Funder’s website

The funder’s website can be found HERE.

Funding Value and Duration

Stage 1: Hybrid workshop

No research funding will be provided during Stage 1 of the ICF Ideas Lab. SSHRC will cover the costs of travel and accommodation to Ottawa for attendance at the in-person workshop meeting in August 2023.

Stage 2: Funding opportunity

Each team that presents a project idea at the end of the workshop will be invited to apply for funding.

ICF Ideas Lab grants are valued at up to $125,000 per year over two years, up to a total of $250,000. Up to five grants could be awarded. Applicants will need to include the costs of travel and accommodation to Ottawa to attend the working forum, scheduled tentatively for fall 2025, to present research findings.


The Imagining Canada’s Future (ICF) Ideas Lab is an exciting, two-year pilot funding opportunity designed to encourage innovative research partnerships and projects. By breaking down methodological barriers and empowering participants to explore novel approaches to research, the ICF Ideas Lab will promote knowledge sharing and provide foundations for future interdisciplinary projects.

If you enjoy collaborating with other researchers and are seeking new challenges, this funding opportunity may be for you.

What is the ICF Ideas Lab?

An Ideas Lab is an innovative way to stimulate and support interdisciplinary projects that present creative solutions to pressing global challenges. There are three components to the ICF Ideas Lab framework: the workshop, the application for the funding opportunity and the project development phase.

What is the theme?

Global Health and Wellness for the 21st Century is one of 16 global challenges identified through SSHRC’s ICF initiative. It is also a priority for the Public Health Agency of Canada and Genome Canada, which seek to gain social sciences and humanities insights in this priority thematic area.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, the world was experiencing rapid changes in the health and wellness sector. Growing demands from an aging population, important technological drivers and climate change are among key forces that were, and still are, requiring transformation. The advent of COVID-19 highlighted the pressures on the global health and wellness environments. Across national, provincial, territorial, municipal and Indigenous jurisdictions, citizens have felt the impacts of a health system in crisis. Further, the impacts of colonialism, racism and other forms of structural discrimination continue to shape our perspectives on health and wellness. Simultaneously, climate change and other environmental factors will continue to influence our health system in complex and nuanced ways throughout the 21st century. Several factors will need to be considered when exploring health and wellness systems.

Stage 1: Hybrid workshop

The workshop is central to the Ideas Lab design. The workshop brings together researchers from different disciplines and institutions and encourages them to step outside of their comfort zone to think about the selected challenge in new and creative ways. Participants must be present for all ICF Ideas Lab workshop activities and must be prepared to fully engage with others during the intensive workshop phase.

Under the guidance of a facilitator and a small number of peer mentors, workshop participants will explore the theme of Global Health and Wellness for the 21st Century. During the initial Interact and Clarify stages of the workshop, participants will consider how different disciplines and sectors might frame the challenge. The entire group will then develop a common language and terminology to move beyond disciplinary boundaries, and to encourage innovation and discovery.

During the Create, Develop and Implement stages in the second half of the workshop, participants will break into smaller teams to develop project ideas. Initially, participants will be able to contribute to many different groups, but they will be required to commit to one project idea and a team before the end of the workshop. Throughout the creation process, they will be supported by the peer mentors. These experts in relevant fields will provide feedback on ideas and push the teams to propose innovative and groundbreaking research. On the last day of the workshop, teams will pitch their project ideas to the peer mentors, who will provide feedback and guidance to the teams before Stage 2 of the funding opportunity.

The agencies recognize that the terms “multidisciplinary,” “transdisciplinary” and “interdisciplinary” have different connotations, and their usage across and between research disciplines can vary. For the purpose of the pilot, “interdisciplinary” is used as an umbrella term to refer to all three concepts inclusively. To meet the minimum requirement to be considered interdisciplinary, a proposed research project must combine elements from at least two different disciplines (as defined by a group-level classification (Excel) based on the Canadian Research and Development Classification).

Stage 2: Funding opportunity

All teams will be invited to Stage 2 of the ICF Ideas Lab to submit fully developed funding applications. Funding is intended to support the teams as they further advance their projects and establish multisectoral partnerships.

Teams will have up to 11 weeks to complete and submit their proposals for Stage 2. A merit review committee consisting of a small number of external experts will evaluate and identify meritorious applications. Up to five grants of up to $250,000 will be awarded. Participation in the Ideas Lab workshop is no guarantee of funding.

Stage 3: Development of partnerships and project advancement

Teams that receive grants will have two years to further develop their partnerships and advance their research projects. During this time, it is expected that teams will formalize their partnerships and undertake preliminary research. At the end of the two years, the teams will be expected to seek out full project funding from research agencies to implement the fully developed research project.

Award holders will be required to attend a working forum toward the end of the grant period, where they will have opportunities to discuss their projects in more detail with the peer mentors, as well as with knowledge users from different sectors. At the forum, teams will also be provided with information about possible sources of full project funding.

Eligibility Criteria

The ICF Ideas Lab is open to researchers from the social sciences and humanities as well as other disciplines.

Stage 1: Hybrid workshop

The following are eligible to apply to participate in the ICF Ideas Lab workshop:

  • researchers from the social sciences, humanities and other disciplines who are affiliated with an eligible Canadian institution (see the list of SSHRC eligible institutions);
  • postdoctoral fellows at Canadian institutions (To be eligible for Stage 2, however, they must formally establish an affiliation with an eligible Canadian institution at the time of application, that is, November 2023, and maintain such an affiliation for the duration of the grant period.);
  • researchers who maintain an affiliation with a Canadian institution that holds institutional eligibility, but whose primary affiliation is with a non-Canadian postsecondary institution; and
  • individuals affiliated with Indigenous not-for-profit organizations being assessed for or holding institutional eligibility to administer multiple grants over a five-year period.

Stage 2: Funding opportunity

During the workshop, each team will appoint a principal investigator who will provide overall leadership of the team and who will act as the applicant during the funding opportunity application process. Other team members will contribute to the funding opportunity application as co-applicants and/or collaborators. Additional co-applicants and collaborators from the public, private and not-for-profit sectors can be added to the team at this time.

The principal investigator / applicant for each team must be a researcher from a social sciences or humanities discipline. To be eligible for funding, the proposed project idea must have a strong social sciences or humanities focus (e.g., a project examining health or genomic interventions and their impact on society, economies or ecosystems would be deemed eligible).


Applicants must be researchers from a social sciences or humanities discipline, and affiliated with a Canadian institution that holds institutional eligibility. Researchers who maintain an affiliation with a Canadian postsecondary institution, but whose primary affiliation is with a non-Canadian postsecondary institution, are not eligible for applicant status.

Applicants who have received a SSHRC grant of any type but have failed to submit an end of grant report by the deadline specified in their notice of award are not eligible to apply for another SSHRC grant until they have submitted the report.

Postdoctoral fellows at Canadian institutions are eligible to be applicants for Stage 2 if they have formally established an affiliation with an eligible institution at the time of application (November 2023) and maintain such an affiliation for the duration of the grant period.


Grant funds can be administered only by an eligible Canadian institution. Institutions proposing to administer a grant awarded under this funding opportunity must hold or obtain institutional eligibility.

Indigenous not-for-profit organizations being assessed for or holding institutional eligibility to administer multiple grants over a five-year period are eligible to apply. Institutional eligibility must be obtained before funding is released.

Institutions must contact to begin the institutional eligibility application process or if they have questions about institutional eligibility.


Individuals (including postdoctoral fellows) are eligible to be co-applicants if they are formally affiliated with any of the following:

  • Canadian eligible postsecondary institutions; not-for-profit organizations; philanthropic foundations; think tanks; or municipal, territorial or provincial governments; or
  • international postsecondary institutions.


Any individual who makes a significant contribution to the project is eligible to be a collaborator. Collaborators do not need to be affiliated with an eligible Canadian postsecondary institution.

Individuals from the private sector or federal government can participate only as collaborators.


Grant holders will be expected to report on the use of grant funds, on funded activities undertaken during the grant period and on outcomes. Successful applicants will be informed of reporting requirements upon receiving their notice of award.

Internal Contacts

Potential applicants are encouraged to discuss this funding opportunity with their Faculty Research Facilitator.



Faculty Deadline Consult your Faculty Research Facilitator.
OVPRI Deadline (Approval Form and Application) May 18, 2023
Submission to Sponsor May 25, 2023

Submitting Your Application

  • Step 1) Submit an internal Carleton Approval Form
    Submit an internal Approval Form through our central awards management database CUResearch:
    For a user’s guide on submitting an Approval Form, click HERE.
  • Step 2) Submit an external application to the granting agency
    Submit an external application to the corresponding grant or award agency. To navigate to the funder’s website, click HERE