Seed Fund Application
Click on the institution below to determine the application procedure and selection criteria for you
Opportunity status:
Seed Fund
Open until
Closed
Open until funds are fully allocated
Expected to open May 2024

About the program

The OFI Seed Fund supports ocean-related projects that offer high potential for innovation success but need small amounts of funding to help them move forward — and grow.

Round VIII of the Seed Fund is now closed. Check back on updates on future funding calls.

Contact information

For further information please contact:

Tracey Woodhouse
Programs Manager
Email: tracey.woodhouse@dal.ca

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty, staff, technicians, postdocs, or students (Please note: students, postdocs, and technicians that are awarded funding must be supervised by a current faculty member who would be identified as the grant holder and assume responsibility for distribution of funds and terms of the deliverables).

Applicants from Dalhousie may be eligible for funding from OFI, NSERC, Invest NS and Genome Atlantic. Co-funders with specific project interests are outlined below:
            - Genome Atlantic: focus on enabling socio-economic impact through genomics innovation
            - NSERC:
 includes evidence of training and partnership

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will typically range from $10,000 to $15,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. Successful applicants may receive added experience learning about funding relationships with this round's sponsors
  6. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  7. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds.

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email); students and postdocs must also provide contact information for a current faculty member who would act as the project supervisor and grant-holder
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must be administered in accordance with Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles, and are to be used only for eligible expenditure as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty, staff, technicians, postdocs, or students (Please note: students, postdocs, and technicians that are awarded funding must be supervised by a current faculty member who would be identified as the grant holder and assume responsibility for distribution of funds and terms of the deliverables).

Applicants from Memorial may be eligible for funding from OFI, NSERC and Genome Atlantic. Co-funders with specific project interests are outlined below:
            - Genome Atlantic: focus on enabling socio-economic impact through genomics innovation
            - NSERC:
 includes evidence of training and partnership

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will typically range from $10,000 to $15,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. Successful applicants may receive added experience learning about funding relationships with this round's sponsors
  6. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  7. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds.

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email); students and postdocs must also provide contact information for a current faculty member who would act as the project supervisor and grant-holder
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Please note:
Faculty, staff and students must follow the institute’s procedures for applying to this opportunity. Please consult with your faculty’s Grants Facilitators to determine internal deadlines.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must be administered in accordance with Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles, and are to be used only for eligible expenditure as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty and the project must provide some type of training or some type of partnership.

Applicants from UNB may be eligible for funding from NSERC, NBIF and Genome Atlantic. Co-funders with specific project interests and matching funds criteria are outlined below:
            - Genome Atlantic: focus on enabling socio-economic impact through genomics innovation.
              Supervisor or institutional matching funds required.
            - NBIF:  Supervisor or institutional matching funds required.
            - NSERC: includes evidence of training and partnership includes evidence of training and partnership

Please note:
Applicants must follow the institute’s procedures for applying to this opportunity. Please consult with the Office of Research Services (ors@unb.ca) to determine internal deadlines.

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will start at $20,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  6. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds (see above).  OFI does not provide matching funds; the applicant, their department, or institution must meet the matching fund requirement

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email).
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility.
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must follow Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty, staff, technicians, postdocs, or students (Please note: students, postdocs, and technicians that are awarded funding must be supervised by a current faculty member who would be identified as the grant holder and assume responsibility for distribution of funds and terms of the deliverables).

Applicants from UPEI may be eligible for funding from  NSERC and Genome Atlantic. UPEI has a small amount of matching funds available for one project. Co-funders with specific project interests and matching funds criteria are outlined below:
            - Genome Atlantic: focus on enabling socio-economic impact through genomics innovation.
              Supervisor or institutional matching funds required.
            - NSERC:
 includes evidence of training and partnership includes evidence of training and partnership

Please note:
Applicants must follow UPEI’s procedures before applying to this opportunity. Applicants must submit their application in the UPEI Researcher Portal before submitting to the OFI. The deadline for receipt of the application by the Office of Research Services is June 27, 2023.

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will typically range from $10,000 to $15,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. Successful applicants may receive added experience learning about funding relationships with this round's sponsors
  6. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  7. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds.

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email); students and postdocs must also provide contact information for a current faculty member who would act as the project supervisor and grant-holder
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must be administered in accordance with Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles, and are to be used only for eligible expenditure as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty and the project must provide some type of training or some type of partnership.

Applicants from UQA R may be eligible for funding from NSERC. Co-funders with specific project interests are outlined below:  
            - NSERC:
 includes evidence of training and partnership includes evidence of training and partnership

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will start at $20,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  6. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds (see above).  OFI does not provide matching funds; the applicant, their department, or institution must meet the matching fund requirement

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email)
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Please note:
Applicants must obtain the signature of the Dean of Research one week prior to the deadline for all departments, except ISMER. At ISMER, the applicants must obtain the signature of the Director one week prior to the deadline.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must follow Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty and the project must provide some type of training or some type of partnership.

Applicants from ULaval may be eligible for funding from NSERC. Co-funders with specific project interests are outlined below:
            - NSERC: includes evidence of training and partnership includes evidence of training and partnership

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will start at $20,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  6. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds (see above).  OFI does not provide matching funds; the applicant, their department, or institution must meet the matching fund requirement

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email)
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must follow Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.

Application procedure

OFI's Seed Fund supports innovative projects that have the potential to advance research, commercial or social concepts relating to the ocean. To qualify, applicants must be current faculty and the project must provide some type of training or some type of partnership.

Applicants from UVic may be eligible for funding from NSERC. Co-funders with specific project interests are outlined below:
            - NSERC:
 includes evidence of training and partnership includes evidence of training and partnership

Funding amount & duration

  1. Awards will start at $20,000 with particularly compelling ideas considered up to a maximum of $30,000
  2. Funding is intended for projects to be undertaken and completed within a 12-month time frame
  3. Award recipients are expected to contribute to OFI reporting. Report requests are expected to occur at the end of the approved award period
  4. OFI requires Seed Fund recipients to showcase their work publicly through an event and/or media outreach. OFI will assist with this communication
  5. OFI will actively support completed Seed Fund projects that have commercialization potential to advance commercialization plans through the next stages of the ocean ecosystem, such as Lab2Market Oceans, Ocean Startup Challenge, and CDL Oceans
  6. Some Seed Fund co-funders require a commitment of matching funds (see above).  OFI does not provide matching funds; the applicant, their department, or institution must meet the matching fund requirement

Application submission

The following information must be compiled and sent to ofi@dal.ca and ofi@mun.ca as one PDF document:

  1. Applicant information (name, title, affiliation, address, phone, email)
  2. Applicant Curriculum Vitae (please limit to two pages)
  3. Title and summary of proposed research (250 words)
  4. A brief description as to how the project would promote/foster equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility
  5. Description of expected outcomes arising from the project, its significance, and how these outcomes will be achieved (500 words)
  6. Clearly state how this project acts as a seed for future projects; how the proposed project could potentially catalyze a new initiative and grow in the future (250 words)
  7. A brief description of how the project supports (or aligns with) OFI research priorities (250 words)
  8. If applicable, alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  9. Work plan: Project start and end dates; identify key milestones
  10. Names and contact information of team members: collaborators, partners, students
  11. Indicate the role of co-investigators (who, their background, and their role in the project)
  12. A budget that itemizes general categories of expenses and a brief justification for these expenses (please also send this as an excel spreadsheet in addition to the compiled PDF)
  13. Indicate if you, your department, or your institution have matching funding available to support this project. Please provide an overview of the amount available, timeline associated with the matching funds and source

OFI aims to foster a systemic, intentional, and holistic approach to diversity and inclusiveness to ensure welcoming, respectful, and inclusive communities and campuses. Please ensure proposals include activities to admit, engage, support, and graduate a diverse body of researchers and students, with attention to enhancing access and success of historically underrepresented groups.

By applying for the Seed Fund, you agree that your proposed project will be reviewed by interested parties such as community organizations and industry for potential co-investment and collaboration who may co-fund projects in partnership with Mitacs.

Selection criteria

  1. Excellence and creativity of the proposed research program
  2. Excellence of the proponent(s)
  3. Alignment with OFI's research priorities
  4. Potential for the project to lead to larger-scale research projects or commercial opportunities
  5. Alignment with areas of interest to co-funders
  6. The Seed Fund review committee consists of researchers from all seven partner universities, as well as reviewers from each of the co-funding organizations. Co-funders review all applications that align with their interests and criteria.

The fund cannot be used to supplement OFI's large research projects currently underway.

Eligible expenses

Funds must follow Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) guidelines and principles as outlined in the Use of CFREF Funds, CFREF Administration Guide. Specifically, as per those guidelines, awarded funds must not be used to pay an awardee researcher’s salary or other remuneration. For co-funded projects, sponsor funds must additionally be administered in accordance with the sponsoring partner's guidelines.

OFI does not accept responsibility or obligation for funds expended in excess of the amount provided through the Seed Fund, or for funds expended before or after the term of the Seed Fund.