- Updated criteria for EDI (Ethics, Diversity and Inclusivity)
- Creation of a new funding and career advancement continuum, which will imply certain changes to eligibility and participation limits
- Composition of the team
- Removal of equipment as an eligible expense
The Team Research Project program refers to FRQ’s Common General Rules (CGR), which govern all of the FRQ’s programming. The information below provides guidelines specifically applicable to the Team Research Project program, and these rules take precedence over the CGR.
A link to the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio, as well as the forms associated with this competition, may be found by visiting the “Portal Access” section of FRQ’s website. More information is also available in the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio under “Documents.” Please note that it is the applicant’s responsibility to use the correct application form. In the event that an error is made, the FRQ will not transfer the application from one program to another and the application will be deemed as not eligible.
The FRQ requires that the Canadian Common CV and a list of detailed contributions be included in the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio application. The applicant must ensure that the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies (FRQNT) version is used. The information in these documents should be updated as of June 2021.
For complete instructions, please consult the documents Instructions for detailed contributions and the Canadian Common CV – FRQNT and the Application Presentation Standards – FRQNT which may be both found in the “Portal Access” section of the FRQ website as well as in the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio under “Documents.”
APPLICATIONS SUBMITTED AFTER THE COMPETITION DEADLINE OF SEPTEMBER 8, 2022 AT 4:00 PM WILL BE DEEMED INADMISSIBLE BY THE FRQNT.
The purpose of the Team Research Project program is to:
- Foster the emergence of new and exciting research areas in the scientific fields that are within the FRQNT’s scope
- Enhance the ability of Québec researchers to compete in federal and international funding competitions by developing innovative projects
- Encourage researchers that have complementary expertise to collaborate together in developing research projects
- Promote high quality environments that will provide opportunities for the training, mentoring and skill development of students
Grants may be awarded within the Team Research Project program for a maximum of three years and up to $50,000 per year. This grant is non-renewable.
Indirect costs of research (ICR) will be paid to managing institutions. The ICR will equal 27% of the grant awarded, and is in addition to the grant amount.
The Team Research Project program is part of a funding and career advancement continuum that includes the following three FRQNT programs:
- Research Support for New Academics
- Team Research Project
Each of these three programs has eligibility requirements related to the career stage of the principal investigator (PI) of the application. Please refer to the chart below to determine if the Team Research Project program applies to your situation.
For Principal Investigators who fall under the Status 3 category, please refer to the eligibility requirements outlined in Section 3 further below.
In office since sept. 2, 2019
In office between Sept. 2, 2016 and Sept. 1, 2019
In office before Sept. 1, 2016
More details on the eligibility requirements for the Team Research Project may be found in Section 3 of the program rules.
All research projects, principal investigators, research teams and participants must comply with the eligibility requirements as per the program rules and CGR that are in effect at the time of the application submission. These rules will also apply throughout the award period covered by the grant. Any project, researcher, research team or participant that does not meet the eligibility requirements listed below will not be eligible. Failure to comply with program rules or failure to provide information needed to establish eligibility or evaluate the project may result in a declaration of ineligibility.
3.1 Principal investigator
The principal investigator (PI) of the application may be a researcher who:
- Meets the definition of Status 1.i or 2, as stated in the CGR, AND
- Has accumulated a minimum of 6 years of experience as a professor. This would mean that the PI had started this position on or before September 1, 2016*.
*Similar positions held outside Québec may be counted in the total number of years of experience.
- Meets the definition of Status 3 as stated in the CGR, AND
- Has accumulated a minimum of 6 years of teaching experience in a college or research position in a College Centre for the Transfer of Technologies (CCTT).
Researchers who meet the Status 1.ii definition of the CGR are not eligible to be PIs, but may join the team as co-investigators.
Contracted researchers who meet the CGR’s Status 1 definition and hold a non-tenure track position at their university must provide a letter from their university (see Section 4 below for more details).
The PI may submit only one application to EITHER the NOVA OR the Team Research Project.
3.2 Team composition
The project team must include an eligible PI and a minimum of two eligible co-investigators.
The team may include co-investigators from any of the research areas that fall within the scope of the three branches of the FRQ.
A co-investigator (CI) may be of Status 1, 2, or 3, as defined in the CGR.
CIs may be at any stage of their career and may be working under contract or retired, provided they have an affiliation with a university that allows them to supervise students on their own.
While retired university researchers cannot be PIs of a research project, they may join the team as a CI. In this case, retired Cis must include a letter from their institution in the final application (see Section 4). Retired college researchers are not eligible for this program.
Any person meeting Status 1 to 4 as defined in the CGR or research institution may join the team as a collaborator. A CV is not required. In addition, international researchers are eligible to participate as collaborators.
The team composition must reflect the complementary expertise that is necessary to carry out the research project.
3.5 Research project
Please note that all applications for financial assistance must fall within the scope of the FRQNT’s research fields. In the event that a researcher is uncertain about the applicability of their project’s research topic, researchers may contact the program officer to ensure that the project falls within the FRQNT’s research fields.
In addition, research projects cannot be simultaneously funded by another granting agency.
3.6 Participation limits
Researchers may participate as a PI or CI in a maximum of TWO applications in the NOVA and Team Research Project programs. This includes participation in projects that have already been accepted for funding or will be submitted for funding. See the tables below to determine which case best applies to your situation.
No active grants* within NOVA or Team Research Project
One active grant* within a Team Research Project, but it is in its final year
An active grant* within NOVA or Team Research Project
*For example, PIs whose projects were funded in 2021 are not eligible for this funding competition
No active grants* within NOVA and/or Team Research Project
ONE active grant* within NOVA and/or Team Research Project
TWO active grants* within NOVA and/or Team Research Project
* CIs involved in projects that were funded in April 2021 are considered to be participants in an active grant. However, CIs who are involved in the final year of an active grant are eligible to participate in this competition.
While there are participation limits in place for PIs and CIs, researchers may participate in other funding applications as collaborators.
Notifications regarding the evaluation process or ineligibility of the application will be sent by email to the PI in October.
Applicants will not be requested to provide any information missing from the application. Any documents received after the deadline for submitting applications to the FRQNT will not be accepted and files will not be updated. In addition, any excess pages will be removed from submitted applications. These rules will be rigorously applied and incomplete applications will not be eligible. Please refer to Section 3 of the CGR for more details regarding application procedures. For applications written in English, the title and abstract must be provided in both French and English.
A complete application will include the following documents:
Funding Application Form (via the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio) that includes the following:
- Project description: Provide a description related to the 5 evaluation criteria (maximum of 11 pages including tables, figures and a page reserved for a list of references – see Section 5 below for more details)
- Release from teaching duties – colleges: Identify any team members who are requesting to be released from teaching duties, and provide explanations regarding why the release is requested (1 page)
- Budget: Attach a PDF document that includes an explanation of anticipated operating expenses (1 page maximum)
- Other Documents:
A. A letter from the university or college of retired researchers from Québec, if applicable
B. A letter from academic institutions of principal investigators and co-investigators from Québec who are under contract, if applicable
The following documents should be attached to the Other documents section of the form:
A. Retired researchers
A letter must be provided from the university attesting that, for the duration of the grant, the retired researcher will have access to the facilities and logistical support that is necessary to carry out the proposed research activities, and will continue to train students and prepare them for a research career in the field in question. The university must also confirm that it will manage and administer the funds in the usual manner.
B. Contracted researchers
For principal investigators who hold a non-tenure track position at their university, as well as for non-tenure track co-investigators who meet the Status 1 definition of the CGR (Section “Status and Roles”), a letter must be provided from the academic institutions indicating that the researcher(s) in question will maintain this status throughout the duration of the grant. A letter that is not adequately documented could result in the ineligibility of the researcher.
Canadian Common CV and list of detailed contributions (FRQnet Electronic Portfolio)
The Canadian Common CV, including a list of his/her detailed contributions, must be attached to the application made in the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio for both:
- Principal investigators
The list of detailed contributions must present contributions from the last 5 years (starting from September 2017) in FRQNT’s format. The Canadian Common CV and detailed contributions must have been updated since at least June 2021.
Proof of submission, acceptance or in-print publications must be attached to the PDF file of the Canadian Common CV detailed contributions.
Please note that approval by institutions is required prior to submission of the application to FRQNT. Therefore, it is likely that internal deadlines have been established by your institution that are earlier than FRQNT’s deadlines. It is the researchers’ responsibility to be informed of these deadlines so that applications can be submitted to the FRQNT before the competition deadline.
Applications are evaluated by multidisciplinary evaluation committees (MEC) who may request the advice of experts to complement the committee’s expertise.
The internal review process, including the funding decision, may be found in Section 4 of the CGR.
Applications for funding are evaluated according to the following criteria:
Criterion 1: Scientific quality of the research project (30 points)
- Innovative, promising or emerging aspects of the project
- Need to call on complementary expertise in order to carry out the project
- Methodological approach and feasibility of the timetable
Criterion 2: Expected benefits of the project (25 points)
- Impact on the advancement of knowledge and solving social, economic, cultural and technological issues
- Leveraging potential for Québec
- Potential for developing highly qualified personnel
- Possibility of establishing partnerships with end-users
- Communication of research results to the public
Criterion 3: Scientific quality and complementarity of team members (25 points)
- Demonstration of creative potential
- Research achievements and recognition by the research community
- Appropriateness and adequacy of the team’s expertise for the proposed research
- Methods of integrating scientific skills
- Quality of collaboration and networking potential between team members and with other key players or partners, where applicable
Criterion 4: Quality of the training environment (15 points)
- Team member experience in supervising students
- Integration of college or university students (undergraduate or graduate) or postdoctoral fellows with the research project
- Contribution of the project to training and skills development
- Capacity to integrate highly qualified personnel into the job market
Criterion 5: Integration of the principles of equity, diversity and inclusion (5 points)
This criterion will be assessed by focusing on the principal investigator’s efforts to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI), and not on the composition of the research team.1
- Training: Specific actions already taken and/or planned to promote EDI in the training of highly qualified personnel (recruitment practices, mentoring, career development, etc.)
- Research: When applicable, the consideration of EDI in the design and execution of research projects (research questions, methodology, etc.), as well as the dissemination and mobilization of knowledge to a diverse audience
- Involvement: Specific actions already taken and/or planned to promote EDI in his/her environment, field or the research community in general (committees, inclusive scientific events, outreach activities, etc.).
1The applicant should not provide any information as to whether they, or members of their team, belong to marginalized or underrepresented groups.
For more details about EDI, please see the document Considering Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Efforts in the Evaluation of FRQNT Grant Applications in the “Document” section of the FRQnet Electronic Portfolio.
Funding requests that have an evaluation score below 80% will not be retained for funding.
Grants must be used only for expenses directly related to the conduct of the current research project.
All budget items as outlined in the CGR (Section 8) are eligible. Grants may include an annual amount to purchase equipment having a unit cost of $7,000 or less, including taxes. These amounts must be reported in the “Equipment (purchase, rental, operating costs, maintenance, installation, repair)” category of the budget section of the application form.
More specific information regarding eligible expenses for this program are described below.
Individuals whose salaries are included in the budgets of government-funded institutions or other government agencies
With the exception of college researchers (Status 3 according to the RGC), grants must not be used to pay salaries or salary supplements to PIs, COCs and individuals whose salaries are included in the regular budget of a government-funded institutions such as universities, ministries or affiliated institutions, or any other government agency. See the CGR for more details.
Salary support for eligible Status 3, non-teaching researchers from CCTTs
A portion of FRQNT grants may be used to support salaries for team members who are college researchers that do not have teaching duties. The PI’s institution may transfer this portion directly to the college institution or to the college affiliated with the CCTT (in the situation where the researcher is from a CCTT).
Salary support for eligible Status 3 researchers who have teaching duties: SUPPLEMENT for release time from teaching
For each college researcher who is a member of the team and has regular teaching duties, an additional amount of up to $16,000 per year will be paid directly to the college. This amount, paid directly to the managing college institution, may be used to compensate for the portion of the researcher’s salary dedicated to the release from teaching duties or to ensure that the researcher’s teaching duties are performed by another college faculty member.
SUPPLEMENT – student maternity leave
The student maternity leave supplement is designed to encourage the retention of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, where they have historically been under-represented.
A female student enrolled in a Québec post-secondary institution who receives a scholarship (not in the form of a salary) funded by a grant under this program may receive a maternity supplement from the FRQNT for a period of up to eight months for the birth or adoption of a child. To be eligible, the student must have been receiving the scholarship under the FRQNT grant for at least six months. In addition, she may not hold an award from another granting agency and may not be receiving benefits from the Québec Parental Insurance Plan.
To obtain the maternity leave supplement, students must make the request by email to the FRQNT program officer and provide copy of a medical certificate attesting to the pregnancy. Also, when the time comes, copies of the birth certificate or proof of adoption of the child, as well as proof of suspension of enrolment from the Québec post-secondary institution, should be sent to the FRQNT program officer. In addition, a copy of the student’s scholarship contract must be provided. The maternity supplement may begin up to eight months prior to the birth or adoption of the child. The FRQNT will transfer the maternity supplement to the post-secondary institution upon receipt of the required documents.
The FRQNT authorizes the maternity leave supplement on the condition that the student’s post-secondary institution allows the time to be taken off. In addition, the PI of the grant must agree to resume supervision of the student after the absence. The FRQNT reserves the right to reject any application that does not provide adequate explanation.
7. Management and Follow up
Please refer to Sections 5 to 7 of the CGR for more details.
Grants are awarded for a maximum period of three years. Grants are paid annually for the period from April 1 to March 31 of each year.
Funds that are not spent by the end of the grant may be carried forward by one additional year, and will be subject to the conditions stated in Section 6.10 of the CGR.
The final report is administrative in nature and allows FRQNT to document the impact of the grants offered. The PI must complete and submit the final report via FRQnet Electronic Portfolio no later than 6 months after the submission of the last financial report.
If the final report is not submitted within the timeframe specified by the FRQNT, or if the report is not to the satisfaction of the FRQNT, the funding holder will not be eligible to receive further financial assistance from any of the three branches of the FRQNT and may have payments suspended until this condition is met.
8. Open Access Dissemination Policy
Peer-reviewed publications resulting from the research made possible by this award shall be published as immediate open access (without embargo), under an open license, in accordance with the FRQ Open Access Policy for the Dissemination of Research (revised in 2022).
9. Effective Date
These rules will apply for the 2023-2024 fiscal year.