CIHR Project Grant

The Project Grant program is designed to capture ideas with the greatest potential for important advances in fundamental or applied health-related knowledge, health care, health systems, and/or health outcomes by supporting projects or programs of research proposed and conducted by individual researchers or groups of researchers in all areas of health. The best ideas may stem from new, incremental, innovative, and/or high-risk lines of inquiry or knowledge translation approaches.

Changes effective Spring 2021

Read the summary of changes from CIHR.

  • Summary of Progress (2 page max): Mandatory for all Nominated Principal Applicants. This document supports your research proposal by allowing you to describe how your application fits into your overarching research program. When preparing the Summary of Progress pages, please carefully read the instructions.
  • Applicant Profile CV: Knowledge users, Indigenous applicants and international applicants now have the choice to use either the CCV or an Applicant Profile CV. Canadian academics must still submit a CCV. NOTE: ResearchNet will allow either version to be uploaded – be certain you are including an acceptable format CV.
  • Removal of Weighted Scores: Reviewers will now provide one score that reflects all three evaluation criteria: (1) significance and impact of the research, (2) approaches and methods, and (3) expertise, experience, and resources.
  • Sex and Gender Based Analysis (SGBA): In addition to identifying whether SGBA is a strength, a weakness or not applicable to the proposal, reviewers will now be explicitly required to include their assessment of whether SGBA is appropriate for the research being proposed. If so, the overall application score and written evaluation will reflect if SGBA has been suitably addressed in the research proposed.
  • Entry of Foundation grant-holders: Spring 2021 was the first competition where non-ECR Foundation grant-holders were eligible to apply to the Project grant program.  CIHR will be investing the funding previously allocated for the Foundation grant program as it becomes available directly into the Project grant program.
  • Indigenous health research: CIHR has updated the eligibility criteria for the Project grant competition. Starting with the Fall 2020 competition, individuals affiliated with Indigenous nongovernmental organizations in Canada with a research or knowledge translation mandate are now eligible to apply to the Project grant competition as Nominated Principal Applicants.
  • Ensuring equitable access to research funds: Since 2016, CIHR has ensured that the proportion of applications submitted by ECRs is at least equal to the proportion of ECR grants funded. CIHR will extend these measures to ensure that the proportion of grants funded is at least equal to the proportion of applications submitted by female applicants and for applicants submitting applications written in French. As with ECRs, a portion of the competition budget will be reserved for these interventions. Should the full amount set aside not be required, all remaining funds will be used to fund applications in rank order.

New effective Fall 2021:

  • Extension: Offering the option for an Extension to the Authority to Use Funds.  These requests are processed by Research Services - please contact to request an extension.
  • ECR Status Extension: CIHR has extended ECR status from 72-84 months.
  • Interdiciplinary Review Panel: A Tri-Agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee has been added beginning in the Fall 2021 competition. More information available here.

Key application considerations

  • Applicants may submit a maximum of two (2) Project Grant applications per competition in the role of Nominated Principal Investigator (NPA).
  • Notice of Recommendation (NOR): CIHR will continue to issue Notice of Recommendations (NOR) for the Fall 2021 competition. The NOR provides applicants with information such as their application score, committee rank and reviews to help them determine if they want to resubmit their application to the next competition. 
  • Equity and Diversity Questionnaire: Completion of the Equity and Diversity Questionnaire is mandatory for all CIHR Application participants. Collaborators are exempt.  The Equity and Diversity Questionnaire must be completed prior to the eSubmission deadline. 
  • iKT/Partner/Knowledge User or projects involving Indigenous research: For projects involving integrated knowledge translation, partners, and/or knowledge users, or those that involve Indigenous research, please contact as soon as possible to discuss implications to the application.  
  • Response to Previous Reviews: If you are resubmitting an unsuccessful Project Grant application, you may provide a response (up to 2 pages) to previous reviewers’ comments.  Applicants who upload a “response to previous reviews” must include all the reviews received in the last round of submission in the response (the reviews do not count toward the 2 page response limit).  You do not have to respond to all the comments in the reviews, only those that are relevant to your revised application. Your 2-page response to reviews - and the reviews being addressed - must be uploaded as a single PDF attachment. Please see Application Instructions for updated, detailed instructions.
  • Sex and Gender Considerations: 1) The NPA is asked to complete one of the sex- and gender-based analysis training modules available online through the CIHR Institute of Gender and Health and upload with the application the Certificate of Completion in the Attach Other Application Material task. 2) In addition to identifying whether SGBA is a strength, a weakness or not applicable to the proposal, reviewers are explicitly required to include their assessment of whether SGBA is appropriate for the research being proposed. If so, the overall application score and written evaluation will reflect if SGBA has been suitably addressed in the research proposed.
  • CIHR Priority Announcements (PAs) are available  for the Fall 2021 Project Grant competition. PAs offer additional sources of funding for highly ranked and competitive applications that were not funded through the Project Grant competition budget. Review the PA Funding Opportunity Details Page and FAQs
  • For Commercialization Projects, a Research/Technical Plan and a Commercialization plan must be integrated into the 10-page proposal. Consult CIHR's Commercialization Projects website, and (see links under 'Resources' below) the Peer Review Manual, Funding Opportunity Details and the Application Instructions for details.
  • All application attachments must adhere to CIHR's  Acceptable Application Formats and Attachments.

Key Deadlines:

(Check with your department/faculty for additional deadlines)


Researchers who intend to apply for a Project Grant must complete their registration in ResearchNet by/before February 16th, 8pm ET *EXTENDED*


Internal Review Process: Submit the application to Research Services for internal review by verifying and submitting the full application and all CCVs and attachments in ResearchNet. Please do not email the application to Research Services.


*EXTENDED* Wednesday March 2nd 2022, by/before 2pm ET

  • Submission of ROLA proposal
  • Submit your complete draft application in ResearchNet

*Note: Applications will not automatically be returned in ResearchNet for editing, however applications can be returned upon request once they have been downloaded by Research Services. Please email to request the return of your application.

Applications will be reviewed in the order they are received in ResearchNet and applications received after the internal deadline will receive truncated reviews.


*EXTENDED* Wednesday March 16th 2022, by/before 2pm ET

  • Final application submitted in ResearchNet.
  • When you submit your application in ResearchNet, it will be routed through Research Services for review and final submission to CIHR. Research Services must forward applications to CIHR prior to the sponsor deadline.

Note: When you submit your Registration in ResearchNet, it will be sent directly to CIHR. When you submit your Application in ResearchNet, it will be routed through Research Western for review and final submission to CIHR.

Project Grant Registration Instructions

A Common CV is not required at this stage

Project Grant Application Instructions



Western Webinars

Fall 2021 Virtual Panel Discussion about CIHR Project Grant Peer Review  

Spring 2021 Western Webinar and Q&A with Jane Rylett and Tim Regnault

Fall 2020 Virtual Panel Discussion about CIHR Project Grant Peer Review  

CIHR Webinars

CIHR will be hosting the following webinars to support participants with the requirements of the funding opportunity “Project Grant – Spring 2022 Applicant Webinar” and to answer questions on how to apply.

English Sessions
Duration: 60 minutes
When: Wednesday, January 26, 2022 at 11:00 am ET | Join
When: Thursday, February 17, 2022 at 1:00 pm ET | Join


Webinar details and archived webinars are on the CIHR website.


For more information, or questions relating to the Project Grant program, please contact Western Research at