Mitacs and the Banting Research Foundation
Partners for Innovation to Address Climate Change, Health and Equity


Mitacs

Established in 1999, Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada by solving business challenges with research solutions from the best academic institutions at home and around the world. For more than 20 years, Mitacs has worked with over 165 postsecondary partners, thousands of companies, and federal, territorial and provincial governments to build partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada.

The Banting Research Foundation

Since 1925, the Banting Research Foundation is a unique, talent-spotting beacon. The Foundation identifies the best and the most promising new investigators in Canada, provides seed funds in biomedical discovery, and mentors them the way insulin discoverer, and Nobel laureate Sir Frederick Banting was encouraged. Social justice and equity in addressing the world’s biggest health challenges have always been a key value for the Foundation.

NEW – Research Internships for Postdoctoral Scholars

The Banting Research Foundation (BRF) and Mitacs developed a partnership through the Mitacs Accelerate Industrial Postdoctoral Fellowship program, which will support the brightest postdoctoral scholars conducting biomedical sciences research (see eligible research criteria) to address health inequities – under the supervision of faculty/early career researchers who are previous Banting Research Foundation Discovery awardees from 2015 to 2021. 

The postdoctoral scholars will share their time between academic institutions and eligible partner organizations. This application cycle is for a 24-month term for projects beginning no earlier than October 1, 2022.

  • This highly intersectoral and interdisciplinary collaboration scheme supports potentially transformative research in advancing health inequities. Projects should challenge existing paradigms by using novel approaches and techniques. High-risk and high-reward projects are encouraged. The Mitacs-Banting Discovery Postdoctoral Fellowship Program aims to expose postdoctoral scholars to new theories and methods which complement or build on their previous experience and expertise.
  • This collaboration scheme will respond to well-identified needs in various research and innovation areas, expose the researchers to the academic and non-academic sectors, and offer research training, as well as transferrable skills and competencies relevant for innovation and long-term employability.

Goals and themes

Health disparity and inequality in Canada

For a long time, the public saw climate change as an environmental issue only.

Today, we see the direct health risks and inequities due to climate change in Canada and across the globe. The new Mitacs-Banting Discovery Postdoctoral Fellowship will:

  • Help Canada lead in understanding the links between health, equity, and the impacts of climate change.
  • Support research examining health outcomes and inequalities among marginalized and underrepresented communities. 
  • Increase the quality of internationally competitive, leading-edge research in areas critical to the health, economic, and social well-being of Canadians.

The Mitacs-Banting Discovery Postdoctoral Fellowship will also encourage talented young scientists to think broadly beyond their scope of expertise and equip them to be future research leaders.

Financial mechanics

Postdoctoral scholar candidates are eligible for funding of Can$70,000/year, for two years, with $30,000 (+ applicable taxes)/year required from the eligible partner organization (see criteria below). 

Application process

Applications to the Mitacs-Banting Discovery Postdoctoral Fellowship is a two-stage process: Letter of Intent due to BRF and a full Mitacs Accelerate application. This is a competitive call with up to five fellowships available to be invited to Stage 2.


Stage 1

Due date: June 10, 2022

Please submit the Letter of Intent (LOI) package to the BRF e-portal. (Click Here)

The Letter of Intent (LOI) package must include the following:

A high-level description of the proposed research

  • All prospective applicants must submit a letter of Intent (LOI) for the BRF internal review and selection. The LOI is a simplified version of the final application. LOIs will be evaluated on the suitability between the applicant and the research environment, the proposed research program, and the research leadership/excellence of the applicant.


Eligibility

Postdoctoral candidate

  • Must be within 5 years of their PhD when the project starts
  • Project proposal (one page) explaining how your project would advance the research program of the supervisor 
  • Summary (one page) of research contributions
  • Append the Canadian Common CV

Faculty member

  • Confirmation of participation in Banting Discovery Award (2015 to 2021)
  • Research project proposal (one -page) includes an overall objective with a maximum of three aims
  • Name of your proposed partner organization (see section below) and their role in the research project
  • Outline (one page) plans for training and development of future leadership potential
  • Append the Canadian Common CV
  • Append the partner organization letter of support (see below)

Proposed partner organization

  • An eligible for-profit company with research site in Canada
  • An eligible incorporated not-for-profit organization or hospital in Canada (***to confirm eligibility of the not-for-profit/hospital partner for Mitacs programs, please reach out to Jillian Murray (jhatnean@mitacs.ca) by May 31, 2022)
  • See Mitacs Accelerate partner organization roles and responsibilities for more details on their involvement and interaction with the research project
  • Letter of Support from the partner organization, including their commitment to contributing $60,000 (+ applicable taxes) over two years ($30,000 + applicable taxes/year) toward the project

Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI) and Indigenization

EDI will be central to the competition, both in whom the awards are delivered to, and how research contributes to issues related to EDI. This will include awards delivering to under-represented groups and delivering awards based on the research impact to under-represented groups: e.g. indigenous health.

Stage 2

Due date: August 15, 2022

Successful eligible applicants from Stage 1 will be invited to submit a full Mitacs Accelerate proposal package with the support of a Mitacs Business Development representative to Mitacs. This application package will be sent for external peer review, as per Mitacs review policies.

Approved projects are expected to start no earlier than October 1, 2022

For questions pertaining to this initiative or application process, please contact:

BRF Program Manager grants@bantingresearchfoundation.ca

Jillian Murray, PhD., Mitacs Account Manager jhatnean@mitacs.ca

Post award

Reporting for the Banting Research Foundation

All postdoctoral scholars must submit to the Banting Research Foundation a brief report of the work performed – describe the impact of research, career of postdoctoral trainees and the career of the faculty – within two months of the Accelerate grant end date.

Acknowledgement

Any publication(s), abstract(s), presentation(s), and proceeding(s) resulting from the work supported by the Mitacs-Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship Program must contain the following acknowledgement: This work was supported by a grant from Mitacs, Banting Research Foundation and (name of the partner).

One copy of ALL publication(s), abstract(s) and/or proceeding(s) must be forward to the Banting Research Foundation at grants@bantingresearchfoundation.ca