College and Community Social Innovation Fund grants


CCSIF applications are adjudicated through a competitive process. Each CCSIF grant application is reviewed by a multidisciplinary committee with relevant expertise from the public, private and not-for-profit sectors. The exact number and composition of the review committee membership will be determined by the number and nature of the proposals received. Committee members are required to have no conflict of interest with the applicant, partners or any team members. They are asked to evaluate the proposal and make a funding recommendation to NSERC based on the selection criteria for the program.

Evaluation criteria

Applications are evaluated based on the following criteria:

Quality of the proposal

  • The focus and clarity of the objectives of the proposal
  • The appropriateness of the literature review
  • The quality and feasibility of the work plan and the appropriateness of the research methodology, including integration of EDI in the research process
  • The project’s potential to apply knowledge in an innovative manner and/or lead to the development of new knowledge
  • The suitability of the impact measurements used to monitor progress and assess outcomes
  • The overall budget and the justification of the individual budget items

Partnerships and impact

  • The effectiveness of the proposal to foster innovation that addresses the needs of the community and partner organization(s)
  • The total resources available from the college, the partner organization(s) and other sources, and their relevance to the project
  • The involvement of the partner organization(s) and/or relevant stakeholders in the design and conduct of the research and/or related activities, and their capability to implement and/or use the project results
  • The quality and appropriateness of the plans for knowledge mobilization, including effective dissemination, exchange and engagement with partner organizations and stakeholders and the likelihood of impact within and/or beyond the organization(s) and/or research community
  • The long-term potential for the research results to lead to measurable Canadian societal benefits at the local, regional or national level

Applied research competence

  • The experience and expertise of the research team to address the proposed objectives competently and to complete the project successfully
  • The quality, quantity and significance of the principal investigator’s and the research team’s experience working with community partners
  • The identification and description of at least one concrete practice to ensure that EDI is intentionally and proactively considered in recruiting, selecting and/or integrating personnel into the research team


  • The appropriateness of the overall plan to incorporate student training as an integral component of college applied research activities, including opportunities for enriched student experiences in applied research and problem-solving skills, and in professional skills, such as leadership, communication, collaboration and entrepreneurship; the participation of college students and trainees must be clearly described
  • The quality, quantity and impact of student training and mentoring, and the extent to which these enhanced skills meet the needs of the community, region and/or partner organization(s)
  • The identification and description of at least one concrete practice that will promote the participation of a diverse group of students and trainees, including those from underrepresented groups, as well as promote an equitable, inclusive and accessible training environment

For more information about review process timelines, consult the Application deadlines and notification of decision page.

What's next?
Receiving funding and conducting research

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Application deadline
Before 8:00 pm (ET) on March 1

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