The purpose of this new fund is to support the establishment of hubs of expertise and to facilitate access to this expertise by QCBS members and partners.


  • Foster the emergence of small teams of researchers with shared expertise of strategic relevance to the QCBS 2.0 scientific program
  • Promote the sharing of expertise, infrastructure, and equipment across the QCBS
  • Offer a stimulating training environment for students and postdoctoral fellows

Funding to stimulate the creation and the maintenance of expertise hubs

  • Support Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) within these hubs of expertise to:
    • Provide training to QCBS students and researchers
    • Provide access to tools, infrastructure, and equipment

The Hubs of Expertise fund may co-fund HQP up to a maximum of 20,000$ (per fiscal year). In addition, the Hub of Expertise will be awarded a 5000$ annual quota in Learning Development Awards (LEADA) to sustain student initiatives linked to the activities of the Hub.

The fund is subject to an annual call for application: Deadline April 30th of every year. Exceptionally, in 2021 the deadline will be May 14, 2021.

Up to five Hubs of Expertise funds will be available per year (at least one per research axis).


The following paragraphs describe guidelines on information to be provided when applying for a Hub of Expertise fund.

For applicants to be considered for the opportunity, please send the application PDF by mail to

Following the guidelines will greatly facilitate the evaluation process.

Submit an application

The Hub of Expertise fund application must contain the following items:

a) Cover letter (maximum 1 page)

The cover letter must include the following information: Names of all applicants and identification of the Principal Investigator, which will be the contact person, her/his academic institution, and email address. The cover letter should be brief and summarize the purpose of the request, elaborated in the following sections.

b) Description of the proposed project for which you need Hubs of Expertise support (maximum 2 pages)

The proposal should include the following items: Context, rationale, general and specific objectives, description of the hub and services offered (and costs, if applicable), plan to facilitate access to tools, equipment and facilities, training plan, plan to ensure the sustainability of the hub

c) The list of collaborators for the proposed project (1 table)

The list should include and clearly identify both the QCBS members as well as the external collaborators (if any).

d) Estimated budget (1 table)

HQP total budget plus benefit, clearly indicating the amount requested from the QCBS. QCBS contribution is limited to 20,000$ maximum.

e) Fund proposal selection and allocation

The Scientific Committee will evaluate applications according to the following criteria:

  • Eligibility of Hubs of Expertise fund request
  • The link between the Hubs of Expertise fund request and the QCBS research axes and themes
  • Quality of the training plan for the broader QCBS community
  • Quality of the plan to provide broad access to tools, infrastructure, and equipment to the entire QCBS network (across institutions)
  • The likelihood that the fund request will stimulate collaboration within and among axes
  • Sustainability of the Hub of Expertise 

Following the review of the Hub of Expertise fund request by the selection committee, successful applicants will receive an email notification from the QCBS, detailing the amount allocated. Following award decisions, recipients will have to follow the administrative procedures for fund transfer established by QCBS.

The final fund allocation may be made only after the principal investigator will answer any eventual questions from the selection committee.

e) Communication of activities and report

Communication:  The PI must ensure that a full description of the Hub of Expertise is available on the QCBS website. Contact for this. Specifically, this description must include:

  • Name of the Hub of Expertise and location(s)
  • Name and contact details of the HQP co-funded for the Hub of Expertise
  • Name and contact details of the PI and all team members within the Hub
  • Full description of the services offered by the Hub
  • List of tools, instruments and facilities available to QCBS students and members
  • Training offered to QCBS students and members (e.g. workshops, tutorials, courses)
  • Costs of using the tools, instruments and facilities, if applicable
  • Photos illustrating some of the tools, instruments, or facilities

Report :

 A summary report with training outcomes (individual and collective) should be sent to QCBS after one year. The report will be made available on the QCBS website after revision by the QCBS office, if required. The report should contain the following sections:

  • A short narrative section (maximum of 1 page) recalling the context and specificity of the hub of expertise. 
  • The list of the major training activities (including the list of participants with their institution)
  • A breakdown of how the funds were allocated and spent

Original receipts shall remain filed for an appropriate period with the researchers’ university administrations.

For questions, contact the QCBS Coordinator, at