The goal of the Fund is to foster the development of more productive and environmentally sustainable agricultural systems that increase food security and enhance nutrition in developing countries.
The two key objectives are to:
a) Increase food security in developing countries through investments in applied research for agricultural productivity and nutrition; and
b) Harness Canadian expertise and knowledge in food security related science and technology to develop solutions with and for the developing world.
Proposed research should clearly address real, practical development challenges related to the objectives of the Fund, targeting the poor and most vulnerable groups, and with the potential to generate applied research results within the lifetime of the research project—and potential development impacts within three years after the project ends.
This call will support applied field and/or laboratory research projects with potential to generate high impact and innovative results for agriculture, nutrition, and food in developing countries, with particular impact on the poor (including women and vulnerable groups). Basic/fundamental, purely theoretical, and/or policy research will not be considered. All projects require the sound assessment of environmental impact and the integration of social and gender variables.
This call will consist of a two-stage selection process to fund full research projects. In the first stage, all concept notes prepared by applicant partnerships will be pre-screened for eligibility and then thoroughly reviewed. A set of concept notes will be short-listed, according to the selection criteria outlined below. The review process draws on the expertise and recommendations of an international Scientific Advisory Committee of the Fund and final short-listed concept notes are approved by the Governance Committee of the Fund.
In the second stage of the process, short-listed applicants will be eligible to receive a small travel grant (must be fully justified) of up to $10,000 CAD, to permit representatives from the applicant organizations to meet to develop the full proposal. Note that provision of such a travel grant does not guarantee funding of any future full proposal, but if such a grant is awarded, a proposal must be submitted, and attendance at the meeting between applicant organizations is considered a prerequisite for submission of a full proposal.
The applicant organizations whose concept notes were shortlisted will jointly submit a full proposal, which will again be reviewed by the Scientific Advisory Committee. The Governance Committee will make final funding decisions based on the review and recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Committee.
Concept notes will be assessed on the following five criteria:
1. Relevance of the concept note / scientific idea (25%)
2. Research merit and effectiveness (25%)
3. Team strength and collaboration (25%)
4. Special attention to women (12.5%)
5. Environmental sustainability (12.5%):
In addition to the above five criteria, applications must include a budget estimate, which should be commensurate with the proposed work. Value for money is inherent in the overall assessment of criteria 1, 2, and 3, above.
In order to be considered, concept notes must:
i) be completed using the online application on the CIFSRF website, between Feb. 9 and March 23, 2011;
j) be submitted in either English or French;
k) provide summaries of the proposed research project, applicant organizations and principal investigators, team composition, and third-party organizations
l) contain a description of the research project that is not more than 24,000 characters (approximately 6 pages, Times New Roman, single spaced), plus maximum of 4,000 characters (approximately 1 page) of references. Research description must include all of the sections noted in the instructions
m) provide an overview of project activities
n) include a tentative consolidated budget, indicating expected and reasonable expenses for the duration of the project
o) include a CV of the principal investigator of each applicant organization;
p) include a signed official letter of endorsement from each applicant organization –
Concept notes must be submitted by the deadline of 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time Zone, March 23, 2011, using the online application form.
Note - All applicants from India require FCRA clearance and should provide a copy of the form for their organization when submitting concept notes. An FCRA form must also be attached for any third-party organization based in India.
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