MRI - Ontario Research Fund - Research Excellence


The Ontario Research Excellent Fund (ORF-RE) 

For More Information


The Ontario Research Excellent Fund (ORF-RE) promotes research excellence of strategic value in Ontario by supporting new leading-edge, transformative, and internationally significant research. The ORF-RE focuses of scientific excellence and strong benefits to Ontarians.

Funding Availability

The ORF-RE will contribute towards eligible operating costs of an approved research project to a maximum of 1/3 of the total project costs, with the remaining 2/3 coming from a combination of institutional and private sector contributions.

The minimum support provided by the ORF-RE to a project is $1 million. The maximum support provided is $4 million. 

Indirect costs are charged at 40% of the ORF-RE cash contribution and are included in the maximum support provided by the province.  Standard University policies apply to indirect charges on matching funds from partners. 

Eligible Costs

  • Direct operating costs including salaries and benefits
  • Limited costs for facilities and equipment (up to 10% of total direct costs)
  • Other direct research costs such as materials, fieldwork expenses, and dissemination of research
  • Management & Administration (up to 5% of total direct costs)

Eligible Projects

Round 8 is a general funding round and is open to all disciplines. However, the Ministry encourages applications in three focus areas:

  • Bio-economy & clean technologies
  • Advanced health technologies
  • Digital media information & communication technologies

Evaluation Criteria

  • Research Excellence: scientific merit, quality of research, and expertise of research team
  • Research Impact: Anticipated value to Ontarians in the following three categories:
    • Commercialization
    • Economic Benefits
    • Societal Benefits
  • Research Translation: Strategy for achieving Research Impact
  • Project Management and Governance: management of the project, including governance structure, sustainability, budget and milestones

Special Notes

An information session for interested applicants will take place Tuesday, June 23 from 3-4 p.m.  Ministry personnel will be attendance.  (Additional information workshops are taking place in the region in June and July for those who cannot attend the Guelph session on June 23.)  For more information, contact

How to Apply

  1. Researchers must communicate their intent to apply to their Associate Dean of Research (ADR).
  2. Researchers must complete a Notice of Intent (NOI) along with an OR-5 form for the Research Excellence program. NOIs are not binding and will not be assessed by the Ministry. Applicants must submit their NOI through the Office of Research; NOIs submitted by individual investigators will not be accepted.
  3. OR-5s and NOIs must be submitted to Sarah Bates ( ) in the Office of Research no later than 4:00pm on July 24, 2015.
  4. Full completed applications, including all supporting documentation must be submitted to Sarah Bates ( ) in the Office of Research no later than 4:00pm on December 8, 2015.  The Office of Research will coordinate an internal review prior to the external deadline of January 19, 2016.
For Questions, please contact

Office of Research

Carolyn Osborn, Director, Grants & Contracts
Research Services Office
519-824-4120 x52935

Alert Classifications
Funding Opportunities and Sponsor News

Health and Life Sciences
Information and Communications Technology
Social Sciences