The NSERC Discovery Grant program is designed to capture ideas with the greatest potential to advance natural sciences and engineering.
Discovery Grants are offered as grants-in-aid to support long-term research objectives.
The Discovery Grant program typically follows a single application cycle each year from August to November. Applicants should consult the NSERC website and relevant ORS guidelines for their campus to confirm internal review and submission guidelines.
Applying to the Discovery Grants program is a two-stage process including a mandatory Notice of Intent (NOI) and a full application. The value of the award is based on the assigned Quality Bin and Evaluation Group. Proposals are sorted into incremental funding bins based on the program selection criteria. Decisions are typically communicated at around 26 weeks after the date the application is received.
An NOI must be received for every application to the Discovery Grant program. Late NOIs are not accepted, nor are revisions to NOIs once they have been submitted.
- Review instructions to submit an NOI
August to October
Our team can provide comprehensive reviews of your notice of intent as well as your application in advance of the corresponding deadlines. Limited availability.
Application Guide for UBC Researchers
We have prepared a comprehensive guide for applying to the Discovery Grant program, exclusive to UBC researchers.
Our team can provide detailed feedback of your Discovery Grant. Limited availability.
Sample Grant Library
Check out our comprehensive sample grant library and additional resources curated specifically for UBC researchers.
Workshops & Info Sessions
We offer dedicated workshops throughout the year to assist UBC researchers in developing strong grant proposals.
Manager of Research Development
SPARC support services
Dr. Purang Abolmaesumi
Sciences & Engineering Research Advisor (NSERC), UBC
Advocacy and advice
UBC's Grant Facilitation Network
Research support personnel based in the faculties
Various grant support
- Information Centre: FAQs, evaluation indicators and the peer review manual
- Resource videos: Tips on applying and demystifying the review process
- Program overview: program objectives, evaluation and application processes
- List of evaluation groups
- Discovery Grant peer review manual (2021-2022)
- Policy and guidelines on the assessment of contributions to research and training
- Guidelines for the preparation and review of applications in engineering and the applied sciences, specifically researcher excellence and proposal merit
- Guidelines for the preparation and review of applications in interdisciplinary research
- Guidelines for considering equity, diversity and inclusion in applications
- Discovery Grant competition statistics