News

CERC Program – Third Competition

  • October 27, 2016
  • News

Canada Excellence Research Chairs (CERC) Program

The Faculty of Health Sciences at McMaster University recently communicated that the Canada Excellence Research Chairs (CERC) Program has announced its Third Competition, offering 11 Chairs.  A maximum of $10M will be provided for each award and will cover a 7-year period – 100% matching funds is required.  Confirmation of your intent to apply is required.  Please notify Tracy Arabski, arabski@mcmaster.ca as soon as possible.  McMaster internal timeline and internal application form will be available shortly. 

This will be a two-phase competition.  McMaster may submit a total of two applications to the Phase 1 competition, which will have a deadline in the spring of 2017. Full details on Phase 1 of the competition will be available in November.

Details on the competition can be found on the CERC website.  Highlights are as follows:

11 new Chairs will be offered in the following priority areas:

  • environment, climate change, and clean and sustainable technologies (at least two Chairs will be awarded in fields related to clean and sustainable technologies);
  • health and life sciences;
  • natural resources and agriculture;
  • information and communications technologies;
  • advanced manufacturing;
  • social inclusion and innovative society (at least one Chair will be awarded in business sector innovation); and
  • open areas of inquiry demonstrated to be of benefit to Canada (up to three Chairs)
  • This will be a two-phase competition.  McMaster may submit a total of two applications to the Phase 1 competition, which will have a deadline in the spring of 2017. Full details on Phase 1 of the competition will be available in November.
  • Equity and diversity practices will play a more significant role in the competition as there is only one female CERC in Canada. McMaster University is strongly committed to employment equity within its community and to recruiting a diverse faculty and staff. The University encourages applications from all qualified candidates including women, persons with disabilities, First Nations, Métis and Inuit persons, members of racialized communities and LGBTQ-identified persons. If you require any form of accommodation throughout the recruitment and selection procedure, please contact the Human Resources Service Centre at 905-525-9140 ext. 222-HR (22247).

CERC Objectives:

Key objectives for the Third Competition have not yet been identified.  Objectives of the Second Competition of the program were as follows:

  • to strengthen Canada’s ability to attract the world’s top researchers in order to be at the leading edge of breakthroughs in priority research areas expected to generate benefits for Canadians;
  • to help Canada build a critical mass of expertise in the priority areas outlined in the Government of Canada’s science and technology strategy, including: environmental sciences and technologies, natural resources and energy, health and related life sciences and technologies, and information and communications technologies;
  • to create a competitive environment to help Canadian universities attract a cadre of world-leading researchers in their pursuit of excellence in their research; and
  • to establish Canada as a location of choice for leading research in science and technology development.

Evaluation Criteria – Phase 1 (information taken from the second competition)

Note that although the criteria are not weighted, the CERC program has advised in the past that not meeting the standard of excellence for Criteria 1 and 2 would be “deal-breakers”.

  • the institution’s research strengths in the proposed field, assessed against global standards of excellence;
  • the promise of the proposed field of research for the Chair, measured in the context of leading global research; the likelihood that the work associated with the proposed Chair will be recognized as globally relevant and will advance the frontiers of research in the field on a global scale;
  • the extent to which the proposal fits in one or more of the priority and sub-priority areas identified;
  • the ability of the university to sustain the research advantage created by the proposed Chair after the seven-year term of the chair expires;
  • the ability of the institution to leverage additional resources that, together with the CERC program, will enable the university to adequately support the direct and indirect costs associated with a world class program of research; and
  • the potential to apply the research results from the Chair to advance public policy and/or the potential to commercialize research discoveries from the Chair.