Please note: We are only accepting proposals for Affiliated Projects at this time.

Call for Proposals for Transformative Science Projects (Pillars 1 and 2)

The Strategic Management Committee (SMC) for the Global Water Futures (GWF) program, funded by the Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) is inviting proposals to develop transformational research projects directed towards Pillar 1 - Diagnosing and Predicting Change in Cold Regions and Pillar 2 - Developing Big Data and Decision Support Systems by February 28, 2020.

Proposed science, big data and decision support system projects should complement and show consistency with GWF core teams and strategies and should be in alignment with the vision of GWF, which is:

  • to provide Canada with the information and tools needed to prepare for and manage water futures in the face of unprecedented environmental and societal change, whilst ensuring health and wellbeing,
  • to provide world-leading water science for Cold Regions and to be a global partner of choice for developing user-focussed solutions to water security

The three-year projects will aim to put Canada at the forefront of water science and innovation. Whilst any aspect of Pillars 1 and 2 can be the subject of a proposal, projects of particular interest to the SMC will be strategic to the needs of GWF. Strong project proposals will include those that make the case that their objectives are not adequately covered by GWF Core Support activities and by Pillar 3 User-need Led Projects. For instance the SMC identifies strategic research needs in the areas of:

  • Social science, policy and governance
  • Water and health
  • Innovative sensors, citizen science and apps development
  • Water in Cities
  • Science in support of big data, process inclusion in model and high-end computing
  • Cold regions processes

Projects that include Indigenous community engagement are welcome under this call.

The project principal investigator must be a faculty member at one of the GWF partner institutions (USask, Waterloo, McMaster, WLU) or a listed partner in the original GWF proposal. Co-investigators must be a full-time faculty member at an accredited Canadian University.

For more information, including the submission process, please view the Request for Proposals document below.

Call for Affiliate Projects

GWF aims to be an inclusive program of water security researchers in Canada and globally that can contribute towards the vision and mission of the GWF (see Appendix below). The goal of the program is to deliver risk management solutions - informed by leading-edge water science and supported by innovative decision-making tools - to manage water futures in Canada and other cold regions where global warming is changing landscapes, ecosystems, and the water environment.  Many research opportunities may arise that will be pursued by eligible GWF members, but which were not included in their GWF funded projects, and by others who are not eligible for GWF funding. These opportunities may contribute strategically towards the GWF vision and mission and so it is possible for GWF to provide in-kind support to these projects and to benefit from such linkages to expand its research envelope. The purpose of the call for GWF Affiliated Projects is to find ways to align with and link to projects that are outside of the direct funding remit of GWF, to benefit both the Affiliated Projects and GWF.



  • Any individual researcher or consortium (Canadian or international) who is working in the area of water science and can contribute towards the GWF vision and mission via their funded projects.
  • Existing GWF members who were either funded or not funded can get their new externally funded projects affiliated with the GWF program
  • New faculty members who were recruited as part of the GWF program can affiliate their developing research program
  • Any partner, user or stakeholder whose new funded research project contributes towards the GWF vision and mission
  • Access to core modelling outputs and will facilitate links to existing GWF-funded projects and core teams, including knowledge mobilization, computer science, and certain observational data and sensor developments
  • Access to some administrative and outreach support from the GWF Secretariat, and the opportunity to showcase their project on the GWF website and via social media accounts
  • Can participate in GWF topical workshops and Annual Science Meetings for research dissemination, planning, outreach, knowledge mobilization and professional development
  • Participation in pursuing future funding opportunities with GWF members and projects
  • Contributing to GWF goals and objectives
  • Scientific excellence
  • Open data and open-source modelling (adhere to the GWF Data Policy and Management Framework)
  • Diversity, equity, respect, inclusiveness
Reporting Requirements
  • Reporting is in line with the GWF Project Annual Reports (see attached GWF Reporting Template)
Application Process

The application package should consist of:

  •  2-page description of the project showing how it addresses the Vision and Mission of the GWF and will meet the Expectations of Affiliated Projects

Submit application via email to Phani Adapa, Director of Operations, GWF at 


Only in-kind support is available from GWF

Deadline There is no associated closing date with applications. 
Appendix - GWF Vision and Mission

  • To provide Canada with the information and tools needed to prepare for and manage water futures in the face of unprecedented environmental and societal change ensuring health and wellbeing; and,
  • To provide world-leading water science for Cold Regions and to be a global partner of choice for developing user-focussed solutions to water security.

  • Deliver new capability for providing disaster warning to governments, communities and the public, including Canada’s first national flood forecasting and seasonal flow forecasting systems, new drought warning capability, and water quality models and monitoring that warn of hazards to health and drinking water supply;
  • Diagnose and predict water futures to deliver improved scenario forecasting of changing climate, landscape and water for the future, with information outputs tailored to the needs of users. This will enable us, for example, to assess risks to human health from changing flood, drought and water quality; and
  • Develop new models, tools and approaches to manage water-related risks to multiple sectors, integrating natural sciences, engineering, social and health sciences to deliver transformative decision-making tools for evidence-based responses to the world’s changing cold regions. New models will define changing risk from floods and drought, and allow end-users to plan sustainable infrastructure investment to manage future risk.