Call for Proposals SSHRC SIG Community-Engaged Research Grant (CERG) Program Deadline: March 9, 2020

Lakehead University is pleased to announce a program in support of community-engaged research with community organizations, and not-for-profit partners.  We invite all Lakehead faculty members in the social sciences, and humanities to submit applications to the 2020 Community-Engaged Research Grant (CERG) Program. 


Community-engaged research is a collaborative process between universities and diverse communities. The goal of such research is to improve community well-being and to describe, through participatory knowledge creation and creative expression, how this is accomplished. Community-engaged research respects the capacity of all stakeholders to contribute to the development of new knowledge and incorporates them in the design, conduct and dissemination of the different phases of the research process. Community-engaged research is founded upon the principles of social responsibility, respect, reciprocity, democratization of knowledge creation, and social and/or ecological justice.


This initiative will support funding for two-year   collaborative   research   initiatives   that   are    aligned    with    Lakehead University’s commitment to Social Responsibility and Community Engagement with community partners as outlined in the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan. 


The Office of Research Services anticipates supporting 2 – 3 projects and a maximum amount of $30,000 is available for the following types of research initiatives:

  1. Start-up funds associated with the establishment of a new Research Centre (up to $15,000 will be provided over a two-year period);
  2. Research funds to support community-engaged research where there is evidence of an existing partnership with a community organization (up to $15,000 will be provided over a two-year period); and
  3. Partnership development seed funds to support planning activities with community partners, including travel, meetings, workshops, etc. (up to $7,500 will be provided over a two-year period).


Please note that research grants must be completed and all funds spent by March 31, 2022; SSHRC has indicated that extensions are not possible past this date.  Successful applicants must commit to completion of a progress report in a format acceptable to SSHRC.


Proposals for the establishment of research centres must provide a detailed five-year plan to address sustainability and demonstrate a commitment to becoming a Senate approved research centre. Funds should be spent within two years of approval; approvals for extensions will only be considered in cases where an extension would support the program’s principles of equity, diversity and inclusiveness (i.e., additional time required to ensure genuine community engagement and participation with community partners).



Funding for this research initiative is made possible through the SSHRC Institutions Grant (SIG) Small Universities Supplement program; the objective of the SSHRC SIG is to enable small universities to develop and strengthen focused research capacity in the social sciences and humanities. Proposals must demonstrate how this funding will lead to a successful and competitive external SSHRC application within one year following the end of the grant.


Centres and researchers funded previously through the previous SSHRC Aid to Small Universities Grant or IRCD program are encouraged to apply as long as they have completed the previous project, continue to meet the eligibility criteria and provide a performance activity report outlining results and outcomes achieved with the previous grant.


Eligibility:  Full-time tenure-track, tenured or 3-year LTAs are eligible to apply for this program.  Lakehead University Research Centres and Institutes are also encouraged to apply.  Community partners may include, but not be limited to: Indigenous communities, not-for-profit organizations, grassroots organizations, municipal departments, and health agencies.  Government agencies and other postsecondary institutions are not eligible as partners.


Application Process: Applications must be submitted through the Romeo Research Portal no later than March 9, 2020. Appendix A provides a description of the information that will be required in the Romeo application.


Selection Process: An internal peer review committee will be established to evaluate and rank proposals; the Committee will include a community organization representative.   The Committee will rank and make a final recommendation of the projects to be supported through the program to the Vice-President, Research and Innovation.


Evaluation Criteria


ChallengeThe aim and importance of the project (60%):

  • strategic value of the chosen research development area to the partner, and clarity of alignment between the proposed research and Lakehead’s 2018-2023 Strategic Plan;
  • evidence that communities/organizations are/will be genuine partners in the initiative;
  • expected contribution to knowledge;
  • appropriateness of the research methods/approach; and
  • potential influence and impact within and/or beyond the social sciences and humanities research community.


Feasibility—the plan to achieve inclusive research excellence (20%):

  • probability of effective and timely attainment of an increase in research capacity at Lakehead University and within community organizations;
  • quality of the proposed community-engagement plan;
  • appropriateness of the requested budget and justification of proposed costs; and
  • an indication of financial and in-kind contributions from community partners and other sources, as appropriate.


Capability—Track record and the potential to succeed (20%):

  • the track-record of the proposed research team working with community organizations;
  • indication of human, financial and institutional resources available and to be committed;
  • where applicable, evidence of outputs and outcomes resulting from previous related funding.


Should you have any questions about the program, please contact Anne Klymenko, Director, Office of Research Services, at ext. 8223 or  If you need assistance with completing the Romeo application, please contact Bonnie Knott at 343-8934.

Appendix A:
Proposals should be no more than approximately 2,500 words (the equivalent of approximately five typed pages @ 500 words per page) and include the following information:

Research Project Summary (100 words), written in lay language describing the uniqueness and importance of the proposed research program.

Objectives (500 words) – Describe the short-term objectives of your project and how the project will contribute to your long-term research plan.

Context (600 words) – Describe the background of your proposed project/group including, relevant prior research and/or meetings or events that have occurred.

Methodology (800 words) – Describe specifically what will you do to meet the objectives of your project/group.

Community-Engagement Plan (500 words) - Indicate how your proposed project or the work of your proposed team engaged your community partner in the design of the project and research questions.

Budget and budget justification (template in Romeo)

Letters of support from partners (not included in five typed pages)

SSHRC Common CV (not included in five-page total)