance practices or policies within these communities. This may also entail interaction with integrated GE3LS projects funded through Genome Canada’s LSARP competitions. All projects must clearly demonstrate engagement with Users in the development and execution of the research plan in order to help ensure receptor uptake and practical applicability of the research.

“Users” in the context of this program can be defined as those who are able to use the information generated through research to make informed decisions on relevant issues, policies, programs and product development. Examples of User organizations could include industry and industry associations, producer organizations, government departments and regulatory agencies. Individuals from these types of organizations should be included on the team.


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

External Deadline

Deadline for submitting Draft Registration directly to Ontario Genomics.

Note: OR-5 forms and approvals from the Office of Research Services are not required at this eligibility screening stage.

External Deadline

Deadline for submitting Final Registration directly to Ontario Genomics.

Note: OR-5 forms and approvals from the Office of Research Services are not required at this eligibility screening stage.

Internal Deadline

Please submit your Full Application, along with an OR-5 Form to research.services@uoguelph.ca. We kindly request that if you are applying, you reach out to Office of Research Services well in advance of the deadline. We will provide advice and support around co-funding (awards and agreements) and will require time to review the proposal, budget and obtain approvals.

External Deadline

Deadline for submitting full application to Ontario Genomics.

How to Apply

Additional details will be provided on the program website and through consultation with Ontario Genomics staff. 

For Questions, please contact

If you have questions about this program or would like to discuss the fit of your proposal idea within the focus of this program, please contact:

Dennis McCormac, Ph.D., Associate Vice President, Science & Technology
Email: dmccormac@OntarioGenomics.ca
Tel: 416.673.6590

Office of Research

Carolyn Dowling-Osborn, Senior Manager, Grants & Contracts
Research Services Office
519-824-4120 x52935

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