Knowledge-to-action (K2A) groups are intended to facilitate the emergence of new lines of collaborative research amongst QCBS members and their partners (i.e. end users of the research results, data or methods). The K2A approach is a well-developed method that catalyzes the transfer of knowledge from basic research to end users. The K2A research groups may pursue various objectives linked to the research axes of the QCBS:

  • The emergence of novel research questions stemming from interactions with partners (Ministries or NGOs, for example) where there is a need for a sustained scientific expertise resulting in the development or application of new methods, tools and models;
  • A training environment for highly qualified personnel in biodiversity science interested in engaging with user driven research, 
  • The development of innovative research opportunities able to attract promising students or postdoctoral researchers.

Funding for K2A groups will follow an annual call for applications. This year the deadline is May 31, 2021. The call for applications will be announced in the QCBS Newsletter, and will remain accessible on QCBS website. Members can submit applications to the QCBS if opportunities arise outside of a call. They will be considered after independent evaluation and if budget is still available

Call for applications

The expected outcome of K2A groups is to establish new collaborations among teams of researchers active in different research themes, and across the axes of the new research framework of the QCBS, as well as key partners / end users. The research groups may arise from various approaches, and pursue various objectives:

  • The emergence of novel research themes, not previously possible, and requiring the input of additional expertise, as well as the establishment of new collaboration among researchers and key partners.
  • Collaboration among researchers with complementary training and expertise and key partners / end users, which aims at making the whole group more competitive for funding at the national and international levels.
  • Improve training environment quality for highly qualified personnel in biodiversity science. Here we expect some training opportunities within partner institutions (e.g. an internship), and the development of innovative research opportunities able to attract promising students.

Amount: Up to $20,000 per year, for up to two years, for a K2A group plus up to $10,000 for research tool application/development, or knowledge synthesis that will benefit partners. 

Who Is eligible: The Principal Investigator of a K2A working group must be a QCBS co-researcher. K2A research groups must involve several QCBS members, but the participation of non-QCBS members from Quebec, Canada or other countries is permitted. The group must focus on a research question related to the QCBS research axes. The expertise needed to pursue a new research question must be clearly provided by members of the proposed  K2A research group. The K2A team must involve partners that are expected to be end-users of the research, for example from government, local administrations, private sector or NGOs. Ideally, the proposed working groups will involve researchers from at least two of the four QCBS research axes.

Application process: Funding for K2A groups is subject to an annual call for applications. The call for applications is announced in the QCBS Newsletter, and is always accessible on the QCBS website. Members may still enquire to the QCBS office about funds if opportunities arise outside of a specific call deadline.

  • Application Deadline: May 15 each year
  • Decision Date: June  1st of each year

APPLYING FOR A QCBS K2A WORKING GROUP

We now describe guidelines on the information required when applying for a QCBS K2A funding. Applications that do not follow the guidelines will be returned for revision.

Send you application by email to Philippe Auzel : info@qcbs.ca

K2A group applications 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, and the contact person (if different from the PI), their academic institution, ID, FQRNT NIP and email addresses. The cover letter should be brief and summarize the proposal content, elaborated in the following sections.

b) Description of proposed activity (maximum 6 pages)

The proposal should include the following:

  • Context and issues, justification and general and specific objectives of the group (max 2 pages).
  • The nature of the partnership and the expected deliverables (maximum 1 page)
  • Calendar of the proposed scientific collaboration, with the expected milestones for the deliverables (maximum 1 pages).
  • Consideration of equity, diversity and inclusiveness (0.5 page).
  • Reference to FAIR and open data principles to follow. CARE‘s Principles for Indigenous Data Governance should be followed where applicable (0.5 page).

c) CVs for each non-member collaborator

The CV of each member of the team who is not a QCBS co-researcher should be included with the working group application (maximum of 3 pages per CV

d) Estimated budget (maximum 1 page)

The budget consists of a table listing and justifying all the expenses planned under the activities of the K2A group.

See the following template:

Item Quantity Unitary Cost Total Cost Amount from other sources

Amount requested from QCBS

 

Eligible expenses:

  • Student salary;
  • Staff salary (50% should be covered by another source)
  • Equipment rental
  • Data acquisition costs
  • Lodging is permitted for attendance at a meeting or field site.
  • Travel is permitted or attendance at a meeting or field site.

Non eligible:

  • purchase of equipment
  • software purchase

 

CRITERIA FOR EVALUATION

A multi-institution QCBS committee will evaluate applications according to the following criteria:

  • K2A research group has identified the research contribution to QCBS research axes and themes.
  • Identification of relevant partners as end-users of the research and tools to be co-developed.
  • Historical or ongoing links to project partners;
  • Clear project milestones and objectives
  • Likelihood that the working group will stimulate collaboration between axes;
  • Appropriate justification for funds requested;
  • Contribution to graduate students and postdoc training, and the opportunities for internships or work experience with partners.

K2A RESEARCH GROUP ALLOCATION

Following the review of K2A research group applications 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 established by QCBS and described in the QCBS funding program-working group procedure document that will be made provided by Philippe Auzel.

However, the final fund allocation may be made only after the principal investigator answers any eventual questions from the selection committee. Once the QCBS directors have approved and signed off on the final budget, no further changes will be allowed (except in extreme extenuating circumstances). The final budget will be used to assess the eligibility of expenses incurred by the working group team.

EXPECTED CONTRIBUTIONS OF AWARD RECIPIENTS

Events organization: Organizing public events, such as guest speakers, mini-workshops or seminars is strongly encouraged. Those public events will then be announced through the QCBS media, such as the Monthly Bulletin, Twitter, Facebook, and the events page of the website.

Communication of activities and results: For each major activity of the group (meetings, workshops, seminars), the principal investigator should send a short description (two sentences) and the list of participants to Philippe Auzel. This information will be posted on the K2A group page of the QCBS website, and will be used to monitor the K2A Research Group activities. The presentation of the research results at QCBS Annual Symposium is expected.

Report: A summary report with research outcomes (e.g. reports, papers, links to tools and code on github) should be sent to QCBS three months following the final research group meeting. The report will be made available on the QCBS website after revision by the QCBS office, if required. The report (maximum of 10 pages) should contain the following sections:

  • A short narrative section (maximum of 1 page) recalling the context and initial objectives, and explaining how the stated goals of the project have been achieved;
  • The list of the major activities (including the list of participants);
  • The list of products and deliverables produced through the working group activities: grant proposal, publications (papers, literature review, book chapter…) major events;
  • 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 Philippe Auzel, the QCBS Coordinator, at philippe.auzel@mcgill.ca