NSERC Strategic Partnership Grants
NSERC’s Strategic Partnership Grants are intended to increase research and training in targeted areas that could strongly enhance Canada’s economy, society, and/or environment within the next 10 years. Research and training under these grants must be conducted through a partnership between academic researchers and industry or government organizations.
It is expected that these grants will:
- generate new knowledge/technology with the strong potential to strengthen Canada’s industrial base, generate wealth, create employment, and/or influence Canadian public policy;
- increase the number of highly qualified personnel in the specified target areas; and
- enable the transfer of knowledge/technology expertise to Canadian-based companies that are well-positioned to apply the results for economic gain or to government organizations to strengthen public policy.
Application Timeline & Important Dates
|January 2018||Work with
|By January 24,
Provide draft LOI and support letters to Research Development for optional review and feedback.|
|February 1, 2018, 2 p.m.||Deadline for submitting LOI in the NSERC Portal. Note that this forwards the application to the research office, not to NSERC. The LOI will be forwarded to NSERC by Western prior to the NSERC deadline.|
|By April 3,
||Invitation to submit
|April 2018||Work with
|By May 24,
|June 7, 2018, 2 p.m.||Deadline for submitting
Stage 1: Letter of Intent (Deadline: February 1, 2018)In the first stage, applicants submit a mandatory letter of intent directly to NSERC through the On-line System. The letter of intent includes: a 3-page description of the proposal; a completed Form 100 for the applicant only; a completed Form 183A for the SPG-P LOI for each supporting organization; and a signed letter of support from each supporting organization describing the organization’s operations in Canada, the support for
Stage 2: Full Application (By invitation only; deadline: June 7, 2018)
Full Application (By invitation only; deadline: June 7, 2018)
The full SPG-P application will remain unchanged from previous competitions. Full instructions for the application can be found on NSERC’s website.
Strategic Partnership Grants for Networks (SPG-N) fund large-scale, multidisciplinary research projects in targeted research areas that require a network approach and that involve collaboration between at least five academic researchers and strong commitment and active involvement of Canadian-based partner organizations from relevant sectors; the duration is five years. NSERC’s deadline for submitting a preliminary application for an SPG-N is April 1, 2017; submission of full applications is by invitation only.
Applications for an SPG-N are extensive to prepare; applicants considering submitting a preliminary SPG-N proposal are strongly encouraged to contact Research Development in January or early February 2017 for assistance with proposal development.
An NSERC SPG must include at least one eligible supporting organization. An eligible supporting organization:
- is a Canadian-based company that can apply the research results in a way that generates wealth or employment or is a government organization that can apply the results in a way that strengthens public policy;
- collaborates in all stages of the research project, including proposal development and, as the project unfolds, interacting regularly with the academic researchers, students, and other research personnel, and providing input on the project; and
- validates the results of the research and/or provides guidance concerning the exploitation of results.
Organizations without Canadian R&D or manufacturing operations will not be considered. For government organizations, how the research will strengthen public policy beyond a research collaboration must be clearly demonstrated in the letter of support.
Other participants who do not meet the above criteria may be included in the proposal, but do not qualify as eligible supporting organizations. For more information on partner eligibility, consult NSERC’s Guidelines for Organizations Participating in Research Partnerships.
The supporting organization must be actively involved in all stages of the project; therefore, in-kind contributions are required, but cash is not. Target Areas
NSERC’s target areas for 2016-2020 are:
- Advanced Manufacturing
- Environment and Agriculture
- Information and Communications Technologies
- Natural Resources and Energy
All projects must support the goal of the SPG program and fall within one of the target areas. Each target area includes several Research Topics. Priority will be given to applications that address the research topics identified in each target area.
Projects that make a compelling case for research within the Context section of a target area description, but are outside the research topics, will be considered “exceptional” and may be funded subject to the availability of funds. No more than 20% of the budget will be allocated to “exceptional opportunities.”
Documents and Resources
- NSERC Strategic Partnership Grants
- NSERC SPG Target Areas, 2016-2020
- NSERC Guidelines for Organizations Participating in Research Partnerships
- NSERC SPG-P Presentation, December 7, 2017
- NSERC Words of Wisdom from a Successful Applicant, December 7, 2017