Early Researcher Award Round 13: Internal Call for Proposals


In the past, Lakehead University has been successful in securing awards through the previous rounds of the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science’s Early Researcher Award (ERA) program.  The purpose of this program is to help promising, recently-appointed Ontario researchers build their research teams of undergraduates, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, research assistants, associates, and technicians.


Eligible Applicants

Lakehead University invites early career researchers who meet the ERA program criteria, to apply to the 2017 internal ERA competition.  You are eligible to apply for this award if you:

  • are full-time faculty or principal investigators who, at the application deadline, are based at an eligible institution;
  • started your independent academic research career on or after July 1, 2012;
  • have completed your first Doctor of Philosophy, Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree, Medical Doctor or terminal degree on or after July 1, 2007;
  • have not already held an Early Researcher Award
  • are not a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair.

Researchers may receive only one ERA during their career.  To be competitive, researchers are encouraged to be actively involved in conducting research that has been supported by peer-reviewed funding and to demonstrate academic independence from previous supervisors.


Available Amount/Number of Lakehead University Applications

Under this program, an award to a leading researcher is worth a maximum of $100,000 and must be matched by an additional $50,000. For this competition, Lakehead University will provide the required matching contribution of $50,000 ($10,000 per year over 5 years) towards two applications. If researchers, however, are able to access funds from other sources to meet the matching requirement, Lakehead will consider submitting more than two meritorious ERA applications. Please note that awards administered by the federal granting councils (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council) are not eligible partner contributions.


Step One: Notice of Intent

Notices of intent (NOI), using the MRI form, are due in the Office of Research Services no later than June 30, 2017 (this is required in order for the applicant to be registered with MRI). Full ERA applications are then due internally in the Office of Research Services no later than August 5, 2017 and will be reviewed by the Lakehead University Senate Research Committee (SRC) to determine which application(s) will be submitted to the ERA program.


Strong Letters of Reference Are Critical to Success

In addition to the required ERA application form and attachments, the application package must include three original signed letters of reference. Letters of reference need to be sent to the Office of Research directly.The letters should address all the Round 13 ERA Evaluation Criteria: Excellence of the Researcher, Quality of the Research, Development of Research Talent, and Strategic Value for Ontario.  Strong reference letters are critical to the success of an ERA application.  Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the referee letter requirements found in the program guidelines and to communicate this information with the individuals who are writing their letters of reference.  A weak letter or a letter that is too brief (or lacking in detail) will weaken an application.

For More Information
The official call for this program can be found on the MRI website.  The information includes a complete list of ineligible partner contributions, eligible expenses, evaluation criteria, application forms and letter of reference requirements, etc.