In the EMPOWER Awards III, OSSU is soliciting proposals that relate patient-partnered and citizen/public engaged research that has the capacity to deliver impacts related to COVID-19 challenges in Ontario. The original patient partnered research need not be on the subject of COVID-19 itself, but the application and impact of the work should be relevant to the needs of stakeholders in the province (from patients, to healthcare practitioners, to health policy and the health system).

OSSU is inviting proposals from qualified research teams who can demonstrate the patient-oriented health research they have undertaken (or are undertaking) with patient partners in the last two years that would benefit from an injection of knowledge translation and/or implementation funding to empower the research to impacts related to the COVID-19 challenges being faced in the province.

Specific funding requirements may be found on the OSSU-EMPOWER Awards document.


In order to be eligible for this funding opportunity, proposals must identify:

  • That the initial research to be translated can demonstrate meaningful patient partnership;
  • That the initial research to be translated is clearly applicable to COVID-19 challenges in Ontario;
  • That the initial research to be translated was NOT funded by the Ontario SPOR SUPPORT Unit as part of its IMPACT Award demonstration projects;
  • That the proposed research and knowledge translation team incorporates patient partnership in the proposed activities; and,
  • That the nominated principal applicant (NPI) is associated with a CIHR-eligible institution to whom OSSU funds can be flowed.

The OSSU EMPOWER Awards are NOT to supplement research activity funding or to conduct further research based on the initial patient-oriented research project.


OSSU will allocate up to $25,000 for the period October 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021, for up to eight (8) awards.

Special Notes

Please note that research activities carried out in the context of COVID-19 need to adhere to the University of Guelph COVID-19 research principles, policies, guidelines and processes as they may be updated from time to time and communicated on the Office of Research web-page.


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

External Deadline

Please submit the nomination electronically to OSSU via email to ossu@ossu.ca to by the external deadline. Please also submit a copy of the full nomination and OR-5 to research.services@uoguelph.ca.

How to Apply

Proposals are to be submitted electronically to OSSU via email to ossu@ossu.ca Proposals should involve two documents:

  1. A five page workplan
  2. Budget using the OSSU budget template provided

The document templates may be accessed on the EMPOWER Awards phase III webpage.

Please also submit a copy of the full nomination and OR-5 to research.services@uoguelph.ca by the external deadline.

For More Information

For more information, contact stratprg@uoguelph.ca or Eddy Nason at eddynason@ossu.ca

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Honours and Awards

Health and Life Sciences
Social Sciences