Major programs

The Canadian Cancer Society currently provides ongoing funding and support to three centre-based research initiatives: the Canadian Centre for Applied Research in Cancer Control (ARCC), the Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG) and Propel Centre for Population Health Impact.

Canadian Centre for Applied Research in Cancer Control

The Canadian Centre for Applied Research in Cancer Control (ARCC) is an innovative pan-Canadian research centre whose mission is to improve cancer control and the delivery of care through interdisciplinary leadership in health economics, services, policy and ethics research, education and knowledge translation. ARCC is the first research centre of its kind in the world, bringing together Canada’s leading social science, population health, and clinical researchers with decision-makers.  ARCC has a network of over 900 people, including investigators, students, clinicians, and policy makers from across Canada, as well as research staff based at the Centre’s leadership hubs at the BC Cancer Agency and Cancer Care Ontario. We facilitate the development of new collaborations among our members through quarterly newsletters, webinars, training and mentoring opportunities, social media (LinkedIn and Twitter), and our website.

Work conducted by ARCC members drives the annual ARCC Conference, the only applied cancer control conference in Canada. With numerous oral and poster presentations, the ARCC Conference has steadily grown and garnered acclaim as one of the best conferences for networking within the area of cancer control. The ARCC Conference takes place annually in May in conjunction with the CAHSPR conference.

ARCC offers various funding opportunities for our members, including studentships and seed grant competitions. As a result, we facilitate the advancement of research across the cancer control spectrum in prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, survivorship and palliative care.

ARCC has 4 research program areas:

Societal Values and Public Engagement Research Program examines the role of public opinion in health-system decision-making.  ARCC understands that critical decisions about investments in new health technologies and services should reflect society’s values, not just the scientific evidence. 

Health Technology Assessment Research Program aims to find innovative ways to help the healthcare system provide effective, sustainable care, even as it is faced with a rapidly increasing number of expensive cancer treatments.  

Health Systems, Services, and Policy Research Program appraises the issues of access and quality of care and their effects on the health of the patient. Such issues include the factors affecting the organization, delivery and use of cancer services, and the funding, financing and regulation of cancer services.

Cancer Survivorship Research Program explores issues relating to the physical, psychosocial and economic impact of cancer on survivors and families that can best be addressed by health and social care systems.

Canadian Centre for Applied Research in Cancer Control 

Co-directors: Drs. Kelvin Chan and Stuart Peacock


ARCC has two main leadership hubs, one in British Columbia and one in Ontario:

British Columbia

BC Cancer Research Centre

675 West 10th Ave

Vancouver, BC V5Z 1L3

Tel: 604-675-8000 x.7054

Cancer Care Ontario

620 University Avenue

Toronto, ON M5G 2L7

Tel: 416-971-9800 x.2326

Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG)

The Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG) is a highly respected research group that develops, conducts and analyzes national and international multicentre trials of cancer prevention, therapy and supportive care. Its primary mission is to assess the effectiveness of interventions to prevent the development of cancer or improve the care of those patients who do develop cancer. The Canadian Cancer Trials Group is supported by a core grant received from the Canadian Cancer Society. 

The Canadian Cancer Trials Group is the only adult cooperative oncology group based in Canada that has a national membership and is committed to assessing all modalities of therapy across the spectrum of different types of cancer. Canadian Cancer Trials Group studies span the continuum of phase I testing of novel new agents to the conduct of large phase III (randomized controlled) trials. Over 80 member institutions across Canada, ranging in size from major cancer centres to community hospitals, enroll patients on CCTG studies. More than 2,100 physicians, research nurses, data managers and pharmacists participate in the local administration of these trials. Since its inception in 1980, the CCTG has conducted or is conducting 295 trials within its Phase III Program, which have included more than 72,000 patients, and 208 phase I or II studies within its Investigational New Drug (IND) Program, which have included more than 6,200 patients. A key component of the CCTG, the IND Program leads trials testing potential new anti-cancer agents obtained in collaboration with the international pharmaceutical industry, small biotechnical companies, and the US Cancer Therapy Evaluation Program. 

Committees of expert representatives from the participating institutions are responsible for designing and assessing trial proposals for specific disease sites. Separate standing committees have been established to assess special outcomes within the clinical trials such as quality of life, health economics and correlative biologic markers. The unique success of the Group in incorporating quality of life endpoints into its trials has been applauded by researchers on both sides of the Atlantic. 

In addition to its Canadian-based trials, the Canadian Cancer Trials Group leads and collaborates with other cooperative groups from around the world, including the United States, Europe and Australia in the conduct of international clinical trials of cancer therapies. The Group regularly joins with these groups to answer treatment questions that can only be answered by enrolling very large numbers of patients in studies. The CCTG has a special relationship with cooperative groups in the United States through its participation in the National Clinical Trials Network. 

The Group’s Central Operations and Statistics Office, which is responsible for the organization of the trials, management and analysis of the data they generate, and for satisfying all regulatory requirements, is located at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. Staff includes senior faculty members, master's level researchers, computer programmers and a number of additional administrative and support staff. 

For information on current trials, please visit, or Canadian Cancer Trials at

Canadian Cancer Trials Group
Dr Janet Dancey, Director
Canadian Cancer Trials Group
Queen’s University
10 Stuart Street
Kingston, ON K7L 3N6
Tel: (613) 533-6430
Fax: (613) 533-2941


Propel Centre for Population Health Impact

The Propel Centre for Population Health Impact is a pan-Canadian centre, hosted by the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences at the University of Waterloo, and supported by a major program grant from the Canadian Cancer Society as well as grants and contracts from government and other non-government organizations. Propel exists to stop cancer before it starts. Propel’s ability to influence population health in Canada relies on meaningful relationships with individuals and organizations. Propel works with advocates, policy makers, program delivery staff and other researchers to jointly plan, do and act on studies that will improve the health of people and places in Canada and internationally. 

Propel has three inter-dependent programs areas: (1) Tobacco Control, which focuses on supporting advocacy and improving policy and cessation interventions; (2) Healthy Living, which focuses on the implementation and spread of population interventions, especially those that promote healthy eating and physical activity; and (3) Capacity Development, which includes scientific innovations, training and learning opportunities for students, sparking and supporting new collaborations across policy, practice and research sectors, and strengthening the environment within Canada for applied prevention science. Propel’s team includes in-house scientists, experienced research staff, and over 400 research, policy and practice collaborators across Canada and beyond. Propel is committed to moving evidence into action to foster healthier populations in Canada and around the world.

For more information about Propel, please visit
Propel Centre for Population Health Impact
Dr Barbara Riley, Executive Director
Lyle S. Hallman Institute, University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1
Telephone: (519) 888-4567 ext 37562