1. Does my research need to be aligned with a CIFAR research program?
Yes, an applicant must apply to participate in one of the five eligible programs accepting Global Scholars in 2019. Eligible programs are listed under Question 2 below. CIFAR’s research programs are described in some depth at: cifar.ca/research. Profiles of participating Fellows and Advisors are also provided with each program description. Applicants are encouraged to make the case for how their research could contribute to a CIFAR research program, and also how their research could benefit from interaction and collaboration with other disciplines represented in the program. CIFAR strongly encourages applicants with diverse backgrounds and perspectives not presently represented in our programs.
2. Which CIFAR research programs are eligible to receive CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar applications?
In 2019, the eligible programs are:
3. What is a CIFAR research program?
CIFAR’s global research programs connect many of the world’s best minds – across borders and between disciplines – to shape new perspectives and spark ground-breaking ideas. By helping innovative pioneers push further, and inspiring young research leaders to join them, CIFAR’s programs are able to expand the boundaries of understanding in ways that would otherwise not be possible.
A central feature of each CIFAR research program is the sustained interaction among its fellows. Each program assembles a unique combination of researchers with different disciplinary perspectives and research approaches to collectively tackle a complex challenge facing the world. Programs hold one to three meetings per year over a five-year, renewable period. Sustained interactions create a “safe” environment that becomes highly conducive to sharing preliminary ideas and sparking innovative new collaborations. Fellows are inspired to think creatively, disruptively and without limitations.
4. Are postdoctoral fellows (or equivalent) eligible for this program?
No. Postdoctoral fellows are not eligible for this program. CIFAR requires applicants to be employed at an institution of higher education or research and be within the first five years of a full-time academic position, including responsibility for both conducting an independent research program and supervising/teaching graduate or postdoctoral trainees. Typically, applicants will be an Assistant Professor (or the equivalent in other academic systems). See the detailed program overview for full eligibility requirements. If you have questions, please contact email@example.com.
5. If I do not have the title of Assistant Professor, would I be eligible?
CIFAR recognizes that different academic systems around the world assign different titles to junior faculty positions. We welcome junior faculty from all over the world to apply. Applicants requiring assistance to determine their eligibility may contact us by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
6. If I was appointed to a full-time faculty position more than five years ago, but I spent a portion of time away on a parental/medical leave, would I be eligible to apply?
Eligible applicants should be appointed to their first full-time faculty position no earlier than May 1, 2014. Applicants who were appointed earlier than May 1, 2014, but who have taken parental leave during this time, will be expected to provide an explanation in their application form as to why they should still be considered for the program. CIFAR reserves the right to make the final determination of eligibility.
7. If I am an early career researcher based in a country outside of Canada, would I be eligible?
CIFAR is seeking to develop a diverse and global cohort. There are no geographical restrictions on who may apply to this program.
8. Do I need to re-locate from my current institute to be part of this program?
CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars remain at their home institution and country throughout their two-year term. The research funding associated with the award is administered through the recipient’s institutional department.
9. If I am unable to attend the in-person interview on June 26-27, 2019 in Toronto due to a prior commitment, should I apply?
The interview consists of a series of individual and interactive group activities among invited candidates, taking place over a day and a half. In-person participation is required to ensure a fair and complete evaluation. Applicants unable to attend will not be considered.
10. How will CIFAR support me as a CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar?
CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars receive:
- $100,000 CAD in unrestricted research support
- A two-year term in a CIFAR research program, a global network of top-tier research leaders
- Opportunities to network and collaborate with like-minded colleagues from diverse disciplines
- Mentorship from a senior researcher within a CIFAR research program
- Specialized leadership and communications skills training, and support to put skills into action
- Annual meetings to network, collaborate and form a community with other Global Scholars
11. What is expected of a CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar?
During the two-year term of their award, Global Scholars are expected to:
- Attend CIFAR research program meetings (usually 2-3 per year, depending on the program) in Canada and various locations around the world. While at meetings and where appropriate, interact and collaborate with fellow program members on research areas of common interest to the program.
- Attend annual CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar meetings (usually in held in early May). CIFAR expects that each scholar will attend two annual meetings.
- Report on successes and activities annually, and where possible and appropriate, interact with CIFAR stakeholders and funders to share their experience.
- Acknowledge CIFAR as a funder in research publications and presentations supported by the program’s funding, use ‘CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar’ in their professional signature, and indicate CIFAR as an affiliation.
12. How can I use the $100,000 CAD in research support?
The research support aims to enhance a scholar’s capacity to conduct research. CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars are provided these funds over the two years of their term. Possible uses include, but are not limited to: research projects, teaching release, trainee support, conference travel, etc. CIFAR does not support indirect costs.
13. What is the purpose of the annual meeting of Global Scholars?
CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars meet annually for activities focused on strengthening core leadership and communication skills. The annual meeting aims to build a community of early career researchers and supports peer-to-peer sharing and collaboration. Over three days, scholars engage in interactive skill-building workshops led by expert facilitators and targeted to early career researchers. Invited guests provide opportunities for cross-sector engagement, mentorship and enhanced learning. Group activities, excursions and session times provide opportunities to explore potential collaborations and develop a peer group.
14. How are applicants selected?
CIFAR is strongly committed to diversity within its community and through the application review and selection process, described below:
- Basic Eligibility: CIFAR ensures all applications meet basic eligibility requirements.
- Application Review: A CIFAR research program sub-committee, comprised of CIFAR fellows and/or advisors, is assembled for each eligible program. The committee reviews and assesses the applicant based on three criteria: i) research excellence, ii) potential to contribute to a program by adding new and diverse perspectives and approaches that build on or complement existing membership, and iii) leadership potential both within and outside of academia. Each program selection committee shortlists up to 5 candidates per program.
- Final In-person Selection: CIFAR invites shortlisted candidates to attend a two-day Selection Meeting in Toronto, Canada on June 26-27, 2019. This meeting consists of a series of individual and interactive group activities. Assessments will be conducted by a diverse committee of researchers from academia and a mix of leaders with expertise in other areas such as policy, communications and leadership. The Selection Committee evaluates and assesses candidates’ capacity, potential and desire to actively engage with peers across a full spectrum of disciplines and their potential to have a broader impact.
15. What has been the success rate of applicants?
This year, each eligible CIFAR research program will be accepting 2 or 3 new CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars. Presently, the CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholars program is conducting its fourth annual call for applications.
- In 2016, we received 173 eligible applications from 27 countries for 9 research programs. Thirty-five candidates were invited to attend in-person interviews in Toronto, and a total of 18 Global Scholars were selected.
- In 2017, we received 445 eligible applications from 48 countries for 11 research programs. Thirty-three shortlisted candidates attended the interview meeting, of whom 15 were selected to become Global Scholars.
- In 2018, we received 402 eligible applications from 55 countries for 5 research programs. Twenty shortlisted candidates attended the interview meeting, of whom 12 were selected to become Global Scholars.