FES-GRI Joint Research Booster Fund

Terms of Reference

Eligibility Criteria

  • Minimum of $100,000 per year in research funding for a minimum of two years must be applied for, and approved from a major Canadian research funding agency (e.g. Alberta Innovates, Emissions Reduction Alberta, Natural Resources Canada, National Research Council of Canada, PrairiesCan), industry or industry consortia (e.g. Canada's Oil Sands Innovation Alliance).
  • Application for funds must have been submitted on or after April 1 2022. Applications submitted after April 1 2023 may be eligible if FES-GRI funds are still available.
  • If applicants are pooling applications from different sources, the majority of funds must be awarded from Canadian sources.
  • Research proposals previously rejected by either FES or GRI programs, and/or by any of the provincial or federal funding agencies or industry will not be considered.
  • Proposals that are a simple continuation of previously or currently funded projects from FES and/or GRI will not be considered unless they are now connected to more substantial funding as described above.
  • Scope of intended work with FES-GRI booster funding needs to be clearly differentiated from the original funding application scope, including a strong rationale as to what each FES and GRI team lead would be able to accomplish with the booster funding.
  • Alignment with FES and GRI scopes must be clearly explained.
  • Applications that show clear alignment with both Canada’s Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) priorities and the Alberta Technology and Innovation Strategy (ATIS) will be ranked higher than those without such alignment.


  • Requests that could lead to commercialization of novel technologies, processes and/or patent filings will be prioritized.
  • At least one scholarly refereed publication per institution per year of the project is required, with joint FES-GRI publications considered as one publication per institution.

Eligible and Priority Expenses

  • As per CFREF administration guide.
  • Booster funding requests that are mostly intended for moving research to a higher technology readiness level will be prioritized. A secondary priority will be for funding requests that are mainly for HQP compensation to move to these higher levels.
  • Requests for major research equipment and/or infrastructure over $25,000 or 10% (whichever is lower) of total funding procured and/or requested will not be considered.

Research Teams

  • Minimum one lead researcher from each of UofA and UofC is required, with high preference for other research team members from each of UofA and UofC.
  • Investigators or collaborators from other academic institutions or other sectors are welcome, as long as they do not exceed the total number of researchers from UofA and UofC.
  • Clearly demonstrated research collaboration is required.
  • Co-supervision of at least one graduate student or post-doctoral fellow per team is required.
  • Current or past affiliation to FES or GRI programs is not required.
  • Equal representation at each institution is not required.

Evaluation Committee and Communications

  • Subset of FES and GRI research advisory committees, with additional appointments as deemed appropriate by FES and GRI Directors.
  • Email communication is preferred for initial discussions of eligibility.
  • The joint committee will not grant in person or virtual meetings to applicants, until the latter have provided strong evidence that they meet all the criteria in these terms of reference.

Available Funds and Adjudication

  • Close to $4M in joint funding.
  • The program will continue accepting expressions of interest until funds are used.
  • Funding may be awarded to a single project or divided among multiple projects on a first come, first served basis, depending on the budgets submitted by successful teams.

For more information and to receive an application package, please contact:

At UofA,
Dr M Anne Naeth (anaeth@ualberta.ca), FES Director
Sam Ferraz (ferraz@ualberta.ca), FES Program Coordinator

At UofC,
Dr Ian Gates (idgates@ucalgary.ca), GRI Director
Jessica Tink (jctink@ucalgary.ca), GRI Manager