The Canadian Institute of Ecology and Evolution seeks proposals for new Thematic Programs (Working Groups) to be staged over the 12 month period from January 2018 to December 2018. The deadline for submission is October 10, 2017.  Proposals should outline a plan to address significant questions in ecology and evolution through synthesis-based research in the form of (a) unified and comprehensive data aggregation, (b) methodological integration, (c) conceptual synthesis, or (d) use of outcomes from funded research to arrive at broader impacts (e.g., meta-data analysis).

Applicants must define the project scope, meeting agenda, inclusive budget, and plan for publication. CIEE provides logistic support and travel expenses.  In the past, working groups were awarded grants valued from $6,000 to $15,000.  Programs can be also co-sponsored with other organizations.  Working group generally involve 8 to 20 participants, including graduate students.  Meetings can be held at any location in Canada; however preference will be given to meetings hosted at CIEE member organizations. 


Application Procedures

Proposals should be comprised of the following:

1. A cover page including the project title, name and complete contact information for the organizer(s), and project summary (max. 300 words), suitable for public circulation.

2. A maximum three-pages, single-spaced narrative.  Please note that proposals longer than 3 pages will not be accepted. The narrative should include:
2.1. Brief introduction to the project goals.
2.2. Work plan of activities:  schedule of pre-meeting activities, agenda of the planned meetings, follow-up plan after-meetings in order to reach the expected outcomes.  As appropriate, please include the source of the data to be synthesized and methods of the analyses.  Working groups should schedule at least one electronic meeting (e.g., via Skype) prior to the first physical meeting. Meetings can be held at any location in Canada; however preference will be given to meetings hosted at CIEE member organizations.  In addition, the CIEE offers facilities and logistic support in the Synthesis Centre at the University of Regina.  These 6,500 sq-ft research facilities include dedicated meeting facilities, break-out rooms, computer laboratory, and on-campus housing, and are available during the summer period 01 May to 31 August of 2018.  If successful, applicants may be eligible for additional support for data storage and advanced computation requirements.
2.3. Expected outcomes (e.g., publications, white paper, etc).
2.4. Importance to Canada (e.g., benefit to Canadian environmental and economic well-being).

3. A list of participants, with affiliations and a short (one paragraph) biographic profile or summary of their expertise.  Programs should involve 8 to 20 participants, including one or more graduate students.  We encourage geographic and institutional diversity, as well as gender balance among the participants.  Foreign participants are welcome.  Finally, please indicate which individuals have committed to the project and which are potential participants.

4. A budget including logistics and transportation.  In the past, working groups were awarded grants valued from $6,000 to $15,000; however, most awards where in the middle of this range.  Please note that overhead costs cannot be included as eligible expenses.

5. Short resume(s) for the organizer(s).  Maximum 3 pages for each resume.


The selection process

As occurred during the last calls for proposals, CIEE’s finding decisions for new Working Groups will be based on confidential and individual evaluations performed by members of the CIEE’s Scientific Advisory Committee.  The CIEE’s Direction will determine the final level of funding to be received by each awarded project, as well as will provide applicants with formal feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of their proposals.

In general, scientific excellence and likelihood of success are the main criteria for evaluation, although consideration will also be made for the degree to which proposals help CIEE demonstrate broader benefits to Canada, fiscal responsibility, and CIEE’s member benefits. The specific criteria of evaluation are:

1. Project rationale: scientific significance of the questions, likelihood to advance understanding in Ecology, Evolution or Environmental issues, evidence of novel synthesis, and evidence of benefit to Canadian environmental and economic well-being.

2. Project description: clarity of objectives, outcomes, work plan, meeting schedule.

3. Expertise of applicants and participants (from the organizer’s resumes and the summaries of the participants).

4. Participant diversity: The CIEE is a national organization; therefore organizers should aim for geographic-institutional diversity that reflects collaborative research, as well as gender balance among the participants.

5. Anticipated outcomes. Potential for defined scientific products, including refereed publications.

6. Budget adequacy and feasibility (complete estimates and coherent justification).  Presence of matching funds or partner organizations should be indicated.  Applicants with industrial partners should also consider submitting their proposal to the regional NSERC office for consideration in the CONNECT program prior to CIEE submission. 

Deadline: Submit the full proposal as a single Adobe pdf file by October 10, 2017 to:


Applicants are encouraged to contact the CIEE Director, Peter Leavitt, and the Associate Director, Diego Steinaker, with any questions, including those on content, budget and facilities.

Peter R. Leavitt, Diego F. Steinaker
Direction Team, Canadian Institute of Ecology and Evolution



The CIEE will grow as it adds partners from coast to coast. CIEE achieves its mission principally through funding from, and co-operation among, a consortium of Canadian institutions. Each member university pays annual membership fees assessed on a sliding scale according to their NSERC Discovery Grant program funding in ecology and evolution.  No overhead is charged, so all of the funding obtained from member organizations is used for direct support of CIEE scientific programs, whereas in-kind contributions help maintain staff and synthesis facilities.  As a result, the more members we have, the more activities we can support.
To increase our membership, we are seeking CIEE members’ at all Canadian universities to act as representatives and liaisons to their local administration. Through its membership, your institution will: 1) facilitate access to CIEE’s scientific programs for your faculty and highly qualified personnel, 2) gain a seat on the management board that sets the mandate and direction of the CIEE, and 3) play a pivotal role in shaping the future of ecology and evolution in Canada.  We are always looking for new representatives, so please, do not hesitate to contact us for additional information.