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Competition Guide

2016 Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program competition (additional funding for centres funded in 2010)

 Competition Guide


The Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECR) program was established to create internationally recognized centres of excellence in areas of priority for the Government of Canada that 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 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 2010 CECR competition with the opportunity to apply for additional funding.

 Applicants should refer to the CECR program guide at for detailed information about the CECR program.


2016 Competition for additional funds for centres funded in the 2010 CECR competition - Summary

The 2016 competition provides an opportunity for centres funded in the third CECR cohort (2010 competition) to apply for additional funds to fully implement their business model so that the centre can achieve financial sustainability that will endure beyond the additional CECR grant.

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. Centres must also demonstrate sustainability in their business plan through a gradual reduction in their reliance on CECR funds.

Sustainability of the centre means that the centre will continue a reasonable proportion of its core activities beyond the CECR funding period. The centres can achieve sustainability by using a range of models, such as partnerships, memberships, other governments’ support and other revenues generated by a diversified portfolio of products and services. Centres are expected to become self-sufficient by establishing a strong business model and partnerships and must be able to support their activities through their own revenue streams, stakeholder investments, confirmed contributions from other sources of funds and/or membership fees.

Centres that compete for additional funding will undergo a rigorous review to assess their progress and achievements as well as the viability of their business and sustainability plans. Centres must demonstrate that they have had a strong impact in their first cycle and outline a robust sustainability plan to be considered for additional funding.


Program Overview

Program Objectives

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

Financial sustainability of the centres beyond the CECR grant funding remains a key element of the program.

Expected Results and Outcomes

The program is expected to maximize the benefits of government investment in research and development (R&D) and encourage the private sector to increase its investment in science and technology.

Centres should be world-class and should 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 or services in priority areas where Canada can significantly enhance its competitive advantage;
  • Attracting investment (including foreign direct and venture capital investment); and
  • Strengthening domestic collaboration and ensuring that benefits reach a wide array of firms, organizations, sectors and regions of the country.


Eligible Recipient Organizations

Only centres funded in the 2010 CECR competition are eligible to apply to the 2016 CECR competition for additional funds.

Centres failing to demonstrate adherence to the requirements of the CECR funding agreement and the program guide over the first five years of funding will be ineligible for additional funding.

Competition Objectives

The 2016 competition for additional funds will support centres that can demonstrate impact, financial need and a realistic plan to achieve sustainability, along with a credible budget over the proposed timeframe. Centres can request no more than the value of the original grant.


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. Fulfilment of the CECR matching requirements is essential for continued CECR funding.

CECR grant funds can cover up to 50% of eligible commercialization costs and up to 75% of other eligible costs, with the balance to be provided through non-federal partner contributions. A balance of cash and in-kind contributions should be sought in order to support the centre’s long-term sustainability plan.


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, and 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; and
  • Commercialization costs: expenses related to commercialization activities such as 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 funding period; however, contributions for equipment and capital expenses from centre partners will be considered eligible matching contributions, up to the maximum specified in the CECR Program Guide. For a more detailed list of the eligible and ineligible expenses, please refer to Appendix A of the CECR Program Guide.

Evaluation Criteria

I. 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; and
  • Evidence that the centre will help to accelerate the commercialization of leading-edge technologies, goods or services in priority areas where Canada can significantly advance its competitive advantage.

II. 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; and
  • The ability of the applicants to support partners, firms and researchers with advice, analysis, training and business services to advance their commercialization objectives.

III. Business Plan

  • Excellence, focus and coherence of the R&D 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; and
  • Evidence that the applicants have in place an accountability framework likely to result in effective leadership, sound financial planning and decision-making.


Competition Timeline

Dates Milestone
October 2014 Competition launched
October 31, 2014 Letter of Intent (LOI) deadline
March 6, 2015 Full application deadline (4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time)
Late March 2015 Expert panel review
Late April 2015 Review by the PSAB
Early May 2015 Decision by the NCE Steering Committee
Summer 2015 Announcement of competition results
Fall 2015 Funding agreements and amendments circulated for signatures
March 2016 Funding starts


Review and Decision Process

Centres applying for additional funding must submit a letter of intent (LOI) and a full application. The mandatory LOI will identify the centres that will compete for additional funding and allow applicants to suggest potential expert panelists for the review of their application.

The full application will be used to assess the centre’s achievements, future plans to build on these successes and the robustness of the centre’s sustainability plan. As part of their full application, all centres that apply for additional funding must provide a progress report, a detailed business plan and a viable sustainability plan supported by a substantiated financial plan.

Full applications will be evaluated using the three program evaluation criteria described above. In addition, centres funded under the CECR program must demonstrate the ability to become self-sustaining in a reasonable period of time through a gradual reduction in their reliance on CECR funds.

Applications from centres requesting additional funding will undergo review by expert panels established by the NCE Secretariat. These panels will be comprised of domestic and international experts who will evaluate the centres’ applications, meet with applicants and produce in-depth written assessments of the application. The expert panel reports will then be presented to the Private Sector Advisory Board (PSAB).

The PSAB will review all applications and their associated expert panel reports, to develop funding recommendations to the NCE Steering Committee. 

The NCE Steering Committee will make the final decision regarding the amount and duration of funding for centres, based on the recommendations of the PSAB. The decisions reached by the NCE Steering Committee are final. There is no appeal process.

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 centres. Funding disbursements will be managed by the NCE Secretariat and disbursed to the centres through a funding agreement under the legal authority of the relevant granting agency or agencies (CIHR, NSERC and/or SSHRC).


Comments to Applicants and Announcements

The confidential evaluation reports from the expert panel and the PSAB for each full application will be made available to the applicant after the final approval of the results of the competition.

As well, results of the competition will be posted on the NCE website at after the competition announcement (see Competition Timeline, above).


Application Requirements and Submission

To be eligible for funding in the 2016 CECR competition, centres must submit both their LOI and full application on time. Late submissions of either document will not be accepted.

Application Contents:

Letter of Intent (Deadline: October 31, 2014)

Centres must provide a letter from the Chair of its Board of Directors supporting the centre’s application for additional funding. As an appendix to their LOI, centres must provide a list of at least 15 potential expert panel members who are not in conflict of interest for the review of their application. Please see Appendix A for the CECR Conflict of Interest Guidelines. Each expert panel will be comprised of five to seven experts in business, management, knowledge and technology transfer, commercialization, applied science and/or public policy.

Full Application (Deadline: March 6, 2015, 4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time)

A full application consists of the elements listed below. A detailed description of each element appears in the section “Instructions for Completing a Full Application.”

  1. Centre description;
  2. Statement from the Chair of the centre’s Board of Directors supporting the centre’s business plan; with a commitment to an updated plan with additional funding;
  3. Response to the 2011 PSAB review of the centre;
  4. Full application form;
  5. A progress report; describing the centre’s achievements in reaching the objectives of its first funding cycle, results, impacts and benefits to Canada;
  6. A business plan that presents a viable path to financial sustainability beyond the CECR funding;
  7. A financial plan;
  8. Performance table(s) with detailed performance indicators, targets and milestones that demonstrate the incremental value generated by the CECR investment; and
  9. Letters of support, an alphabetical list of key individuals and short biographies of centre management and members of the Board of Directors, as appendices.

Submission Procedures

Application documents must be submitted via the This link will take you to another Web site NCE Secure Submission Site. One original hard copy of the full application, with original signatures, is also required, postmarked by the submission deadline.

Complete the required fields and select the relevant options from therespective drop down menus. The following message will appear on-screen if a document is successfully uploaded:

Thank you for using the NCE Secure Submission Site. You have successfully submitted the document below. We will contact you or the contact person indicated in the document should we require any additional information.


The LOI should be submitted as a single Portable Document Format (PDF) document that combines the letter from the Chair of the Board of Directors and the appendix listing the centre’s suggestions for potential expert panelists. The PDF document cannot exceed 10 MB. The deadline for submission of the LOI via the This link will take you to another Web site NCE Secure Submission Site is October 31, 2014.

The full application should be submitted as a single PDF document. The total file size cannot exceed 49 MB. The deadline for submission of the full application via the This link will take you to another Web site NCE Secure Submission Site is 4:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (EDT), March 6, 2015.

The NCE Secretariat will send an email to the centre’s director to confirm receipt of the LOI and the full application within a week after the submission. If confirmation is not received within a week of the submission deadline, please contact the NCE Secretariat:
Tel.: 613-995-6010

Presentation Standards

  • Page size: 8½ × 11 inches
  • Margins: no less than ¾ of an inch on all sides
  • Font: Times New Roman (no smaller than 12 points) or Arial (no smaller than 11 points). If measured in characters per inch (cpi), it must be no more than 10 cpi. Condensed type is not acceptable.
  • Header: Include the name of the centre at the top of every page.
  • All pages must be numbered consecutively.
  • Graphs and illustrations may be included, but will count as part of the page limits for each section (see Instructions for Completing a Full Application, below). Either single- or double-column presentation of text, graphs or illustrations is acceptable. Any pages exceeding the limits given below will be removed from the submission.


Instructions for Completing a Full Application

The general presentation guidelines apply to the development of the CECR Business Plan. See Appendix B for a checklist to ensure a full application at the time of submission. For completion of the centre’s Business and Financial plans, applicants should refer to the Excel spreadsheet available as part of the CECR application documents. Applicants may add or remove rows from the financial tables according to their requirements in order to most clearly demonstrate their centre’s plans for sustainability.


Describe the centre’s vision and objectives. The description should include a clear vision of the expected results of the commercialization and research activities after the CECR funding ends, especially with respect to the expected outcomes and impacts on partners and the user sectors. This will provide an overview of the centre to prospective reviewers.


Provide evidence of commitment to the centre’s updated business plan.


Describe whether the centre has addressed concerns raised in the PSAB report prepared for the 2011funding decision. Explain why a response was undertaken or not and detail the measures taken.

IV. FULL APPLICATION FORM (complete form, all fields are mandatory)

Section A: General Information (1 page)

Provide all information as requested for the General Information section.

Section B: Centre Revenues (cash) (complete table)
Indicate the centre’s anticipated cash support from all sources. Amounts listed for the 2014-15 are estimates and will not appear in the “Total” column on the far right.

Section C: Centre Budget (cash expenditures) (complete table)
Provide details by expenditure category to indicate the centre’s anticipated budget. Amounts listed for the 2014-15 are estimates and will not appear in the “Total” column on the far right.

Section D: Summary of the centre’s in-kind contributions from its stakeholders

Provide the values of the in-kind contributions that are anticipated from the centre’s partner organizations. In the space provided below the table, please summarize the nature of the contributions.

Section E: Additional Information

In the space provided, please add explanations concerning the centre’s anticipated benefits to Canada, Explanations should be provided concerning the centre’s goals and objectives, incremental economic and/or social benefits and its expected impacts and outcomes for its industrial sector.

Information is also requested concerning the composition of the centre’s board of directors and the overall composition of the centre’s stakeholder organizations.

Section F: Summary of the Application for Public Release (1 page)

Provide a brief summary that can be used for public communications and expert panel recruitment.

Section G: List of letters of support

Complete the list of letters of support. Sort letters by category (academic, industrial, government, host institution, foreign and other). The number of letters is not restricted; however, the table of letters of support from partners and stakeholders should include only those that will be providing cash and in-kind support to the centre.

V. PROGRESS REPORT (maximum 5 pages)

The progress report should demonstrate the centre’s achievements in its first cycle of funding and the progress towards a strong economic impact and benefits to Canada (including economic, social, health and environmental benefits). It should explain how the first-cycle activities are building a foundation to maximize the CECR investment and are contributing to the centre’s path to attaining sustainability.

The progress report should be developed in collaboration with the centre’s relevant stakeholders and must integrate industry priorities.

VI. BUSINESS PLAN(maximum 25 pages to address the following topics)

a) Strategic Plan

The centre’s strategic plan should describe how the centre will achieve its objectives to integrate the technology and 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.

Specifically, the strategy should include

  • A demonstration of how its portfolio of activities fits into its current vision and how this aligns with the original objectives of the centre;
  • A robust commercialization strategy that describes centre’s business model, describing the requisite expertise and management capacity to achieve its objectives, the approach to partnerships development and value creation, and how these will result in commercial benefits; and
  • Key commercial risks and mitigation strategies.

b) Market Assessment

The market assessment should clearly articulate the key findings about the relevant industry sector, including the centre’s most significant 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 (needs that the technology responds to, demand for the technology);
  • 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 its priority area; and
  • 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.

c) Centre’s Capability

Applications 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.

d) 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 proposed 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 the proposed management team and its time commitment to the centre);
  • Human resource plan outlining staff competencies to achieve objectives; and
  • The managerial risks and the centre’s related mitigation strategies.

e) Technological Capability

This section must demonstrate that the centre possesses, or can be reasonably expected to secure, the technological capability to achieve the centre’s goals and objectives. Specifically, the centre should identify the sources of technology disclosures available and describe technologies in the centre’s 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 its technical activities;
  • A description of the centre’s approach to managing its technical activities, including 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’s readiness, as well as the stage of development of activities within the centre’s portfolio;
  • The key technological capability, and the technology feasibility risks and the centre’s associated mitigation strategies.

f) Commercialization Capabilities

This section must show that the centre has the requisite commercialization expertise needed to achieve the commercialization and revenue outlined. The centre should outline how it will optimize the commercialization of products or services in its portfolio. The centre must demonstrate the necessary capabilities to help clients prepare the product for the market and the market for the product through the alignment and integration of all necessary commercialization strategies.

Centres should describe their IP strategy, including, where appropriate, a description of the pipeline of promising technology disclosures and high value IP accessible to the centre, as well as the centre’s IP expertise and management capacity, its plans for managing the IP and how it will result in commercial benefits for the centre;

The centre should demonstrate that it has the capabilities, when applicable, to provide commercialization services that will help clients maximize market access opportunities.

g) Sales/Communication and Marketing Capabilities and Resources

The section must include the centre’s communication and marketing strategies. This plan should describe how the centre will brand itself, market its activities and 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; and
  • Key messages on the impact of the centre’s activities on the firms supported or firms that have partnered with the centre.

h) 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 a reduction in its reliance on CECR funding as it is replaced by centre-generated revenues and contributions from other sources over time. The plan should detail the key milestones and deliverables required with an overview of how the centre’s business model will lead to sustainability.

VII. FINANCIAL PLAN (Narrative description with financial tables)

This section must include a detailed financial overview of the centre including revenues, sources of funding, operational expenses and R&D expenses. The centre must set out a multi-year budget with details of each key technology development or business activity showing 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 of any of the key assumptions (e.g., revenues forecasted and rate of displacement of CECR funding).

The section must clearly distinguish between remaining, negotiated and planned funding. Government funding and non-governmental funding should be well identified. The forecast budget with projected revenue and expenditures for ongoing activities 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.

The narrative section should provide a clear description of

  • Sources of funding/support;
  • Operating expenses (administration);
  • Annual R&D spending in the first cycle and anticipated ongoing expenses;
  • Financial analysis of the basis of costs — centres must list and explain all material/ large hypotheses used in generating the numbers such as the costs for use or purchase of equipment;
  • A forecast of projected revenues from commercialization investments — this section should clearly describe the methodology used to develop the centre’s revenue forecasts and clearly indicate which activities/investments are providing returns;
  • Special conditions attached to any of the revenues and investments, such as need to repay interest-free loans by certain year, or options to IP in exchange for investment;
  • 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; and
  • Key financial risks and the centre’s proposed mitigation strategies.

Financial tables to be included are the following.

  • Table 1 – Income Statement: details the centre’s revenues in the first cycle;
  • Table 2 – Balance Sheet: a snapshot of the centre’s assets, liabilities and stakeholders’ equity in the centre;
  • Table 3 – Financial Forecasts: an overview of the centre’s projected sources of funding and operational expenses; and
  • Table 4 – Revenue Projections: a projection of the centre’s future income, adjusted for risk.


The centre must provide a table with performance metrics that it will use to evaluate its achievements and to demonstrate the incremental value generated by the CECR investment, as well as yearly milestones and targets.


A.1 Letters of support (maximum 2 pages per letter)

Provide letters of support confirming the contributions for each partner listed in Appendix A.1. For each stakeholder organization, the letter must make explicit reference to the centre, and should

  • Come from a senior executive;
  • Make commitments in terms of cash and/or in-kind support;
  • Indicate how the centre helps the organization; and
  • Indicate current and past associations with the centre.

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,
  • Provision of the committed resources, and
  • 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. Any other letters will be removed from the full application.

A.2 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 centre management team and Board of Directors).
  • 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 (use acronyms provided): Centre Director (CD), proposed member of the Management Committee (MC), Board of Directors (BOD), Chair of the Board (CBOD); and
  • An asterisk if a biography is provided.

A.3 Short biographies of centre management and members of the Board of Directors (maximum 1 page per biography)

Provide short biographies (up to 20) for the lead applicants (including the proposed centre director), centre management and members of the Board of Directors.


Instructions for meeting with an expert panel

All applicants invited to submit a full application will meet with an expert panel comprised of experts in business, management, knowledge and technology transfer, commercialization, applied science, finance and/or public policy.

The role of the expert panel is to provide the PSAB with a report on the strengths and weaknesses of the application.

At this meeting, up to five representatives of the proposed centre will have an opportunity to make short presentations on the centre’s:

  • Vision, objectives and benefits to Canada;
  • Lead applicants’ track record and potential;
  • Business plan; and
  • Financial projections and self-sustainability plan

Presentations should add value to the written application by highlighting major features, achievements and new developments rather than repeating the details of the application. Each section of the presentation will be followed by a question and answer period.

Based on the information provided in the proposal and during the expert panel presentation, the panel will prepare a report for the PSAB addressing the strengths and weaknesses of the application according to the CECR program evaluation criteria.

Applicants will be asked to distribute a paper copy of their presentation to the expert panelists and to leave an electronic copy of their presentation, which will be forwarded along with the expert panel report to the PSAB.


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 conflict 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. It is the responsibility of members to declare any conflict of interest. These guidelines are adapted from those of NSERC and CIHR.

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 collaborated 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 longstanding 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 conflicts of interest 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 an application (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: Application Checklist

A full application must be fully paginated, with tabs for each section/item. Use the 2016 CECR Competition full application form available on the NCE website.

Number of Pages Items
Maximum 0.5 page Centre description
Maximum 2 pages Statement from the Chair of the Board
Maximum 0.5 page Response to the PSAB review of the centre
Complete form

Full application form

  • Section A – General Information
  • Section B – Centre revenues (cash)
  • Section C – Centre budget (cash expenditures)
  • Section D –Summary of In-kind contributions from stakeholders
  • Section E – Additional information
  • Section F – Summary for public release
  • Section G – List of letters of support
Maximum 5 pages Progress report
Maximum 25 pages Business plan
As needed (no maximum number of pages)

Financial plan

  • Financial narrative
  • Table 1 – Income Statement
  • Table 2 – Balance Sheet
  • Table 3 – Financial Forecasts
  • Table 4 – Revenue Projections
As needed Performance indicators, targets and milestones
Maximum 2 pages per letter Appendix A.1 – Letters of support
As needed Appendix A.2 – Alphabetical list of key individuals
Maximum 1 page per biography Appendix A.3 – Short biographies of centre management and members of the Board of Directors


Appendix C: What do the electronic or original signatures on the application mean?

For the Lead Applicant

By signing and submitting my application, I (the Lead Applicant):

  • certify that the information provided in my funding applications and related documents is true, complete and accurate and that I have represented myself, my research and my accomplishments in a manner consistent with the norms of the relevant field;
  • consent to the sharing between the NCE Secretariat and any academic institution to which I am, or may become, affiliated of any and all information, including personal information, in any way related to the application and to the grant/award;
  • understand the This link will take you to another Web site Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act (including the Use and Disclosure of Personal Information Provided to the NCE Secretariat) as they pertain to grant application information;
  • attest that participants listed on the application have agreed to be included;
  • certify that I am not currently ineligible to apply for and/or hold funds from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) or any other research funding organization world-wide for reasons of breach of responsible conduct of research policies such as ethics, integrity or financial management policies;
  • certify that I respect and comply with the  This link will take you to another Web site Values and Ethics Code of the Public Sector , as required only if I am, or was in the last 12 months, a public servant in the federal government;
  • accept the terms and conditions set out in NCE Program Guide and the This link will take you to another Web site Agreement on the Administration of Agency Grants and Awards by Research Institutions between the federal granting agencies and Canadian institutions;
  • will inform the NCE Secretariat and institutional officials of changes in eligibility status;
  • agree to comply with the policies and guidelines described in the This link will take you to another Web site Requirements for Certain Types of Research , including:
    • research involving humans;
    • research requiring human pluripotent stem cells;
    • research requiring the use of animals;
    • research involving controlled information;
    • research involving biohazards;
    • research involving radioactive materials;
    • research activities having potential effects on the environment; and
    • other related policies;
  • will inform the NCE Secretariat and institutional officials of any changes in the nature of the research that may have an impact on certification or approvals on the same policies as in the previous bullet; and
  • understand that maintaining public trust in the integrity of researchers is fundamental to building a knowledge-based society. By submitting this application or by accepting funding from CIHR, NSERC and/or SSHRC, I affirm that I have read and I agree to respect all the policies of these agencies that are relevant to my research, including the This link will take you to another Web site Tri-Agency Framework: Responsible Conduct of Research . In cases of a serious breach of agency policy, the agency may publicly disclose my name, the nature of the breach, the institution where I was employed at the time of the breach and the institution where I am currently employed. I accept this as a condition of applying for, or receiving, agency funding and I consent to such disclosure.

For academic participants:

By accepting to participate in the Centre, I (the academic participant) also agree to the above.

The signatures of the institutional authorities certify that:

  • the institution will abide by the roles and responsibilities as set out in the This link will take you to another Web site Agreement on the Administration of Agency Grants and Awards by Research Institutions with the three federal granting agencies;
  • the applicants have met, or will meet, the eligibility requirements;
  • the institution obtained written approval from other institutions involved in the application process prior to submission; and
  • the institution agrees to comply with NSERC’s, CHIR’s or SSHRC’s data protection requirements and has adequate safeguards in place to protect sensitive information entrusted to it by the NCE Secretariat for the purpose of administering applications and awards.

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

  • agrees with the content of the application and will provide the committed resources; and
  • agrees to the release of the public summary of the award and to the publication of the organization's name as a supporter of the initiative.

For further information, see the Questions and Answers on the Consent to Disclosure of Personal Information at address This link will take you to another Web site