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Research Support Fund 2014 - 2015

Research Office


Definition

While individual research awards can be used to cover the direct costs of research such as certain salaries, equipment, and supplies connected with a project, research institutions must bear the increasingly high costs of supporting their overall research activity with appropriate facilities, academic research resources, researcher salaries, management and administrative personnel, oversight of regulatory compliance and accreditation, and intellectual property management. In 2003 the Federal Government introduced the permanent Indirect Costs of Research Program (ICP) to provide grants to Canadian universities and colleges to offset the financial challenges of administering Tri-Agency funded research. 

The University of Winnipeg has been very grateful for the Indirect Cost of Research grant. In the past year, the grant money was used in several areas that supported the ongoing research work at our facilities. 

About the Research Support Fund Program

The program (formerly known as the Indirect Costs Program) was introduced in 2003 as part of the federal government’s strategy to make Canada one of the world’s top countries in research and development. It currently has a budget of $342 million and serves 126 postsecondary institutions across the country. The Research Support Fund replaces the Indirect Costs Program as of May 25, 2015.

The Research Support Fund assists Canadian postsecondary institutions and their affiliated research hospitals and institutes with the expenses associated with managing the research funded by the three federal research granting agencies: 

Every year, the federal government invests in research excellence in the areas of health sciences, engineering, natural sciences, social sciences and humanities through its three granting agencies. The Research Support Fund reinforces this research investment by helping institutions ensure that their federally funded research projects are conducted in world-class facilities with the best equipment and administrative support available.

Eligible institutions receive an annual grant through the fund to help pay for a portion of the central and departmental administrative costs related to federally funded research.

What costs does the program support

Examples of costs supported by the program are:

  • salaries for staff or students who provide administrative support for researchers and their projects;
  • training costs for workplace health and safety;
  • costs related to the maintenance of libraries and laboratories; and
  • Administrative costs associated with getting a patent for an invention.

Below are some of many examples about how The University of Winnipeg has taken advantage of the RSF program 

Student working with the Bloomberg Terminal DatabaseBloomberg Terminal Database: Bloomberg terminal, located on the 4th floor of the Buhler Centre, allows subscription to the Bloomberg Database. The Bloomberg terminal is an entire data service that provides a large variety of data on asset prices, company information, market-based data and forecasts. This information helps our students, researchers and the faculties become competitive by providing the market changes by the second in real time for tens of thousands of securities. Prior to acquiring the Bloomberg Terminal, UWinnipeg students and faculty depended on the external resources for market-based data that were not always readily available and accessible. 

Qualtrics Software Institutional License: Qualtrics is web-based, research survey software that offers many advanced, but user-friendly features. Qualtrics enables users to do surveys, feedback and polls using a variety of distribution means. Qualtrics is cloud based software.  All data collected under the University of Winnipeg’s enterprise license are stored on servers in Ireland.

Women & Gender Studies studio renovations: The grant money helped in making significant improvements to a room in Sparling Hall at the University of Winnipeg. An under-used room was turned into a studio for Professor Roewen Crowe of the Department of Women and Gender studies. 

Women and Gender Studio














Knowledge Mobilization Lab: The Knowledge Mobilization Lab is a facility specializing in research communication, visualization and storytelling using digital video, cartography, animation, websites, apps, and other multi-media tools. The lab is overseen by Dr. Ian Mauro, an award winning academic and filmmaker, whose research focuses on the use of participatory video to engage communities in issues related to the human dimension of environmental change. His projects have focused on food security, climate change, and energy development.

Research Support: A part time staff member was added by the University of Winnipeg in the department of Financial Services to help the research office. As the university’s research funding in the past decade has risen from $2.5 million to $7.5 million, the University of Winnipeg is striving to build support for the research office. 

RSF grants at the University of Winnipeg

ICP grants are allocated annually based on a rolling average of the Tri-Agency funding awarded to the institution over the previous five years. In 2013-14 The University of Winnipeg incurred eligible costs of $1,823,633 in support of Tri-Agency funded research activities.  The total ICP grant awarded for that year was 909,329, off-setting roughly 50% of these costs

RSF funding chart

The program allows institutions flexibility to allocate their annual RSF grant, at their discretion, to offset eligible costs incurred under five categories:

  • Research facilities: renovation & maintenance of research facilities, upgrades and maintenance of research equipment and other devices, operating costs, and technical support for labs, offices and other facilities.

  • Research resources: acquisition of library holdings, improved information resources, library operating costs and administration, and insurance on research equipment and vehicles.

  • Management and administration of the research enterprise: support for the completion of grant applications/research proposals, acquisition, maintenance and/or upgrade of information systems to track grant applications, certificates and awards, training of faculty and research personnel, human resources and payroll, financial and audit costs, research planning and promotion, and public relations.

  • Regulatory requirements and accreditations: creation and support of regulatory bodies, relevant training of faculty and other research personnel, international accreditation costs, upgrades and maintenance of research facilities to meet regulatory requirements, technical support for animal care and handling of hazardous substances, and the purchase of animals exclusively for training purposes (not research).

  • Intellectual property: creation, expansion or sustenance of a technology transfer office or similar function, administration of invention patent applications, support for technology licensing, administration of agreements and partnerships with industry, development of incubators, support for the creation of spin-off companies, certain public outreach activities, and marketing of teaching materials, scientific photo libraries, data sets, and other tools for knowledge transfer.

The University of Winnipeg RSF grant is overseen by the Associate Vice-President Research and Innovation and is administered by the Office of Research Services and Office of Financial Services. The funding from this program is used to cover expenditures in all 5 categories listed above.

Facilities

$186,865.00

20%

Resources

$280,297.00

30%

Management and Administration

$280,297.00

30%

Regulatory Requirements and Accreditation

$93,432.00

10%

Intellectual Property

$93,433.00

10%

Total

$934,324.00

100%

RSF funding chart

For more information about the program please visit the Research Support Fund’s website:

http://www.rsf-fsr.gc.ca/about-au_sujet/index-eng.aspx

 










University of Winnipeg’s Objectives for 2015-16 RSF Grant:

Richardson College Vivarium:

The University of Winnipeg Vivarium occupies a 7200 square feet space for keeping and raising animals for research.

Objectives:

  • Significantly increase approval of number of research protocols
  • Increase the number of research partnerships entered with other institutions in Manitoba such as the Red River College and the University of Manitoba

FMIS project for research:

The University of Winnipeg is investing heavily on a computer software application that will enable the researchers to directly access financial information for their research in real time.

Objectives:

  • Increase  access to financial information for the researchers
  • Claim travel expenses online
  • Prevent overspending by the departments

Commercialization of Research

The University of Winnipeg’s Research Department aims to bridge the challenging gap between innovation and commercialization.

Objectives:

  • Significantly increase number of projects moving towards patenting and commercialization

University of Winnipeg’s Business Incubator

Objectives:

  • Establish and develop University of Winnipeg’s Business Incubator