Faculty Research Grant
Policies and Procedures: Faculty Research Grant
Academic Operations Manual
Approving Authority: SJU Senate Council
Established: October 16, 2015
Date of Last Review/Revision: November 23, 2018
Office of Accountability: Vice President Academic and Dean
Administrative Responsibility: Vice President Academic and Dean
Printer-friendly version (pdf)
Per the Collective Agreement (full-time unit), the Committee on Research and Scholarship manages an annual budget. From that budget, the Committee may award a portion in Additional Professional Development funding and another portion in Aid to Scholarly Publications funding. The Committee shall reserve the balance for the Faculty Research Grant (FRG) competition. The maximum FRG awarded from this fund to any one member shall be $8,000 in any given fiscal year although, in exceptional circumstances, projects may be eligible for more than the normal funding. A limited number of grants shall be available each year.
2. Policy Statement
This policy provides parameters to govern the FRG application process and applies to all decisions made by the Committee on Research and Scholarship regarding the FRG.
All full-time academic staff are eligible to apply for research support based upon criteria established by the Senate Council of St. Jerome’s University in accordance with the terms of the Collective Agreement (full-time unit). Eligible projects can be those defined in the Collective Agreement. Projects might include, but are not limited to, “start-up” grants, completing a research project, bringing research to publication, etc. These funds may be used by researchers preparing applications especially to SSHRC programs and to other funding agencies. Applications may be peer reviewed, normally by a member of the appropriate University of Waterloo community. All applications must comply with the guidelines established by the University of Waterloo’s Office of Research Ethics (ORE).
The Committee on Research and Scholarship shall follow the procedures below in adjudicating FRG applications. The Committee retains the discretion to adjust budgets, to allocate partial or full funding, and to deny funding with reasons (reasons include lack of funds, incomplete or unclear applications, lack of supporting evidence).
4.1 Members applying for the FRG must submit applications to the Vice President Academic and Dean by 31 January of the fiscal year beginning the following 1 May. In the event the Committee issues a second call for proposals, the Committee may elect to receive applications after that date.
4.2 The Committee shall complete its adjudication by 31 March, at which time it shall determine whether a second call for further disbursements is necessary. In the event that a second call is viable, the Committee Chair shall make this known to the Members via email on or before 7 April. The Chair shall, at that time, indicate a reasonable deadline for submission of applications to the second call.
4.3 The Committee Chair shall inform all applicants in writing of the Committee’s decision on or before 15 May, briefly outlining the reasons for the decision.
4.4 All grant recipients shall submit a brief report each year by 15 February to the Committee Chair outlining the progress of their project.
4.5 All grant recipients shall submit a report to the Vice President Academic and Dean upon completion of their project.
Faculty Research Grant Guidelines
Article 39 (Research and Scholarship Fund) of the Collective Agreement (full-time unit) requires that University research funds be disbursed by the Committee on Research and Scholarship. That Committee is chaired by the elected faculty Research Officer and is composed of three elected members of the SJU ASA bargaining unit and the Associate Dean (or another delegate of the Vice President Academic and Dean).
Members of the Committee who wish to apply for Faculty Research Grants (FRG) shall recuse themselves from evaluation or discussion of their own applications as outlined in Article 39.1.c.
NOTE: New applications for FRG funding may not be considered until the appropriate report has been submitted for prior FRG funding. See ‘Reporting Requirement’ below.
Applicants must complete all components of the Application Form, consisting of the following (with descriptions below):
- Priority area
- Sources of external funding
- Research record
- Peer reviewers
- Ethics approval (if applicable)
- Curriculum vitae (included at the end of the Application Form, forming a single document)
Project summary: applicants must submit a project summary of no longer than 200 words, single-spaced. The summary should be intelligible to a non-expert audience and should briefly outline how the proposed project advances the state of knowledge. It should also outline all deliverables. Keep in mind that, if the application is successful, this summary may appear on the St. Jerome’s University webpage.
Project proposal: applicants must submit a detailed proposal of no more than 1500 words explaining the nature of their research project and justifying it in relation to the FRG priorities. Proposals should outline relevant methodologies and may contain references and bibliographies. Proposals should explain in detail any deliverables, indicate all anticipated timelines, and situate the proposal in terms of the applicant’s research agenda and the broader field. If the application is for an ongoing project that received prior FRG assistance, or for a similar project that received prior FRG assistance, applicants must justify their need for renewed FRG funding. Such applicants must also indicate what they accomplished with prior FRG funding (e.g. a SSHRC proposal, a published article, a contribution to knowledge, etc.).
Project deliverables: specify what type of contributions, including timelines.
2. Priority area
1. Seed grant: projects for which external grants (SSHRC, NSERC, CIHR, and other major, nationally recognized, scholarly granting agencies) will be sought.
2. Research project in its final stages: previously funded by a recently expired external grant; priority given to proposals that did not receive prior FRG funding.
3. Research project below SSHRC threshold: requires less than $8,000, but will yield a scholarly contribution.
4. Ongoing research: will be considered only if funds remain after applications meeting the above priorities have been met.
3. Sources of external funding
Applicants should indicate whether they plan to apply for additional funds beyond the FRG for their projects, and how such external funding might complement the FRG. For example, a new faculty member applying jointly for a UW SSHRC Seed Grant and for a FRG must explain how the two sources of funding will work together. In such a case, applicants should submit both proposed budgets (see below). If, moreover, an applicant currently holds funding for the submitted project, he or she must explain how that funding would complement the FRG and why FRG funding is necessary.
4. Research record
Applicants must demonstrate evidence of their research record or potential. To that end, they must submit an up-to-date curriculum vitae (attached at the end of Application Form) and a written statement explaining how they are qualified to undertake this project (600 words, single-spaced).
Applicants must submit an itemized budget with clear justification for all line items. Allowable budget expenses must be in line with those permitted by the Tri-Council (SSHRC, NSERC, and CIHR). Applicants must also adhere to the Broader Public Sector Expenses Directive and Canada Revenue Agency regarding allowable, non-taxable research expenses. The Committee would encourage applicants to contact the Director of Finance and Accounting with questions.
Be sure to itemize and justify choice of research location, if applicable, and explain how each budget item advances the goals of the proposed project. If applicable, please justify the continued use of any purchased equipment after the project’s completion. All items purchased from research funds become the property of St. Jerome’s University.
All applications for salaries must adhere to the recommended salary rates for student and non-student assistants paid from research grants guidelines published by the Office of Research at the University of Waterloo. This information will be made available by the Committee on 1 September each year, or applicants should consult the Research Office website: https://uwaterloo.ca/research/find-and-manage-funding/apply-funding/building-budget/recommended-salary-rates
Keep in mind when budgeting for student assistance that you must also budget 14% (the upper threshold for vacation pay, Employment Insurance, Workman’s Compensation, and Employers’ Health Tax).
If hiring a student, clearly state what that student will be doing and how his/her work directly advances the project.
6. Peer reviewers
Applicants must suggest the names and contact information of two potential arm’s-length peer reviewers with expertise in the project area. Take note that the Collective Agreement indicates that FRG reviewers will “normally be a member of the appropriate University of Waterloo community.” In the exceptional case where applicants wish to include one non-UW expert in their list of two peer reviewers, they must justify why they believe this is necessary.
Peer reviewers must be “arm’s length” and in no conflict of interest. No St. Jerome’s faculty member may serve as a peer reviewer. For the purpose of the FRG review process, a reviewer in conflict involves:
A friend or relative;
A research collaborator;
A former thesis supervisor or mentor;
A student previously under the applicant’s supervision;
A person with whom the member is involved in a partnership.
Peer reviewers will be asked to write expert assessments based on these criteria:
- Degree of originality and expected contribution to the advancement of knowledge;
- Scholarly significance of the research;
- Appropriateness of the theoretical approach or framework;
- Appropriateness and expected effectiveness of the research strategies or methods;
- Feasibility of successfully completing the project and appropriateness of timelines;
- Suitability and expected effectiveness deliverables;
- Where appropriate, the nature and extent of research training; and
- Where appropriate, contribution to interdisciplinary research.
7. Ethics approval (if applicable)
All applications must comply with the guidelines established by the University of Waterloo’s Office of Research Ethics (ORE).
Applicants whose research project requires a formal ethics review from the UW Office of Research Ethics (ORE) must include in their application package a proof that ORE approval has already been sought (although not necessarily yet obtained) and must include their ORE application number. Without such information, the research grant application will not be considered.
FRG funds cannot be released until the applicant provides the Committee Chair with up-to-date ORE documentation proving that ethics approval has been obtained.
8. Curriculum vitae
Please include this at the end of the application.
Evaluation of Applications
The evaluation of applications will be based on:
budget justification and feasibility;
clarity of research plan and method;
research record or potential;
report by an arm’s-length peer reviewer.
In evaluating applications, the Committee may (i) authorize the grant as requested, (ii) authorize a reduced grant, or (iii) reject the application.
Publication of Results
Results of the annual FRG competition will be posted to the St. Jerome’s University website.
The Collective Agreement requires that recipients of FRG funds must (i) submit a brief progress report to the Committee Chair regarding the FRG-funded project, deadline 15 February; (ii) submit a final report to the Vice President Academic and Dean upon completion of the project when FRG funds have been exhausted.
Progress reports should be no more than 500 words and should include information on how the funds have been spent to date, expected completion, and list any significant challenges encountered while undertaking the research. Final reports should be no more than 500 words and should include information on how the budget was spent, contributions arising from the research, and significant challenges encountered while undertaking the research.