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Investigator Initiated Projects

About the Program

A call for submissions will be made to the general CIRC membership annually. Members who wish to submit a proposal in-between those submission times (due to time-sensitive nature of the proposal) may do so through a request to the Director of Research, which will then be discussed amongst the Executive Board to deem whether it is appropriate for an Expedited Review.

Submissions & Review of Proposals

We welcome multicenter study proposals that would benefit from the involvement of the Consortium. Proposed studies should ideally involve multiple sites and investigators across provinces. Submissions may be new proposals requesting seed funding and/or CIRC endorsement, or established CIRC studies requesting bridge funding. CIRC aims to support clinical research and hence research limited to basic science will not be accepted.

All proposals will be reviewed by the Scientific Committee and ranked on relevance/importance, scientific quality, feasibility and appropriateness for CIRC. Highly ranked proposals will be funded as they are or invited to submit revisions, based on input from the Scientific Committee, and to present their revised proposal to the CIRC membership. Using a CIHR-based scoring format, highest ranked studies will be funded if they attain a minimum score of 4.0 (out of 4.9) and may be invited to submit a revised proposal if they attain a score of 3.5 – 3.9. Proposals receiving a score below 3.5 will not be funded but will receive feedback from the committee to assist with future submissions. Successful applicants will have access to CIRC’s study coordinator and administrator, and their proposal will be advertised through CIRC’s various forums. It is expected that studies that receive funding or endorsement from CIRC will make every effort to acknowledge CIRC’s contributions in future presentations and publications that arise from the study.

The Director of Research will present research proposals at a Board of Directors Meeting (President, Vice-President, Director of Research, Treasurer, Member-at-Large), which will make the decision whether to include the study on the agenda for discussion at the next General Assembly Meeting in early November. Based on discussion and input at the General Assembly Meeting, the Board of Directors will prioritize studies in queue based on feasibility, financial resources, type of studies, and other ongoing studies. The Board of Directors will work with the study PI to finalize the full study protocol, budget and develop strategies to secure funding.


Once a study proposal in queue is ready for initiation, the PI will work with Research Director and the Vice-President to establish multicentre collaborations based on the existing CIRC network and an implementation plan.

Expedited Review

At the discretion of the Research Director, investigators may request that time-sensitive proposals be reviewed by the Scientific Committee outside the regular proposal submission cycle under an expedited review process. If the Research Director deems that expedited review is appropriate, he/she will ask the Scientific Committee to review it usually within 4 weeks. If the study is deemed to be scientifically meritorious and feasible, the Director of Research will present it at the next Executive Board meeting to determine whether a full protocol should be developed and approved. Studies that already have identified funding but would benefit from the CIRC network and infrastructure are examples of those appropriate for Expedited Review.

Update – CIRC’s Fall 2023 Call for Proposals is open!

Kindly note that all relevant information should be included in the body of the main proposal. Additional information (i.e. tables, figures, publications, etc.) may be included as appendices, but reviewers will not be obligated to read them. Also, please include up-to-date CVs of the study PI(s) and Co-Investigators, highlighting current appointments and research accomplishments. For more information, please read the Program Guidelines.

Submissions should be uploaded to the research proposals portal as a single PDF no later than 9 PM Pacific time (midnight EST) on January 5th, 2024.