Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund
The federal government announced details on June 23, 2020 on the $450M Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund (CRCEF). The three-stage program will be administered by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) on behalf of the tri-agencies: Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) and SSHRC. Demonstration of need will be required for all stages: research that has been impacted and/or delayed entirely or partly are eligible.
Stages 1 and 2 ($325M): Wage support for eligible research-related personnel whose salaries were adversely affected by COVID-19 and who are paid in part or in whole by non-governmental sources, and who are not claiming other government wage support e.g., Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).
Up to 75% of the portion of research personnel’s salaries/wages, to a maximum of $847 per week for up to 12 weeks of salary support (consecutive or broken up over the eligibility period) per individual, incurred within the eligibility period of March 15, 2020, to August 29, 2020.
Personnel who have been laid off or furloughed as a result of COVID-19 within the eligibility period can become eligible retroactively, as long as they are rehired and their retroactive pay and status meet the eligibility criteria for the claim period.
Stage 3 ($125M): Supports direct costs associated with maintenance and ramp-up of research activities.
Stage 4 ($84M): Extended wage support for eligible research –related personnel paid in part or in whole by non-governmental sources from 12 to 24 weeks within the eligibility period of March 15, 2020 to August 29, 2020.
CRCEF has confirmed that Stage 1 is primarily a research accounting exercise and reimbursement of costs is expected.
Process for Stage 1 – Wage Support (CLOSED)
The allocation process for distribution of the CRCEF funds to the affiliates in Stage 1 followed the same CRCEF grant allocation formula that was used to distribute funds to UM.
The total CRCEF support to UM was prorated based on the funding from non-governmental sources at the affiliates using the average over three years (2015-16 to 2017-18) from CAUBO research income reports.
UM together with their affiliates submitted a Stage 1 application to CRCEF on July 6, 2020.
The Stage 1 allocation was awarded to UM on July 22, 2020 in the amount of $7.8M.
|U of M and Affiliates (CAUBO non-governmental research income)||Portion of CRCEF|
|3 Year Average||% Avg|
|University of Manitoba (UofM)||71,846,390||76.9%||6,001,570|
|Children's Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba (CHRIM)||4,000,358||4.3%||334,163|
|Health Sciences Centre (HSC)||3,293,833||3.5%||275,145|
|St. Boniface Hospital Research Centre (SBGH)||5,822,837||6.2%||486,401|
|CancerCare Manitoba/Research Institute in Oncology and Hemitology (CCMB)||8,423,915||9.0%||703,678|
The VP Research and International office, Human Resources and Research Accounting used internal financial data to identify eligible research funds from non-government sources and research-related personnel costs during the programs' eligibility period.
The reporting requirements for Stage 1 were submitted on August 6, 2020 and included:
A description of the allocation process for distribution of funds to affiliates
The total allocation of funds provided to affiliates
The number of personnel requiring support, listed by category (graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and other research personnel) for UM and affiliates
The total use of wage support in Stage 1 by UM and affiliates
|CancerCare Manitoba/Research Institute in Oncology and Hemitology (CCMB)||Health Sciences Centre (HSC)||St. Boniface Hospital Research Centre (SBGH)||Children's Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba (CHRIM)||University of Manitoba (UofM)||Total|
|Other Research Personnel||42||15||58||49||201||365|
This left UM with an overall balance of $4.6M of CRCEF support remaining.
Process for Stage 2 – Wage Support (CLOSED)
The objective is the same as Stage 1: to supplement wage support for research-related personnel based on eligibility.
Eligible applicants for Stage 2 support are:
Universities not included in the CAUBO dataset, eligible to the Research Support Fund (RSF)
Non-affiliated health research institutions eligible to receive funding from the three federal research funding agencies
Recipients of Stage 1 funding that have residual needs for wage support
Non-eligible applicants are:
Stage 1 recipients with unspent funds held in reserve
Institutions that declined Stage 1 support
Based on Stage 2 eligibilities, UM and their affiliates do not qualify. No application for Stage 2 support was submitted.
Process for Stage 3 – Research maintenance/ramp-up costs (OPEN)
Funding is currently available for UM researchers from CRCEF Stage 3 to recover incurred costs associated with the maintenance and ramp-up of research activities supported by governmental or non-governmental sources.
The application process (coming soon) will be based on the direct costs of research (actual costs) that are extraordinary and incremental to those already covered by existing funds and have been incurred between March 15 and November 15, 2020.
Applicants must justify the need for the funds and all eligible expenses MUST BE CHARGED by Nov 12, 2020 to receive reimbursement, up to maximum of 75%.
Eligible Expenses Criteria at Stage 3:
- Unanticipated additional costs that would not have been incurred in the absence of the COVID-19 pandemic and cannot be funded by existing sources of funds
- For direct costs associated with maintenance and ramp-up of research activities
- Costs borne by research projects
- Approved by the institutional decision-making group identified for CRCEF
Costs associated with the following categories:
Maintenance Costs - Costs incurred associated with maintaining essential research-related activities during the pandemic that are exceptional and incremental to those already covered by existing sources of funds. This includes:
- animal and specimen care through the crisis period
- maintenance of equipment, software, cohorts, datasets, including warranties, licenses and service contracts
- technological equipment for remote access to maintain assets
- safety equipment for personnel dedicated to maintenance.
Ramp-up Costs - Costs incurred associated with full ramp-up of research activities, as physical distancing measures are eased and research activities can resume. This includes:
- re-organizing the research environment and activities;
- additional costs to bring the research back to its pre-pandemic level, including experiments or related to the restart of collections and datasets (e.g., population-based, environmental);
- re-scheduling and restarting human and clinical trials;
- exceptional costs to access special facilities, platforms and resources, knowledge transfer meetings and workshops;
- restarting, reassembling and safety checks of equipment and facilities;
- reacquiring lost and donated laboratory and field supplies and equipment, reagents, perishable materials, laboratory animal and other living specimens (replacement costs)
- personal protective equipment and related items for research personnel.
Process for Stage 3 - Updates and Eligibility
The CRCEF is new for both the federal government and for universities. This page will be updated as clarifications are made to Stage 3 expense eligibility.
- The costs of research personnel can be eligible for partial reimbursement at up to 75% in Stage 3 for the period of August 30, 2020, to November 15, 2020, provided the costs meet the Stage 3 eligible expenses criteria.
- Internet, land line, cell phone connection and equipment for working remotely can be eligible if they meet the Stage 3 eligible expenses criteria.
- Animal per diems for research maintenance and animal purchase costs to ramp-up the population are eligible, provided they are paid from a specific research project.
- Shared facilities and platforms may charge user fees to research projects for expenses incurred to maintain or restart research activities due the pandemic. These are eligible if:
- (i) these costs were transparently communicated to researchers
- (ii) if they are traceable to the research project through a reporting process (e.g. billing)
- IT equipment or services were specifically purchased to maintain or re-start a direct research activity (e.g. continue data acquisition.
- “Ramp-down” costs (source of information: CRCEF webinar)
- Institutional administrative costs (indirect costs, overhead or transaction costs)
- IT equipment purchased to enable general research activities (e.g. writing papers, drafting grant applications, maintaining contact with your research group) are not eligible expenses
- Office furniture, including ergonomic equipment
- Cancellation fees for travel or un-refunded travel expenses
- Lost revenues
CRCEF released a new Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Stage 3
Process for Stage 4 – Wage Support (COMING SOON)
CRCEF Stage 4 has just been announced. More information on timeline and application process to follow.
As with Stages 1 and 2, Stage 4, funds will be used exclusively for wage support for research personnel whose salaries were adversely affected by COVID-19 and who are paid in part or in whole by non-governmental sources.
Stage 4 funding will extend the period of wage support for eligible research personnel by increasing the maximum duration of support from 12 weeks to 24 weeks, during the March 15 to August 29, 2020 period.
In accordance with the mandate from the federal research funding agencies and the CRCEF program, as signatory to Dimension’s charter, UM is committed to EDI principles in all research matters. We are committed to removing systemic barriers that have been historically encountered by marginalized groups in our society and we strive to support and include all individuals in achieving research success.
We commit to fully complying with the program’s equity, diversity and inclusion decision-making and allocation requirements. Marginalized groups include women, racialized persons, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities and persons from 2STLGBQ+ communities.
CRCEF EDI Decision Committee
Decisions for the allocation of CRCEF funds within UM will be made by CRCEF EDI Decision Committee. This diverse, interdisciplinary body incorporates knowledge of research across a broad range of fields and includes representation from all of the marginalized groups. All members received unconscious bias training and are committed to respecting the principles of responsible stewardship, public accountability and equity, diversity, and inclusion in all stages of the program.
The committee provides an accountable and transparent governance structure for making decisions on how the CRCEF funds will be used following Tri-Agency direction and is responsible for:
- Developing and overseeing a strategy for EDI decision making for the use of funds
- Advising on UM CRCEF process and controls
- Making recommendations to the Vice-President (Research and International) for final approval of UM requirements at Stage 1, Stage 2, Stage 3 and Stage 4 of the CRCEF program
CRCEF EDI Committee Members
The CRCEF EDI Decision Committee is composed of the following individuals:
- Dr. Digvir Jayas, Vice-President (Research and International)
- Rowena Krentz, Director, Office of the VP (Research and International)
- Laura Deen, Senior Budget Officer, Office of the VP (Research and International)
- Dr. Neil Watkins, Director, Research institute in Oncology and Hematology/CancerCare Manitoba
- Dr. Terry Klassen, CEO and Scientific Director, Children’s Hospital Research Institute of Manitoba
- Dr. Paul Beaudin, Director, Research and Innovation, Shared Health, Health Sciences Centre
- Dr. Grant Pierce, Executive Director, Research, St. Boniface Hospital
- Dr. Trust Beta, Professor and Canada Research Chair, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences
- Dr. Marcia Friesen, Associate Dean (Design Education), Price Faculty of Engineering
- Dr. Frank Deer, Associate Professor and Canada Research Chair, Faculty of Education
- Dr. Pooneh Maghoul, Associate Professor, Price Faculty of Engineering
- Dr. Robert Mizzi, Associate Professor, Faculty of Education
- Dr. Neeloffer Mookherjee, Associate Professor, College of Medicine
- Dr. Samar Safi-Harb, Professor and Canada Research Chair, Faculty of Science
- Dr. Barbara Triggs-Raine, Professor, Max Rady College of Medicine
- Dr. Feiyue Wang, Professor and Canada Research Chair; Clayton H. Riddell Faculty of Environment, Earth, and Resources
- Francia Esquerra, Senior Research Accountant, Research and Special Fund Accounting
- Casey Gooch, Assistant Manager, Research and Special Fund Accounting
- Geoffrey Hui, Human Resources System Analyst
- Tracy Mohr, Director, Office of Research Services
- Valerie Williams, Human Resources Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Facilitator
Committee Adjudication Process
Stage 1 and 2: Claims submitted did not exceed the funds allocated to UM. All eligible requests were given the same consideration and were supported to the maximum amount allowable under the CRCEF funding guidelines. Our internal identification process used financial data to identify eligible research funds from non-government sources and research-related personnel costs during the program’s eligibility period. Any unconscious bias was unlikely to occur.
Stage 3: Should the amount of submitted claims exceed available funds, UM will ensure the following:
- Adjudication of funding requests will be determined by the CRCEF EDI Decision Committee, which is a diverse, interdisciplinary committee with representation of individuals from all of the marginalized groups and who have received unconscious bias training (see above).
- We will ensure the evaluation criteria does not create barriers to access for individuals from (racialized minorities, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, women, and persons from 2STLGBQ+ communities).
- Acknowledgement that individuals from marginalized groups may be disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. We will carefully consider our support for individuals who have been personally impacted by the pandemic (e.g., their own or their immediate family’s health has been directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, family obligations for dependent care or limited access to medical care for persons with disabilities).
- Establishment of a fair and open adjudication process with pre-determined selection criteria (update coming soon) applied consistently to all applicants, to ensure that decisions:
- Limit the negative impact of unconscious bias and systemic barriers for both wage support and maintenance/ramp-up costs
- Are not negatively affected by a researcher’s inability to work during the pandemic due to child/family care or increased risk related to exposure to COVID-19
- Value research that is non-traditional or unconventional, rooted in Indigenous ways of knowing outside the mainstream of the discipline, or focused on issues that relate to gender, race, sexuality,or ability differences
Stage 4: The same consideration and process will be followed as in Stage 1 to the maximum amount allowable under the CRCEF funding guidelines. Any unconscious bias is unlikely to occur.