Research Support Fund

1.  Indirect Costs Defined

Indirect costs of research are real, ongoing, necessary operating expenses that support research but cannot be wholly attributed to any single research project. Many of the indirect costs are incurred whether or not research funding applications or proposals are successful.
Examples of Indirect costs include: accounting, human resources and payroll (invoicing, research account maintenance, preparation of financial reports, purchasing), research administration (drafting of research agreements, negotiation of contracts, review of research proposals, on-going contract administration, maintenance of information on funding sources, etc.), support for libraries, access to computer services and the provision and maintenance of research facilities and office space.

2.  About the Program

The Research Support Fund (the former Federal Indirect Costs program) is an institutional grant awarded to Canadian post-secondary institutions (and their affiliated institutions) to offset a portion of the indirect costs associated with managing their research enterprise, helping them to maintain a world-class research environment.
The cost of research includes both direct and indirect costs.  Examples of indirect costs include maintaining research space and libraries; cost of utilities for that space; management and administration of research, accounting, regulatory requirements and compliance; and managing intellectual property, amongst other costs.  It is difficult to assign these indirect costs to specific projects since the costs are incurred to support a variety of research projects and programs.
RSF funds provided are to assist with indirect costs in 5 major categories:
  • Research Facilities;
  • Research Resources;
  • Management and administration of an Institution’s research enterprise;
  • Regulatory requirements and accreditation, and
  • Intellectual Property.
Research Support Fund grants are calculated annually based on a 3-year rolling average of an institution’s share of Tri-Agency revenue.

For more information:


3.  Research Support Fund (RSF) at Lakehead University

The Lakehead University RSF grant is overseen by the Vice-President Research and Innovation and is administered by the Office of Research Services and Office of Financial Services.  A portion of the RSF is also allocated to Lakehead’s affiliated institutions to offset the indirect costs of tri-agency supported research awarded to affiliated scientists.  Funding from this program is used to cover indirect costs in all 5 eligible RSF cost categories.


4.  Communications


5.  RSF Performance Objectives


6.  RSF - Affiliated Institutions

The following affiliated institutions are allocated a portion of the RSF based on the amount of Tri-Agency funding associated with the University and awarded to affiliated scientists and adjunct professors.
Affiliated Health Agencies: 
  • Thunder Bay Regional Health Research Institute (TBRHRI) - Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre
Other Affiliated Organizations:
  • NOSM University