Interdisciplinary Development Initiatives

Western will invest in a limited number of interdisciplinary development initiatives (IDIs) that have a demonstrated potential to become national and international models for excellence. The IDI program is intended to seed new interdisciplinary collaborations. IDIs will be exceptional programs that advance Western’s research mission, attract scholars and graduate students to our university, and bring prestige to the institution. These IDIs, led by established or emerging scholars, will have clearly articulated research dimensions and objectives.


IDIs are open to researchers in all disciplines and Faculties. Proposals must identify a project leader and at least one co-investigator. The project leader must hold an academic appointment at Western and be eligible to hold research grants. There is no limit to team size. Teams are encouraged to consider equity, diversity and inclusion principles in their team composition. Researchers are permitted to be involved in multiple IDIs, however they may only be identified as the project leader of one IDI. Teams may include researchers or partners from other organizations as co-investigators. Co-investigators who do not hold research-eligible appointments at Western will not have access to grant funds.

Funding Amounts

  • Western will invest up to $4 million over four years (2021-2025) in IDIs, with a notional investment of $1 million/year (subject to applications).
  • IDI projects will be nominally one or two years in duration.
Stream Funding Amount & Duration
Stream 1 $35,000 for one year
Stream 2 $200,000 over a maximum of two years

Guidelines & Application Forms

Program Timelines & Application Deadlines

  • November 21, 2023: Program launch
  • February 1, 2024: ROLA proposal deadline
  • February 8, 2024, 3pm EST: Application deadline
  • By March 31, 2024: Application results
  • May 1, 2024: Grant start date

Application Process

ROLA proposal is required. The completed application, including all required attachments, must be submitted to Western Research via the online submission portal no later than 3pm on Thursday, February 8, 2024. Only electronic submissions will be accepted; hard copies should not be submitted.

The completed signature page may be submitted as a separate, scanned page. Electronic signatures or scanned signatures will be accepted.


Please direct any questions on the IDI program to