LFS Internal Research Grant Program (IRGP)

In order to encourage the submission of the greatest diversity of proposals possible and to give prospective applicants adequate lead time to discuss and develop their projects with collaborators external to the faculty, the 2022 Internal Research Grant Program deadline has been pushed back to 5 pm, Thursday September 15, 2022.

The details of this intake can be downloaded here and also found on this page below.


The Faculty of Land and Food Systems Internal Research Grant Program (IRGP) provides short-term support for the development of innovative, multidisciplinary research that will eventually form the basis of a research proposal submitted to one of the Tri-Agency funding organizations (i.e. NSERC, CIHR, SSHRC) or the UBC TLEF program. The overall aim of the IRGP is to identify and support innovative, early-stage research within LFS which will enable preliminary data to be gathered for the purpose of strengthening the calibre and competitiveness of research proposals submitted to the Tri-Agency and TLEF funding competitions from LFS.

Target Area

This year’s IRGP applications must address one or more of the five priority areas from the current LFS Action Plan, Navigating Change.

  • Addressing climate change and resilient food systems
  • Ending hunger and improving food security
  • Enhancing regional agriculture for sustainable cities
  • Promoting nutrition and wellbeing for healthier communities
  • Ensuring the health and welfare of animals in society


  • The LFS IRGP encourages collaborative multidisciplinary submissions: this year’s IRGP also aims to spark new collaborations with units and faculties external to LFS, hence applicant teams must be comprised of a lead PI from LFS and at least one other co-applicant from outside LFS with whom the PI has never worked before.
  • Co-applicants may be, but are not limited to, researchers and professors, practitioners, policy-makers, educators, decision-makers, health-care administrators, Indigenous Elders, Indigenous Knowledge Keepers, community leaders, or individuals working for a charity. If the co-applicant is a researcher or professor, they must be considered independent researchers.
  • The lead, and at least one other co-applicant, must be full-time LFS faculty members with a minimum of 12-month appointments.
  • Applicants and co-applicants who have previously held an LFS or another UBC internal research grant must have completed the project and submitted an acceptable Final Report where required.
  • Associate Deans and Deans are eligible to apply, but will be expected to recuse themselves from the IRGP adjudication committee (see below).

Award Process

Support will only be provided for the direct costs of research that are essential to the completion of the proposed research, including:

  • Stipend and salary support for undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. This year’s IRGP applications must include support for at least one undergraduate student.
  • Research-related travel.
  • Material supplies or consumables.

Salary and/or consultant fees for co-applicants are not eligible expenses.

Equipment purchases will not be supported.

All items must be critical for the successful completion of the proposed research and must be defended in a detailed budget justification to be submitted as an attachment to the main application (see below). Expenses incurred prior to the start date of the proposed work will be ineligible to receive funding.

It is expected that researchers will take advantage of opportunities to leverage LFS funds with funds from other sources (e.g. MITACS) so that cash and in-kind contributions make up a minimum of 20% of the proposed budget.

Researchers are invited to submit an application to the LFS internal research grant program that includes:

  • A completed LFS Internal Research Grant Program (IRGP) application form (applicant and co-applicant information, budget summary table and signatures) with the following attachments:
  • A proposal (two-page maximum) that includes:
    • A Rationale in which the central problem or question addressed by the applicant’s research project is explained, with particular attention paid to how the project connects to one or more of the priority research areas from the current LFS Action Plan, and how the work could become part of a future Tri-Agency funding application. The applicant should make clear how the internal research grant will lead to the success of the future external application.
    • A Methodology section that details the theoretical/conceptual framework guiding the research and any research hypotheses if applicable, supported by references to existing literature and detailing the methods and procedures to be used and highlights the roles of specific individuals (co-PIs and HQP) required to successfully carry out the work.
    • A Significance and Faculty Benefits section which explores the broader impacts of the proposed research including a consideration of the project benefits including the forging of new research collaborations within the Faculty, the training of HQP, planned manuscripts or proposals and the relevance of the work to the UBC and LFS Strategic Plans.
  • Budget justification (one page)
  • References (one page)

Funding Details

This intake has a $50,000 envelope: a single proposal may request up to $25,000 (with the requirement for 20% in-kind/cash from other sources, the maximum allowable budget is therefore $25k + $25k x 0.2 = $30k). The review panel reserves the right to only partially award the envelope available if the proposals submitted are not of sufficient quality.

Funding will be released to successful applicants as a single payment and must be spent within one year of award receipt. This funding competition is one-time and cannot be renewed. Successful applicants will be required to submit a final report on the research activities undertaken within 3 months of the project conclusion. Applications to future intakes will not be considered until the final report has been submitted.

Applications (application form plus all attachments submitted as a single PDF file) for this funding call should be sent to lfs.research@ubc.ca  by 5 pm, Thursday September 15, 2022. Proposals will be reviewed by the Faculty Research Awards Committee, whose membership consists of:

  • the Associate Dean of Research (Chair);
  • the Program Directors of: Applied Biology, Food, Nutrition and Health, and Food and Resource Economics;
  • the Faculty EDI Coordinator;
  • other faculty members (e.g. previous awardees or external to LFS) as deemed necessary by the Committee.

Decisions will be returned within a month, with the funding start date of November 1, 2022.

Submitted proposals will be judged against the following evaluation criteria:

  • All proposal requirements have been provided in full
  • the quality, originality and potential for impact of the proposed project;
  • the extent to which the aims and motivations of the proposal are consistent with the multidisciplinary intent of the LFS Internal Research Grant Program;
  • Feasibility of completing project within the one-year timeframe
  • Appropriateness of budget allocation and justification
  • Evidence of a clear research plan that links the proposed work to future work planned as part of a Tri-Agency funding application or UBC TLEF proposal.

Questions should be directed to [david.kitts@ubc.ca], or Nick Grant [nick.grant@ubc.ca].

2018 Fall

  • Juli Carrillo; Andrew Black; Hannah Wittman

Bee Smart: Environmental designs for bee conservation.

  • Xiaonan Lu; Barbara Stefanska; Bruce A. Vallance

Human gut-on-a-chip: an innovative platform to investigate the protective effect of whole fruit intake on gut microbiome disturbances, inflammatory bowel disease and colon cancer.

2019 Fall

  • Alexandra Protopopova; Siyun Wang; Nathaniel J. Hall

Reducing pet food waste: Owner acceptance and palatability of a bacteriophage additive in cat and dog food.

2020 Fall

  • Gurcharn Singh Brar; Cara Haney; Jean-Thomas Cornelis

Recruiting beneficial soil microbes to suppress diseases in wheat.

  • Risa D Sargent; Frederik Noack

Is GMO (herbicide-resistant) crop adoption associated with a decline in wild bees and their associated pollination services?

2022 Spring

  • Jean-Thomas Cornelis; Jennifer Grenz; Chelsey Geralda Armstrong

RISEReclaiming and Revitalizing Indigenous Forest Garden Stewardship to Improve the Sustainability and Resiliency of Forest Ecosystems.

  • Daniel M. Weary; Marina. A. G. von Keyserlingk; Tiffany-Anne Timbers

Automatic lameness ranking of dairy cows.