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W. Garfield Weston Postdoctoral Fellowship in Northern Research


1. The W. Garfield Weston Foundation is sponsoring up to four postdoctoral fellowships, valued at $50,000 each, for those pursuing research in the natural sciences with a focus on the Canadian North. This fellowship includes up to an additional $10,000 in support for conference and northern travel expenses. 

2. Candidates must be Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and must complete all requirements for their doctoral degree by September 1, 2016 or have completed the doctoral degree no more than 2 years before the deadline date of the year of the application. This period may be extended to 3 years if you acquired at least 6 months of work experience in government or industry after you received your doctorate or 6 years if you withdrew from active research for parental leave for at least one year after you received your doctorate. Past recipients of the W. Garfield Weston Award for Northern Research (Masters or PhD level) are eligible to apply. 

3. You may hold this Postdoctoral Fellowship abroad only if you have received (or expect to receive before you take up the fellowship) your doctorate from a Canadian university and such an opportunity abroad promises to provide expertise that would not be possible within Canada (e.g. a methodology that is unavailable in Canada). Please provide a compelling case within the application including the contributions to the Canadian scientific community as a result. You are not permitted to hold your fellowship at the same university where you received your doctorate. You may not hold the Postdoctoral Fellowship with your PhD or postdoctoral supervisor, even if your supervisor changes research institutions.

4. Selection will be based upon academic excellence or exceptional promise and demonstrated commitment to a career in northern science, with the requirement that students have a clearly defined research project which will result in the dissemination of research results through publications, conferences and other media. Projects from all natural science subject areas will be considered. Applicants who hold a PDF at time of applications must detail how the Weston PDF will depart significantly from previous PDF research.  A demonstration by publications and presentations that indicate the first PDF has come to a meaningful completion are recommended. Successful recipients must demonstrate an understanding of how their work will contribute to the advancement of northern research and the ways in which this fellowship position will be pivotal to launching their career in northern science. Recipients will be encouraged to present their research results at scientific conferences and academic meetings and must be willing to promote in a variety of ways public interest in the importance of northern scientific endeavours. 

5. Projects from all natural science subject areas will be considered, provided they include a field research component conducted within the term of the award in the Canadian north. ACUNS defines northern Canada as on or above the line indicated on the Northern Boundary Map.

6. University support for the postdoctoral project must be demonstrated in the application by both the postdoctoral supervisor and the host institution (i.e., the dean of the faculty within which the student is working or senior administrator responsible for research). The postdoctoral supervisor may not be the same individual as the candidate’s doctoral supervisor. 

7. Award recipients are identified in May. Only successful candidates will be notified. The fellowship covers a twelve month period. Payment will be issued in quarterly instalments. Successful recipients will have the opportunity to renew the fellowship for one additional year. Participants may be contacted up to five years after the award period for evaluation of the program. 

8. Please note that the applications are reviewed by a multi-disciplinary committee; technical jargon should be kept to a minimum. 

Application Instructions :

The application is made up of 5 parts: (1) the application form, (2) supervisor’s report, (3) 2 referee reports, (4) indication of university support and (5) official university transcripts. All 5 parts must be received in the ACUNS office before January 29, 2016.
1. Application
Please read award guidelines and instructions carefully before completing the form. In order to apply, you will be required to create a CNST account by clicking the signup button at Once you have registered, you will receive an email to confirm. Your CNST account will allow you to save your application and track the progress of your application(s), referee reports and transcripts. 

Referee Guidelines
2. Supervisor Report
Applicants are asked to have their proposed postdoctoral supervisor complete the online Supervisor’s Report.

3. Referee Reports
Two further referees are to complete the online Referee’s Report, one from an academic scholar who knows the applicant well while the third must come from a northern resident capable of judging the methods, objectives and merits of your research project for Northern research (e.g. a territorial government scientist, an academic living full-time in the north, a member of an Aboriginal organization responsible for local licensing, etc.). The CNST Management Committee requires that the northern reference will have a meaningful geographic and relevant research engagement in the jurisdiction where the project will take place. If possible the northern reference should have a direct connection to the research and/or be able to comment on the proposed research plan

4. Indication of University Support
The Indication of University Support is to be completed by an individual who can speak on behalf of the university indicating support for this candidate’s proposed postdoctoral project (i.e.: the dean of the faculty within which the student is working or a senior administrator responsible for research).
During the application process, you will be asked to enter the names and email addresses of the individuals you will ask to complete the above mentioned reports in support of your application. Referees will receive an email directly which will include the report to be completed. Upon submission of the report, your CNST account will be updated to reflect its completion.
5. Transcripts
Only original transcripts will be accepted and must be sent by mail. Please note that it can take several weeks to have official transcripts ordered and delivered. It is highly recommended that you order these well in advance of the application deadline. Please send one copy of all required official grade transcripts, in a single package to:      
Canadian Northern Studies Trust Awards Program
c/o Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies
2464 Sheffield Road
Ottawa, ON K1B 4E5