The Operating Grants competition is the principal means by which the Cancer Research Society fulfills its mission to support fundamental, early translational and Environment-Cancer research on all types of cancer in order to contribute to the advancement of science aimed at preventing, detecting and treating this disease.

Our Operating Grants Competition takes place every year and is open to researchers across Canada.

Instructions for Application
Eligibility Requirements
Grant Termand Amount
Financial Rules
Additional Specific Grant Opportunities 
Evaluation Procedure
Accepting a Grant Offer

Application Toolkit

Letter of Intent:

Letter of Intent form and instructions available online: November 7, 2016

Complete Application:

Application Form available online: December 16, 2016
Disclaimer and Indemnity Form 2017 : To come

Program Officer

Lucille Beaudet, PhD, MBA

514-861-9227, ext. 234
Toll-free: 1 888 776 2262, ext. 234


See the list list of additional grant opportunities in specific areas of cancer research



Letter of Intent

November 7, 2016

Letter of intent form available online

December 5, 2016

Deadline for submitting letter of intent

Decembre 16,2016

Results of the letters of intent are announced

Full  Application

December 16, 2016

Application form available online

February 16, 2017

Deadline for submitting full application

* Only those applicants who submitted a letter of intent may submit a complete application. Applicants will receive an e-mail with the PIN(s) assigned to their project(s) no later than December 16, 2016. If by January 4, 2017 you have not received the confirmation e-mail with your PIN(s), please contact us without delay at grants@src-crs.ca.

August 2017

Results are announced following approval by the Cancer Research Society’s Board of Directors

September 1, 2017

Payments to grantees begin

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** Please do not print and scan your completed pages.

The submission of a letter of intent or application requires completing the appropriate interactive PDF form, downloadable by clicking on the links below. 

To complete and save the form, you will need either Acrobat Pro, Standard, Acrobat Reader version XI or DC.

For those using Acrobat Standard or Pro (recommended software) 

  • You can save the completed letter of intent and application form at all times.
  • You can easily insert additional pages into your application form.
  • Software or subscriptions to Acrobat software can be purchased online.
  • Free 30-day trials are available.

For those using Acrobat Reader XI or DC (for the letter of intent only)

  • You can save the completed Letter of Intent form at all times. If you are unable to save the forms, you do not have a recent version of Acrobat Reader installed on your computer.
  • Acrobat Reader does not allow inserting pages in a document and thus cannot be used for the application form. Free trials of the Pro and Standard versions are available on the official Adobe website.
  • Acrobat Reader DC can be downloaded for free from the official Acrobat website.


Non-official websites proposing the download of Acrobat Reader might install malicious software on your computer. The Society is not responsible for any damage or inconvenience malicious software could cause to your system. 

Do not print and scan your application. 

Letter of Intent: Form - Letter of Intent 2017 : Available November 7, 2016
Instructions - Letter of Intent 2017 : To come
Complete Application: Application Form - 2017 : Available December 16, 2016
  Disclaimer and Indemnity Form - 2017 : To come


Submitting a letter of intent is a preliminary and compulsory step in the application process that helps ensure the validity of the project and organize the evaluation committees. 

Failure to submit a letter of intent will result in the rejection of a complete application. 

Deadline for submission of the Letter of Intent:
December 5, 2016 at midnight (EST)

The title of your letter of intent must be structured as follows:

“Last name_First name_ Letter of Intent_OG2017”.  
For example, “Smith_John_Letter of Intent_OG2017”.

For applicants submitting more than one letter of intent, please differentiate between your forms by numbering them.
For example: “Smith_John_Letter of Intent _OG2017_1

No later than December 16, 2016, all applicants who submitted a completed Letter of Intent before the deadline will receive an e-mail inviting them to submit an application.


Deadline Submission of Letter of Intent: December 5, 2016 at midnight (EST).

Once completed, you must e-mail your letter of intent form to: grants@src-crs.ca

Please indicate the filename of your Letter of Intent in the subject of the e-mail you will send. (e.g. Smith_John_Letter of Intent_OG2017).

For applicants submitting more than one letter of intent, please differentiate between your forms by numbering them and send them in separate e-mails.


Deadline Submission of the complete applications: February 16, 2017

In order to streamline the grant application process, you have the option of submitting your application file using the WeTransfer file transfer service.

You have the choice of either:

1. Sending your filled out application and the documents accompanying it using WeTransfer. The deadline for submitting your electronic files via WeTransfer is February 16, 2017, at midnight EST (Montreal time).

Depending on your internet connection, the upload process might take a certain amount of time, particularly if you upload a large file. We recommend that you upload your file(s) a few days in advance in order to prevent any last minute delay. No application will be accepted after February 16, 2017.

2. Sending two copies of your application and accompanying documents, by mail or courier, saved on two (2) CDs or two (2) USB keys. The deadline for mailing your application is February 16, 2017. Applications must be postage stamped on or before this day.

*** Please do not send paper copies of your application.

You must mail your application saved on CDs or USB keys to the following address:

Cancer Research Society
C/O Research Department
625 President-Kennedy Avenue, Suite 402
Montreal, QC H3A 3S5

Preparing your electronic files

  • The title of your electronic file should end with the identification number (PIN) received in the Acceptance e-mail for your letter of intent as shown: Smith_John_OG2017_21282.
  • Scanned applications will be refused.
  • The application file must be saved in PDF format (not printed as PDF, which is the equivalent of a scanned document!).
  • Scanned copies of the “Disclaimer and Indemnity Form 2017” should be sent with your application in PDF format (see below for instructions).

Note: When available, you should include in your application the electronic copies of the ethics and biohazard certificates required for your research project.

***The first installment of a grant is made only when all certificates are provided.

For applicants submitting more than one application, you must differentiate them by adding at the end of the filename their respective identification number (PIN) received in the LOI Acceptance e-mails.

Smith_John_OG 2017_21878
Smith_John_OG 2017_21884

You should not number your files in any other way!

Transferring your files using WeTransfer

The secure link to upload your files is: https://www.wetransfer.com

1. Start by clicking “Add File” to upload your Application file.
2. Click “Add more files” to include the PDF file of your Disclaimer and Indemnity Form.
3. Click “Friend’s e-mail” and paste grants@src-crs.ca (Copy-paste it to make sure you do not make a typo.)
4. Indicate “Your e-mail” address. (Be careful not to make a typo in it)
5. In the Message Box, indicate: Last name_First name_ OG2017_21XXX.
6. Click the Transfer button.
7. Once the transfer is complete, click Okay.

Save your WeTransfer confirmation e-mail and make sure the recipient’s e-mail address was correctly entered: grants@src-crs.ca .

If Ms. Irina Navarrete, Assistant, Research, Communications and Marketing, has not confirmed the reception of your file(s) within two working days, please contact her (grants@src-crs.ca) and forward a copy of the WeTransfer confirmation.

IMPORTANT: Please save your WeTransfer confirmation e-mails and make sure that the indicated e-mail addresses for the transfer are correct. If you do not receive WeTransfer confirmations, check your SPAM folder (We suggest that you add the domain WeTransfer.com to your Approved Senders List). If the confirmation message is not in your SPAM folder, you may have made a mistake in your own e-mail address.


By regular mail or courier
Your application must contain the following:

1. Two (2) electronic copies saved on two (2) CDs or two (2) USB keys (1 copy per electronic medium). Please make sure that your application and accompanying documents were properly saved on your CDs or USB keys and are not encrypted. You should test your electronic media to make sure that they can be read on a computer not linked to your institution.

The title of your application file should as follow:
Last name_First name_OG2017_21XXX
For example, Smith_John_OG2017_21884

This title should also appear on both CDs or USB keys. For applicants submitting more than one application, you must differentiate them by adding at the end of the filename their respective identification number (PIN) received in the LOI Acceptance e-mails and save them on separate electronic media.

For example: Smith_John_OG 2017_21878
Smith_John_OG 2017_21884

2. Scanned copies of the “Disclaimer and Indemnity Page_2017” should be sent with your application in PDF format (see below for instructions).

Note: When available, you should include in your application the electronic copies of the ethics and biohazard certificates required for your research project.

***The first installment of a grant is made only when all certificates are provided.


Please fill out and print the document entitled:
“Disclaimer and Indemnity Form 2017”.

This form must be signed by all applicants, co-applicants and their respective officials. A scanned copy should be sent with your electronic application copies using WeTransfer or saved as a separate file on your 2 CDs or 2 USB keys.

The filename of this form should be:
Last name_First name_DIF_21XXX
For example, Smith_John_DIF_21878

Electronic signatures are accepted.


Applicants may update their award notices and publication lists after submission of their full applications.

Publication updates may be provided via e-mail to grants@src-crs.ca no later than April 28, 2017.


The degree of conciseness and clarity in the presentation can significantly influence the evaluation of the application.

All information required for the evaluation of the application must be included in the form, or attached to the form as indicated in the specific instructions in each section. 

The settings of the different document fields are pre-set (please do not modify them). 

When additional pages are allowed, the typeface must be in black ink. 

The only acceptable font is Times New Roman.

The character size measured in points (pt) must be no smaller than 12 pt

The text must be single-spaced.

Condensed type is unacceptable.

The number of pages and/or documents must be limited to the detailed instructions in each section.

Please note that the disrespect of these rules could lead to an automatic rejection of your submitted application prior to its scientific evaluation.

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All applicants and co-applicants must hold an academic appointment in a Canadian university or accredited institution.

Collaborators may be from outside of Canada however no funds from the Cancer Research Society can be transferred outside of the country.

All applicants must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

Candidates in postdoctoral training are not eligible.

Research associates are not eligible.

There must be only one main applicant for the purposes of this award. This person will also administer any grant awarded.

All other applicants are considered co-applicants.


The Cancer Research Society Operating Grants award program is offered to research projects in basic and fundamental, early translational and Environment-Cancer research.

Applied, psychosocial or clinical research projects are not admissible to this program.


The number of applications a researcher may submit to the program as a main applicant is not limited. However, in the event that there would be a significant increase in the number of Letters of Intent submitted, it is possible that we limit the number of applications per applicant.

A researcher may also participate in other projects as a co-applicant.

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Operating Grants are usually awarded for a period of 2 years.

All awarded grants take effect as of September 1st


Researchers who currently have a grant with the Cancer Research Society may submit an application to renew their current project. 

A project that has already been the subject of an application for renewal,or a project for which the financial support granted by the Cancer Research Society, is already completed cannot be considered for a renewal application.

The letter of intent is also compulsory for operating grant renewals.

Conditional upon approval, a renewal may be granted for an additional two (2) years.

*** Researchers awarded a grant renewal must still submit the final Financial and Scientific Reports for the original project. The due date for the two reports is November 30 after the end of the original project.

Please note that if the grant is not renewed, no terminal grant should be expected. Applicants should ensure that their internal arrangements allow for possible non-renewal of the grant.

Applicants whose grants have not been renewed can subsequently apply for a new operating grant in the next competition.

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$60,000 per year

Researchers submitting an application for less than $60,000 and who qualify for funding will receive their grant for the amount requested.


The annual funding period is from September 1 to August 31 of every year.

  • Payments of Operating Grant are made to the financial officer of the awardees.
  • Payments are made on a quarterly basis: September, December, March, June.


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Cancer Research Society allows funding for:

  • salaries of students and post-doctoral fellows;
  • salaries of research staff ( research assistant, research associate, technician);
  • research supplies;
  • publication fees.

Cancer Research Society funds cannot be used for:

  • remuneration of principal investigators, co-investigators and collaborators;
  • all indirect expenditures related to layout organization or reorganization, facilities leasing and maintenance or the indirect costs covered by the host institution;
  • equipment acquisition;
  • travel expenses, sabbatical leave or maternity/parental leave;
  • meetings, seminars or conferences: all expenses related to these activities including registration fees, travel, etc.;
  • living expenses;
  • clinical drug trials.

Funds may not be transferred outside of Canada.

Any funds not spent for their original purpose by the end of the award period (2 or 3 years depending on carry forwards), must be returned to the Cancer Research Society with a final Financial Report.


For a continuing grant, up to 25 percent (25%) of the annual award may be carried over to the next year.

For a terminating grant, after the second year of the award, up to 15 percent (15%) of the annual award may be carried over for up to one (1) additional year without a written request.

If the amount exceeds the percentages indicated above, a formal written request for a carryover (for a continuing grant) or an extension (for a terminating grant), addressed to the Cancer Research Society (by e-mail at grants@src-crs.ca) is required. This request must include the following information:

  • amount of funds remaining;
  • reason the funds were not spent for their intended purpose;
  • how the remaining funds will be used;
  • requested timeframe needed.


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Over the last few years, the Cancer Research Society is pleased to offer additional operating grants to the scientific community through our regular competition.

These grants on specific types of cancer are in addition to the regular operating grants applicable to the broad field of cancer. 

The funding of these specific grants is made possible thanks to significant collaborations that the Cancer Research Society has developed over the last years with valuable partners. If you apply for a specific grant award, you must check the designated box or boxes on the Letter of Intent and Application forms. You will be required to justify, on the Application form, how your project applies to the specific area(s) of research you selected.



Breast Cancer: 
Through a partnerships with the CURE Foundation and Rina Primeau Memorial Fund, the Cancer Research Society 
will be co-funding three (3) operating grants on breast cancer.
Four (4) operating grants supported through the Cancer Research Society’s Environment-Cancer FundTM in partnership with Read for the Cure are available.

Grants in environment-cancer are dedicated to finding scientific evidence relating the risk of developing cancer to the impact of environmental factors, such as our lifestyle (eating habits, physical activity, etc.) and our working, leisure and living environments.

Since 2006, the Environment-Cancer FundTM is funded in part by Read for the Cure, a non-profit volunteer organization, formed by passionate Canadian book lovers.

Childhood Cancer:
Through a partnership with C17 Council, a non-profit organization led by experts in pediatric oncology/hematology to encourage and develop collaborative research that will ultimately improve health outcomes and quality of life for children in Canada who are fighting cancer, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding two (2) additional operating grants. Applications are sought that fit within the shared scope of C17 and the Cancer Research Society—those that focus on discovery to translational research in children, with a clear potential for future application to novel therapeutic approaches, improved treatment efficacy or reduced immediate- to late-effects resulting from the biological consequences of cancer, anti-cancer treatment, or both.
Multiple myeloma: 
Through a partnership with Myeloma Canada, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding one (1) additional operating grant on multiple myeloma. The research project must be directly related to myeloma and aligned to the objective of improving patient outcomes within two to three years. As such, priority will be given to the submission deemed to have the greatest probability of positively impacting clinical practice within the defined time frame. The focus will be on proposals that contribute to the advancement of clinical practice through translational research. 

Ovarian Cancer: 
Through a partnership with Ovarian Cancer Canada, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding one (1) operating grant on ovarian cancer.

Through a partnership with the ISAIAH 40:31 Memorial Fund, the Society will be co-funding (1) operating grant on Nutrigenomics, with a focus on how individual genetic variations affect a person's response to nutrients for cancer risk, prevention and treatment.
Pancreatic Cancer: 
Through partnerships with the Charlotte Légaré Memorial Fund, the Ganotec/Marc-André Pigeon Fund, the Jean Doré Fund and the Rob Lutterman Memorial Fund, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding four (4) operating grants on pancreatic cancer.
T-cell Prolymphocytic Leukemia (T-PLL):
Through a partnership with the Benoit Gagnon Research Fund, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding one (1) operating grant on new therapeutic approaches and improved treatments for T-PLL, a rare and aggressive malignancy of mature T cells.
Lung Cancer:
Through partnerships with the Marjolaine Bazinet – Michel Caya Research Fund, the Cancer Research Society will be co-funding one (1) operating grants on lung cancer.
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Financial Report Form

Progress Report Form


Deadline for Financial Reports:
November 30, at the end of each funding year.

At the end of each funding year (i.e. August 31) and before November 30 (three months later), the host institution must return a brief financial statement to the Cancer Research Society attesting to the fact that the funds have been disbursed for their intended purpose.

A final Financial Report indicating a $0 balance must be submitted at the latest at the end of the 3rd year of the granting period. This report should be accompanied, if applicable, by a check for the account balance as of August 31 of the3rd year following the start of the granting period.


Prior to filling out the form, please carefully read the appropriate financial rules and reporting obligations specific to the Cancer Research Society funding (Financial Rules).

Please use the appropriate Cancer Research Society form to submit your financial report, downloadable by clicking on the above link. 

Once completed, print the form in order to obtain original signatures, then scan and send to the Cancer Research Society, by e-mail to grants@src-crs.ca.

Original (paper) reports are not required.

PROGRESS REPORTS Deadline for Scientific Progress Reports: November 30, at the end of the project.

For all terminating projects, regardless of whether or not a renewal of the project has been accepted for funding by the Cancer Research Society, a final progress report is required.

In the case of certain partnerships, a progress report may be asked at the end of each funding year. Please follow the instructions included in the official grant offer provided to you upon acceptance.

Please use the appropriate Cancer Research Society form to submit your progress report, downloadable by clicking on the above link.

Send all completed reports to the Cancer Research Society by e-mail to grants@src-crs.ca.

Original (paper) reports are not required.


The financial support awarded by the Cancer Research Society must be acknowledged in all forthcoming publications and presentations, by properly using our name: Cancer Research Society or Société de recherche sur le cancer

For operating grants jointly funded by the Cancer Research Society and a partner, both the Cancer Research Society and the partner must be acknowledged in all forthcoming publications and presentations.
Please follow the instructions included in the official grant offer provided to you upon acceptance.

The Cancer Research Society requests to be informed in advance of any media relations activities (i.e. press releases, interviews, newspaper articles, etc.) regarding the work and or a discovery of a researcher funded by the Cancer Research Society so as to include our participation (quote, etc).

A copy of each publication must also be sent by e-mail in PDF format to

When the Cancer Research Society needs to be mentioned along with other granting agencies, it may become necessary to explain what portion of the research was specifically supported by the Cancer Research Society. 

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All applications are reviewed by one of our peer-review committees made up of 14 to 17 Canadian and/or international scientists with expertise in the appropriate domains of cancer research. The applications are assessed based on the research area and topic and are categorized into one of the four following panels:

Panel A: Cell Signaling
Panel B: Pharmacogenetics/Cancer Immunology
Panel C: Tumour suppressor genes, oncogenes and DNA repair
Panel D: Tumour progression and metastasis
Panel E: Early Translational Research and Epidemiology

Consult the different topics covered in each panel.

The Cancer Research Society will try to assign the application to the first panel choice selected by the researchers. However, we reserve the right of making the final decision regarding the assignment of the application to either one of the two selected panels.  


Panel reviewers use the following criteria for the review of an application:

  • originality of the research plan
  • ability of the investigator to conduct the research in their respective milieu;
  • significance of the project to cancer research;
  • strengths and weaknesses of the proposal;
  • budget relevance:

- No monies are allowed for travel or equipment;
- The budget must be appropriate to the proposed project.



The expert panels conduct a critical and distinct analysis of each application, which is first reviewed and scored by two expert and impartial reviewers, to then be discussed and scored by the entire panel. 

The overall scientific score of the research project is determined after a thorough discussion of the application by the entire evaluation committee and may differ from the initial scores attributed by the two reviewers providing written evaluation reports.

Cancer Research Society funding is allocated to the projects with the highest scores and, where applicable, to the projects that fulfill the requirements for grants on specific cancer research topics as a result of partnerships with the Cancer Research Society.

To be considered for funding, a project must meet the Cancer Research Society’ assessment criterion of a minimum score of 7.5 out of 10.

Due to the high quality of proposals received each year and lack of available funds, not all projects having obtained this minimum scientific score are funded. 

All applicants, regardless of their score, will receive an official letter notifying them of the outcome of their application.

If an applicant refuses offered funding, the Cancer Research Society will offer the grant to the next meritorious project on the list.

Cancer Research Society decisions are final.


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In accepting a grant from the Cancer Research Society, the grantee and all co-applicants agree to observe and comply with the terms and conditions stipulated in the program description listed on this page, as well as on the signed Disclaimer and Indemnity Form submitted with the complete application.

In addition, the grantee and all co-applicants agree to comply at all times with the general principles of honesty and scientific ethics, especially in relation to using the research funds received from the Cancer Research Society for their intended purpose, and the Policy regarding open access to published research outputs.

The award will be revoked if the grantee and co-applicants fail to comply with these rules.


Upon acceptance of an award, different actions need to be taken by the principal investigator in order for the award to take effect:

1. Formally accepting the award and its pertaining rules in writing (by e-mail to grants@src-crs.ca) while stating that no overlap of the project exists, before the deadline indicated in the Grant Offer. 

Should the Cancer Research Society fail to receive this notice of acceptance, it will consider the principal investigator as having refused the grant.

2. Advising the official in charge of the financial management of research grants in his/her organization of the award and its pertaining conditions by forwarding them a copy of their Cancer Research Society Grant Offer.

3. Completing and sending his/her researcher’s profile, including a recent picture, for our website and donor relations. 

Fill out our online Profile Form.


Every project involving human or animal subjects requires the approval of the research ethics board of the principal investigator’s institution. Disbursement of the grant is contingent on provision of an ethics certificate and related documents to the Cancer Research Society.

Certificates may follow the application’s approval for funding but must be received before the payment of the first installment.    

The award will be revoked if the Grantee and co-applicants fail to comply with these rules.


Each application submitted to the Society must be original. The Society will not award a grant overlapping fully or partially with a grant obtained from another funding agency for the support of a project. 

Should an applicant choose to accept a grant from another funding agency for a fully or partially overlapping project, it is incumbent upon him or her to inform the Cancer Research Society immediately of these circumstances.

Failure to comply with these rules will lead to the cancellation of an awarded grant. Where applicable, a grantee may be required to reimburse paid installments for a grant obtained which was not in compliance with the Society’s rules.


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Please forward questions to grants@src-crs.ca.