Development/Innovative Grant


The Development/Innovative (D/I) Grant provides funding for developing or innovative health research initiatives in Nova Scotia, in order to strengthen a submission to a targeted peer reviewed research funding competition.

NSHRF considers developing research and innovative research to include:

  • Research in its early stages;
  • Research that focuses on new or innovative issues; and or
  • Novel approaches for solving research problems

The required outcome of this grant is the submission of an application to a targeted funding competition within 12 months of the end of the D/I Grant funding period.

Application Process
Review Process
Assessment Criteria
Resources and Assistance



To apply for a Development/Innovative Grant, the Principal Investigator must:

  • Be a researcher with an academic appointment at a Nova Scotia university or affiliated research institution, or with an appointment (with research responsibilities) at an affiliated hospital/ research centre/ institute; and
  • Reside and work in Nova Scotia during the funding period of the grant.
Special Eligibility Considerations

Academic Appointments

The NSHRF considers the following to be academic appointments:

  • Tenured appointments
  • Tenure-track appointments
  • Probationary tenure-track appointments
  • Limited-term appointments
  • Continuing Appointment
  • Clinical scientists, clinical faculty or other appointments approved by a senior official (i.e., CEO or VP Research)

Adjunct and instructor positions are not considered academic appointments.

Limited Term Appointments

Applicants with limited term appointments are eligible to apply, however, the grant funding period must end before the end date of the appointment.

Applicants with a limited term appointment must clearly indicate the end date of the appointment on their CCV. They must also provide a letter from a senior official at their institution indicating the start and end dates of their appointment. If, at the time of application, the PI holds a limited term appointment that ends prior to the funding end date, he/she is still eligible to apply. However, if the application is successful, a condition of funding will be institutional confirmation of a new appointment that extends the full length of the funding period.

Funding Amount and Duration

A maximum of $15,000 per grant will be issued for a funding period of one year.

Multiple Submissions

Applicants may submit only one application for consideration. 

Dates and Deadlines

Application Available in GMS: January 14, 2019
Deadline: March 26, 2019 - 2:00 p.m. (AT)
Peer Review: June 2019
Results Available: July 2019
Funds Available: September 2019


Application Process

Step 1:
Confirm Eligibility

Consider whether you meet the eligibility criteria (outlined above).

If applicants have any questions related to their eligibility, they are encouraged to contact the Manager, Research Programs before submitting an application.

Step 2:
Review Application Requirements

Be sure to carefully review all application requirements, as outlined in the document below:

2019-20 Development/Innovative Application Requirements (PDF)

Step 3:
Register in NSHRF’s Grants Management System (GMS)

Applications must be submitted through NSHRF’s online Grants Management System (GMS).

To access the application in GMS, the Principal Investigator (PI) must create an account. Please visit and click "sign up here" to create an account.

Step 4: Complete Application To apply, login to GMS to access the application, where information will be either entered directly into GMS or uploaded as PDF documents. All instructions are detailed in the Application Requirements and the GMS / CCV User Guide.
Step 5: Obtain Team Member Application Consent Ensure all team members have provided their consent in GMS prior to submitting application.
Step 6: Obtain Institutional Approval Institutions must approve the application in GMS after it is submitted and prior to the application deadline.

Be sure to contact your institution to inquire about their process and deadlines for approval.

More information about these steps is outlined in the Application Requirements.

Review Process

  1. NSHRF staff will assess applications to determine whether they are complete and meet the eligibility criteria.
  2. One of two peer review panels will review applications in accordance with NSHRF’s peer review guidelines and the assessment criteria outlined below. The two committees reviewing applications are:
  • Biomedical (MED) Peer Review Committee: Applications related to basic scientific and biomedical study, including clinical and epidemiological investigations. 
  • Health Policy, Health Services, Health Outcomes (PSO) Peer Review Committee: Applications related to health policy, health services and health outcomes. 

Assessment Criteria

The following criteria will be used by the peer review committee to assess Development / Innovative Grant applications:

Project Description

  • Clarity, scope and appropriateness of objectives
  • Clarity and appropriateness of methodology
  • Relevance and clarity of gender and/or sex considerations or strength of justification for not including gender and/or sex considerations
  • Extent to which potential challenges and limitations are identified and adequately addressed
  • Potential contribution to the field of health research

Developmental or Innovative Components

  • Extent to which the proposed research is developmental or innovative
  • Potential for the proposed research to strengthen a subsequent grant application
  • Appropriateness of the chosen targeted funding agency/competition for the proposed research
Relevance to Nova Scotia
  • Relevance to the health of Nova Scotians
  • Relevance to the health research priorities of the NSHRF
  • Potential for impact on the economy, clinical practice, health policy and/or health services in Nova Scotia

Work Plan and Timeline

  • Clarity and feasibility of project timeline
  • Clarity and feasibility of project activities
  • Alignment of timeline and work plan with objectives

Team Composition


  • Clarity and appropriateness of team member roles and responsibilities
  • Relevance and scope of expertise and experience of the team members
  • Appropriateness of the applicant(s)’ environment to enable the conduct and success of the research project
  • Potential of team to successfully conduct proposed research
  • Potential of team to successfully apply to targeted funding competition


  • Appropriateness and adequacy of budget expenses and their justification
  • Availability of in-kind contributions and other sources of funding
Overall Merit of the Proposal
  • Significance of proposed research and expected contribution to understanding, interpreting, or creating knowledge


Resources and Assistance

Application Support

Applicants are invited to contact the Manager, Research Programs for assistance prior to submitting an application.

Grants Management System (GMS) Support 

Please click here to download a step by step guide for applicants outlining how to navigate the Grants Management System. 

For technical questions regarding the GMS (including password resets, system navigation), contact the NSHRF Helpdesk at 902-424-4043 or

Please allow 1-2 business days for a response.

Canadian Common CV (CCV) Support

Looking for your CCV/NSHRF PIN? Your PIN is the email address you used to register with GMS. 

Please click here to download a step by step guide for validating your PIN and submitting your CCV. 

For technical questions regarding the CCV (including password and account resets, PINs, CCV submission, etc.), contact the CCV Centralized Helpdesk at 1-888-603-4178 or