NSERC and Mitacs offer streamlined opportunity to support university R&D

Research innovations can advance more quickly thanks to support for highly qualified personnel at Canada’s universities

Ottawa, ON — NSERC and Mitacs are pleased to build on the success of their existing partnership with a new joint initiative that will support the R&D efforts of Canadian university researchers and their partners, while supporting highly qualified personnel including students and/or postdoctoral fellows.

Through NSERC’s Alliance grants and Mitacs’s Accelerate, this new opportunity is available to Canadian researchers through a single application submission and review process. Applicants are invited to include in their Alliance application a request for additional support through Mitacs Accelerate internships as a component of the training of highly qualified personnel.

Alliance grants support university researchers to collaborate with partner organizations, which can be from the private, public or not-for-profit sectors, on their R&D efforts that will create economic, social and/or environmental benefits to Canada.

Accelerate puts the talent of students and postdocs to work with a paid internship at an organization that needs their expertise.

Together, Alliance-Accelerate will support R&D projects that seek to respond to a diverse range of research challenges in the natural sciences or engineering from artificial intelligence to manufacturing to agriculture. This opportunity is yet another example of how both NSERC and Mitacs work with organizations across the country to develop meaningful R&D collaborations between researchers and partner organizations to create tangible benefits for Canadians.

Alliance-Accelerate applications require the following information when outlining the training of highly qualified personnel:

  • A description of the role of the Mitacs interns in the research project and an explanation of the quality of the research-based training experiences provided to the interns
  • A description of how the internship partnership organization is committed to providing supervision and mentorship to the interns
  • An explanation of how the number of Mitacs interns and the number of internship units are appropriate to the scope of the project.

Applicants who wish to include Mitacs Accelerate internships in their Alliance application should contact their local Mitacs business development representative to obtain the NSERC/Mitacs joint application form. Applicants must submit the NSERC/Mitacs joint application form to NSERC with their Alliance proposal.

For more information please visit the NSERC Alliance/Mitacs Accelerate Grants webpage.


The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry

“Our Government is committed to science, research and the people who power it. This includes fostering opportunities for the next generation of researchers to work and grow. This new initiative between NSERC and Mitacs will make it easier for students and postdoctoral researchers to access on-the-ground training and for universities to collaborate with partners on research projects.”

Alejandro Adem, President, NSERC

“NSERC’s Alliance grants are designed to get funding out the door more quickly and efficiently, and into the hands of Canada’s top researchers to work with their partners to address important challenges in our country. We are pleased to continue to deliver on this through the Alliance-Accelerate streamlined opportunity, and further support highly qualified personnel, to bring positive impacts to Canada and Canadians.”

John Hepburn, CEO and Scientific Director, Mitacs

“Mitacs is delighted to align with NSERC to ease the process for Canada’s highly qualified personnel to apply their research to the challenges facing society. We are honoured to be trusted by our partners to connect precisely the right talent with the need for innovation.”

Quick facts:

  • Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada by solving challenges with research solutions from academic institutions.
  • Mitacs is funded by the Government of Canada along with the Government of Alberta, the Government of British Columbia, Research Manitoba, the Government of New Brunswick, the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the Government of Nova Scotia, the Government of Ontario, Innovation PEI, the Government of Quebec, the Government of Saskatchewan and the Government of Yukon.
  • NSERC invests over $1.2 billion each year in natural sciences and engineering research in Canada. Our investments deliver discoveries—valuable world-firsts in knowledge claimed by a brain trust of over 11,000 professors. Our investments enable partnerships and collaborations that connect the makers and users of discoveries. Research partnerships established by NSERC help inform research and development and solve scale-up challenges. NSERC also provides scholarships and hands-on training experience for more than 30,000 post-secondary students and post-doctoral fellows. These young researchers will be the next generation of science and engineering leaders in Canada.
  • NSERC Alliance grants were launched in April 2019 and are awarded throughout the year. Since its inception, Alliance has funded close to $118 million for over 400 R&D projects involving almost 800 partners. Visit the Alliance funding decisions webpage for more details.



Valerie Levert-Gagnon
Media Relations Officer
ErinRose Handy
Manager, Communications