Global Excellence Initiative

Updated July 6, 2021

Subsequent to a meeting involving the then Governor-General of Canada, government representatives, and leaders of research agencies, scholarly associations and interested groups through the nation, a federal initiative was launched with the objective of raising Canada's research profile on the global stage: the Global Excellence Initiative outlining strategies behind the Paths to Success. One of the facets of this initiative is to provide support to scholars and scientists toward their nomination for major international awards with the aim of raising international recognition. An early commentary on this initiative was published in University Affairs in 2014.

In October 2017, Universities Canada took over the helm of the Global Excellence Initiative at Mr. Johnston's request as he ended his term. With the support of ISED, CIHR, CFI, NSERC, and SSHRC, Universities Canada offers a dynamic inventory of major international research awards which are eligible for external review.

Note: Thanks to a new partnership between The Rideau Hall Foundation and Universities Canada, Canadian researchers now have added support in their efforts to apply for and receive career-boosting national awards. The Global Excellence Initiative, which has assisted Canadian researchers apply for major international awards since 2012, is expanding its mandate to include national prizes and fellowships.

An external review process is available through Program Specialist, Caroline Flocari (Universities Canada), which follows the following timeline:

  • At least 6 weeks prior to the submission deadline, the institution must provide the Program Director with the name of the nominee as well as a short biography, the subject matter for the nomination, the name of the prize or award, as well as a list of 3 – 6 names of experts in the nominee’s field who could be contacted to provide anonymous review . This information will be utilized in order to secure two excellent reviewers. For national awards requiring a list of external reviewers to be provided to the granting council, please provide the GEI with that list rather than a list of potential reviewers. 
  • The institution must submit a full draft nomination dossier no later than 3 weeks prior to the submission deadline to the Program Director
  • Responses from reviewers will be returned to the Program Director within 10 days to be transmitted back to the institution.
  • The institution has 10 days to incorporate any comments and suggestions into the final nomination dossier for the international award/prize to the sponsoring organization.

If you are involved in a nomination for an international award/prize and would like to participate in the external review process provided by Global Excellence Initiative, please inform the Coordinator of Research Awards and Communications in the Vice-Principal (Research) Portfolio, and please take note of the timeline provided above.