Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships in Canada
The Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program provides funding to the very best postdoctoral applicants, both nationally and internationally, who will positively contribute to the country's economic, social and research-based growth.
The objective of the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program is to:
- attract and retain top-tier postdoctoral talent, both nationally and internationally
- develop their leadership potential
- position them for success as research leaders of tomorrow
Confirm that you and your proposed host institution meet the criteria below before you apply for a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship.
Applications that do not meet all of the eligibility criteria will be deemed ineligible.
Citizenship and location of host institution
Canadian citizens, permanent residents of Canada and foreign citizens are eligible to apply, provided they meet the following conditions:
- Applicants who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada may only hold their Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship at a Canadian institution.
- Applicants who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and who obtained their PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree from a foreign university may only hold their Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship at a Canadian institution.
- Applicants who are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and who obtained their PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree from a Canadian university may hold their Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship at either a Canadian institution or an institution outside of Canada.
The Banting PDF program previously had a limit of 25% on the number of awards granted to postdoctoral trainees for tenure abroad. This limit has been removed, effective as of the 2017-2018 competition.
Eligibility window for degree completion
Applicants to the 2019-20 Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program must fulfill or have fulfilled all degree requirements for a PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree:
- between September 15, 2016 and September 30, 2020 (inclusively), and
- before the start date of their award.
Applicants who have not fulfilled all requirements for their degree at the time of application must submit proof no later than October 15, 2020.
For applicants who have completed more than one PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree, the eligibility window applies to the most recent of these degrees.
Allowable extensions to eligibility window
The window of eligibility can be extended by a cumulative maximum of two years if the applicant had their career interrupted for one or more of the following reasons:
- parental leave
- health-related family responsibilities
- mandatory military service
- disruptions due to war and/or civil conflicts in the country of residence
"Career interruption" refers to a period of time when the applicant was not working (full-time or part-time) and when their research output was completely interrupted.
Additionally, for health professionals who have engaged in post-degree non-research-related clinical training (e.g., residency), the eligibility window can be extended by the duration of this training.
For other professions that require post-degree, non-research-related training to be certified by a professional body, please consult the Vanier-Banting Secretariat to confirm whether an extension to the eligibility window is allowable.
No other exceptions will be allowed.
Interruptions used to extend the eligibility window for degree completion must have occurred after the fulfilment of your degree requirements and before the application submission deadline.
Justification must be provided in the Special circumstances attachment.
"Fulfilled all requirements of the degree" refers to the date that the applicant completed all the steps required for obtaining their degree. Although these requirements may vary by institution and degree type, they normally include thesis defence corrections and thesis deposition. Note that convocation is not considered a degree requirement.
Host institution eligibility
Institutions eligible to host a Banting Fellow include Canadian and foreign universities, affiliated research hospitals, colleges and not-for-profit organizations with a strong research mandate and capacity.
Canadian governments (federal, provincial, municipal) and all for-profit organizations are not eligible to participate as host institutions.
Questions regarding institutional eligibility should be directed to the Vanier-Banting Secretariat well in advance of the submission deadline.
Other eligibility restrictions
- Applicants who currently hold or have held agency-specific (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC) awards at the postdoctoral level are eligible to apply to the 2019-20 Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program only if the term of that funding officially ends on or before September 30, 2020 and prior to the start of the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship. Early termination of the agency-specific postdoctoral award for the purpose of application to the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program is not permitted.
- Applicants can apply for both the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program and other agency-specific postdoctoral fellowships programs (whether to the same or a different federal granting agency) at the same time, provided that the research proposed in each application falls within the mandate of the federal granting agency to which the application is submitted.
*Applicants who are successful in both competitions will have to choose which award to accept.
- Applicants must not hold a tenure-track or tenured faculty position, nor can they be on leave from such a position.
- Only in rare circumstances will a Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship be awarded to an applicant who is staying at the same institution or within the same research environment where they completed their PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree. If an applicant chooses to apply in collaboration with the same institution (or its affiliated hospitals, research centres and other laboratories) or within the same research environment from which they obtained their PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree, a solid justification must be provided in the Special circumstances attachment. Examples of valid justifications are scientific reasons (e.g., availability of specialized equipment/infrastructure or expertise), family reasons (e.g., family obligations), health reasons (e.g., proximity to health care facilities) and/or reasons related to community or cultural responsibilities.
- Applicants can submit only one application per competition year to the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships program.
- Without exception, Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships:
- are tenable only at the institution that supported the original application for the program;
- must be taken up no earlier than April 1st and no later than October 1st following the year of application;
- are for two years;
- cannot be held concurrently with another Tri-Agency training award; and
- can only be held once in a lifetime.
Value & duration
- $70,000 per year (taxable)
- 2 years (non-renewable)
Areas of research
- Health research
- Natural sciences and/or engineering
- Social sciences and/or humanities
Review process overview
All eligible applications to the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships (PDF) program undergo an evaluation by a selection committee from one of the three federal granting agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).
Applications will be reviewed against the 3 equally weighted selection criteria, and ranked.
The ranked list of all the applications will be submitted to the Tri-agency programs steering committee for their approval.
The Tri-agency programs steering committee, made up of the presidents of the three federal granting agencies, and the deputy ministers of Industry Canada and Health Canada, will approve the final slate of 70 awardees annually.
- Research excellence and leadership in the research domain – demonstrated capacity for research excellence based on track record as defined by quality of applicant's research contribution, and demonstrated capacity for leadership in the research domain defined by the sphere of influence achieved to date by the applicant.
- Quality of applicant's proposed research program – examined in terms of the potential of the proposed research program, executed in the proposed institutional environment, to position the applicant for significant impact through a research-intensive career (potential for significant impact).
- Institutional commitment and demonstrated synergy between applicant and institutional strategic priorities
- Demonstrated commitment of the institution to support development of the applicant's research and leadership capacity through institutional support (funding, facilities, equipment, etc.) and professional development
- Demonstrated alignment and synergy between the applicant's research ambitions and the institution's potential to benefit strategically from engagement with the applicant (alignment with institution's strategic priorities)
- April – September 2019 Applicants seek endorsement from host institution to apply, prepare and submit application (institutions may have internal deadlines).
- September 18, 2019 (20:00 EDT) Deadline for complete application submission
- October to December 2019 Evaluation of applications
- Mid February, 2020 Anticipated notification of results. Applicants will be notified by email when the results are available on ResearchNet.
- April to October 2020 Payments begin