Career development awards in prevention

Note this program is not currently being offered. For information only.

Please see the eligibility and requirements section prior to creating an application.

Deadline dates

Application due date: TBD
Results announcement: TBD
Anticipated start date: TBD

Application guides can be found on the EGrAMS documentation for applicants page. See FAQs.

The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) in partnership with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation has established a joint funding opportunity to support additional Career Development Awards focused on increasing Canada’s capacity for breast cancer prevention research. Recently appointed Assistant Professors, postdoctoral and clinical fellows in the field of breast cancer, breast health, and cancer prevention are encouraged to apply. This partnership will allow for funding additional Career Development Awards in breast cancer prevention. Please see the ‘Partners description’ section below for more information.

Program description

Career Development Awards in Prevention have been created to establish or maintain the career development of post-doctoral fellows, clinical fellows or junior investigators in the area of cancer prevention/risk reduction research and community-based clinical research in cancer prevention by providing protected research time and research funds. Applications are invited from researchers in the fields of social/psychosocial and behavioural science, health policy, population health, health promotion, health services, cancer etiology, health economics and genetics aimed at improving cancer prevention.

The goal of this program is to provide salary and research support during the early years of a developing career for cancer prevention researchers. The program is designed to support researchers whose work has the potential for high impact within the domain of prevention/risk reduction research.

Applications must include the commitment of a supervisor/mentor who will work with the applicant over the term of the award. In addition, the Host Institution must be prepared to make a commitment as described below.

Prevention programs will focus on research that reduces the risk of cancer. The Canadian Cancer Society recognizes that in order to change the risk profile, prevention research can be accomplished anywhere along the research continuum from identifying factors that affect the risk of cancer at an individual or population level to interventions that lead to action to reduce established risk factors.

Priority areas identified by the Society and/or the Canadian Cancer Research Alliance include, but are not limited to:

  • tobacco control
  • occupational and environmental carcinogens (O&E)
  • UV radiation exposure
  • healthy eating and physical activity
  • screening
  • health economics and health systems related to cancer prevention

Examples of projects within a program of research that may be appropriate for this grant opportunity include, but are not limited to:

  • studies of the impact of cancer prevention interventions on health care costs
  • comparative effectiveness or efficacy of interventions to reduce cancer-related risk factors
  • effects of using new modalities for communication of cancer risks and/or preventive strategies
  • identifying at risk individuals for effective targeted activities and interventions
  • analysis of effective policies to increase cancer prevention-related behaviours in a population
  • development and testing of strategies to reduce cancer incidence in defined populations
  • identification or characterization of carcinogenic exposures
  • application of basic research including a better understanding of cancer etiology and gene-based studies related to risk reduction and prevention

Applications focusing on quality of life or psychosocial outcomes will not be considered under this funding opportunity. Applicants interested in quality of life research are encouraged to apply to our Quality of Life Research Grants program.


At the time of application, applicants for this award must be either a:

  • postdoctoral or clinical fellow with at least one year of postdoctoral training completed, or
  • Assistant professor* within the first five years of their appointment.

*Note that as part of the Host Institution’s commitment to the career development of a candidate in a faculty position, the Host Institution will be required to commit, as part of the application process, an additional two years of support to the applicant at an appropriate rank and salary upon the termination of this Career Development Award. The Host Institution must also commit to providing the applicant with adequate infrastructure and physical space to conduct their research program during and after the granting period. If the salary portion of this award offsets the institutional commitment, the incremental benefit of the award must be clearly indicated in the application. 

Applicants must identify an accomplished investigator as a supervisor/mentor who will assist in the development and direction of the research program. It is preferred that the supervisor/mentor be located in the same institution as the applicant but if that is not possible, a clear rationale for the chosen supervisor/mentor and details of the nature and frequency of the interactions must be provided.

Applicants must be Canadian citizens or residents of Canada at the time of application and the award must be taken up at an eligible Canadian Host Institution.

Program details

Applicants must devote the majority of their time to their cancer prevention research programs. In the case where the applicant is a junior investigator, time should also be spent supervising associates/trainees participating in those programs. It is expected that the applicant may be required to assume other responsibilities (e.g. teaching and administration, clinic responsibilities and/or additional research activities) by the Host Institution; however, the institution must confirm that the applicant will commit at least 80% of their working time to their cancer prevention research program. All remaining time must be dedicated to the development of the applicant’s career as an independent cancer prevention scientist.

Funds available

Budgets awarded will not exceed $75,000 per year, for up to 3 years, to a maximum of $225,000 per award. This award is meant to primarily support the salary of the individual; therefore at least $50,000 per year must be used for salary support except where it exceeds the institution salary scale. The remaining amount of the award is to be used for research and support (e.g. research expenses including pilot study data collection, research personnel, supplies, and/or equipment, travel to scientific conferences, etc.). Requested research costs must be associated with the applicant’s described research program and be well aligned in terms of the requirements for a specific project.  In cases where the value of the teaching and other duties are less than the salary portion of this award, the Host Institution must ensure this award benefits the awardee through other means (e.g. travel allowance, access to research staff or support, etc.).

It is anticipated that up to 3 awards will be funded each competition. Funding will be provided to support the direct costs of the applicant’s salary, research costs, including supplies, expenses, wages and equipment associated with the applicant’s proposed work. Equipment requests of up to $10,000 can be included within the proposed budget and must be appropriately justified.  

Note that indirect costs, the salaries for supervisor/mentors, secretarial or administrative assistants or tuition fees are not eligible expenses.

Peer review

A multidisciplinary peer review committee will be assembled to review the applications. The peer review committee will consist of scientific experts with broad expertise, along with community representatives to provide patient/survivor/caregiver perspectives.  At a minimum, candidates will be interviewed by a member of the panel however applicant presentations to the panel may be requested.


When preparing the application, the following will be required:

  1. as part of the public (non-scientific) summary, a cancer prevention relevance statement clearly describing the potential of the applicant’s research program to advance or enhance cancer prevention knowledge
  2. a summary of the applicant’s previous training and/or relevant research experience in cancer prevention
  3. a description of the impact the research will have on reducing the burden of cancer incidence and the advancement of cancer prevention research
  4. a description of the applicant’s career development plan and goals
  5. a responsiveness statement which addresses the appropriateness of the application to this funding opportunity and demonstrates that this award will relieve the candidate of teaching and other responsibilities
  6. up to three letters of reference supporting the applicant and the research program (including one from the supervisor/mentor)
  7. a proposal describing their research program, containing no more than 5 pages of single spaced text which includes a description of the following:
    • a rationale for this cancer prevention research program and the prevention research educational objectives
    • a rationale for selection of the supervisor/mentor (additional details on working relationship is required if different institution that the applicant)
    • a description of the research environment including resources and facilities available to the applicant and a brief description of the dedicated research space
    • a description of the prevention research career education and training opportunities that will be accessed during the grant award period

      In addition, 5 pages of data figures/tables/charts and their associated legends are allowed. Specific guidelines for the online application are available
  8. a budget justification related to the supplies, equipment and personnel associated with the research program as well as the details for the specific portion of the applicant’s salary.

Note that the Host Institution is required to sign off on the application which includes confirmation of their commitment to the additional two years of support for those in faculty positions.

Review criteria

Panel members use the career development awards and responsiveness rating scales. The review criteria for the application will include, but not necessarily be restricted to the following:

  • potential of advancement of the mission of the Canadian Cancer Society to reduce the incidence of cancer
  • relevance of the proposed work to this funding opportunity
  • the applicant’s academic and publication record and research experience
  • potential value (in protected time) to the applicant and potential impact of the award on the applicant’s career path and of the applicant becoming a leader in the cancer prevention research field in Canada
  • the scientific merit of the cancer prevention research program and the likelihood that the proposed research program will have an impact on cancer incidence
  • an assessment of the supervisor/mentor, the career educational program objectives and plan and the quality of the research environment
  • the quality of the applicant’s reference letters
  • commitment of the Host Institution to provide protected time and research support funds
  • appropriateness of the term and support requested

Multiple applications/multiple sources of funding 

It is understood that applications may also be made to other agencies to provide support for grants/ programs similar to those submitted to the Canada Cancer Society. The onus is on the applicant to indicate the extent (or absence) of overlap.


Applicants are reminded to review the eligibility and requirements section for details on scientific and financial reporting, funder acknowledgement, Canadian Cancer Society policies on open access and tobacco related funding.

Partners description

The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation is the leading community-drivenorganization in Canada dedicated to creating a future without breast cancer. The Foundation’s investments in innovative and relevant research and education have led to progress in breast cancer prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care. Since 1986, the Foundation has been at the forefront of a nationwide movement supporting and advocating for the breast cancer community. For more information please visit