Social Determinants of Health in Neuroscience Team Grants: Interdisciplinary Teams Pool


Total Envelope


Value per grant



One year (non-renewable)

Anticipated number of grants

Approximately 6 to 9


  • Apr. 8, 2024: Competition opens
  • May 6, 2024, at 11:59 p.m.: Application deadline
  • May 15-May 31: Review
  • Jun. 2024: Start of funding
  • Jun. 2025: End of funding
Submission Submit online using the application webform

Program Objectives

This grant will fund projects with the goal of researching and developing guidance on integrating the Social Determinants of Health (SDoH) into specific areas of neuroscience research primarily carried out in human participants.

Teams will receive support to:

  • Develop specific advice on how to appropriately integrate the SDoH into one particular area of neuroscience per team;
  • Develop guidance that is multi-tiered, providing users with a sliding scale of options for SDoH integration to facilitate uptake (e.g., bronze, silver and gold levels of SDoH integration); and

Work collaboratively with other funded teams and the Umbrella Team to share knowledge and ensure complementarity across guidance materials being produced. Guidance could include, but is not limited to:

  • Promising practices for SDoH integration in specific areas such as neuroinformatics, computational neuroscience, clinical neuroscience, behavioural neuroscience, and neuropsychology, or in specific methodologies such as computer simulations, mathematical modelling, electrophysiology, or neuroimaging
  • Promising practices for data analysis
  • Guidance on use of existing clinical data to add social variables to studies
  • Guidance on collection of new SDoH data
  • Example protocols
  • Survey templates
  • Case studies
  • Checklists
  • Standardized data collection and sharing methods
  • Ethical considerations for collecting and sharing data

Guidance for SDoH integration should be modular so that neuroscientists have entry-level guidance to start integrating the SDoH, but also have higher-level guidance that could require more complex or time-intensive research methods. For example, this could be done through creating bronze, silver and gold standards for SDoH integration.

Given the one-year grant time period, teams are encouraged to do a review of existing research to develop guidance. In addition, teams may choose to test promising practices from the literature on a specific use case to facilitate the creation of the most practical advice.

Additional Information

Throughout the one-year grant, HBHL will organize regular coordination workshops, particularly aimed at trainees (though PIs are also welcome to attend) across both pools. The goal of these workshops will be to share information and knowledge across teams, provide support to trainees, promote complementarity and reduce overlap across projects. At least one team member must attend each workshop.

Eligibility Requirements

Teams must include:

  • A minimum of one faculty member (Co-Applicant) from neuroscience*;
  • A minimum of one faculty member (Co-Applicant) who is an expert in the SDoH*;
  • A minimum of one trainee from neuroscience; and
  • A minimum of one trainee working under a supervisor who is an expert in the SDoH.

* Note: Faculty members and trainees are not required to be members of a particular faculty, department or program. This requirement is meant to ensure teams are interdisciplinary and include two individuals whose primary research area is in either neuroscience or related to the SDoH. The team must include a minimum of two supervisors with different expertise. One with a focus on neuroscience and one who is an expert in the SDoH (i.e., one individual cannot fulfil both roles on the team.)

Additional Eligibility Requirements

Co-Applicants must be either a McGill faculty member or a faculty member at one of HBHL’s CFREF partner institutions (i.e., Western University, Université de Montréal, University of British Columbia or Polytechnique Montréal);

At least one Co-Applicant must be a faculty member at McGill;

  • Trainees must be enrolled full-time at McGill University or at one of HBHL’s CFREF partner institutions (Western University, Université de Montréal, University of British Columbia or Polytechnique Montréal); and
  • At least one trainee on the team must be at the Master’s, PhD or Post-doc level.

Support for Team Development

Faculty members seeking a collaborator may consult this online database (and please add your contact information).

Project Relevance

The project must:

  • Propose activities with the potential to create multi-tiered or modular guidance to facilitate the integration of the SDoH into neuroscience research;
  • Aim to develop guidance on the integration of the SDoH into an area of neuroscience that involves human participants and fits into one or more of HBHL’s four research themes

Eligible Expenses

All expenses must adhere to CFREF guidelines. See the Direct Costs “Eligible expenses” and “Ineligible expenses” in the CFREF Administration Guide.

General Application Guidelines

  • The application must be submitted by a Co-applicant through the HBHL online form.
  • All named team members (including faculty and trainees) must complete the HBHL equity self-identification form at the time of submission.
  • Submissions must be received by the deadline. Late submissions will not be accepted. Access to the online form will be blocked at the time of the deadline.
  • Incomplete submissions will not be reviewed.
  • Submissions that do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be reviewed.

Submission Instructions

Complete HBHL’s online submission form to apply for the Social Determinants of Health in Neuroscience Team Grants by May 6, 2024, at 11:59 p.m.

Submit one application per team. In the online submission form, the Co-Applicants refer to the lead faculty members for the project. Both Co-Applicants must be faculty members.

Please use the templates provided for the budget and biosketches.

Lay summary

- Online form

A lay summary of the project (150 words maximum).

This is for HBHL's communication purposes and lay summaries of awarded projects may be posted on the HBHL website or otherwise disseminated publicly. Lay summaries should address: i) project objectives, and approach; and ii) anticipated outcomes.



- Budget template

- Upload as .xlsx


Complete the budget table:

  • Provide details of the anticipated expenses, and how they were calculated.
  • Justify why these expenses are necessary for the project.


Upload the criteria below as a single .pdf document

Project Proposal


In a maximum of four pages, describe the project. Suggested page allocations:

  1. Project Description and Plan (3.5 pages):
  • Describe the specific aims of the project. For which area of neuroscience will you develop SDoH integration guidance?
  • Justify the need for this particular project. To what extent is there a need for SdoH integration in this particular area of research? What guidance, if any, already exists? Make the case for why this topic should be funded over other potential areas of neuroscience. Is this topic broader reaching? More urgent? Does it have a greater potential to improve health outcomes?
  • Describe your approach. What methods will your team use to develop your guidance? How will your work add to and complement existing knowledge? What will be your approach to developing guidance with multiple levels/entry-points to facilitate uptake among researchers in this area?
  • Timeline. Describe your anticipated timeline and describe how your team will feasibly achieve its aims within the one-year grant timeline.
  1. EDI (0.5 pages): Describe the manner in which the activities of your team advance McGill’s commitment to Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion (EDI). View examples of practices that you can implement if you have not done so already.

Note: Applicants must include all the necessary information (including any tables and figures) within four pages. Applications that go beyond the page limit will not be reviewed. Any references may be listed in addition to the four pages.

Important Notes on EDI Section

  • In this section, you are expected to provide concrete examples of clear and specific initiatives and measures that you and your team have undertaken or will undertake to advance EDI principles. Examples of practices you may wish to refer to in your response are provided on the HBHL website. DO NOT include in your response any demographic information (e.g., gender, ethnicity, ability) about any individual other than yourself.
  • Providing demographic information about the project team is not considered an appropriate or adequate response to the EDI section For example: “Six out of ten people on the team identify as members of equity-seeking groups therefore we are in good shape EDI-wise” would be an inappropriate response to this section.

Sex- and Gender-based Analysis Plus certificate

All named team members (at a minimum, both Co-Applicants and both named trainees) must attach to the application an electronic certificate of completion, showing their name and date completed, from at least one of CIHR’s Online Training Modules on Integrating Sex and Gender in Health Research.

Biosketches of the faculty members

- Biosketches template

For each faculty member, provide a two-page biosketch that includes: Name; Affiliation; Education/training; Employment/affiliations; Research funding in the past four years; Most significant contributions (up to five).


Faculty members are invited to describe any career interruptions to explain impact on productivity. If this option is chosen, an additional maximal half page (only for this purpose) may be added to the biosketch.


Letters of interest from the trainees


For each trainee, provide a maximum one-page letter of interest that includes: Name; Affiliation; Education/training; Area(s) of interest either within neuroscience and/or the SDoH; Motivation to work on the team.

Unique contributions of team members


For at least the two Co-Applicants and two trainees (more may be added if needed to illustrate team expertise), provide a 1/2-page description of the unique contributions the team member will make, which will contribute to the team achieving the aims of the project. This could include research expertise, work experience and/or lived experience that allow the individual to contribute a unique perspective or skillset to the team. Faculty members with SDoH research experience should highlight their specific area of SDoH expertise. Team members may (but are not required to) include their positionality in relation to the project, including potential biases they may bring to the project.


Eligibility Review

All applications will first be reviewed internally at HBHL for relevance, completeness, eligibility and on-time submission. Eligibility will be determined based on the following criteria:

The team must include:

  • At least two faculty members (Co-Applicants): one from neuroscience and one who is an expert in the SDoH;
  • At least two trainees: one from neuroscience and one working under a supervisor who is an expert in the SDoH;
  • Co-Applicants that are either McGill faculty members or faculty members at one of HBHL’s CFREF partner institutions (i.e., Western University, Université de Montréal, University of British Columbia or Polytechnique Montréal);
  • At least one Co-Applicant who holds a faculty position at McGill; and
  • At least one trainee at the Master’s, PhD or Post-doc level.

A complete application must include:

  • A lay summary
  • A completed budget template
  • A project proposal of not more than four pages (plus references)
  • A Sex- and Gender-based Analysis Plus certificate from all named team members (minimum four)
  • Biosketches of all the named faculty members (minimum two)
  • Letters of interest from all the named trainees (minimum two)
  • Up to a ½ page per team member, detailing their contribution to the team

Peer Review

All complete applications will be evaluated by external reviewers under the direction of HBHL based on the following criteria:

Proposed project plan and activities (50%)

  • The project shows potential to create multi-tiered or modular guidance on integrating the SDoH into a particular area of neuroscience.
  • The project addresses important gaps in terms of currently available guidance for integrating SDoH in neuroscience research.
  • The project is feasible given the one-year timeline (e.g. activities, timeframes, and milestones).

Appropriate and complementary expertise of the leadership and team (30%)

  • The leadership has the appropriate expertise and experience to lead the project plan. This includes having considerable expertise in neuroscience and SDoH.
  • Trainees are motivated to contribute to the team and participate in regular educational and training workshops organized by HBHL.
  • Individual team members bring unique, complementary and appropriate expertise to the team.
  • Positionality of team members in relation to the project, including potential biases team members may bring to the project (optional component).

Importance of the subject area (10%)

  • The project is a good fit for the CFBHR initiative in that it addresses a significant and important gap in current knowledge and practice and has the potential to improve the applicability of research findings once SDoH guidance is developed and implemented.

Appropriateness of proposed budget (10%)

  • The expenditures are reasonable and appropriate for the described project.

Results and Post-Award

All applicants will be notified by email of the results of the competition. Successful Co-applicants will be sent a Notice of Award. It is the applicant’s responsibility to complete the Acceptance of Award form and other required documents including the McGill’s Office of Sponsored Research (OSR) checklist by the indicated date.

For any questions, please contact HBHL [at]

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