Research Funding Fair
Funders from over 25 organizations participated in the first Research Funding Fair, held in Van Vliet Complex on November 17, 2016.
Getting your money’s worth at Research Funding Fair
In a quest to increase their chances of finding research funding, faculty and students from across the university converged at Van Vliet Complex on November 17. They attended Research Funding Fair where they made in-person connections with funders and discovered opportunities they might have not known about. The new event was hosted by the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation and the Research Services Office (RSO) with over 25 organizations participating.
Thea Luig discovered Women and Children’s Health Research Institute (WCHRI) at a marketplace set up on Social Street. Luig is a postdoctoral fellow researching obesity prevention and management in the 5AsT Intervention Project.
“I thought the fair was really valuable because some of the institutions I didn’t know. If I looked for funding, I wouldn’t have known about WCHRI so I learned new stuff here,” she said.
Luig works with Melanie Heatherington, a study coordinator on the project. They took advantage of a one-on-one session with Dale Dempsey of Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) where he helped with their plan and tailored information to their needs.
“He gave us information that will help us decide whether to go for that type of funding and whether our research project would apply to their specific type of grant,” said Heatherington.
Attendees also heard more from funders at formal presentations including one co-lead by Geneviève Truchon of Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). The greatest tip she could offer those applying for funding is to phone them far ahead of the grant deadline with any questions.
“We can help you improve your application. We can’t comment on the content but can help with instructions and making sure everything will be completed on time,” she said.
The fair gave Truchon a chance to put faces to names she might only see on emails.
“I really enjoy having a discussion about the research. It’s a lot more personal than exchanging emails about general topics of eligibility,” she said adding, “It gave me to opportunity to let people know we have funding for students, researchers and events like knowledge mobilization initiatives.”
Nick Holt, associate director of research in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation, helped bring the fair to Van Vliet Complex and hopes it helps researchers get more grants. He thinks it’s critical that connections are made between agencies and researchers and the fair is one way to do that.
“At these types of events funding agencies get to talk to each other, researchers get to talk to each other and we develop ideas,” said Holt adding, “Now when you follow up you can speak to that person and you’ve actually met them in person. That doesn’t happen as much these days.”
RSO is hoping to bring back the fair next year.
“The feedback we got from the funders was that it was really positive for them and so did internal groups to the university. They found the fair useful and liked the fact that they could meet with and talk face-to-face with people either at their tables or at one-on-one meetings,” said Lorraine Deydey, director of RSO.
View photo gallery from Research Funding Fair
Presentation resources from Research Funding Fair
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