The Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund (CRCEF), was announced on May 15, 2020, as part of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.

The CRCEF is a Tri-agency program and is administered by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) on behalf of the three federal research funding agencies: the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and SSHRC. The Canada Research Coordinating Committee (CRCC) provides strategic oversight for the program and approves awards. The Tri-agency Institutional Programs Secretariat (TIPS) provides administration.

The temporary program was established to help sustain research enterprises at Canadian universities and health research institutions affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program includes 4 stages, the first was to avert or reverse layoffs of eligible research personnel (e.g., research staff, students, post-doctoral fellows) paid in part or in whole by non-governmental sources.


CRCEF funding will be provided through four stages:

  • Stage 1: Wage support for research-related personnel
    • Completed September 2020
  • Stage 2: Supplemental wage support for research-related personnel
    • NACTRC did not require supplemental wage support; stage was not executed
  • Stage 3: Research maintenance/ramp-up costs
    • Information about Stage 3 will be provided in November 2020
  • Stage 4: Extension period for wage support for research-related personnel
    • Currently underway, intake forms now due Nov 25, 2020 – deadline has been extended


Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Commitment Statement

In accordance with the mandate from the federal research funding agencies and the Canada Research Continuity Emergency Fund (CRCEF) program, NACTRC offers this commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion:

NACTRC is an institution affiliated with the University of Alberta whose strength is based on our shared commitments to equity, diversity, and inclusion. Diversity is an underlying principle of our Strategic Vision, which pledges NACTRC to “foster a culture of inclusion and mutual respect, celebrating the diversity and multi-ethnic character reflected amongst its students, faculty, staff and our society.” NACTRC is committed to ensuring that no individual receives unequal access to, or is excluded from participating in, the CRCEF program. Consistent with this principle, NACTRC will take active measures to remove systemic barriers and afford equal opportunities for equity-seeking groups, specifically women, racialized minorities, Indigenous peoples, persons with disabilities, and persons from LGBTQ2+ communities.


Stage 4 wage relief overview

Stage 4 is an extension of wage relief provided in Stage 1.

If you receive non-governmental funds and have staff who worked any days between March 15 and August 29, 2020, you may be eligible to receive CRCEF funding. If your research has been negatively impacted by COVID-19 in any way, including reductions in staff productivity due to loss of access to campus or family-related absences, you may be eligible.

Those who received funding through Stage 1 may be eligible for additional funds.

Stage 4 wage relief will cover up to 24 weeks of eligible wages. This is an increase of 12 weeks from what was covered by Stage 1.

This funding is intended for researchers who:

  1. Have additional eligible wages beyond what they received CRCEF support for in Stage 1, or
  2. Did not apply for Stage 1 wage support, but believe they are eligible.

Example: A researcher received Stage 1 wage support for one staff member for the maximum of 12 weeks, even though the staff member was unable to work for 16 total weeks. That researcher may apply for Stage 4 wage support for the additional 4 weeks.

NOTE: Only non-governmental funds are eligible for this funding. Tri-agency funding and stipend/scholarship or stipend payments are NOT eligible. Non-taxable stipends/scholarships have been deemed ineligible by the tri-agency secretariat.

If you wish to apply, you must complete an intake form by November 25, 2020. All those applying for Stage 4 funding must complete an intake form, even if you did so for Stage 1. Questions can be submitted to [email protected]



CRCEF Stage 3 is to support direct costs of research that have been incurred to:

  • Maintain essential research-related commitments during COVID-19; and
  • Support the ramp up to full research activities as physical distancing measures are eased and research activities can resume.
  • We distributed Stage 3 funding to our affiliated health research institution, Alberta Health Services (AHS), based upon their proportionate share of all research revenues earned.


Only extraordinary and incremental direct costs of research related to those already covered by existing sources of funds are eligible, and only for the time period March 15 – Nov 15, 2020. Eligible expenses will be reimbursed up to 75%. Funding will be provided to faculties based on its relative share of total research revenue in fiscal 2020. Research Services informed research groups of their respective allocations.



Next Steps:

  • Review eligibility and gather all required information
  • Complete the CRCEF Stage 4 Intake Form and submit by November 25th, 2020 (deadline extended)

Complete the intake form »


Contact information: [email protected]



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