SSHRC Impact Awards 2018 competition

Updated Information
  • Internal Deadline: From February 6, 2018 to January 8, 2018
  • Internal deadline information
  • Contact information


Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)


SSHRC Impact Awards are designed to build on and sustain Canada’s research-based knowledge culture in the social sciences and humanities. The awards recognize outstanding researchers and celebrate their achievements in research, research training, knowledge mobilization and outreach activities funded partially or completely by SSHRC. 

Award funds are to be used for activities that promote and extend the work being honoured. In recognition of the crucial role that postsecondary institutions play as researchers’ knowledge mobilization partners, at least 10 per cent of each award must be used to promote the recipient’s research achievements. Individual recipients and their institutions may choose to devote additional funds, including a higher percentage of the award funds, to these activities.

A multidisciplinary jury made up of distinguished individuals from academia, as well as the private, not-for-profit and public sectors, from Canada and abroad,will select award recipients according to the selection criteria associated with each of the five awards listed below.

Prior to announcing the award winners, SSHRC will disclose the names of the finalists for all awards but the Gold Medal. Nominees must, as part of the nomination package, consent to SSHRC using their name and nomination information in related promotional activities.

Each institution may submit only one nomination for each award in a given year. 

The Office of Research Services will hold a competition for four of the SSHRC Impact Awards: 

Gold Medal ($100,000) The Gold Medal is SSHRC’s highest research honour. It is awarded to an individual whose sustained leadership, dedication and originality of thought have inspired students and colleagues alike.  The recipient’s achievements in research must have significantly advanced understanding in their respective fields of research in the social sciences and humanities. The exceptional quality and impact of the recipient’s research, and their ongoing efforts to share the results, of this work must have greatly enriched Canadian society, and contributed to social, cultural, economic and intellectual life in Canada and/or internationally.

Insight Award ($50,000) The Insight Award recognizes outstanding achievement arising from a research project funded partially or completely by SSHRC. It is given to an individual or a team of six people maximum (including the nominee) whose project has significantly contributed to knowledge and understanding about people, societies and the world. The project’s research outcomes must have led to demonstrable impact within the nominee’s fields of research and/or beyond the social sciences and humanities research community.  In the case of a team project, the nominee must be the project’s principal investigator. If successful, this person will receive the award on behalf of the team.

Connection Award ($50,000) The Connection Award recognizes an outstanding SSHRC funded initiative to facilitate the flow and exchange of research knowledge within and/or beyond the social sciences and humanities research community. It is given to an individual or team whose project has engaged the campus and/or wider community, and has generated intellectual, cultural, social and/or economic impacts. In the case of a team project, the nominee must be the applicant / project director for the initiative. If successful, this person will receive the award on behalf of the team.

Partnership Award ($50,000) The Partnership Award recognizes a SSHRC‑funded formal partnership for its outstanding achievement in advancing research,, research training or knowledge mobilization, or developing a new partnership approach to research and/or related activities. It is awarded to a formal partnership that, through mutual co-operation and shared intellectual leadership and resources, has demonstrated impact and influence within and/or beyond the social sciences and humanities research community.  For the Partnership Award, the nominee must be the project director. If successful, this person will receive the award on behalf of the partnership.

More information on the above mentioned awards can be found on the SSHRC Impact Awards website.


A nominee must:

  • be a citizen or permanent resident of Canada at the time of nomination;
  • be an active social sciences and humanities researcher or student;
  • hold or have held SSHRC funding pertinent to the award category;
  • be in good standing with SSHRC;
  • be affiliated with an institution eligible to administer SSHRC funds; and
  • if the recipient of an award, maintain affiliation with an eligible institution for the duration of the award.


  • cannot nominate themselves;
  • can be nominated in two sequential years for the same award, following which two years must pass before they can next be nominated in the same category;
  • can be nominated in only one category in any year; and
  • can be nominated in a subsequent year for a different SSHRC Impact Award

Note: Current members of SSHRC’s governing council, as well as Impact Awards jury members, are not eligible to be nominated.

Special Notes

In response to feedback provided by program stakeholders during the evaluation of the Impact Awards funding opportunity, page limits for the following sections of the nomination package have been reduced:

  • Rationale for the Nomination: two pages maximum instead of four;
  • Information Supporting the Nomination Rationale:
    • Gold Medal: six pages maximum instead of ten;
    • Insight, Connection and Partnership: three pages instead of four;
    • Talent: the page limit remains the same at two pages maximum.


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

Internal Deadline

For Nominations:

To Office of Research Services: Please submit to

  1. Covering letter (confirm eligibility) in the format outlined by SSHRC
  2. Draft information document supporting nomination rationale
  4. Referee Spreadsheet
External Deadline

to sponsor: The Office of Research Services will courier final nomination packages to meet SSHRC’s deadline (postmarked) of March 6, 2018

For more information visit the SSHRC program's website.

How to Apply

Each college is invited to submit up to two (2) nominations for each of the Gold Medal, Insight, Connection and Partnership Awards to the Office of Research Services, by Tuesday February 6, 2018.  Interested nominees should contact their Associate Dean of Research as soon as possible to explore nomination development. For full information on the nomination requirements, please refer to the SSHRC website, in particular the section on “The Nomination Package”. Nomination packages should be forwarded by e-mail to .

Review process:  The Office of Research Services will review all nominations in accordance with the program guidelines and objectives, and will make a recommendation to the Associate Vice-President Research (Research Services) and the Vice-President Research on the nominations to be advanced. Only one nomination for each of the Impact Awards noted above may be forwarded to SSHRC for consideration. The selected nominees/nominators will be notified by Tuesday February 27, 2018 so that the final nomination packages may be prepared.

For Questions, please contact

For further information, please contact Geneviève Truchon, Program Officer in the Research Training Portfolio (

Office of Research

Laurie Gallinger, Awards & Agreements Officer
Research Services Office

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