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NSERC Forest Sector Research and Development Initiative

There will be no further competitions for this initiative. Research in the forest sector will continue to be funded under NSERC’s regular Research Partnerships Programs—such as the Collaborative Research and Development Grants, Industrial Research Chairs, Strategic Projects Grants (forestry research is covered under the “Natural Resources and Energy’’ target area), Interaction Grants and Engage Grants.

Read more about the This link will take you to another Web site NSERC Forest Sector Research and Development (R&D) Initiative.

Duration Various, up to five years
Application Deadine Various
How to Apply See below
Application Forms Form 100* and instructions
Form 101* and instructions
Form 183A* and instructions

*This link is for reference only. To create or access this application, select On-line System Login.
Program Contact View Contact Directory page

The Call for Applications for scientific directors for the NSERC strategic networks in the forest sector is now closed and the directors have been chosen. For more information, read the news release.


This initiative is in direct response to Federal Budget 2008, in which NSERC was allocated new funds for collaborative research that directly contributes to the knowledge and innovation needs of Canada’s forest industry. Canadian academic researchers, in collaboration with FPInnovations, Industry and Government scientists and engineers, may receive grant funds to investigate specific research that support the forest sector priorities identified below.

This new investment by NSERC for research in the forest sector will be directed by the industrial and government stakeholders in FPInnovations with the purpose of transforming the forest sector industry. This leading edge research will identify novel, high value products from forest biomass and new ways to efficiently collect and process this material. To accomplish this, the research will draw upon the most recent findings in biology, chemistry, physics and materials engineering to name a few. Much of the progress in creating truly transformative technologies will take place at the interface between different sciences and engineering disciplines. These projects will be challenging but will also be rewarding because of their focus on commercial implementation. Students will have the opportunity to be exposed to breakthrough science and engineering, work with state-of the-art equipment, and will be the future workers in the forest sector.

Expected Results

It is expected that this program will:

  • generate new knowledge/technology with the strong potential to strengthen Canada’s forest industry, generate wealth, create employment, and/or influence Canadian public policy;
  • increase the number of highly qualified personnel in the target areas;
  • foster the involvement of the Canadian-based forest industry and/or government organizations and non-governmental organizations in academic research and;
  • enable the transfer of knowledge/technology and expertise to Canadian-based companies that are well positioned to apply the results for economic gain or to government organizations to strengthen public policy.


The NSERC Forest Sector R&D Initiative is restricted to the priority areas identified below. Proposals must also meet the requirements and deadlines (exceptions noted below) of one of the following NSERC Partnership Programs.

To be funded, a project must meet the following requirements, in addition to receiving a positive peer review using the evaluation criteria of the chosen NSERC grant program:

  • be endorsed by FPInnovations;
  • focus on research that is technology development-driven and application oriented;
  • contain well-defined objectives which ensure that the results will be achievable within the proposed timeframe (up to five years);
  • demonstrate an integrated approach to the research problem that fully exploits the research facilities and resources available at FPInnovations, government and industrial laboratories, and universities;
  • have a clear plan to direct, manage and integrate the activities of the project (as appropriate) with complementary projects and activities within the priority research elements;
  • comply with the intellectual property Policy on Intellectual Property (IP) provisions of NSERC and have a signed IP agreement with FPInnovations and any other partners.

Supporting Organizations

Each project must have the support of FPInnovations, from which a project manager will be assigned and who will ensure collaboration within FPInnovations in all stages of the research project (i.e. help in the development of the proposal and, as the project unfolds, interact regularly with the academic researchers, students and other research personnel and provide input on the project to NSERC).

The project may also include other participants from industrial or government research laboratories and/or foreign research institutions. The FPInnovations manager may suggest other potential participants or supporters.

Given that interaction between personnel from academic institutions and other sectors contributes to knowledge sharing and the development of highly qualified personnel, the program encourages secondments, cross-appointments, co-supervision of students, internships, reciprocal laboratory visits and joint workshops. (For details, see the Policy and Guidelines on the Assessment of Contributions to Research and Training.)

Priority Research Elements

FPInnovations Flagship Innovation Program in the FPInnovations Strategic Plan will form the basis of the priorities for this initiative, with the following five research elements (for each element an FPInnovations manager is identified as lead contact, and an NSERC contact is provided):

Application Procedures

Application development

Potential projects must be discussed with the relevant FPInnovations manager(s). FPInnovations will determine if the project meets its research priorities and determine the level of support (cash and in-kind) it can provide within its resources. Additional support is encouraged from companies and other levels of government. NSERC support will vary depending on the requirements of the grant program, and the availability of funds within the overall initiative.

Full application

Applicants who receive FPInnovations support will then be invited to prepare an application to the relevant NSERC program.

All of the chosen program conditions will apply (for example review procedures, selection criteria, and reporting requirements) with exceptions noted in the Requirements section above.

Please refer to the instructions of the chosen program for completing the application.


Primary contacts are given in the descriptions for each of the priority research elements.

General inquiries can be directed to:

Tel.: 613-992-5641

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