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Competition Guide

2013 Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program competition

 Competition Guide
 Full Application Form

Background

The 2013 Competition provides an opportunity for centres funded in the inaugural CECR competition to apply for an extension to their funding period and additional funds.

The CECR Program is a key element of the federal government’s Science and Technology Strategy. The program has been established to create internationally recognized centres of excellence in areas of priority for the Government of Canada to deliver economic, social, health and environmental benefits to Canada.

Since the program’s inception in 2007, the centres have generated value for Canada by matching clusters of research expertise with the business community, sharing knowledge, expertise and resources, and bringing new innovations to the market faster. To maximize the impact of the government’s CECR investment, the Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) Steering Committee is providing centres funded in the 2007-08 competition with the opportunity to apply for an extension to their funding period for the use of remaining funds beyond the grant period.  In addition to the opportunity to apply for an extension of their funding period, centres that can demonstrate a strong impact and a robust sustainability plan will also be given an opportunity to compete for additional funding. All centres competing for additional funding will also be considered for an extension of their funding period.

Centres that apply for an extension in the funding period must clearly demonstrate progress towards the objectives set in their corporate plan and adherence to the funding agreement. Centres that opt to compete for additional funding will undergo a rigorous review to assess their progress, achievements and the viability of the business and sustainability plans. The business plan must clearly demonstrate a gradual reduction in the centre’s reliance on CECR funds as part of its sustainability plan.

Competition 2013 Summary

The 2013 CECR Competition will provide centres funded in the 2007-08 Competition with the opportunity to apply for:

  1. An extension to its funding period, and
  2. Additional funding

The NCE Steering Committee invites centres funded in the 2007-08 CECR competition to apply to the 2013 Competition. The Competition provides centres with the opportunity to apply for an extension in time to its funding period to use the centre’s remaining CECR funding. It also provides an opportunity to compete for additional funding through a competitive process. Centres requesting additional funding must demonstrate economic impact, benefits to Canada (including social, health and environmental benefits), and the ability to become self-sustaining in a reasonable period of time as demonstrated through a gradual reduction in its reliance on CECR funds.

Sustainability of the centre can be achieved using a range of models, such as partnerships, memberships, other governments support, and other revenue. Centres are expected to become self-sufficient by establishing a strong business model and partnerships.

The CECR Program is overseen by a tri-agency Steering Committee (NCE Steering Committee) composed of the Deputy Minister of Industry, the Deputy Minister of Health, the Presidents of the three Granting Agencies [Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)] and the President of the Canada Foundation for Innovation (as an observer). A Private Sector Advisory Board (PSAB) has also been established to assess the economic and commercial benefits and opportunities of each centre proposal, as well as provide advice and funding recommendations to the NCE Steering Committee. Proposals seeking additional funding will undergo international peer review prior to the PSAB review.

Day-to-day administration of the CECR Program is provided by the NCE Secretariat. Prospective applicants should refer to the CECR Program Guide on the NCE website at www.nce-rce.gc.ca for detailed information about the CECR Program.

Program Overview

Program Goals

The goal of the CECR program is to create internationally recognized centres of commercialization and research expertise in priority areas in order to deliver economic, social, health and environmental benefits to Canada. 

Expected Results

The Program is expected to maximize the benefits of government investment in R&D and encourage the private sector to increase its investment in science and technology.

Centres should be world-class and able to demonstrate their progress towards:

  • Branding Canada as the host of internationally recognized centres of excellence that will yield economic, social, health or environmental benefits to Canada;
  • Drawing on existing research and commercialization strengths, infrastructure, networks and funding capacity to enhance their impact;
  • Attracting, retaining and providing training to highly qualified personnel (including internationally recognized business leaders);
  • Opening up new opportunities for Canadian researchers and firms to access world-class equipment, facilities and networks;
  • Creating, growing and retaining companies in Canada that are able to capture new markets with breakthrough innovations;
  • Accelerating the commercialization of leading edge technologies, goods, services in priority areas where Canada can significantly advance its competitive advantage;
  • Attracting investment (including foreign direct and venture capital investments); and
  • Strengthening domestic collaboration and ensure that benefits spill over to a wide array of firms, organizations, sectors and regions of the country.

Eligible Recipient Organizations

Organizations eligible to receive funds are not-for-profit corporations created by universities, colleges, not-for-profit research organizations, firms, and other interested non-government parties.

As an added condition of eligibility, organizations applying to the 2013 CECR Competition must be part of the first cohort of CECRs funded in the 2007-08 Competition.
  
To be eligible for an extension in time to the funding period, or for additional funding, centres must demonstrate adherence to the program’s matching, governance and financial management requirements of the Funding Agreement and the CECR Program Guide over the first five years of funding.

Parameters for Additional Funding

The 2013 competition will support centres that can demonstrate the need for additional funds and articulate how this will maximize the centre’s impact and enable it to achieve self-sustainability. Centres can request additional funds no greater than the value of the original grant, and funds will be allocated such that the CECR funding declines over the period of the grant. The focus of the review will be on the credibility of the required budget as well as the appropriateness of the proposed timeframe to achieve sustainability. Centres applying for additional funds must demonstrate impact, the need for funds, and a realistic plan to achieve sustainability along with a credible budget over the proposed timeframe. Sustainability is understood broadly to mean a reasonable continuity of a centre’s activities funded by its own revenue streams, as well as by stakeholder investments, confirmed contributions from other sources of funds and membership fees.

Parameters for the use of CECR Funds

Centres are expected to leverage funding from multiple sources to meet the CECR matching requirements.  Total assistance provided to the centre will be carefully assessed to ensure adherence to the program requirements for both an extension in time and for additional funding.  Fulfilment of the CECR matching requirement is essential for an extension in the funding period of the centre, or for additional CECR funding.

Matching contributions may be in the form of cash or in-kind and must come from non-federal sources. CECR grant funds used for eligible commercialization costs must be matched over the duration of the grant agreement by a ratio of 1:1. Every CECR grant dollar spent on eligible commercialization costs must be matched by one dollar of non-federal cash or in-kind. CECR grant funds for other eligible costs must be matched over the duration of the grant agreement by a ratio of 3:1. Every three CECR grant dollars spent on other eligible costs must be matched by one dollar of non-federal cash or in-kind.

Centres failing to demonstrate adherence to the Program’s matching, governance and financial management requirements of the Funding Agreement and the CECR Program Guide over the first five years of funding will not be eligible for an extension or additional funding. These centres will be given a three-month wind-down period.  During the wind-down period, centres will be required to produce a final report to the NCE Secretariat and return unspent funds.

Eligible expenses

  • Operating Costs: maintenance and operation of the centre; materials and supplies; liability insurance for members of the Board of Directors and centre administrators; legal fees and other related incorporation costs;
  • Salary Costs: salaries for management, technical and professional staff employed to provide support to users or to maintain and operate the centre;
  • Knowledge Mobilization Costs: expenses relating to communications activities, networking, promotion of the centre, knowledge dissemination and engagement of stakeholders to put available knowledge into active service;
  • Commercialization Costs: expenses related to commercialization activities (e.g. intellectual property protection, market studies, business plan development, counselling and mentoring, technology evaluation, development, and investments).

CECR Funding cannot be used for capital expenditures in this second phase; however, contributions for equipment and capital expenses from centre partners will be considered eligible matching contributions.   

Competition Overview

Timetable:

A submission for an extension to the funding period or for additional funding will NOT be accepted if the NCE Secretariat has not received the LOI by  the deadline of June 15, 2012 at 4:30pm Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).

Deadlines Milestones
June 1, 2012 Competition Announced
June 15, 2012 Letter of Intent (LOI)
October 1, 2012 Full Application deadline
October 2012 Expert Review Panels
November 2012 Review by the PSAB
November 2012 Decision by the NCE Steering Committee
Winter 2012-13 Announcement of CECR 2013 competition results
January/ February 2013 Funding Agreements and Amendments circulated for signatures
March 2013 Funding starts

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

The names and affiliations of the members of the Private Sector Advisory Board (PSAB) will be included in its final competition report.  Results of the competition and the PSAB report will be posted on the NCE website at www.nce-rce.gc.ca after the 2013 Competition announcements (see Timetable, above).  

Competition Outline and Process

The 2013 competition is open only to centres funded in the inaugural CECR 2007-08 Competition.  These CECRs have an opportunity to apply for an extension of their funding period.  In addition, centres that can demonstrate impact, a plan to achieve sustainability plan with a reasonable and credible timeframe can also apply for additional funding.

Centres applying for an extension of their funding period in order to spend their remaining funds must submit both a Letter of Intent (LOI) and a Full Application that includes an updated Corporate Plan (scenario 1).

Centres applying for additional funding must submit a Letter of Intent, an updated Corporate Plan (scenario 1) and a Business Plan (scenario 2).

If a centre’s submission for additional funding (Scenario 2) is not recommended following the Expert Panel and the PSAB reviews, the application will automatically be considered for an extension in time of their funding period (scenario 1). 

STAGE I:  Letter of Intent (LOI)

Deadline: June 15, 2012

The LOI is reviewed by the NCE Secretariat to:

  • Identify the centres that will apply for an extension in time of their funding period, and those who will apply for both an extension of their funding period and for additional funding.
  • Identify the specific expertise required for the review.

STAGE II (scenarios 1 & 2): Submissions for extension in time and/or additional funding

Deadline: October 1, 2012

Only applicants who submit an LOI are eligible to submit an updated Corporate Plan for an extension in time to their funding period, and a Business Plan for additional funding. 

Scenario 1 - Extension of the funding period:
An updated Corporate Plan

An extension of the funding period will be provided to centres that can demonstrate progress towards benefits to Canada (including social, health and environmental), and reaching their objectives.  The updated Corporate Plan should clearly build on the centre’s achievements and articulate how the extension of the funding period will enable the centre to maximize the CECR investment.  The centre must demonstrate how the extension of the funding period will maximize the impact of the centre and ensure a lasting legacy.

The updated Corporate Plan will be reviewed by the PSAB. Centres will also be assessed on their adherence to the Funding Agreement and the Program Guide requirements.  The PSAB will recommend to the NCE Steering Committee which centres should be provided with an extension of the funding period for the use of remaining CECR funding. The NCE Steering Committee makes the final decision. There is no appeal process.

Centres applying for an extension of the funding period, and centres applying for additional funding must both submit a Corporate Plan that clearly articulates how the remaining funds will be used to maximize their impact and legacy, and demonstrate that they have complied with the financial and governance requirements of the CECR Program.

Scenario 2 – Additional Funds Request
Business Plan

This stage of the competition will focus on the centre’s Business Plan outlining its path to sustainability.

All centres that apply for additional funding must provide the two different scenarios; an Updated Corporate Plan (Scenario 1) and a Business Plan (Scenario 2).  The focus of the 2013 Competition for additional funds will be the assessment of the centre’s achievements, how future plans build on these successes and investments and the robustness of the centre’s sustainability plan. The submission will consist of an Updated Corporate Plan (scenario 1) and a strong Business Plan with financial projections and performance metrics that show the incremental value generated by the CECR investments, as well as a clear path to sustainability. Centres applying for additional funds will have to clearly demonstrate how they plan to use funds remaining from their initial grant, and how additional funds will build on their achievements to date.

Full applications will be evaluated using three program criteria described below. The Secretariat may also consult with provincial officials to identify provincial priorities and to secure their views on the project proposal(s) from their province.

An expert panel will review the application and meet the applicants to discuss elements of the proposal.  The Expert Panel Report will then be presented to the PSAB. The PSAB will review all applications, including Expert Panel reports and reports from parties consulted, to develop recommendations to be presented to the NCE Steering Committee.

The NCE Steering Committee will select the successful centres for extensions of their funding period, as well as additional funding based on the recommendations of the PSAB. There is no appeal process.

Review and Decision Process

The PSAB will review all proposals, including requests for extension of the funding period, and for additional funding. Expert Panel reports will only be used for the review of additional funding requests. The PSAB will recommend which centres are to receive an extension of their funding period and those that will receive additional funding to the NCE Steering Committee for approval and final decision.

Submissions for centres requesting additional funding will undergo review by Expert Panels established by the NCE Secretariat. These panels are comprised of domestic and international experts, who will evaluate the centres’ submission to the 2013 Competition and the robustness of the sustainability plan, meet with applicants, and produce in-depth written assessments of the submission.

Given the multi-disciplinary nature of the CECRs, funding for a given centre may come from more than one Granting Agency, and so the NCE Secretariat will be the primary point of interaction for all project applicants throughout the life of their projects. Funding disbursements will be managed by the NCE Secretariat and disbursed to the recipient(s) against a funding agreement under the legal authority(ies) of the relevant granting agency(ies) (CIHR, NSERC, and/or SSHRC ).

Decisions reached by the NCE Steering Committee are final.  There is no appeal process.

Program Criteria

Centres requesting an extension of their funding period will be assessed through an updated Corporate Plan based on the three selection criteria outlined below and on progress towards their own corporate objectives. For centres requesting additional funding, the 2013 competition reviews will ensure that the centres are aligned with the three selection criteria of the CECR Program, but will also place added emphasis on commercial outputs and the strength of the Business Plan and their sustainability plan.

The evaluation criteria are as follows:

  • Benefits to Canada
    • The extent to which the centre’s research and commercialization activities address issues of high priority for Canada;
    • The likelihood that the centre will create sufficient scale and focus to brand Canada as the host of an internationally recognized centre of excellence in its area of priority;
    • Evidence that the centre will help accelerate the commercialization of leading edge technologies, goods, services in priority areas where Canada can significantly advance its competitive advantage.
  • Track Record and Potential of the Applicants
    • The achievements of the applicants and their ability to contribute to the centre’s research and commercialization objectives;
    • The ability of the applicants to attract investment sufficient to meet the program matching requirements and to encourage investment in partner firms.
    • The ability of the applicants to support partners, firms and researchers with advice, analysis, training and business services to advance their commercialization objectives.
  •  Business Plan:
    This criterion will be assessed based on the updated Corporate Plan and the Business Plan where applicable.
    • Excellence, focus and coherence of the research and development and commercialization program;
    • The effectiveness of the plan to manage, protect and exploit intellectual property resulting from centre-funded innovation;
    • A credible demonstration of how this investment will result in the creation of a self-sustaining, productive centre of excellence;
    • The quality of the proposed organizational structure with appropriate representation on the Board of Directors and management team to achieve its objectives;
    • Evidence that the applicants have in place an accountability framework likely to result in effective leadership, sound financial planning and decision-making. 

Guidelines for Completing a Full Application

GENERAL PRESENTATION:

The type size for fonts measured in points (pts) must be no smaller than 12 pts.  If measured in characters per inch (cpi), it must be no more than 10 cpi. Condensed type is unacceptable.  

Page layout must be 8½ x 11 inches (21.5 cm x 28 cm), with margins of 3/4 of an inch (1.91 cm) (minimum) all around. Enter the title of the CECR at the top of every page and number the pages consecutively.

Include a Table of Contents (not to be counted in the maximum number of pages allotted).  Graphs and illustrations may be included, but will count as part of the page limits set out below. Either single or double column presentation of text, graphs or illustrations is acceptable. Any extra material will be removed.

APPLICATION CONTENTS:

Stage I: Letter of Intent
(Deadline: June 15, 2012)

Centres applying for additional funding should also provide a list of five potential Expert Panel Members who are not in Conflict of Interest for the review of their application.  Please see Appendix A for the CECR Policy on Conflict of Interest.

Stage II:  Full Application
(Deadline: October 1, 2012 – Online submission through ReviewRoom at This link will take you to another Web site https://nce-rce.myreviewroom.com)

Scenario 1 Package:
Extension in Funding Period (Updated Corporate Plan)

The general presentation guidelines for a full application apply to the development of the CECR Updated Corporate Plan. See Appendix D for a checklist to ensure a full application at the time of submission.

CECR Scenario 1 Extension Submission:

  1. Centre Description
  2. Response to the PSAB Review of the Centre
  3. Full Application Form
  4. An Updated Corporate Plan (see Appendix B)
  5. A detailed budget plan with remaining CECR funding and leveraged funding delineated that provides reasonable financial projections, timelines and objectives to maximize the impacts of the extension period.
  6. Appendices to the Corporate Plan.

I. Centre Description (1,582 characters)

Describe the centre’s vision and objectives.  It should include a clear vision of the expected end results of the commercialization and research activities after the CECR funding, especially with respect to the expected outcomes and impacts on partners and the user sector.

This will provide an overview of the centre to prospective reviewers.

II. Response to the PSAB Review of the Centre (1,582 characters)

Describe whether the centre has addressed concerns raised in the PSAB Report. Explain why a response was undertaken or not, and the measures taken.

III. Full Application Form

Complete the CECR 2013 Full Application Form, Section A, B, C, and D available on the ReviewRoom website at : This link will take you to another Web site https://nce-rce.myreviewroom.com.

Section A: General Information

Complete and sign Section A of the CECR
2013 Full Application Form. The following information must be provided:

  • Centre Director: name, mailing address, telephone numbers, and e-mail address.
  • Centre Name
  • Keywords: up to 10 key words related to the centre.
  • Budget Grand Total, CECR funds
  • Electronic Signature: The Centre Director.

Section B: Anticipated Funding (1 page)

  • Summary Anticipated funding: indicate, the anticipated new incremental cash support (lines A to I) and new incremental in-kind support (lines K to R) from all of the other sources.

Section C: Incremental Contributions (1 form per contributor – the number of form needed will be generated automatically by the number of partners provided at the bottom of section B)

  • Incremental Contributions (Cash and In-kind) from Stakeholders: Using one page per stakeholder (3,165 characters), provide details on cash and in-kind contributions.

Section D: CECR Application Summary Data Sheet

Use Section D of the CECR 2013 Full Application Form to provide reviewers with a brief overview of the content of the submission.

IV. Updated Corporate Plan (Appendix B) (maximum 20 pages – document can be uploaded to ReviewRoom)

The activities of the centre must be developed in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, and must integrate industry priorities. The Corporate Plan must demonstrate the centre’s progress towards reaching its objectives and strong economic impact, benefits to Canada (including social, health and environmental benefits) and explain how an extension in time of their funding periods will maximize the CECR investment and lead to a lasting impact. The updated Corporate Plan should highlight how the centre is fulfilling the Program Criteria of the CECR Program.

V. A detailed Budget Plan with projections

A detailed budget plan in table form (no specific template requested) with remaining CECR funding and leveraged funding delineated that provides reasonable financial projections, timelines and objectives to maximize the impacts of the extension period. Also provide a detailed description of the budget table in prose form. The detailed budget form and description should be uploaded as one document to ReviewRoom.

It is expected that the budget plan submitted will reconcile with the Statement of Accounts (SOAs) submitted to the NCE Secretariat for the previous fiscal year.

VI. Appendices to Corporate Plan

A.1. Original Corporate Plan (Submitted June 2008)

A.2 List of letters from partners and stakeholders (per sector)

The list of Letters of Support submitted with the application, must provide the name and organizational affiliations of signatories. The number of letters is not restricted. Sort letters by category (academic, industrial, federal government, provincial government, municipal government, host institution, foreign and other); also indicate if the private firms are SMEs (<500 employees, or $50M in annual revenue).

For each entry, provide the following: 

  • Name and title of Senior Executive signing the letter;
  • Organization and department;
  • Address of organization;
  • Amount of cash contribution;
  • Amount of in-kind contribution;
  • Amount of total cash & in-kind contribution.

A.3 Contribution Confirmation Letters (Maximum 2 pages per letter – Letters should be compiled into one document and uploaded to ReviewRoom)

Provide letters confirming the contributions for each partner listed in Appendix A2. For each stakeholder organization, the letter must make explicit reference to the centre, and should:

  • come from a senior executive;
  • make commitments especially in terms of financial and/or in-kind support;
  • indicate how the centre  helps their organization; indicate current and past associations with the applicant.

The letters should not follow a template/form format.

The signatures of authorized officers of supporting organizations certify that the organization agrees to:

  • the content of the application and will provide the committed resources; and
  • the publication of the organization's name as a supporter of the centre.

If the Centre Director is also a principal of a collaborating or supporting organization, another senior official must sign on behalf of the organization.

Sort the letters by category (academic, industrial, federal government, provincial government, municipal government, host institution, foreign and other).

Note: Only letters providing support in the form of in-kind or cash contributions should be included (all other letters will be removed from the full application package). 

A.4 Short biographies of Centre Management and members of the Board of Directors (Maximum 1 page per biography – one document to be uploaded to ReviewRoom)

Biographies (up to 20) should be provided for the Lead Applicants (including the proposed Centre Director) and for members of the Board of Directors. Each biography must not to exceed one page in length.

A.5 Alphabetical List of Key Individuals

To assist the reviewers in their evaluation, provide:

  • An alphabetical list of key individuals involved in the centre (i.e., Centre Director, proposed members of the Management Committee and Board of Directors, interim Chair of the Board).
  • For each individual, the alphabetical list must provide the following:
    • Name;
    • Organization, Department and Position;
    • Province;
    • Percentage of salaried time to be devoted to the centre, if any;
    • Role in the centre: Centre Director (CD), proposed member of the Management Committee (MC), Board of Directors (BOD), interim Chair of the Board (CBOD).
    • An asterisk if a Biography is provided.

Scenario 2 Package:
Additional Funds Request (CECR Business Plan)

The general presentation guidelines for a full application apply to the development of the CECR Business Plan.  The submission must be a maximum of 25 pages. See Appendix D for a checklist to ensure a full application at the time of submission.

CECR Scenario 2 Competition 2013 for additional funds Package must include an updated Corporate Plan (Scenario 1) in addition to: 

  1. Statement from the Chair of the Board with a commitment to an expanded plan with additional funding;
  2. A Business Plan with financial projections showing a viable path to sustainability by the end of the funding period requested;
  3. Detailed performance indicators, targets and milestones that demonstrate the incremental value generated by the CECR investment;
  4. Updated Appendices for the Business Plan.

I. STATEMENT FROM THE CHAIR OF THE BOARD (maximum 2 pages)

Statement from the Chair of the Board with a commitment to an expanded plan with additional funding.

II. BUSINESS PLAN (maximum 25 pages – one document to be uploaded to ReviewRoom)

1. Strategic Plan

The centre’s strategic plan should describe how the centre will achieve its objectives to integrate the technology and the intellectual property developed within the centre and   its partner institutions. The objectives and milestones required to fully exploit the technology pipeline or service capacity of the centre should be clearly set out.

In particular, the strategy should include:

  • The centre’s plan showing how its portfolio of activities fits into its current vision and how this aligns with the original objectives of the centre’s Corporate Plan.
  • A robust IP Strategy that describes the pipeline of promising technology disclosures and high value IP accessible to the centre, as well as the centres IP expertise and management capacity, how the IP will be managed, and how it will result in commercial benefits for the centre.
  • Key commercial risks and mitigation strategies. 

2. Market Assessment

The market assessment should clearly articulate the key findings about the relevant industry sector, including the centre’s best alliances, customers, and competitors.

The assessment should include a Market analysis that:

  • Defines and describes the market for its products and services;
  • Describes opportunities particularly relevant to the centre in the regional, national and international contexts;
  • Assesses the importance of its technologies within that market (To what need does the technology respond? What is the demand?);
  • Identifies key competitors and partner institutions;
  • Identifies competitive and market access issues (e.g. regulatory approvals, market positioning, competing products, corporate mandates);
  • Demonstrates that revenue projections align with current market and overall landscape in their priority area;
  • Provides a breakdown of the costs involved in core technologies development or business support activities, such as R&D; sales and marketing; administration and human resources.

3. Centre’s capability

Proposals must provide details demonstrating the centre’s capacity to achieve its goals and objectives with the resources on hand, or explain how it will otherwise engage the appropriate resources.

4. Managerial capability 

This section must show that the centre possesses, or can reasonably be expected to secure, the requisite managerial capability to achieve the stated goals and objectives of the centre. The following information, at a minimum, is required:

  • The pertinent experience and expertise (corporate and individual, technical and managerial) of the centre’s management team and the Board of Directors.
  • The roles and responsibilities of all the engaged partners, the allocation and contribution of resources among the partners, as well as the type and management of the relationship.
  • A description of the collaborations, joint ventures and partnerships with the public and private sector, including other centres, and the value of these collaborations to partners;
  • The centre management’s capability and commitment to achieve the planned outcomes (brief outline of background of management team and their time commitment to the CECR).
  • Human Resource Plan outlining any required changes to or development of staff competencies to achieve objectives.
  • The managerial risks and the centre’s related mitigation strategies.

5. Technological capability 

This section of the proposal must demonstrate that the centre possesses or can be reasonably expected to secure, the technological capability to achieve the centre’s goals and objectives. In particular, the proposal should identify the sources of technology disclosures available to the centre, and describe technologies in the centres product development pipeline.  It should also demonstrate that qualified personnel with relevant experience and background are engaged and that systematic reviews will be conducted of opportunities, progress against technology development objectives and risks.

The following information is required:

  • Details of activities in the centre’s first five years and how the centre’s activities are building on its previous work and successes;
  • A description of the available technical resources (e.g. personnel, facilities, equipment, partners);
  • A description of the established collaborations, joint ventures or partnerships that will enable the centre to successfully bolster their technical activities;
  • A description of the company’s approach to managing the centre’s technical activities with an articulation of the tools that will be used  (e.g. project team, planning, budgeting, scheduling, allocating responsibility, controlling);
  • A clear articulation that the centre’s activities are technologically feasible, and competitive;
  • A demonstration of the technology readiness, as well as the stage of development of activities within their portfolio;
  • The key technological capability and the technology feasibility risks and the centre’s mitigation strategies.

6. Sales/Communication and Marketing Capabilities and Resources

The proposal must include the centre’s communication and marketing strategies. This plan should describe how the centre will brand itself, market its activities and how the centre will communicate with internal and external partners.

The following information is required:

  • A description of the client-base of the centre’s key technologies and activities;
  • An overview of the proposed value of the centre’s activities to partners;
  • Key messages on the impact of the centre’s activities on the firms supported by or, on firms which have partnered with the centre.

7. Operational Plan

The centre should describe the current and future capacity of its operations and any changes in personnel or operating expenses required to achieve its new objectives. 

The centre’s business model should be clearly explained, highlighting how the centre’s activities will generate revenues and contributions from partners. The centre should demonstrate how CECR funding will be replaced by centre generated revenues and contributions from other sources overtime. The centre must clearly demonstrate a reduction in its reliance on CECR funding as part of its sustainability plan. The plan should detail the key milestones and deliverables required with an overview of how the centre’s business model will lead to sustainability.

8. Financial Plan (narrative description with financial tables)

This section must include a financial overview of the centre and make reference to  the latest financial statements and the most recent annual report provided to the NCE Secretariat in July 2012.  The proposal must also set out a multi-year budget with details on each key technology development or business activity that shows that the centre possesses, or can reasonably be expected to secure, the financial resources required to achieve sustainability.  The proposed budget must list all anticipated sources of funding and revenue generating activities, the timing of that funding and revenue, and key assumptions. The text must include sufficient detail on any of the key assumptions (e.g. revenues forecasted and rate of displacement of CECR Funding). Please see Appendix C for the CECR budget breakdown used in the annual report.

The proposal must clearly distinguish between remaining, negotiated and planned funding. Government funding and non-governmental funding should be well identified.  

This section should provide a clear description of:

  • Annual R&D spending in the first cycle and the anticipated ongoing expenses.
  • • A forecast budget with, projected revenue and expenditures for ongoing activities. The forecast must clearly demonstrate that CECR funding declines over the funding period and should extend to the first year that the centre expects to fully displace CECR funding with other revenue to achieve sustainability. Sustainability of the centres remains a key element of the CECR program and includes many models, such as revenue streams, partner-led initiatives, and investments. Centres are expected to become self-sufficient through the establishment of a strong business plan and partnerships.
  • Special conditions attached to any of the financial contributions from public and private sector partners and any assumptions or dependencies related to acquiring funds from other sources.
  • Key financial risks and the company’s proposed mitigation strategies for same.

III. PERFORMANCE INDICATORS, TARGETS AND MILESTONES

  • The centre must provide a performance metrics on which the centre will evaluate its achievements and demonstrate the incremental value generated by the CECR investment.
IV. UPDATED APPENDICES TO BUSINESS PLAN

The appendices to the Business Plan should present an update to the appendices prepared for the Corporate Plan (Scenario 1).  It is expected that centres applying for additional funds can demonstrate ongoing and new commitments from partners and stakeholders.

The general instructions applied for the Appendices in the Corporate Plan apply.  The appendices may be updated in the event that the Updated Business plan requires new additions.

If needed, please provide updates of:

  • A.2 List of stakeholder letters (per sector)
  • A.3 Contribution Confirmation Letters (maximum 2 pages per letter – one document)
  • A.4 Update of the biographies of Centre Management and members of the Board of Directors (maximum 1 page per biography – one document)
  • A.5 Alphabetical List of Key Individuals

SUBMISSION PROCEDURES –
Stage I: Letter of Intent (LOI):

The deadline for submission of the Letter of Intent (LOI) is 4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) on June 15, 2012

An electronic copy of a single PDF file containing the signed LOI Form and a signed Letter from the Chair of the Board should be emailed to info@nce-rce.gc.ca. Centres applying for additional funding must also provide a list of five potential Expert Panel members for their review.

The CECR 2013 Competition Guide, the CECR LOI Application Form, and details about the CECR Program can be obtained at www.nce-rce.gc.ca

The NCE Secretariat will send an email to the Centre Director to confirm receipt of the Letter of Intent within a week from your submission. If confirmation is not received by June 22, 2012, please contact the NCE Secretariat at:

Tel.: 613-995-6010
Fax: 613-992-7356
E-mail: info@nce-rce.gc.ca

SUBMISSION PROCEDURES –
Stage II:  Full Application:

The deadline for online submission of the Full Application is 4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) on October 1, 2012.

The complete application containing all the material, including  an electronic approval by the Centre Director and the Chair of the Board of Directors must be fully input into ReviewRoom at This link will take you to another Web site https://nce-rce.myreviewroom.com..

Tables, graphs and figures may be included within the page limits noted above. Any extra material will be removed.

The CECR 2013 Competition Guide, as well as details about the CECR Program can be obtained at www.nce-rce.gc.ca

The NCE Secretariat will send an email to the Centre Director to confirm receipt of the Full Application within a week from your submission. If confirmation is not received by October 8, 2012, please contact the NCE Secretariat at:

Tel.: 613-995-6010
Fax: 613-992-7356
E-mail: info@nce-rce.gc.ca

Appendices

Appendix A:  Conflict of Interest Guidelines

Members who are directly or indirectly associated with the application must disclose their interest and follow guidelines adopted by the NCE Secretariat regarding conflicts of interest. Members, who stand to gain or lose financially, either in their personal capacity or by virtue of being an officer of any legal entity affected by a financial decision of the NCE must disclose their interest.

These guidelines cannot foresee all possible situations and the NCE Secretariat must rely on the judgment of the members. Indeed, it is the responsibility of members to declare any conflict of interest. Examples of conflict of interests as adapted from NSERC, and CIHR state that:

Expert Panel Members should not:

  • be from the same university as the applicant(s);
  • have been a research supervisor or graduate student of the applicant(s) within the past six (6) years;
  • be providing letters of support for the application;
  • have collaborated with the applicant(s) within the past six (6) years or have plans to collaborate in the immediate future;
  • be an employee of a non-academic organization with which the applicant has had collaboration within the past six (6) years;
  • be in any other potential conflict of interest (e.g., personal, financial).

Committee members are in conflict if they:

  • are from the same immediate institution or company as the applicant, and who interact with the applicant in the course of their duties at the institution or company;
  • are a close personal friend or relative of the applicant;
  • have had long-standing scientific or personal differences with the applicant;
  • are in a position to gain or lose financially from the outcome of the application (e.g., hold stock in the company of an industry partner or a competitor), or for some other reason feel that they cannot provide an objective review of the application.

Members are asked to inform the NCE staff of potential conflict of interests as early as possible. At the beginning of a session, the Chair reads the list of identified conflicts and asks each member in turn to declare any other relationship to a proposal (positive or negative). If the Chair believes a member should not participate in the review, that member withdraws from discussion. Difficult cases should be brought to the NCE staff who have the responsibility to rule.

Appendix B: CECR Corporate Plan

The contents and the importance given to each section may vary from one centre to another. The document should not exceed 20 pages, and it should provide a strong rational for an extension to maximize the CECR investment in the centre.
  Notes
Introduction

 

Statement from the Chair of the Board To confirm commitment and importance of the Plan for the centre and for Canada. 
Executive Summary Key objectives and principal elements of the plan.
Benefits to Canada The Benefits to Canada from centre activity.
Centre’s Vision and Mission The vision, mission and main objectives of the centre
Objectives
A desirable, planned outcome to be achieved through the activities of the organization.

List of aims and objectives of the plan linked to

  • The mission and principal goals identified initially and the maturation of the centre’s directions;
  • The progress towards delivering on the CECR Program Objectives;
  • The priorities identified for extension.
 Principal Activities
  • A description of the proposed activities to be undertaken and a description of how the centre intends to implement them;
  • A proposed schedule for their implementation;
  • The planned expenditures per activity for the multi-year activities;
  • The anticipated results of those activities.
 Organization

Must include the following:

  • Organization charts;
  • The governance structure of the centre and its administration with a description of the key positions and leaders of the centre.
Achievements to date

A report on achievements to date and how the activities are being built upon in the updated Corporate Plan.

Action Plan to achieve Objectives

List of activities to achieve the objectives set with:

  • Timetable for their implementation over the period of the plan;
  • An analysis of the financial, human and capital resources required;
  • Responsibility for implementation.
Targets
Should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely (SMART) to enable achievements and progress to be measured

Provide an overview of the centre’s targets and milestones and clearly articulate how the centre has:

  • Progressed in the implementation of the plan, including achievements to date;
  • Ensured effective control of financial and other resources;
  • Ensured effective risk management.

Appendix C: Eligible Expenses for Detailed Budget

For additional details, please refer to the list of eligible expenditures in the CECR 2012 Program Guide
BUDGET ALLOCATION

1)  Operating Costs:
Maintenance and operation of the centre; materials and supplies; liability insurance for members of the Board of Directors and centre administrators; legal fees and other related incorporation costs.
- Matching Requirement for Operating Costs: 3 CECR dollars : 1 partner dollars

  1. Core Facilities
  2. Materials, supplies
  3. Equipment

2) Salary Costs:
Salaries for management, technical and professional staff employed to provide support to users or to maintain and operate the centre.
Matching Requirement for Salary Costs: 3 CECR dollars : 1 partner dollars

  1. Salaries
  2. Others

3) Knowledge Mobilization Costs:
Expenses relating to communications activities, networking, promotion of the centre, knowledge dissemination and engagement of stakeholders to put available knowledge into active service.
Matching Requirement for Knowledge Mobilization Costs: 3 CECR dollars : 1 partner dollars

  1. Hosting conferences, lectures and workshops
  2. Attending conferences, lectures and workshops
  3. Others

4) Commercialization Costs:
Expenses related to commercialization activities (e.g. intellectual property protection, market studies, business plan development, counselling and mentoring, technology evaluation, development, and investments).
Matching Requirement for Commercialisation Costs: 1 CECR dollars : 1 partner dollars

  1. Capital expenditures
  2. Market studies, business development
  3. Intellectual property protection
  4. Others
5) TOTAL PROPOSED EXPENDITURES OF CECR FUNDING FOR THE CENTRE

Appendix D: Checklists for Scenario 1 and 2

Scenario 1:  Use the 2013 CECR Competition online submission system available at This link will take you to another Web site https://nce-rce.myreviewroom.com.

Number of Pages Items
1,582 characters 1. Centre Description
1,582 characters 2. Response to the PSAB Review of the Centre
Section C : 3,165 characters per contributor

3.  Full Application Form

  • Section A – General Information
  • Section B – Summary Anticipated Funding
  • Section C – Incremental Contributions from Stakeholders
  • Section D – Summary Data Sheet
Maximum of 20 pages 4.  Updated Corporate Plan
As needed 5.  Detailed Budget Plan with projections
A.2 : as needed
A.3 : maximum 2 pages per letter – one document
A.4 : maximum 1 page per biography – one document
A.5 : as needed
6. Appendices to the Corporate Plan
A.1 Original Corporate Plan (2008)
A.2 List of stakeholder letters
A.3 Contribution confirmation letters
A.4 Short biographies of Centre Management and members of the Board of Directors
A.5 Alphabetical List of Key Individuals

Scenario 2: A Full Application for additional funding must include both submissions to scenario 1 and 2.  In the event that a centre is not successful in securing additional funding, the centre will be considered for an extension in funding. Please note that you must select “Additional Funding and Extension of Funding Period” in the Type of application task (in ReviewRoom) to have access to the Scenario 2 items.  

Number of pages Items
Scenario 1 Package, AND
Scenario 2 Package
Maximum of 2 pages 1. Statement from the Chair of the Board
Maximum of 25 pages 2. Business Plan
As needed 3. Performance Indicators, Targets and Milestones
 

4. Updated Appendices to Business Plan (if needed)

Clearly indicate any changes to the contributions or stakeholders from scenario 1 to scenario 2.