2020 Large-Scale Applied Research Project Competition: Genomics Solutions for Natural Resources and the Environment

Genome Canada, together with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), has announced a Request for Applications (RFA) for the 2020 Large Scale Applied Research Project Competition “Genomics Solutions for Natural Resources and the Environment”. The Competition aims to support applied research projects that use genomic approaches to address challenges and opportunities in Canada’s natural resources and environment sectors, including interactions between natural resources and the environment, thereby contributing to the Canadian bioeconomy, a healthy environment and the well-being of Canadians.

The scope of this funding opportunity will include areas such as genomics research related to energy, mining, forestry, water stewardship, healthy oceans, wildlife management/conservation and bioproducts that help conserve natural resources, protect the environment and support sustainable resource management. It also includes the use of genomics to understand the adaptive genetic potential of species, populations and ecosystems to climate and other environmental changes and stressors, and identify those key elements that impact ecosystem structure, function and diversity.

The natural resource and environment sectors have a history of using research to assess challenges and develop various solutions. Knowledge and innovation emerging from genomics have the potential to help address the challenges in these sectors and thereby drive sustainability, growth, productivity, commercialization and global competitiveness. Previous investments from Genome Canada in these sectors have led to the development of genomic tools, resources and policies for biomonitoring and ecotoxicological risk assessment, bioremediation, increased efficiency of hydrocarbon extraction, and increased forest sustainability. See previous LSARP projects

Research into the implications of genomics in society (GE3LS research)

Because genomics and its applications in the natural resource and environment sectors can have significant social and economic impact, all projects must undertake research into the application and implications of genomics in society (GE3LS research). GE3LS research can either be the major focus of the project or an integrated component that is shaped by, and helps shape, the overall project.

Funding Available and Term

This funding opportunity makes it possible to collaboratively carry out joint projects with NRCan researchers, where Genome Canada funds will support the Genome Canada eligible researchers and NRCan funds will support the NRCan researchers.

  • There is approximately $25 million available for the term of this competition through Genome Canada, and approximately $1.5 million from NRCan.
  • The contribution from Genome Canada must be between $1 million and $3 million, and the amount of co-funding from eligible sources must be at least equal to the Genome Canada contribution.
  • NRCan will only invest in projects it determines to be relevant; projects are encouraged but not required to include a component that would be funded by NRCan.
  • The NRCan funding for this competition cannot be included as co-funding.
  • Successful individual projects will be awarded funding for a term of up to four years.


Genome Canada funds can only be awarded to individuals affiliated with one or more of the following types of organizations:

  • Canadian universities and affiliated institutions including research hospitals and research institutes
  • Not-for-profit organizations (including community or charitable organizations) with an explicit research mandate
  • Canadian non-federal government departments or agencies

Individuals eligible to receive and administer Genome Canada funds must be:

  • Autonomous regarding their research activities; and,
  • Have an academic or research appointment such that the individual is:
  • allowed to pursue the proposed research project independently for the duration of the funding, to supervise trainees, and to publish the research results; and
  • obliged to conform to institutional/organizational regulations and guidelines concerning the conduct of research, the supervision of trainees, and the employment conditions of staff.

Research teams may include as co-applicants international, private sector, or federal laboratory scientists. However, Genome Canada funding is restricted to activities performed within Genome Canada eligible institutions and NRCan funding (from this funding opportunity) is restricted to activities performed within NRCan.

Application Material and Relevant Links

Potential applicants should contact Laura Riley, Advisor, Sector Innovation and Programs at lriley@ontariogenomics.ca

RFA and Guidelines:

Other Resources:

Competition Timeline

To support the projects from Ontario submitted to this competition, Ontario Genomics will engage external reviewers and advisors to perform a friendly review of the draft applications and facilitate strategy sessions. Applicants will receive feedback on their applications, including gaps and areas for improvement to be addressed prior to submission to Genome Canada.

Researchers in Ontario intending to submit an application are strongly encouraged to contact Ontario Genomics, if having not already done so, to discuss details of the competition such as the scope, the application process, tips for writing the Benefits to Canada Section of the proposal, how to incorporate GE3LS in proposals, and co-funding requirements.

Feb 10, 2020, 10:00AM Informational Webinar
March 2, 2020, 10:00AM Draft Registrations due to Ontario Genomics (OG)
March 11, 2020, 10:00AM Final Registrations due to OG#
May 25, 2020, 10:00AM Draft Pre-Applications due to OG
June 8-12, 2020 Pre-Application Strategy Sessions
July 6, 2020 Interim Pre-Application draft
July 29, 2020, 10:00AM Final Pre-Applications due to OG
Early October 2020 Pre-Application Results
*Oct 14-16, 2020, 10:00AM Full Application Strategy Session 1
*Nov 2, 2020 Draft Full Application due to OG
*Nov 11-13, 2020 Full Application Strategy Session 2
*Dec 7, 2020 Full Application Interim Draft due to OG
*Jan 4, 2021, 9:00AM Final Full Applications due to OG
Jan/Feb 2021 (date TBD) Mock Face to Face panel
Late Feb 2021 (date TBD) Review Committee meets (including meetings with applicants)
Mid-March 2021 Decisions

#OG does not require institutional signatures on Registrations, but institutional requirements may vary, so please check with your institution.
*Dates may be subject to change

If you have any questions, contact Laura Riley, Advisor, Sector Innovation and Programs at lriley@ontariogenomics.ca.