Ontario Human Capital Research and Innovation Fund (OHCRIF)


Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD)


Ontario Human Capital Research and Innovation Fund (OHCRIF)


The Ontario Human Capital Research and Innovation Fund (OHCRIF) is a Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD) program that supports research and innovation activities, to identify better ways to help people prepare for, return to or keep employment and become productive participants in the labour force.

The primary goal of the OHCRIF is to support research and innovation projects that identify better ways to help people prepare for, return to or keep employment and become productive participants in the labour force.

OHCRIF will fund research to enhance the evidence base for workforce development strategies, ideas and approaches to support the positive participation of Ontarians in the labour market to help them better plan for and respond to the needs of employers.


Eligible Organizations

Proposals may be submitted by the following types of organizations:

  • Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology
  • Employers, industry associations, unions, and workforce development partners
  • First Nations governments
  • Indigenous Institutes
  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • Ontario publicly assisted universities
  • Ontario school boards
  • Private career colleges

Proposals may be submitted by a single organization or as a partnership between organizations (i.e., a consortium). However, partnerships must identify a lead organization (intermediary) that will be accountable to the Ministry for Project activities

Eligible Projects

All Projects must include a literature review, inter-jurisdictional review, and/or environmental scan to create a strong evidence base for the research development process.

Projects that meet the following criteria will be eligible:

  • Inquiry Projects: An issue is identified, data is collected from multiple sources, and analysis is conducted:
    • Projects can be case studies, data, discourse or document analysis, or evaluation studies. Projects are expected to include a primary qualitative or quantitative research using single, mixed, or multiple research methods.
  • Impact Projects: A large-scale inquiry project that includes an assessment of workforce development and/or industry challenges, the development of an approach or solution, and an assessment of the potential impact with implementation on a provincial level:
    • Projects can include cross-sectional and longitudinal studies, large data set analysis, or inter-disciplinary collaborative projects.

Additional information on eligible Research themes can be found in the program guidelines.

Funding Availability

The total available funding for this call is $1.5 million

Maximum Project Value

MLTSD expects that Inquiry Projects will not require more than $100,000 total in funding and Impact Projects will not require more than $250,000 total in funding.

Reasonable upward adjustments may be negotiated where the application provides a strong, demonstrated rationale for additional funding based on the nature of the proposal.

The funding will be allocated based on eligible costs and through a competitive process based on the evaluation of the proposals.

Indirect Costs


Project Duration

Projects approved for funding must be completed by March 31, 2021.

Special Notes

All research using funding from OHCRIF must abide by Creative Common’s Attribution 4.0 International License/ (CC BY 4.0) https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. Under this agreement, intellectual property remains with its creator, but others are free to copy, redistribute, transform, and/ or build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially. However, the ministry will consider requests for exempting projects from this requirement if applicants can provide a clear and compelling rationale to support such a request.


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

Internal Deadline

Please submit a signed OR-5 form and full application to research.services@uoguelph.ca at least one week prior to the external deadline 

External Deadline

Completed application and additional relevant information should be submitted via e-mail to OHCRIF@ontario.ca.

How to Apply

Applicants can download the application form on the Employment Ontario Partners’ Gateway Website and any additional relevant information may be attached as appendices to the completed application, if required and submitted to OHCRIF@ontario.ca.


PDF icon Program Guidelines174.69 KB
PDF icon Application Form248.16 KB
For Questions, please contact

For questions regarding the submission process, please contact OHCRIF@ontario.ca.

Office of Research

Gregor Lawson, Industry Liaison Manager
Research Innovation Office
519-824-4120 x54807

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