CIHR – Foundation Grant: Fall 2016 – Stage 1 *updated info under special notes


Canadian Institutes of Health Research

For More Information

For more information, please go to the sponsor website.  


The Foundation Grant program is designed to contribute to a sustainable foundation of new and established health research leaders, by providing long-term support for the pursuit of innovative and high-impact research programs.

The Foundation Grant program is expected to:

  • Support a broad base of health research leaders across all career stages, areas, and health-related disciplines with a demonstrable track record of excellence and impact in their field of study;
  • Develop and maintain Canadian capacity in health research and other related fields;
  • Provide research leaders with the flexibility to pursue novel and innovative lines of inquiry;
  • Contribute to the creation and application of health-related knowledge through a wide range of research and/or knowledge translation activities, including relevant collaborations.

NOTE:  Any potential researcher planning on submitting a Foundation Grant is strongly encouraged to contact their Associate Dean Research (ADR) to discuss and to consider the objectives of the Foundation Grant Program when making their decision to submit an application to this competition.


Administrative Coordinator must be an independent researcher - Faculty

  • Single applications from multiple Program Leaders will be eligible in the Foundation Grant program. Such joint applicants will need to convincingly demonstrate synergy and a history of co-managing programs of research.
  • All Program Leaders must be included as participants at the time of Registration. Program Experts may be added as participants as part of the Stage 2 application.
  • Individuals cannot simultaneously hold a Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) and Foundation Grant. CERC holders are eligible to apply for a Foundation Grant in year 6 of their CERC. 
  • An individual may only submit one application in the role of Program Leader per competition.
  • An individual may hold only one Foundation Grant in the role of Program Leader at any one time, and may not apply for, or hold funds as a Principal Applicant from the Project Grant program or any other CIHR Open Grant program.

Funding Availability

For the grants funded from the 2016 Foundation Grant competition, approximately $225M will be invested over the funding period.

  • The number of grants funded will depend on the requested budgets and peer review recommendations. 
  • Foundation grant levels will be commensurate with need, which is expected to vary by research field, research approach, and scope of program activities.
  • For existing CIHR grantees, the budget request should be consistent with the applicant's previous CIHR Open Funding history as a Nominated Principal Investigator. CIHR will provide a calculated baseline budget to all Stage 2 applicants. Stage 2 applicants must provide robust justification for requests that are significantly higher than their historical grant levels.

Indirect Costs


Project Duration

Five (5) years for new/early-career investigators; seven (7) years for senior and mid-career investigators.

Special Notes

After receiving feedback from the research community, CIHR has decided to lift the restriction that limits researchers to applying to either the Foundation Grant or Project Grant competition. In the upcoming round of the Investigator Initiated programs, researchers will be able to apply for funding through both competitions. The restriction was originally intended to alleviate anticipated pressure on peer reviewers; however, we feel it is more important to address the concerns raised by the community.

The following policies remain in place, however:

1.      If you receive a 2016 Project Grant as a Nominated Principal Applicant and go on to receive a Foundation grant as a Program Leader in future years, your Project Grant will be rolled into your Foundation grant as is the case for all CIHR Investigator Initiated grants.

2.      You cannot submit the same or similar application to overlapping competitions.  If, at Stage 2 of the Foundation Grant competition, it becomes obvious that the same application has been submitted to the Project Grant competition, you will be asked to withdraw one of the applications. 

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Project Leaders register directly using ResearchNet: September 13, 2016.  Registrations will be accepted between August 30, 2016 and September 13, 2016.

Individuals will have access to the Stage 1 application September 14, 2016.

*The Office of Research processes a high volume of grants at this time. Note that by submitting your application you are verifying that it is accurate and complete.

Please note CIHR’s policy on complete applications and their stipulation that:  “The entire responsibility to ensure completeness of the application submitted to CIHR will rest with the applicant.”

In order to best serve applicants who submit complete applications on/before the posted internal deadlines, the grants team will only review complete applications. Applicants who submit incomplete applications or who request to make revisions to their applications at the time of submission, or after submission, will be advised to resubmit when their application is complete. As such, these applications will begin to be processed when submitted as ‘complete’.

Due to the volume of applications expected, while ORS staff will put forward their best efforts, ORS cannot guarantee the review, approval and/or submission of applications that are received after the internal deadline. Further, in these cases, ORS may not be able to complete the full scope of review activities as per the Office of Research Review & Minimum Processing Times. 

Please verify all attachments and complete your Foundation Grant CV prior to submission.


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

Internal Deadline

Please submit your application/proposal along with an OR5 form to

NOTE: Applicant MUST hit the ‘Submit’ button on or before end of day October 5, 2016

External Deadline

(Stage 1)

How to Apply

This funding opportunity follows the eApproval process. This means that when the applicant submits the application, it will be directed electronically to the Research Institution which the applicant has identified as the Institution Paid. The Research Institution will review the application and submit their approval electronically to CIHR on behalf of the applicant.

For Questions, please contact

CIHR ResearchNet Support
Canadian Institutes of Health Research
1-888-603-4178 or 613-954-1968

Office of Research

Ornella McCarron, Grants Officer
Research Services Office
519-824-4120 x52832

Alert Classifications
Funding Opportunities and Sponsor News

Health and Life Sciences