TO:           Principals & Deans, Vice-Deans & Vice-Principals Research or equivalent

FROM:     R. Paul Young, Vice-President Research

cc:             Judith Chadwick, Assistant Vice-President, Research Services

cc:              MayLiza Baak, Executive Director, Research Services

DATE:      23 September 2013

RE:            CFI Update

The CFI has completed a national consultation on potential adjustments to the CFI’s core funding mechanisms.  The purpose was to identify opportunities for better alignment with stakeholder needs, and address evolving priorities.  The CFI will shortly be communicating decisions resulting from the outcome of this, the following is preliminary information.

John R. Evans Leaders Fund (formerly known as Leaders Opportunity Fund)

New allocations will be communicated by the CFI to institutions in late October 2013.  The amount is expected to be commensurate with the previous envelope, i.e. approximately $18.5M to UT & affiliated hospitals. Internal allocations will be determined using similar methodology as in past years, replicating CFI at the national level.

National Competition

The draft call is expected this fall, with web-based information sessions as well as presentations by CFI.  The total funding for this competition is $250M with an accompanying $75M through the IOF program.   The Notice of Intent deadline is expected to be late March and a full proposal deadline late June.  Funding decisions are expected June 2015.  Funding for this competition, while approximately $100M more than the 2012 competition, is still less than half of that in previous years.

In the last two competitions, we applied an excellence-based, peer-reviewed approach for selecting campus-based proposals to submit to CFI.  The result was highly successful, we propose to follow a similar process in this competition.  However, to maintain a competitive advantage we are seeking your input on ideas regarding innovative supports to applicants.

Given the limitation on the available funding, it is important to manage expectations and focus on a smaller number of proposal ideas that best meet CFI program criteria.  We will implement an internal “Notice of Intent” (NOI) stage where divisions can provide an initial indication of projects they expect to bring forward to the formal internal selection process.  Internal deadlines will be set when details are made available by CFI – this will include notification of non-U of T-led projects in which U of T faculty members are participating and which depend on a portion of our institutional “ask envelope”.


We welcome your views and opinions on the approach to this competition.  Should you have questions, you are welcome to be in touch with me, Judith Chadwick, Assistant Vice-President, Research Services or MayLiza Baak, Executive Director, Research Services.