International Research

Below is a list of some of the many opportunities available to UBC researchers to pursue funding from sources outside the Canadian Tri-Council.  

United States Federal Government

Researchers at UBC are eligible to pursue many opportunities with unrestricted eligibility within the United States grant making agencies.  These include opportunities within the National Institutes for Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Defense (DoD), and the Department of Energy (DoE), among others. 

Specific opportunities will be listed in the News & Events section of the SPARC website home page.  To find grants, you can also visit's search page, and filter for "unrestricted" eligibility.  

Association of Commonwealth Universities

Early Career Academic Grants are open to early career academics employed by ACU member universities to attend a conference held in a Commonwealth country other than their own. 

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

The aims of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation are, globally, to enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty, and in America, to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology.  Projects funded at UBC have included

  • a randomized controlled trial focused on community level interventions for pre-eclampsia pregnancy
  • contraception and reproductive health service access
  • vaccine development for neonates

More information for grant seekers can be found here.  Opportunities will also be posted on the SPARC website's landing page in the News and Events section.  

Burroughs Wellcome Fund

The Burroughs Wellcome Fund is a private US-based foundation focused on biomedical research.  The Fund sponsors awards for both postdoctoral fellows and faculty.  More information can be found here.  

Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI)

CHAI’s primary program areas are:

  • Access programs
  • Applied analytics
  • Health financing
  • Human Resources for Health
  • Malaria
  • Maternal, Newborn & Child Health
  • Vaccines
Global Affairs Canada

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) periodically announces calls for preliminary proposals to its international development funding program.  In general, this program’s pre-proposal phase seeks collaborative submissions between 2 and 10 million dollars focused on international development initiatives with an emphasis on implementing solutions for poverty reduction. 

Most of the GAC calls for preliminary proposals stipulate that eligible applicant institutions are permitted to submit only one proposal as the designated lead.  Please note, the vast majority of projects successfully funded through GAC are lead by established non-governmental organizations with extensive experience working on the ground in GAC priority countries.  Applicants wishing to lead a proposal usually must demonstrate GAC’s following minimum requirements:

  • A minimum of two years of experience managing an international development project with an emphasis on poverty reduction
  • A minimum of two years of experience managing an international development project with a total budget equal to or greater than the budget in the proposal

If you meet these requirements and are interested in leading a proposal for an active call, please contact Deborah Watt at the SPARC office to discuss UBC’s Global Affairs Canada submission process.  Please note that researchers wishing to participate in a proposal  lead by an NGO or other organization do not need to contact the SPARC office.

France Canada Research Fund

The France Canada Research Fund focuses on fostering mobility and collaboration between researchers in France and Canada.  They have numerous opportunities throughout the year.  Please consult their website for more details.  

The Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation

The Moore Foundation supports research in the following areas:

  • Path-breaking scientific discovery
  • Environmental conservation
  • Patient care
  • The San Francisco Bay Area
Horizon 2020 EU Framework Programme for Research & Innovation

Horizon 2020 is the European Commission’s program for research and innovation.  Research and innovation are declared priorities in the EU budget from 2014 to 2020.  Horizon 2020 is designed to address societal challenges through funding excellent science, technology and innovation. 

In October 2017, the European Commission released the work plan associated with the last three years of the Horizon 2020 funding program.  The work plan was accompanied by a program that outlines a series of opportunities for researchers at Canadian universities over the next three years. 

The European Commission has national contact points across Canada who are responsible for intelligence gathering, and the dissemination of information on Horizon 2020 activities including workshops, conferences, information sessions and so on.  They also assist with partner search activities and serve as a liaison with the European Commission for all Horizon 2020 matters.   Click here for the current list of national contact points.  

March of Dimes

March of Dimes funds research focused on the prevention birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.  It has two grant categories:  general March of Dimes Research Grants and Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Research Awards (BOC).  

Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research

The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research focuses on two key areas:

  • Research exploring specific therapeutic approaches that could contribute to teh development of improved Parkinson's disease treatments
  • Research to develop tools and resources that will help accelerate the development of Parkinson's disease treatments
Paralyzed Veterans of America Research Foundation

The Paralyzed Veterans of America Research Foundation is focused on funding projects grounded in basic laboratory science and the education of scientists working on breakthroughs directed toward a cure for paralysis or the secondary medical conditions, and technologies associated with spinal cord injry or disease (SCI/D).  Projects should be designed to find better treatments and cures for paralysis, to support efforts to improve the quality of life of individuals with SCI/D until improved clinical treatments, technologies or cures are discovered, and to train post-doctoral fellow investigators adn encourage them to specialize in the area of spinal cord resaerch.  The Foundation's policies and procedures can be found here.  

Patient Centered Outcome Research Institute

The Patient Centered Outcome Research Institute’s stated priorities are:

  • Assessment of Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment Options: Comparing the effectiveness and safety of alternative prevention, diagnosis, and treatment options to see which ones work best for different people with a particular health problem.
  • Improving Healthcare Systems: Comparing health system–level approaches to improving access, supporting patient self-care, innovative use of health information technology, coordinating care for complex conditions, and deploying workforce effectively.
  • Communication and Dissemination Research: Comparing approaches to providing comparative effectiveness research information, empowering people to ask for and use the information, and supporting shared decision making between patients and their providers.
  • Addressing Disparities: Identifying potential differences in prevention, diagnosis, or treatment effectiveness, or preferred clinical outcomes across patient populations and the healthcare required to achieve best outcomes in each population.
  • Accelerating Patient-Centered Outcomes Research and Methodological Research: Improving the nation’s capacity to conduct patient-centered outcomes research, by building data infrastructure, improving analytic methods, and training researchers, patients, and other stakeholders to participate in this research.
Savoy Foundation

The Savoy Foundation is a non-profit organization established by the Savoy family with the stated mission to raise funds to be used for the sole purpose of financing research into epilepsy. The Foundation works principally with Canadian researchers or to foreign nationals who conduct projects in Canada.  

United States Department of Defense (DoD) Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP)

The US DoD's Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program is one of many DoD funding mechanisms.  The CDMRP's primary focus is basic medical research, and grants typically run from one to five years.  Submissions undergo a two-tiered review process that includes peer and programmatic review.  In addition to scientists, clinicians, members of the military, consumers from advocacy communities play an integral role in reviewing all submitted proposals.  It is essential for all applicants to understand who these consumer reviewers are, and what their role is within the peer review phase of the overall CDMRP review process.  

For a list of the CDMRP's current areas of focus, click here.  

Wellcome Trust

The Wellcome Trust is an independent UK-based charitable organization.  Its funding schemes support individuals, teams, resources, seed ideas, places and major initiatives in these areas:

  • biomedical science
  • population health
  • product development and applied research
  • humanities and social science
  • public engagement and creative industries

The Trust has supported projects at UBC in the areas of genomics, neuroscience, fisheries and environmental health.  For more information on current opportunities, please check the Trust's Scheme Finder