Postdoctoral Fellows


Postdoctoral Fellow (PDF): an individual in training who has completed a doctoral degree within the last 5 years and is engaged in research and training at the University under the supervision of a faculty member. The time period may be extended by circumstances requiring an interruption in a research career (e.g. maternity/parental/adoptive leave). Requesting an appointment of a PDF prior to completing a doctoral degree will only occur in exceptional cases and require the PDF to demonstrate their plan to complete all degree requirements within a reasonable time period (less than six months) and that the guidelines of the funding agency permit such appointments.

Faculty Sponsor: a member of faculty responsible for supervising a Postdoctoral Fellow during the duration of the appointment. The Faculty Sponsor must have an academic appointment under the UWFA-RAS collective agreement.

Hiring a Canadian Postdoctoral Fellow

Below are the steps to hiring a Postdoctoral Fellow:

  1. After contacting your Human Resources Consultant, complete the Postdoctoral Fellow Appointment Request Form below by placing an (X) in the appropriate boxes and filling in the blanks. Please ensure you are using the current form to date.
  2. Forward the completed form, CV, and award/authorization letters (if applicable) to your Chair and Dean to obtain signature approval.
  3. Once the signatures have been obtained, please attach CV and all applicable documents to the form, and forward to the office of the Vice-President Research and Innovation for final approval and a Letter of Invitation to be issued.

NOTE: The Letter of Invitation is not an offer of employment.  The Letter of Invitation will be used by Human Resources to issue the official letter offer.

Hiring an International Postdoctoral Fellow

All questions related to hiring an international Postdoctoral Fellow should be directed to:

Amber Dick
Senior Human Resources Consultant

Roles of the Department Chair, Dean, and Vice-President Research and Innovation

Faculty Sponsors will advise their Chair of their intent to hire a PDF, outlining any requirements for departmental and/or institutional resources (e.g., space, equipment and access to facilities). The Dean shall advise the Vice-President Research and Innovation (VPRI) of the pending appointment and that Departmental or other resources are in place. The VPRI will issue the formal Letter of Invitation to the PDF. A Letter of Invitation is not an employment offer. The Letter of Invitation will welcome the candidate to the University of Winnipeg and instruct them to work with Human Resources on the final offer letter.


In cases where a Faculty Sponsor wishes to advertise a PDF in an open competition, they shall follow University of Winnipeg hiring procedures and policies, and work with a Human Resources Consultant.

Appointment Period

The length of a Postdoctoral Fellow (PDF) appointment is normally not less than one year and not longer than three. Appointments exceeding three years will require renewal. For appointments less than one year, a rationale for not considering a Research Associate or Senior Research Associate will be required. Appointments under twelve months may be considered in cases where funding from a funding agency stipulates shorter durations.

PDF appointments are expected to be full time and based on 35-hour work week.

Appointment Renewals and Extensions

A formal request for a Renewal of an Appointment is required by the Faculty Sponsor. The Faculty Sponsor must provide written justification to the Dean and Vice-President Research and Innovation (VPRI) requesting an extension, citing the reasons and that funding is available. Normally, not more than one extension will be granted. Human Resources and Payroll will be notified by the VPRI on the extension and any financial implications of the extension.

Postdoctoral Fellow Salary and Benefits

Prior to requesting a PDF at the University of Winnipeg, please contact your Human Resources Consultant to discuss salary and benefits option for the appointment.

Funding opportunities for SSHRC-Eligible Postdoctoral Fellows

SSHRC Exchange Grant (for SSHRC PDFs only)

The University of Winnipeg has received institutional funding from SSHRC to support an internal grant for UW Postdoctoral Fellows in the Social Sciences and Humanities. The SSHRC Exchange/Explore Grant will provide funding opportunities for UWinnipeg PDFs to support their career development while working and training with a UW supervisor. See the Funding Opportunities–Internal Research Grants page for more information on deadlines and WebGrants for the application form.


The guidelines above apply to all Postdoctoral Fellow appointments at the University. 

 For further information regarding responsibilities for:

  • Faculty Sponsor;
  • Dean and Department;
  • Human Resources;
  • Research Office;
  • Postdoctoral Fellow;
  • Compensation & Nature of Relationship to the University;
  • Privileges and Rights Held by all Postdoctoral Fellows;

please see the Postdoctoral Fellow Guidelines (Effective Date: April 1, 2021).

If you require additional information, please contact:

Bea Spearing
Executive Assistant to the Vice-President, Research and Innovation

or your HR Contact.