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  • EXTENSION: On May 9, 2022 the CFI announced that it extended the 2023 Innovation Fund deadline by one month to July 15, 2022. This information was communicated to the Canadian research community via an automated email sent to the CFI Liaison position at eligible CFI institutions. The update has not yet been posted on their website. ISA has revised the internal and external timelines for SFU-led projects (see Full Proposal Timeline on this page). Teams can elect to continue working to previously posted timelines without penalty or delays.
  • CFI has called the 2023 Innovation Fund Competition
  • SFU has selected which projects will be moving to the full proposal stage
  • ISA has posted the internal and external timelines for SFU-led projects (see Full Proposal Timeline on this page)
  • Expert reviewer bios for the 2023 internal NOI step have been posted (see below)

Program Overview

The CFI Innovation Fund supports transformative infrastructure projects that underpin cutting-edge, globally competitive research. Its objectives are to enable global leadership by supporting world-class research or technology development; enhance and optimize the capacity of institutions and research communities to conduct the proposed research or technology development program(s); and will lead to social, health, environmental and/or economic benefits for Canadians.

Value: Minimum total project size is $1M.  Projects generally range from $5M - $20M.  CFI will provide 40% of the funding and the Province of British Columbia generally provides another 40%.  The remaining 20% must come from supplier discounts and/or other eligible funds.

Note: This is a four-stage application process: internal Expression of Intent (iEOI), internal Notice of Intent (iNOI), CFI NOI, and CFI full application. See Internal Process section below and timeline (right) for details.


For more information on eligibility guidelines, please refer to CFI's Policy and program guide.

  • Acquisition and development of research infrastructure to increase world-class research capacity.
  • Construction costs to build new space or to renovate existing space, exclusively for research activities.
  • Expenditures and in-kind contributions must have taken place on, or after, November 1, 2020.


Internal Selection and Development Support

The ISA manages a robust process that includes opportunities for critique and iterative improvement of ideas and proposals (see Timeline, above right). This process includes:

  • Submission of internal Expressions of Intent (iEOIs) to ISA by February 28, 2021
  • Mandatory participation by proposed teams in ISA-hosted workshops (including Test-Your-Concept presentations, budget, benefits to BC and Canada)
  • Submission of internal Notice of Intent (iNOI) and Space Assessment Form to ISA
  • External expert panel will review iNOIs against CFI assessment criteria and make recommendations to the VPRI 
  • Feedback from the panel will be provided to all applicants (successful and unsuccessful)
  • Teams selected to advance to CFI NOI will work with the ISA, research grants facilitators, Facilities and Procurement on proposal development
  • ISA research project managers may assist with coordinating partners, working with facilities, securing space, assisting with matching requirements, and budget development


CFI Application Process & Assessment Criteria

A full description of the selection criteria (and instructions on how to address them) can be found here. (Note that this is from the 2020 competition; check back for updates.)

Objective 1. Enable global leadership by supporting world–class research or technology development
  • Research or technology development The research or technology development program(s) are innovative, feasible and internationally  competitive. 
  • Team The diverse team comprises the breadth of expertise to conduct the proposed program(s).
Objective 2. Enhance and optimize the capacity of institutions and research communities to conduct the proposed research or technology development program(s)
  • Research capacity The institutions and their partners have the necessary research capacity on which this proposal will build. 
  • Infrastructure The requested infrastructure is necessary and appropriate to conduct the proposed program(s).
  • Sustainability The infrastructure will be optimally used, operated and sustained over its useful life through tangible commitments. 
Objective 3. Lead to social, health, environmental and/or economic benefits for Canadians
  • Benefits The team and its partners have a well–defined plan to transfer the results of the research or technology development program(s). The results are likely to lead to social, health, environmental and/or economic benefits for Canadians. 


Submission Requirements


  • Project information.
  • Project summary (1,500 characters).
  • Collaborating institutions (they must authorize).
  • Team (10 core team members).
  • Project description (4 pages max).
  • Suggested reviewers.

CFI Full Application:

Information pulled from NOI plus:

  • Project Module (35 pages)
  • Finance Module (itemized budget, contributions, etc.)
  • Suggested Reviewers Module (6)


Helpful Resources

Information Sessions

Please visit our Events page for slides and a recording from the January 27, 2021 ISA CFI Innovation Fund information session as well as the June 8 & 16th Mandatory CFI IF Budget and Benefits Information Sessions.

CFI IF 2023 Reviewer Bios

Alison Symington provides consultancy services to a variety of industry and academic clients in the area of Life Science strategy, including proposal development and particularly at the interface of academia and industry. Previously Alison was the Vice President, Research and Corporate Development at Ontario Genomics where she was responsible for the development and management of large scale genomics projects as well as external stakeholder engagement.  Alison was also the Executive Director of Biotechnology Education Canada (BEC), where she led the organization through a substantive rebranding and refocusing, and sponsored a number of events that created national impact in Canada and international visibility for Canadian science education. Alison was also a professor and program coordinator at Seneca College’s School of Biological Sciences and Applied Chemistry. 
(Bio courtesy of

Janet Halliwell is the Principal of JE Halliwell Associates Inc, a company offering value-added services in policy and management consultancy relating to post-secondary education and science and technology, particularly publicly-funded R&D. Janet has extensive and both past and current experience in S&T policy and the governance and management of S&T funding and policy bodies. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Genome BC (GBC) and is Vice Chair of the Board of Canadian Science Publishing. She chairs GBC’s Research Program Committee, is a member of the GBC Sector Development Committee and is Chair of the Board for two Not-for-Profit S&T organizations - CASRAI (Consortia Advancing Standards in Research Administration) and the Canadian Science Policy Council.  In April 2007 Janet retired from many years of public service – serving in her final years as Executive Vice-President of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). From 1975-1996 Janet served the research and academic communities in other executive, advisory and management positions. She was Chair of the Nova Scotia Council on Higher Education (1992-1996), Chair of the Science Council of Canada (1990-1992) and an officer of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (through to 1990).  (Bio excerpted from

Dave Secord is Principal of Barnacle Strategies, a consultancy based on Salt Spring Island, B.C. that advises funders, ENGOs, Indigenous and research organizations. He has spent about half his career working in academia and half of it in foundations. From 2010-2016 he was VP Strategic Grantmaking at Tides Canada Foundation. From 2007-2010 he oversaw grantmaking in Alaska and B.C, for the Wilburforce Foundation. He has been active in various funder affinity groups focused on conservation and Indigenous philanthropy, including co-founding and chairing the circumpolar Arctic Funders Collaborative and serving on the board of the Canadian Environmental Grantmakers’ Network. In 2014 he spearheaded and chaired the Canadian Science Integrity Project. Before coming to philanthropy, he was a university professor for 12 years. (Bio courtesy of

Kellogg S. Booth is Professor Emeritus of Computer Science at The University of British Columbia and a former Adjunct Faculty Member at the Centre for Digital Media. He is the former Director (1990-2002) of MAGIC, the Media and Graphics Interdisciplinary Centre at the University of British Columbia, and the former Scientific Director (2009-2015) of GRAND, the Graphics, Animation and New Media NCE, a former Canada-wide network of centres of excellence in digital media. He served as a Board Member and Secretary for the Computer Science Canada / Informatique Canada from 2017-2019. He has worked in the fields of computer graphics and human-computer interaction since 1968. Research interests include human-computer interaction, user interface design, collaboration technology, visualization, computer graphics, and analysis of algorithms. He has been involved in a number of interdisciplinary research projects at UBC and elsewhere over the past five decades. 
(Bio courtesy of

Dr. ‘Lyn Anglin is consultant experienced professional geoscientist with proven leadership skills, and a strong background in research management, government relations and public communications. She was Chief Scientific Officer and Vice President Environmental Affairs at Imperial Metals, a Vancouver–based mining company, from Sept 2014 to Dec 2018.

Prior to joining Imperial she was the inaugural President and CEO of Geoscience BC (GBC), a non-profit geoscience research organization focused on attracting resource development investment to B.C. Before joining GBC, ‘Lyn spent almost 20 years with the Federal Government, as a Research Scientist and Subdivision Head in the Mineral Deposits Division, and as Associate Director of the Pacific Division of the Geological Survey of Canada. She also spent three years as a Science Advisor and Policy Coordinator with the SR&ED Investment Tax Credit Program in Revenue Canada. (bio courtesy of C.D. ('Lyn) Anglin | LinkedIn)

Last updated: May 31, 2022


May 10, 2022 - Revised to reflect CFI IF Deadline Extension

February 3, 2022 - Revised date for eligible expenditures and in-kind contributions

December 3, 2021 - Refreshed 'Updates' section

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