International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Research Awards 2021 in Canada




Agriculture and Environment, Inclusive Economies, Technology and Innovation


September 16, 2020 by 16:00 (EDT)




January to December 2021 (12 months)




Salary for one year in Canada: CA$42,033 to $48,659







This call is open to Canadians, permanent residents of Canada, and citizens of developing countries enrolled in a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university OR who have completed a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university.

Please take note of the specific eligibility requirements outlined immediately below and in each of the six development outcome areas.

Who can apply

Six positions are available at IDRC’s head office in Ottawa, Canada.

This call is open to:

Canadians or permanent residents of Canada who are enrolled in a master’s or a doctoral degree at a recognized university OR have completed (within the last three years) a master’s or doctoral degree at a recognized university.

Citizens of a developing country who are enrolled in a master’s or a doctoral degree at a Canadian university OR have completed (within the last three years) a master’s or doctoral degree at a recognized university. In either case, applicants must already have a work permit valid for full-time work (37.5 hours per week) in Canada until December 31, 2021 prior to applying.

Please note: the expectation of receiving a post-graduation work permit is not sufficient.

Additional eligibility requirements

  • The proposed research must focus on one or more developing countries.
  • These awards may be part of an academic requirement.
  • The specific eligibility criteria of each research theme must be satisfied.

Please note: Successful award recipients cannot receive any other Canadian government scholarship, award, subsidy, bursary, or honorarium, or hold any federal government contract in support of a research/work project for the duration of the award. This includes any other IDRC award and any award managed by another institution but supported in whole or in part by IDRC, such as the Queen Elizabeth Advanced Scholars program.

Research country exceptions

In principle, IDRC supports research in all developing countries. However, we do not currently offer awards for research that involves the following countries and regions:

Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Mali, North Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of), Somalia, South Sudan, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, southern and eastern Europe, Central Asia, and South Caucasus.

You must follow all Government of Canada travel advisories while applying, when planning your field research trip, and while in the field. Note that there is currently an “Avoid all travel” outside of Canada advisory because of COVID-19, and this advisory must be followed for the duration it is in place. However, thinking forward to when it is lifted, we are asking applicants that at the moment of submitting an application, they should refer to and follow “Avoid all travel” advisories set by country for non-COVID-19 related reasons, e.g. security risks. IDRC will reject any application that proposes travel to a country or region for which there is such an advisory to “Avoid all travel” at the time of application. 

Countries subject to approval

You may apply for research in the following countries and territories or for any other country for which the Government of Canada travel advisory is to “Avoid non-essential travel”. However, if you are recommended for an award, your application may be subject to a further stage of approval within IDRC and there is no guarantee your award will be approved:

Congo (Democratic Republic of), Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Gabon, Guinea-Bissau, Lebanon, Maldives, Micronesia, Monserrat, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Sudan, Suriname, Tunisia, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Zimbabwe, some small island states (including Comoros, São Tomé and Principe, Saint Helena, and Timor-Leste), and the Pacific Islands (Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Wallis & Futuna).

Please prepare to be flexible in the design and implementation of your proposed research, given the strong possibility that COVID-19 and/or its after-effects will complicate and even prevent field research in many regions in 2021.


Research award recipients will join IDRC for a one-year paid program to undertake research on the topic they have submitted. They will receive hands-on experience in research and program management and support, grant administration, and the creation, dissemination, and use of knowledge from an international perspective.

For payroll purposes, awardees are considered full-time employees of IDRC. Benefits include employer contributions to employment insurance, employer health tax, the Canada Pension Plan, and paid vacation leave. Some travel and research expenses are also supported, up to a maximum of CA$15,000.

Six awards will be offered. There is one award per development outcome area listed below. You may choose only ONE of the following:

Evaluation criteria

The following criteria will be used to evaluate applications:

Research component

  • relevance of the proposal to IDRC’s mission;
  • relevance of the proposal to the chosen development outcome area;
  • clarity and quality of the proposal;
  • clarity and appropriateness in addressing the ethical considerations and gender dimensions of the proposed research; and
  • applicant’s capacity to conduct the proposed program of research, including academic training, local language capacity, and related experience.

Program management and support component

  • Applicant’s capacity to conduct program of work, including related employment experience.

Visit Scholarship Website For More details

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