Plateform of funding programs for intersectoral research on aging


Summary

Competition year :

2019-2020

 

Deadline (application) :

March 26th, 2019, 4 PM

 

Amount :

Variable, depending on the component

 

Duration :

Variable, depending on the component

 

Announcement of results :

June 2019

 

NOTES

If the event of a discrepacy between the English and Frenh versions of this program, the French version prevails.

This funding platform refers to the Common General Rules (CGR), which apply to all Fonds de recherche du Québec (FRQ) programming. Any specific conditions applicable to one of the types of funding opportunities for intersectorial research (project or structure or scholarship) on aging are indicated in this document and prevail over the CGR.

 


1.

CONTEXT

As part of the Quebec Research and Innovation Strategy (SQRI 2017-2022), the Fonds de recherche du Québec (FRQ) were allocated specific budget envelopes to implement intersectoral initiatives in response to major challenges facing Québec society, those being: sustainable development including the impacts of climate change and digital technology; demographic changes and the aging population; and entrepreneurship and creativity. As these issues are, by definition, multidimensional and often transdisciplinary, intersectoral networking that integrates distinct but complementary areas of expertise and research methods to address complex research topics is considered a promising path and is strongly encouraged.

This call for proposals is part of the intersectoral research programming put forward by the Directorate of Societal Challenges and Intersectoral Networks (DSMI) of the Office of the Chief Scientist.

The FRQ are seeking to get more researchers from different sectors engaged in research on aging, a phenomenon which continues to be an issue of concern in all western societies. The numbers clearly show that this demographic shift calls for integrative initiatives on aging with a global and ecosystemic perspective and requires the research community to consider new models involving all stakeholders in an effort to generate real benefits.

More specifically, the Plateform of funding programs for intersectoral research on aging is the outcome of a forum held by the FRQ in 2012 entitled Innovation for Better Aging, Together, which aimed to identify the niches of excellence of Quebec researchers with a view to developing an ambitious research strategy on aging largely leveraged by intersectorality. A brainstorming session held in the fall of 2017 then brought together some thirty researchers and partners with an interest in aging research to work on designing this funding platform.


2.

PRINCIPLES

All applications submitted under this plateform of funding programs for intersectoral research on aging must adhere to two key principles.

 

  • Focus on intersectorality

Current funding for aging research and researcher training still tends to operate on a sector-specific basis, making it impossible to coordinate major initiatives that take all relevant factors into consideration. It is therefore important for the FRQ— in keeping with their intersectoral vision— to support efforts based on cross-sectoral collaboration between researchers, build innovative groups of experts from multiple sectors, encourage a new generation of versatile and innovative researchers in an area of key importance for Québec, initiate new intersectoral collaborations, and promote the formulation of innovative hypotheses and solutions during national and international calls for projects.

 

  • A co-construction approach to conducting research

Experience has shown that if seniors do not feel involved in research that concerns them, there is a high risk of failure. A "co-construction" approach, i.e. one in which the users of the anticipated results are involved in the research process, is therefore preferable. More broadly, partnership approaches are strongly encouraged. These may involve, where appropriate, in addition to the user community: public decision-makers, government actors, the private and community sectors, industry and the business community. In short, stakeholder participation at each stage of the research process, from defining knowledge needs to the uptake of research results, is to be encouraged in the interest of respect and openness to a wide diversity of approaches, methodologies, cultures and knowledge.


3.

OBJECTIVES

Convinced that an intersectoral approach will open up novel research perspectives, introduce ground-breaking conceptual frameworks, cast new light on the complex and multidimensional phenomenon of aging and provide innovative, sustainable and socially acceptable solutions, the FRQ invite researchers from all sectors to come together to address this major challenge facing Québec society, by viewing it through the prism of a truly joint, co-constructed, integrated approach based on intersectoral networking.

By "intersectoral networking", the FRQ are referring to a research and collaboration approach which brings together researchers from disciplinary fields or research practices from at least two of the three major sectors covered by the FRQ (namely: health sciences, natural sciences and engineering, humanities and social sciences, arts and literature) to work on a research topic, problem, method or question, in order to shed new light on common or shared research issues. From an intersectoral perspective, disciplines and sectors must firmly engage in a joint, co-created research approach whose mode of operation lies outside of the hierarchization of fields of knowledge and leads to mutual enrichment between sectors.

More specifically, through this funding platform, the FRQ aim to:

  • Support the advancement of knowledge on issues related to aging from a comprehensive holistic perspective;
  • Encourage research proposals focusing on risk-taking and experimentation based on their potential for transformation;
  • Support training and the development of research capacity related to aging;
  • Provide the research community with access to existing cohorts with unique resources for longitudinal studies on aging ("resources" could include participants, data, biological samples, expertise, etc.);
  • Maximize collaboration within the scientific community from the sectors of the three FRQ (Nature and Technologies, Health, Society and Culture) to meet research needs on aging while encouraging the participation of different stakeholders in the search for solutions;
  • Facilitate the consolidation of groups of researchers from different disciplines and sectors while building on the added value of the adopted intersectoral approach;
  • Encourage the sharing of knowledge and tools to better support partners through multiple actions or interventions that could have quick, concrete benefits for practice settings;
  • Increase collaboration between Quebec, Canadian and international researchers and members of civil society on the issue of aging in order to ensure Quebec's position and influence in Quebec, Canada and around the world;
  • Put added focus on the population over the age of 85, isolated seniors, populations of seniors with chronic diseases or loss of autonomy (physical or mental), living at home or in different types of housing or accommodation, and region-specific issues.

4.

RESEARCH NEEDS

Among priority themes and courses of action, the following research needs were highlighted during the Forum on aging in 2012 and, more recently, during the brainstorming session held by the FRQ on October 11, 2017:

  • Better understand the cohort of seniors aged 85 and older. This age group is not well known – being, in a way, the "first generation" of its kind – and is facing very specific vulnerability issues. It is up to researchers to shed light on how we should care for the "oldest old", the nature of their needs and the best practices for supporting them. Furthermore, the growth of the extremely elderly population has led to the emergence of a new sub-group within the cohort of family caregivers, "seniors serving seniors", a complex intergenerational situation that is in urgent need of study.
  • View aging as a trajectory, using a "life course" perspective. We all age differently depending on our genetic heritage, the socio-economic conditions that mark our lives, the place where we live (particularly rural vs urban), the generation we belong to, our gender, our cultural background, etc. Considered in this way, it becomes clear that the stage is set for "successful aging" from childhood and that initiatives on aging should not only focus on the elderly, but on society as a whole. To that end, an intersectoral approach is a promising avenue that can contribute to addressing the phenomenon of aging in less sector-specific terms, more in line with its complex and multifaceted nature. It is also contrary to a common perception that reduces aging to the question of health deterioration in the elderly.
  • Preserve seniors' individual and collective capacities on the short, medium and long terms. With the over-65 age group set to more than double in the near future, it is important to promote "successful" aging by encouraging research aimed at optimizing all forms of autonomy, be it mobility, the ability to take care of their health, to continue living at home, to return to work, to access services, to maintain their financial skills, etc. Prevention and promoting healthy lifestyle habits that can prevent or mitigate the consequences of aging are important areas of research. These include nutrition and exercise, in addition to socialization and intergenerational interaction. As with other issues affecting Quebec society, diversity and immigration are factors that will need to be better integrated in research on successful aging.
  • Aging in the digital age: Today's seniors find themselves aging in a world in which technology and connected objects are assuming an ever-greater importance. Aging well in the digital age means being able to take advantage of advances in robotics or home automation to improve mobility and living environment; it means monitoring one's health through neuroimaging, telemedicine and digital health tracking tools; it means feeling safer thanks to remote monitoring; it means remaining connected in a digital world through access to tools, information and specific skills, etc. However, the situation appears far from ideal. The use of new technologies can be a real challenge for seniors, no matter how motivated. For example, poor vision can make it difficult to read on a screen, and hearing or speech impairments make voice-activated devices hard to use. Not to mention the faulty memory that forgets passwords… But these difficulties are not only caused by motor or cognitive losses. Indeed, it is more important than ever for research to apprehend the digital behaviours of seniors, which vary according to a range of factors including level of education, career path, cognitive health, degree of digital literacy, rural or urban place of residence, etc. Better still, research needs to find innovative, sustainable solutions that are socially adapted for and by seniors and the actors concerned.

5.

TYPES OF FUNDING AND COMPONENTS OFFERED UNDER THIS FIRST CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The Plateform of funding programs for intersectoral research on aging offers the target research community two types of funding: research grants (for projects and infrastructures) and scholarships. These types of funding, which may include multiple components, are described in this section. However, because of the specific budget envelopes provided by the SQRI and for the initial phase of the platform's deployment, the 2019-2020 competition will focus on research grants for projects and infrastructures. The components offered under this inaugural competition and their financial details are summarized at the end of this section.

Research Grants

 

Audace component

The objective of the Audace component is to support bold intersectoral research on aging that offers a departure from traditional approaches. Like the annual Audace program that inspired it, for the purposes of this component, "bold" refers to the ability of the researchers and their project to go beyond the existing paradigms of their respective scientific cultures and fields of research – theories, practices, hypotheses, methods, and even modes of thought. On that basis, an Audace project on aging must present a research proposal that:

  • Is in line with an intersectoral approach– in the sense of strong integrated collaboration between researchers from at least two of the three major sectors covered by the FRQ;
  • Has a high potential for transformation;
  • Is likely to produce considerable impacts, regardless of their nature (scientific, social, economic, technological…).

Living Lab component

The Living Lab component aims to act as an incubator that will foster the emergence of new intersectoral approaches addressing a target theme, with a focus on the development of innovative practices through the direct participation of stakeholders involved with aging: private, public and community organizations; government and municipal representatives; citizens; university researchers; etc. Designed as "an open innovation research method that promotes a co-creation process with end users under real-life conditions" [1] , a Living Lab approach must:

  • Lead to innovative, sustainable, socially acceptable solutions through experimentation in real-life contexts;
  • Facilitate intersectoral collaboration between researchers and knowledge user communities such as policy-makers;
  • Have an impact on the advancement of knowledge and the resolution of social, economic, cultural and technological problems;
  • Foster the sharing of knowledge (data, processes, practices, etc.).

Cohort component

In recent years, Quebec researchers have made breakthroughs in the planning and execution of longitudinal studies involving different cohorts of seniors, in which the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and Fonds de recherche du Québec - Santé (FRQS) have invested for several years. Further to these efforts, the FRQ intend to contribute to the sustainability of existing cohorts in order to enhance the competitiveness of Quebec research teams when seeking funding for innovative research on aging.

 

The cohorts in question are:

The NuAge longitudinal cohort

The NuAge cohort was established in 2004 through a grant from CIHR for the purpose of conducting a longitudinal observational study on nutrition as a determinant of successful aging, the only study of its kind in Canada. From 2004 to 2009, 1,793 generally healthy men and women between the ages of 68 and 82 were monitored annually to provide a range of anthropometric, nutritional, functional, clinical and social measurements and provided biological samples (serum/plasma, peripheral lymphocytes, saliva and urine) to be screened for multiple biomarkers and genetic polymorphisms. From 2014 to 2016, with funding from the Consortium for the Early Identification of Alzheimer's Disease/Pfizer-FRQ-Santé Innovation Fund for Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders, 747 of the participants were contacted and 579 of those agreed to complete questionnaires on their perceived health, ability to carry out activities of daily living, nutrition and cognition. To date, more than 40 studies using the data collected and the biological samples of the NuAge biobank have been completed, and many more are underway. Any researcher or student can access the cohort's data and samples.

The Consortium for the Early Identification of Alzheimer's Disease – Québec (CIMA-Q):

Launched in 2014, this consortium is intended to serve as a repository for data collected through a longitudinal study of a cohort of patients at all stages of Alzheimer's disease. The main objective of CIMA-Q is to develop new methods for early diagnosis of Alzheimer's. Studies based on the cohort of 350 individuals will help identify new sensitive and clinically relevant diagnostic biomarkers, discover new therapeutic targets, and refine preventive strategies for the disease. To that end, the consortium brings together 70 Quebec researchers and clinicians and has set up research platforms with the following six themes: neuroimaging, cognitive/neuropsychiatric markers, biomarkers and therapeutic targets, risk and protection factors, clinical cohorts and neuropathology. A first study phase has already led to the collection of clinical, neuropsychological/neuropsychiatric and neuroimaging data and biological samples (serum, plasma, cerebrospinal fluid and cryopreserved cells) from more than 300 individuals. A one-year follow-up study was carried out to identify acute conditions that could have an impact, and the next follow-up will repeat the full initial evaluation.

The PREVENT-AD cohort:

Set up in 2010 when the first Canadian centre for studies on the prevention of Alzheimer's disease (AD) was created, the PREVENT-AD cohort is composed of 425 subjects aged 55 and over with a parental history of AD. The ultimate goal of research on this cohort is to delay or even prevent the emergence of AD symptoms. Exhaustive real-time monitoring of the brain health of this cohort over the two decades leading up to the expected appearance of the disease should help to identify the neuroimaging, cerebrospinal fluid, blood, sensory, cognitive and genetic determinants responsible for the onset of the disease in its "silent" pre-symptomatic phase in at-risk but cognitively normal individuals. Clinical trials could then be conducted with pharmacological agents that modulate these biological determinants by reducing risk factors or stimulating protective factors. An initial clinical study of prevention through the use of an anti-inflammatory agent has already been completed. An approach based on vascular markers was then undertaken in 2018.

The BIOVIE/TRIAD cohort:

The BIOVIE/TRIAD cohort was established through funding from CIHR and the Weston Foundation to determine which biomarkers predict the progression of cognitive decline among individuals aged 65 and over with no or mild symptoms. It incorporates the new biological definition of Alzheimer's disease based on the ATN (amyloid, tau and neurodegeneration) system. The use of the data obtained from the cohort is original in that it correlates biomarkers from cerebrospinal fluid, blood and saliva with those obtained through cerebral imagery (MRI, amyloid PET ([18F]NAV4694), tau PET ([18F]MK6840), neuroinflammation PET ([11C]PBR28). The cohort includes 230 participants and more than 1100 volunteers. Among other things, monitoring of the cohort will help confirm the interaction between amyloid and tau pathologies leading to synaptic exhaustion, atrophy and cognitive decline, and examine the role of epigenetic mechanisms triggered by amyloid and tau.

Proposals submitted for funding under the Cohort component must:

  • Maximize the use of resources from one of the four cohorts listed in the call for proposals;
  • Reinforce Quebec's position as a Canadian and world leader in longitudinal studies on aging;
  • Develop scientific collaborations and financial partnerships;
  • Valorize the research results and promote knowledge transfer to maximize the impact of the cohort-based studies.

Action-research component

Action-research is based on the need to understand, explain and transform practices in a given field. As transformation is at the heart of an action-research project, the process leading to this transformation must be as likely to generate new knowledge as the transformation itself. Action-research requires the participation of all stakeholders involved, be they from a university or a practice setting, at every stage of the research. As such, an action-research project must:

  • Demonstrate its relevance both for the advancement of knowledge as well as for the development, testing and transformation of practices;
  • Help the users concerned to establish a critical summary identifying and problematizing the challenges faced;
  • Build on collaboration and partnership to develop, implement or improve tools, practices and processes for solving these problems;
  • Focus on innovation and knowledge transfer for the benefit of the uptake community.

 

THEMATIC SCHOLARSHIPS

 

This funding platform for research on aging also provides master's and doctoral scholarships for applicants who are developing intersectoral research aligned with the research needs identified in this initiative under co-supervisors with expertise from at least two different research sectors. Note that the rules governing the management and use of the master's and doctoral scholarships provided under this funding platform for research on aging are the same as those for the regular FRQ master's and doctoral scholarship programs. In addition, the platform funds postdoctoral scholarships identical to those of the regular FRQ postdoctoral scholarship programs.

 

Inaugural competition of the Plateform of funding programs for intersectoral research on aging and funding amounts

The platform's inaugural competition will provide research grants under the Audace, Living Lab and Cohort components as described in the table below:

TYPE OF FUNDING

RESEARCH PROJECTS

COMPONENT

Audace

Living lab

Cohorte

OBJECTIVES

  • Strengthen intersectoral networking

  • Provide funding for risky projects

  • Seek solutions in context

  • Share knowledge

  • Facilitate intersectoral and cross-community collaborations

  • Maintain and optimize the use of existing cohorts on aging for longitudinal studies

  • Maintain Quebec's position as a Canadian and world leader in longitudinal studies on aging

NUMBER OF GRANTS TO BE AWARDED

5 Audace projects

2 Living labs

1 proposal per cohort / 4 proposals

ANNUAL AMOUNT PER GRANT

100 000 $ per year

200 000 $ to

300 000 $ per year

200 000 $ to

300 000 $ per year

DURATION OF GRANT

1 year

3 years

5 years

AMOUNT COMMITTED FOR 2019-2020

500 000 $

600 000 $

1 000 000 $

TOTAL AMOUNT COMMITTED

500 000 $

1 800 000 $

5 000 000 $

 


6.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF THE FIRST COMPETITION

This call for proposals on intersectoral research on aging (Audace, Living Lab and Cohort components) is governed by the rules set out in the CGR regarding  the  eligibility  of  applications, eligible expenses, intellectual property, amounts allocated, funding periods, eligibility rules and FRQ researcher status definitions.

The applicant (principal investigator) must have the status of university researcher, clinical university researcher, or college researcher. He/she must also meet the general eligibility requirements set out in the CGR  or be a full-time faculty member at a general or vocational college, a private government-approved college, or a government school that offers postsecondary education. A college researcher can also be a part-time or full-time researcher in a college centre for the transfer of technology.

For each of the three components, the project may include co-investigators based in Quebec who have one of the statuses mentioned above or the status of "other researcher, practitioner, or artist" (CGR, Definitions - status and roles). Note that, under this program, "Other researchers" are eligible if they: work in Quebec government or industry settings; are faculty members of a Quebec university, but are not part of its regular staff; OR have the status of researcher in an institution not recognized by the FRQ to manage funding but with university affiliation.

In addition to co-investigators, teams may also enlist collaborators with the same statuses as those of the co-investigators. For further details on the eligibility requirements for each component, see Section 7 below.

A researcher may submit only one application as principal investigator, across all components in this competition. A principal investigator may act as co-investigator for up to 4 applications, across all components in this competition.

A co-investigator may be a part of up to five applications, across all components in this competition.

All the information needed to prepare and submit a funding application for each component is presented below.

Recipients of grants offered under this competition must comply with the FRQ Policy for the Responsible Conduct of Research.

The grant must be used to fund current expenses directly related to conducting the research.

The funding period begins on April 1, 2019, and the end date is variable depending on the component.

For each grant, a final report must be submitted no later than three months after the end of the grant period.


7.

ELIGIBILITY CONDITIONS FOR EACH COMPONENT

Component 

 Eligibility of the applicant (principal investigator)

Team composition

Audace

Must have one of the following statuses as defined by the CGR:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.

He/she must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR or, with or without a PhD, be a full-time faculty member at a general or vocational college, a private government-approved college, or a government school that offers postsecondary education. A college researcher can also be a part-time or full-time researcher in a college centre for the transfer of technology.

A person with the status of retired researcher may assume the role of principal investigator (and therefore be responsible for the application), provided they can prove that they are still active in research (publications, grants, student supervision, etc.)

At least two people from at least two sectors covered by the FRQ (Nature and Technologies – Santé – Société et Culture) with the status of:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.

They must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR or, with or without a PhD, be a full-time faculty member at a general or vocational college, a private government-approved college, or a government school that offers postsecondary education. A college researcher can also be a part-time or full-time researcher in a college centre for the transfer of technology.

The research team may also include co-investigators who have one of the statuses mentioned above or the status of "other researcher, practitioner, or artist" (as defined in the CGR).

Collaborators with the same statuses as those of the co-investigators may also be part of the research team. Postdoctoral fellows may thus contribute to the project as collaborators. However, research professionals are not eligible to be collaborators.

Living Lab

Must have one of the following statuses as defined by the CGR:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.

He/she must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR or, with or without a PhD, be a full-time faculty member at a general or vocational college, a private government-approvedcollege, or a government school that offers postsecondary education. A college researcher can also be a part-time or full-time researcher in a college centre for the transfer of technology.

At least four people from at least two sectors covered by the FRQ (Nature and Technologies – Santé – Société et Culture) with the status of:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.
They must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR or, with or without a PhD, be a full-time faculty member at a general or

vocational college, a private government-approved college, or a government school that offers postsecondary education. A college researcher can also be a part-time or full-time researcher in a college centre for the transfer of technology.

The research team may also include co-investigators who have one of the statuses mentioned above or the status of "other researcher, practitioner, or artist" (as defined in the CGR).

In addition, the team must include least one co-investigator with the status of "representative from the practice setting", or "other researcher, practitioner or artist" as defined in the CGR.

Collaborators with the same statuses as those of the co-investigators may also be part of the team.

Cohort

Must have one of the following statuses as defined by the CGR:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.

and

  • Be a director of the cohort in question

He/she must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR.

At least four people from at least two sectors covered by the FRQ (Nature and Technologies – Santé – Société et Culture) with the status of:

  • university researcher;
  • clinical university researcher;
  • college researcher.

They must also meet all eligibility conditions set out in the CGR.

The research team may also include co-investigators who have one of the statuses mentioned above.

Collaborators with the same statuses as those of the co-investigators may also be part of the team.

 


8.

EVALUATION CRITERIA AND EVALUATION PROCESS FOR EACH FUNDING COMPONENT

8.1 Evaluation criteria

Funding applications will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

Audace

Criteria

  Description

Weight

Relevance

  • Clarity of the objectives and their relevance to the research needs identified in the call for proposals.

10 points

Level of intersectoral integration

In concrete terms, intersectoral networking in research – which cannot be reduced to a merely collaborative approach – takes shape through:

  • The joint design and development, within the project, of research problems that engage research questions or topics common to or shared by representatives of the different sectors;
  • The development of an innovative methodology, adapted to each research problem and integrating approaches from each sector represented within the project;
  • Team composition: the project must be headed by researchers from at least two sectors.

30 points

Potential for disruptive innovation

By "disruptive innovation", the FRQ mean significantly challenging the foundations, knowledge and practices that govern a field of research, or the approaches and methods that commonly underpin the study of a research topic. A project's potential for disruptive innovation lies in its capacity, thanks to its intersectoral focus, to go beyond the boundaries of what is known, to break with its inherited frameworks and standards in order to produce radically new knowledge of a theoretical, epistemological, methodological, aesthetic or technological nature that will transform the research field. Applicants must demonstrate that the anticipated breakthroughs of the project have a real potential for disruption.

40 points

Scope of the anticipated impacts

For the purposes of this program, the notion of "impacts" is understood to mean "deliverables", in the broadest sense of the term. The potential impacts under this program, which must be of benefit to Quebec society, can be scientific, social, economic, technological, cultural, or aesthetic in nature.

20 points

Budget estimates are analyzed by the committee, which verifies their consistency with the submitted project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Living Lab

Criter

  Sub-criteria

Weight

Relevance

  • Clarity of the objectives and their relevance to the research needs identified in the call for proposals

20 points

Research approach

  • Originality and added value of the Living Lab
  • Intersectoral collaboration strategy and cross-community nature of the approach
  • Relevance and feasibility of the methodology or approach

25 points

Team skills and expertise and stakeholder contribution s

  • Quality of the experience and achievements of the team in the proposed field of research
  • Synergistic potential of the members and complementary nature of their expertise
  • Involvement and degree of collaboration with community stakeholders and the potential users of the research results

30 points

Anticipated benefits and transfer strategy

  • Project's potential for innovation and transformation
  • Benefits for user communities
  • Potential impact for Quebec, especially in the regions
  • Scope and quality of the knowledge transfer strategy for different potential users of the research results

25 points

Budget estimates are analyzed by the committee, which verifies their consistency with the submitted project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cohorte

Criteria

  Sub-criteria

Weight

Relevance

  • Importance of the research that could be carried out on the cohort in relation to the research needs identified in Section 4

25 points

Organization and management

  • Administrative structure for managing the cohort's resources, which may include, in addition to the participants, data, biological samples, expertise, equipment
  • Modalities for access, sharing, coordination and operation to maximize the use of the cohort's resources
  • Capacity to enhance intersectoral research with the cohort's resources
  • Leadership ability of the cohort director(s) to develop national and international research collaborations and partnerships

50 points

Anticipated impacts, transfer strategy and outreach

  • Impact of research involving the cohort
  • Scope of anticipated national and international scientific collaborations
  • Scope and quality of the dissemination and transfer strategy for different potential user communities of the results obtained from the cohort studies

25 points

Budget estimates are analyzed by the committee, which verifies their consistency with the submitted project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8.2. Application evaluation process

As indicated in Section 4 of the CGR, the FRQ receive funding applications, check their eligibility and submit them for scientific evaluation by specially formed peer committees whose members are recognized for their skills, expertise and achievements in connection with the program objectives and the applications submitted. Furthermore, as the evaluators for this type of multi-component program come from a variety of different backgrounds, applicants are encouraged, in the documents submitted for evaluation, to present their project in such a way as to be easily understandable in a multidisciplinary context.

The project evaluation process takes place in two phases for each component:

  • Phase 1: Individual evaluation with respect to the call for proposals, the research needs set out in Section 4 and the evaluation criteria for each component.
  • Phase 2: Consensus evaluation by the plenary committee and ranking of applications. The committee determines which applications it recommends for funding.

For the Audace component, the international scientific committee interviews the leaders of the projects selected in Phase 1.

The conditions governing funding decisions are specified in Section 4.5 of the CGR.


9.

APPLICATION PROCESS

9.1 E-Forms

Before submitting a funding application, the applicant must create a user account on FRQnet, if this has not already been done. Individuals who already have a personal identification number (PIN) have direct access to a FRQnet account and must update their profile using the E-portfolio.

Individuals interested in the funding opportunities provided under this competition must complete the appropriate application form as principal investigator. Forms are available in the FRQnet E-portfolio.

Each of the three components of this call for proposals has its own application form. These forms can be found on the FRQ-Santé platform of FRQnet. Forms for the Audace and Living Lab components are available under Available competition, Program Research grants and for the Cohort component under Program: Infrastructure grants.

As indicated in the CGR, the form may be filled out in English or French. However, the project title and summary must be written in French. This information may be used for promotion and dissemination purposes.

Only forms completed and submitted electronically will be accepted.

Any documents that are not required and which are included with the application will not be submitted to the evaluation committee. The FRQ will not notify applicants of any information or documents missing from the application. Any documents submitted to the FRQ after the competition closing date will not be considered.

9.2 Documents to be included

The principal investigator who submits the application for the chosen component must include the following documents with the application form:

 

Component

Required documents

Additional optional documents

Audace

A text of up to three pages (including references, tables, figures and graphs) describing the project in light of the call for proposals, the research needs set out in in Section 4 and the evaluation criteria of the Audace component. The project description must include the following:

  • A paragraph describing how each area of expertise of each sector is enriched by another research sector through the co-construction process;

  • A paragraph describing the process by which the project will be carried out and the contribution of each team member to this process.

Each team member must provide an abbreviated CV (maximum 2 pages) summarizing the following, in the order listed:

  • academic and/or professional training;

  • scientific or professional career;

  • relevant expertise and achievements as they pertain to the project.

Up to two pages of budgetary justifications.

Where applicable, an ethical justification of up to one page for the use of human or animal subjects or biological materials.

Where applicable, the following document(s) MUST be attached via the "Other documents" section of the e-form to establish the eligibility of a principal investigator (applicant) or co-investigator with the following statuses:

- university researcher or clinical university researcher who does not occupy a tenure-track position (e.g.: contractual): a letter from the university indicating the start and end dates of the university appointment;

- college researcher who does not occupy a permanent position: a letter from the college certifying that he/she will remain in the employment of the college for the term of the grant;

- retired university researcher or clinical university researcher: a letter from the university indicating that, prior to his/her retirement, the researcher was a regular professor and that, for the term of the grant, he/she will have access to the facilities and logistical support required to carry out research activities and that he/she will continue to train/supervise students and young researchers in the field, where applicable.

An additional optional document presenting the project and/or its leaders may be attached to the form. The choice of content is at the discretion of the applicants. The following formats are accepted:

  • A text of up to 3,500 characters, including spaces and characters that are part of any images or graphic elements;

  • A video or audio recording with a maximum length of 3 minutes (180 seconds);

  • A PowerPoint presentation of up to 10 slides, presented in the form of a video with a maximum length of 3 minutes (180 seconds).

Digital accompanying documents (video between 500 and 1024 MB or PowerPoint) must be sent to the FRQ via the following web address CLOUD. They must be identified as follows: NAME OF APPLICANT - APPLICATION NUMBER.

ATTENTION: Applicants are requested to send their accompanying documents only once, in their final version. In case of duplicate transmission resulting from a manipulation error, the most recent version will be considered for the evaluation.

Cloud : https://cloud.frq.gouv.qc.ca/u/d/db8a43dedf17451d8226

Component

Required documents

Additional optional documents

Living Lab

A text of up to ten pages (including references, tables, figures and graphs) describing the project in light of the call for proposals, the research needs set out in in Section 4 and the evaluation criteria of the Living Lab component. The project description must include the following:

  • The relevance and originality of the project in relation to the research needs indicated in the call for proposals;

  • The relevance, added value and feasibility of the Living Lab approach;

  • Intersectoral integration and the co-creation strategy;

  • The specific contribution of each team member and the synergy between them;

  • Level of involvement of community stakeholders and potential users of the research results;

  • Ability to innovate through multiple actions or interventions that could have quick, concrete benefits for practice settings;

  • Anticipated impacts and dissemination and transfer strategy for different potential user communities of the research results;

  • Scientific and socio-economic impact, particularly for the regions.

Each team member must provide an abbreviated CV (maximum 2 pages) summarizing the following, in the order listed:

  • academic and/or professional training;

  • scientific or professional career;

  • relevant expertise and achievements as they pertain to the project.

Up to five pages of budgetary justifications.

Letter of support from community stakeholders and/or users involved in the Living Lab.

Where applicable, an ethical justification of up to one page for the use of human or animal subjects or biological materials.

Where applicable, the following document(s) MUST be attached via the "Other documents" section of the e-form to establish the eligibility of a principal investigator (applicant) or co-investigator with the following statuses:

- university researcher or clinical university researcher who does not occupy a tenure-track position (e.g.: contractual): a letter from the university indicating the start and end dates of the university appointment;

- college researcher who does not occupy a permanent position: a letter from the college certifying that he/she will remain in the employment of the college for the term of the grant.

Letter of support from partner(s) involved in the project other than community stakeholders and/or users involved in the Living Lab.

Component Required documents Additional optional documents
 

A text of up to ten pages (including references, tables, figures and graphs) describing the proposal that meets all the evaluation criteria and sub-criteria set out in Section 8.

Each team member must provide an abbreviated CV (maximum 2 pages) summarizing the following, in the order listed:

  • academic and/or professional training;

  • scientific or professional career;

  • relevant expertise and achievements as they pertain to the project.

Up to five pages of budgetary justifications.

Where applicable, an ethical justification of up to one page for the use of human or animal subjects or biological materials.

Where applicable, the following document(s) MUST be attached via the "Other documents" section of the e-form to establish the eligibility of a principal investigator (applicant) or co-investigator with the following statuses:

- university researcher or clinical university researcher who does not occupy a tenure-track position (e.g.: contractual): a letter from the university indicating the start and end dates of the university appointment;

- college researcher who does not occupy a permanent position: a letter from the college certifying that he/she will remain in the employment of the college for the term of the grant.

Letter of support from partners involved in the cohort-based research.

 


10.

DESCRIPTION AND NATURE OF THE FUNDING

Component

Level of funding

 Type of eligible expenses

Audace

 

  • Up to 100 000 $ for a 12-month project

  • The use of the funding amount may be spread over two fiscal years

  • Expenses directly related to the implementation of the project

  • All budget items listed in the CGR are eligible (Section 8 of the CGR)

  • Indirect costs equivalent to 27% of the grant amount, paid in addition to the research grant, to a maximum of $27,000

Living Lab

  • Up to $300,000 per year for a maximum of 3 years

  • Expenses directly related to the implementation of the project

  • All budget items listed in the CGR are eligible (Section 8 of the CGR)

  • Indirect research costs (FIR) included in the grant

Cohort

  • Up to $300,000 per year for a maximum of 5 years

  • Expenses related to the maintenance of the infrastructure and which contribute to the implementation of projects

  • All budget items listed in the CGR are eligible (Section 8 of the CGR)

  • Indirect research costs (FIR) included in the grant

 


11.

FOLLOW-UP AND ACCOUNTABILITY

In accordance with the CGR, the holder of a grant obtained under this program is required to submit a final report, the format of which will be communicated in due course to the principal investigator who submitted the application.

In addition, grant holders must focus efforts to popularize their research results in order to maximize potential impacts for those groups most likely to benefit from the research. Furthermore, after the final report, principal investigators must contribute, when invited to do so, to events such as forums, conferences and follow-up or transfer activities organized by the Fonds to introduce the results of their work to a wider public of potential users. Expenses related to such events are the responsibility of the participants and must be included in the grant budget under "travel and accommodation expenses".

The final report may be written in English or French. If written in English, it must be accompanied by a title and abstract in French. The report must be submitted no more than 12 months after the end date of the grant, except under exceptional circumstances. If a final report is not submitted within the prescribed time, co-investigators on the funded project may not receive new funding from the FRQ until the situation has been remedied.

Grant recipients must indicate, in all reports, papers or other communications, that the research was funded by the FRQ.


12.

IMPORTANT DATES AND ANNOUNCEMENT OF RESULTS

January 23, 2019: Launch of the call for proposals for the three components (Audace, Living Lab and Cohort) along with the competition rules.

January 30, 2019: Online publication of application forms for the three components.

3 possible dates to take part in a 1-hour DSMI webinar to present the calls for proposals (Audace, Living Lab and Cohort) and answer participants' questions;

  • Tuesday February 5 at noon: click here to sign up for the webinar.
  • Friday February 8 at 9 a.m.: click here to sign up for the webinar.
  • Monday February 11 at 1 p.m.: click here to sign up for the webinar.

March 26, 2019: Deadline to submit a proposal for any of the three components (4 p.m.).

Week of May 27: Evaluation committee interviews with teams applying to the AUDACE component.

Week of June 24, 2019: Announcement of results for the three components.

For the conditions regarding the announcement of funding, refer to Section 5 of the CGR.

A copy of the certificate of ethics for the use of human or animal subjects or biological materials as part of the project is required on the awarding of any grant, if applicable. Payment of the grant is governed by the rules relating to research ethics and conformity (CGR, Section 5.4).


Do you have questions?

Sophie Gauthier-Clerc

Responsable de programmes
Défis de société et maillages intersectoriels

 Sophie.Gauthier-Clerc

418 643-8560, poste 3255

Technical Assistance

Email: centre.assistance.sante
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