Research Facility Support Grants

The Vice-President, Research & Innovation has established the Research Facility Support Grants (RFSG) competition to provide funding for the operation, maintenance, replacement, repairs or upgrades of equipment currently used in UBC shared facilities to support research. The RFSGs are one-year grants intended to enhance the research and training that can be conducted at UBC.

The 2020/21 competition is now open. Application deadline: September 24, 2020

The 2020/21 RFSG competition has been augmented to allow requests for funding to help support additional costs associated with research curtailment and the staged resumption of on-campus research activities in response to COVID-19.  

Eligible expenses include:

  • Materials, supplies, restart costs, repairs, and minor upgrades essential to the operation and maintenance of equipment.
  • Salaries of technical and professional research support staff employed to operate and maintain the facility and provide assistance to users. The need and justification for any salary costs resulting from research curtailment and staged resumption of activities must be clearly described.

Ineligible expenses include:

  • Service contracts
  • Any costs already reimbursed or to be reimbursed through other sources, including governmental emergency funds (e.g., Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund (CRCEF), Stage 1 and 2) or UBC emergency funds
    • Stage 3 of the CRCEF is not expected to allow any salary costs associated with shared research facilities
  • Any costs associated with VPRI-supported Shared Research Platforms

ELIGIBILITY

Researchers located on the UBC Vancouver campus and affiliated hospital sites are eligible to apply. RFSGs are intended for equipment shared by three (3) or more principal investigators (PIs) who are funded primarily by NSERC, CIHR, and/or SSHRC. Shared research platforms operated in partnership with VPRI are not eligible.

To be eligible for this funding opportunity:

  • The lead applicant must currently hold or have held Tri-Agency funding in the past 5 years.
  • The lead applicant can only submit one application.
  • The facility must not currently have other significant resources at its disposal, e.g., a CFI-funded facility with more than 20% left in its Infrastructure Operating Funds would be considered ineligible.
  • The facility must not be obsolete or unsupported.

Award Details

A total funding envelope of up to $3,500,000 is available for this competition.

A maximum of $150,000 may be requested by facilities that were closed at some point during research curtailment (April 1, 2020-August 31, 2020) and/or had significantly less revenue during that time. Please provide an estimate of the percentage of lost revenue.

A maximum of $75,000 may be requested by facilities that continued to operate with a UBC-approved research exemption with relatively little impact on their fee for service revenues, or facilities whose funding request is independent of research curtailment.

Successful applicants will be notified by mid-October 2020, and funds will be distributed shortly thereafter. Awards must be spent by March 31, 2021. 

Successful applicants will be required to submit a brief (1-page) report, confirming use of funds and impact of the award, by May 30, 2021.

Should funding become available through other sources to cover costs or loss of revenue related to research curtailment (e.g., the Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund), the primary applicant agrees, upon receipt of an RFSG award, to work to apply for such funds and, if said funds are granted, to provide back the corresponding portion of the RFSG award.

The VPRI office will work with applicants before and after submission to refine budgets and applications due to the changing nature of available external funding.

SUBMISSION PROCESS

Researchers located on the UBC Vancouver campus and affiliated hospital sites are invited to submit a proposal (up to a maximum of four (4) pages free-form) along with the lead applicant’s two (2) page CV. Using quantitative metrics when appropriate, the proposal should include:

  • A description of the type of research supported by the RFSG, and its relevant impact within the field;
  • The need for funding, including any impacts from the curtailment of on-campus research activities;
  • Any attempts to obtain funding elsewhere, including emergency funds;
  • Confirmation of any department and/or Faculty financial support received by the facility
  • If salary is requested, the name and title of the individual(s), and the period of funding requested;
  • The use of the facility by the applicants and a description of the user base;
  • Past and planned contributions of the facility toward the training of highly-qualified personnel;
  • A budget and justification for the requested funds (quotes may be included as an appendix).

Note: confirmation of department and/or Faculty financial support is required for requests above $75,000, and encouraged for requests up to and including $75,000 (confirmation of financial support may be included as an appendix).

Applications for this funding call and lead applicant’s CV should be submitted online as a single PDF (proposal first, CV second) to the VPRI by the end of the day on Sept 24, 2020

 

ASSESSMENT CRITERIA

Specific assessment criteria for the RFSG are:

  • Demonstrated need for support of the facility for research programs (e.g., difficulty in funding facility through current or future research grants); unexpected hardship (e.g., loss of user fees due to on-campus research curtailment, etc.);
  • Evidence of research excellence directly supported by the infrastructure. Please restrict evidence to the past 2-3 years only;
  • Evidence that the facility is used by researchers across the UBC research ecosystem; usage statistics and/or other metrics may be included as appropriate;
  • Evidence of high-quality training supported by the facility.

Questions should be directed to the Stacey Herzer, Manager, Internal Research Competitions (stacey.herzer@ubc.ca), 604-827-2379.

Timeline

August 18, 2020: Competition launch

September 24, 2020, 11:59 pm PT: Proposals due

Mid-October: Notification of results

March 31, 2021: All funds must be spent

May 30, 2021: Final report due

FAQs

What should I include in the 2-page CV?
Can I include a quote as an appendix?
Will a report be required at the end of the grant?
Do I need to submit an RPIF with the proposal?
Is it possible to apply for an extension to the project?
Can I request a no-cost extension?