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Stars Career Development Award

Grants to Canada Early-Career Scholars Affiliated with
an Eligible Institution for Research Related to Disease

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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The Arthritis Society

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

06/23/20 5:00 PM EST


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Grants to Canada early-career researchers affiliated with an eligible institution for research studies related to disease. Applicants must register abstracts prior to submitting a full application. Funding is intended to support the investigator's salary, as well as creative research studies related to arthritis, including pilot study data collection, research personnel, supplies, equipment, and travel to scientific conferences. The Arthritis Society strongly values the voice of consumers in research, both in their inclusion in grant applications and the peer review process.

Applications must focus on innovative research efforts in the following priority areas.

Pain research in:

  • Improving our understanding of the underlying mechanisms of pain
  • Translating basic science discoveries into practice
  • Improving techniques to measure pain
  • Developing new and more personalized treatment approaches
  • Alternative approaches to pain management including research on medical cannabis from basic science, clinical, health services and policy perspectives
  • Improving self-management tools and technology enables to help manage and communicate about pain

Osteoarthritis (OA) research in:

  • Improving our understanding of what cause different forms of OA, including the underlying biological mechanisms and how the disease progresses
  • Understand sex and gender differences in patients with OA
  • Developing new and more personalized treatment approaches
  • Developing more effective self-management tools
  • Improving health services and systems
  • Reducing health disparities in vulnerable and hard-to-reach populations

Inflammatory arthritis (IA) research in:

  • Improving our understanding of what causes different forms of IA, including the underlaying biological mechanisms and how the disease progresses
  • Developing new and more personalized treatment approaches
  • Improving strategies to manage symptoms
  • Developing more effective methods to support patient-physician communications
  • Improving health services and systems
  • Reducing health disparities in vulnerable and hard-to-reach populations

Childhood arthritis research in:

  • Improving our understanding of what causes childhood arthritis, how to detect it earlier, and diagnose it most effectively
  • Developing new and more personalized therapies that are safe and effective
  • Innovations to improve transitions in care as children navigate from pediatric to adult healthcare settings and improve unique quality of life issues through other life changes (e.g. education, employment)

Work-related research in:

  • Providing a strong evidence base to inform workplace policies and accommodations
  • Ensuring that employees and employers have effective tools and resources to communicate how to manage chronic conditions in the workplace
  • The prevention of workplace disability and the most effective accommodations

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 188369

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

Pending available funds, the Arthritis Society will fund up to three (3) awards.

Estimated Size of Grant:

The maximum award per application is $125,000 annually for up to three years ($375,000 total), with an additional 3 years of support from the Host Institution of an equal value.

At least $50,000 per year must be used to support the applicant’s salary. This is intended to protect their time for research. Up to $75,000 per year can be used towards research-related expenses.

Equipment requests of up to $10,000 can be included within the proposed budget and must be appropriately justified.

Term of Contract:

This salary and research funding represents a three (3) year commitment by the Arthritis Society, together with an additional three (3) year commitment by the applicant’s Host Institution. These awards are non-renewable.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

An applicant must hold a firm academic position (as a primary appointment) which allows the individual to engage in independent research activities for the duration of the project and includes the ability to supervise trainees and publish research results.

To be eligible, an applicant must:
- Be an eligible Principal Investigator as defined by the Arthritis Society;
- Be within 5 years of their first academic appointment and within 10 years of their most recent graduate or health professional degree (or equivalent, in a field such as medicine, dentistry, rehabilitation sciences, nursing, pharmaceutical studies, veterinary medicine, etc.) at the time of the application deadline. Candidates who have a firm offer of an academic appointment effective before the award start date are also acceptable;
- Be a Canadian citizen or resident of Canada at the time of application with a position at an eligible Canadian Host Institution;
- Have a commitment from their Host Institution from the Faculty Dean or Research Director that includes: Institutional support (suitable lab/research space, resources and support, etc.); a minimum of 80% protected research time for the duration of the award; 3 additional years of equivalent research and salary support (at an appropriate rank and salary beyond the term of this award) as well as adequate infrastructure and physical space;
- Not hold other funding support of a similar nature and goals (i.e. recipients of salary awards and operating grants aimed at establishing their research program and/or advancing their career development as of the funding start date are not eligible to apply). These include, but are not limited to, Canada Research Chair awards, province-specific establishment grants, early career institutional chair awards and early career investigator operating grants.

A researcher designated as the Principal Investigator must be based in, or formally affiliated with, an eligible Canadian Host Institution such as a university, research institute or health care agency. Graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research associates, Adjunct Professors or Status only appointments (except where they hold a firm academic position at another Canadian institution), technical support staff, or investigators based outside of Canada are not eligible to be a Principal Investigator. Both the Principal Investigator and executive authorities of the Host Institution are required to agree to the terms of the Host Institution/Arthritis Society Agreement included as part of the application, thereby acknowledging and agreeing to all the responsibilities and obligations outlined in that Agreement.

Applicants must identify an accomplished investigator as a mentor who will assist in the development of the research program as well as the career development of the applicant. It is preferred that the mentor be located in the same institution as the applicant but if that is not possible, a clear rationale for the chosen mentor and details of the nature and frequency of the interactions must be provided. Applicants must provide rationale if they are remaining in the same institution as their PhD and/or PhD supervisor.

Investigators who have a firm offer of an academic position (as defined above) at an eligible Host Institution and where the appointment is not contingent on the success of a pending application, can submit an application as Principal Investigator provided that the position commences by the start date of the grant. In such cases, a letter from an appropriate authority of the Host Institution must be included, which provides clear details as to the exact nature of the appointment (including title and major responsibilities), as well as the expected start date and duration of the appointment.

A researcher designated as Co-Principal Investigator (similar or equal responsibility as the PI in leading the project) or Co-applicant (directly responsible for some aspects of the project) is a researcher who may or may not have a formal affiliation with the Host Institution, but will take responsibility for particular administrative and scientific aspects of the research project. These categories can include Adjunct Professors or Status only appointments. These categories may not include graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research associates, technical support staff, or investigators based outside of Canada. These individuals are not eligible to receive salary support from a grant.

For additional eligibility information, see:

Grants do not provide for personal salary support of the Principal Investigator (PI) and/or Co-applicants nor for institutional overhead costs.

Indirect costs, the salaries for supervisor/mentors, secretarial or administrative assistants, or tuition fees are not eligible expenses.

Pre-Application Information:

- Online Research Grants Portal open: Late February 2020
- Abstract registration deadline: May 20, 2020, 5:00 PM EST
- Research Grants Portal open for full application: May 20, 2020
- Full Application deadline: June 23, 2020, 5:00 PM EST
- Notification of decision: Mid-December 2020
- Funding start date: January 1, 2021

There is a limit of one Star application per Principal Investigator in a competition. In addition, a PI can only hold one grant or award across all Arthritis Society or partnered competitions (excluding Arthritis Centre grants) as PI/Co-PI at any time.

Eligibility and requirements:

Research strategy:


Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Register abstracts online:

Direct questions to:

Arthritis Society
393 University Avenue, Suite 1700
Toronto, ON M5G 1E6
General Inquiries:
Toll-Free: 1.800.321.1433

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: Alberta   British Columbia   Manitoba   New Brunswick   Newfoundland and Labrador   Northwest Territories   Nova Scotia   Nunavut   Ontario   Prince Edward Island   Quebec   Saskatchewan   Yukon

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