Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU)
Ontario Research Fund - Research Excellence
For More Information
Please refer to the following webpages:
The Ontario Research Fund – Research Excellence (ORF-RE) provides research institutions with funding to support the operational costs of major projects of strategic value to the province.
The fund provides up to one third of the total value of a project, with the remaining two thirds coming from a combination of private sector and institutional contributions.
ORF-RE Round 12 has two application funding streams:
Stream 1: General – Basic and Applied Research - Link to Ministry Guidelines and Application Form.
- is open to all research disciplines
- funds projects that demonstrate strong commercialization potential, where the innovation is at a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 1 or 2
- funds projects from $500,000 to $2,000,000
- funds projects up to a maximum of 5 years
Stream 2: Targeted – Experimental Research - Link to Ministry Guidelines and Application Form.
- funds projects that demonstrate strong commercialization potential, where the innovation is at a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 3 or higher
- requires collaboration with an Ontario-based company
- funds projects from $300,000 to $2,000,000
- funds projects up to a maximum of 4 years
For both streams, priority will be given to applications focused on:
- automotive (includes electric vehicles)
- artificial intelligence
- critical minerals (includes research that supports Ontario's Ring of Fire)
- life sciences (supports Life Sciences Strategy and leverages funding provided by Canada Biomedical Research Fund stage 2)
- medical devises
- quantum technology
Indirect costs must be included in the total value of funds requested from MCU, and contributed by private sector and institutional partners (40% of direct costs).
This program lasts 4-5 years, depending on the Stream selected.
The Ministry review panel scores applicants on:
- research excellence
- commercialization potential (if applicable)
- strategic value to Ontario
- plan for achieving research impact
- development of research talent
- project management and governance
If College-level review is required, your College will communicate its earlier internal deadlines.
Co-applicants involved in proposals led by another institution - Refer to "Information for Co-applicants" below.
Office of Research Services will submit electronic applications prior to this deadline.
How to Apply
For Principal Investigators from the University of Guelph:
Submit a Notice of Intent (NOI) to firstname.lastname@example.org by June 28, 2023. We will schedule a follow-up meeting to further discuss the program and interim milestones for grant development.
A NOI includes:
- PI name
- Private Sector Partners – identify potential partners
- Identify technology readiness level
- Funding Stream – identify if you will be applying for Stream 1 or Stream 2.
Information For Co-applicants
For Co-Applicants Involved in a Proposal Led by Another Institution:
As soon as you are aware you will be participating in an ORF-RE proposal led by another institution, please notify the Office of Research by emailing email@example.com.
We ask to be notified of your involvement in an ORF-RE application no later than August 9, 2023
Office of Research staff will reach out to you to discuss next steps. Institutional letters of support, budgets etc. will need to be prepared and reviewed.