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Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council


The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) is the Canadian federal agency that promotes and supports university-based research and training in the humanities and social sciences. Created by an act of Parliament in 1977, SSHRC is governed by a council that reports to Parliament through the Minister of Industry.

Please note that as of 2011-12, Standard Research Grants will no longer be offered. Applicants should now apply to Insight Grants, which provide support for long-term research initiatives or Insight Development Grants, which support research initiatives in its initial stages.

The Office of Sponsored Research offers grant review, proposal development services, and one-on-one consultations to researchers interested in applying to SSHRC funding opportunities.  Please note that these services are available to researchers who meet internal deadlines and/or who set up meetings well in advance of agency deadlines.

For a complete list of SSHRC funding opportunities, please consult SSHRC’s funding search engine.


Connection Grants

Connection Grants support events and outreach activities (e.g. workshops, conferences, summer institutes) geared towards short-term, targeted knowledge mobilization initiatives. Events and outreach activities funded by a Connection Grant may often serve as a first step toward more comprehensive and longer-term projects potentially eligible for funding through other SSHRC funding opportunities.

The maximum value of a Connection Grant is $25,000 for an event and $50,000 for other outreach activities (with higher amounts considered on an exceptional basis).

SSHRC will not fund the full cost of any connection event or outreach activity. Additional support in the form of cash and /or in kind contributions (excluding registration fees) equivalent to a minimum of 50 per cent  of the amount requested from SSHRC must come from other sources, such as sponsors.
This means you need to divide your total budget by 3 in order to find out the amount you need to raise from cash and /or in kind contributions.


  • When you calculated a total budget of $20,000, you can ask SSHRC for a contribution of max. $13,334 and need to raise at least another $6,667.

Individuals may only be applicant / project director and co-applicant on one (1) active Connection Grant (individual or institutional) at a time. Furthermore, an applicant / project director may apply for only one Connection Grant per calendar year.

OSR Deadline:  3 business days before submission*

Agency Deadline: Continuous intake.
However, please note that SSHRC will make Connection Grant funding decisions through a merit review process during four funding cycles per year, according to the following schedule:

Deadline Decision Date
May 1, midnight (eastern time) June 30
August 1, midnight (eastern time) September 30
November 1, midnight (eastern time) December 31
February 1, midnight (eastern time) March 31

Please note that SSHRC does not allow retroactive support of events.
Therefore, the applicant must ensure that they apply with sufficient time to go through the peer-review so that the award start date is prior to the event.

To obtain a successful proposal from previous years, please contact joanna [dot] mastalerek [at] mcgill [dot] ca

Insight Grants

Insight Grants support research excellence in the social sciences and humanities. Funding is available to both emerging and established scholars for long-term research initiatives of three to five years. Beginning with the 2012 Insight Grants competition, artist-researchers will be able to request support for projects involving research-creation.

The maximum value of an Insight Grant is $500,000 over three to five years (with an automatic one year extension). A minimum request of $7,000 is required in at least one of the years. A maximum of $200,000 is available in a single year.

OSR Deadline:

  • Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014 (10 am) with review*
  • Friday, Oct. 10, 2014 (10 am) without review*

Agency Deadline:

Please note that SSHRC has added a mandatory Notice of Intent (NOI) stage to the application process.

An applicant who has not submitted a NOI by this date will be ineligible to submit the full application in the October 2014 competition.

The NOI form is available via SSHRC’s online form system.

The NOI needs to be submitted directly to SSHRC, unlike the full application which must be submitted via the SSHRC Grants Officer at the OSR.

In addition to basic information, the NOI must include a one-page summary of the proposed research describing:

  • the objectives of the proposed research;
  • the proposed methodology; and
  • the anticipated significance and impacts of the proposed research. 

For those applicants who have submitted to SSHRC a Notice of Intent, full Insight Grants application forms will be made available on the online system starting July 15, 2014.

IMPORTANT: Applicants and research team members are permitted to amend their proposal between the Notice of Intent and full application stage (including changes to the title, the budget and the composition of the research team).

Notices of Intent are used for program planning purposes and to establish committees, and will not be used to evaluate the full application.

To obtain a successful proposal from previous years and/or the intenal application guide, please contact joanna [dot] mastalerek [at] mcgill [dot] ca 


Insight Development Grants

Insight Development Grants support research in its initial stages. The grants enable the development of new research questions, as well as experimentation with new methods, theoretical approaches and/or ideas. Funding is provided for short-term research development projects, of up to two years, proposed by individuals or teams. For the current competition, at least 50 per cent of funds will be reserved for applications from emerging scholars.

  • Grants are valued at between $7,000 and $75,000 over one to two years.

Canadian Common CV is required for this competition.

Please consult the factsheet and FAQs about the Canadian CCV as well as the instructions on how to complete it. 

OSR Deadlines:

  • Optional internal review deadline: Tuesday, January 21st, 2014, 10:00 am Extended to Wednesday, January 29, 5 pm.
  • Mandatory checklist deadline: Friday, January 31st, 2014, 10:00 am Extended to Wednesday, February 5th, 10 am.

Agency Deadline:

  • Monday, February 3rd, 2014, 8pm EST.   Extended to Thursday, February 6th, 8 pm EST. Please note: OSR closes at 5pm.

To obtain a successful proposal from previous years and/or the intenal application guide, please contact joanna [dot] mastalerek [at] mcgill [dot] ca 

Partnership Grants

Note: rupa [dot] narasimhadevara [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Rupa Narasimhadevara) will act as your Authorized Official for partnership requests via McGill. If you are a researcher participating on a grant that has been invited to the final round of applications, please contact her immediately. OSR will also provide your letter of support.

Partnership Grants are institutional grants that provide support for new and existing formal partnerships over four to seven years to advance research and/or knowledge mobilization in the social sciences and humanities through mutual co-operation and sharing of intellectual leadership, as well as through resources as evidenced by cash and/or in-kind contributions.

A formal partnership is a bilateral or multilateral formal collaboration agreement between an applicant and one or more partners, of which at least one must be a Canadian postsecondary institution and at least one must be different from the institution or organization that will administer the grant funds. Partnerships may be between academic institutions, or between one or more academic institutions and one or more non-academic partners. These partners agree and commit to work collaboratively to achieve shared goals for mutual benefit. Partners must provide evidence attesting to the commitment that has been agreed upon. For more information, see the definitions for formal partnership and partner.

Partnerships are eligible under both the Insight and Connection themes.

As these proposals are very involved and require a high degree of institutional support and commitment, it is highly recommended that applicants engage the Office of Sponsored Research via rupa [dot] narasimhadevara [at] mcgill [dot] ca (Rupa Narasimhadevara) as soon as possible in the process.

Value and duration: $20,000 for successful LOIs; $500,000 to $2.5 million at the full proposal stage over 4 to 7 years.

Letter of Intent (LOI): 

  • OSR deadline for researchers to request a Host Letter of Support for their proposal:  Wednesday, January 1, 2014. Please contact OSR well in advance of this deadline if you intend to apply as a lead applicant.
  • Agency Deadline: Saturday, February 15, 2014

Formal Application (by invitation only):

  • OSR Deadline: TBD
  • Agency Deadline: TBD 

Partnership Development Grants

Partnership Development Grants provide support to teams/partnerships, led by a project director, to:

  • develop research and related activities in the social sciences and humanities, including knowledge mobilization and the meaningful involvement of students and new scholars, by fostering new partnerships for research and related activities involving existing and/or potential partners; OR
  • design and test new partnership approaches for research and/or related activities that may result in best practices or models that either can be adapted by others or have the potential to be scaled up to a regional, national or international level.

These grants are valued at $75,000 to $200,000 over one to three years.

  • New this year: while SSHRC CVs will be required for the project director and co-applicants, collaborators’ CVs will no longer be required.

OSR Deadlines:

  • Tuesday, November 19th, 2013 (10 am) with review*
  • Friday, November 29th, 2013 (10 am) without review*

Agency Deadline:

  • Monday, December 2nd , 2013 (8 pm EST)

To obtain a successful proposal from previous years, please contact joanna [dot] mastalerek [at] mcgill [dot] ca

Useful links:

SSHRC: How to apply

Subject matter eligibility at SSHRC

SSHRC Funding News

Dialogue - SSHRC's newsletter

SSHRC Regulations Governing Grant Applications

* Please note that all Principal Investigators must submit a fully signed Office of Sponsored Research (OSR) Checklist and a complete copy of their application package to the OSR by the internal deadline provided above.

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