In its strategic plan for the next two years, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) reviewed its progress over the last five years and outlined its program for keeping pace with rapid global change and the effects of COVID-19.
SSHRC is responsible for shepherding $215 million in research investment over five years, and $55 million per year onward. SSHRC also takes a leadership role in delivering interdisciplinary research programs on behalf of the other tri-council granting agencies. Recipients of SSHRC's grants, fellowships and scholarships represent roughly 54% of Canada’s postsecondary researchers, amounting to over $2.4 billion in funding over the last five years.
From 2014 to 2019, SSHRC'S total funding increased by 43%, from $346 million to $496 million. The gains were spread evenly across SSHRC's programs: Insight Research, Research Training and Talent Development, Research Partnerships, and the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF). The latter was added in 2018. $72 million has been dispensed over the last two years through NFRF, of the total $275 million planned over five years to support international, interdisciplinary and transformative research. Funding for tri-agency interdisciplinary programs increased from nearly $600 million in 2014 to about $900 million in 2019.
Other trends were evident over the last five years: 1) increased participation of non-academic partners in industry, government and the not-for-profit sectors; 2) increased Indigenous organizations involved in SSHRC partnerships; 3) more nominations of women, members of visible minorities, Indigenous Peoples, and persons with disabilities to the Canada Research Chairs Program; and 4) greater numbers of international researchers involved in SSHRC-funded grants.
Looking forward, SSHRC will focus on five main objectives: