VIU Scholarship, Research, and Creative Activity

Canada Research Chair Renewal Process and Timeline

VIU supports the renewal of chair holders where the research remains aligned with the research priorities in the strategic research plan. The following outlines the process used to support the renewal process. This document is intended to support the renewal process for CRC’s at Vancouver Island University. Learn more about the renewal of chairs in the Canada Research Chairs program

Stage 1: Internal review -1 year prior to renewal

The AVP SRCA notifies the CRC and the Dean of the 5-year renewal timeline during the initial orientation of the chair holder and at the three-year annual review meeting. A framework and timeline for the renewal process is shared with the chair holder noting criteria, roles, responsibilities and deadlines.

Timeline: one year prior to date of submission to CRC 

Step 2

One year prior to the end of the first CRC term, the AVP SRCA and Dean discuss whether the chair holder will have the opportunity to submit a renewal nomination taking into consideration a) whether or not the research program of the chair holder is aligned with the research priorities in the SRP and b) whether or not the chair holder is a full time faculty member.

Timeline: one year prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 3

When a renewal nomination has been approved in principle the Dean determines if the chair holder would like to renew for another 5-year term and notifies SRCA of the decision.

Timeline: one year prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 4

Upon confirmation by the chair holder in renewal, the chair holder is assigned a grants facilitator to support them in the renewal process including the development of their performance report and new 5-year plan. The chair holder is reminded that the renewal nomination must be submitted a minimum of 6 months prior to the end of their first CRC term for either the April or October intake dates so there is no break in the chair holder’s tenure.

The chair holder and grants facilitator ensure that materials are prepared for assessment by an institutional review committee including: a) an updated CV, b) self-assessment, c) a concise progress report regarding the research and HQP training activities completed during the first term of Chair, d) a brief statement explaining how holding the chair has added value to the nominee’s research, e) a brief description of the program of proposed research for the second term using the guidelines of the CRCP, and f) a list of 4-6 referees.

Timeline: 8 months prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 5

The Dean and AVP SRCA identify which referees they would like to contact and the grants facilitator provides a template for reference letters including TIPS letter of reference requirements and best practices to avoid unconscious bias in writing letters of reference.

Timeline: 5 months prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 6

The AVP SRCA and Dean identify members for a review committee which will include internal research active faculty members, 2 external independent reviewers, the Manager of Research Development and where appropriate, external community partners.  A member of the review committee will be appointed chair.

Timeline:  5 months prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 7

The Review Committee meets to discuss the renewal candidate assessing the materials provides (CV, self-assessment, reference letters and new research proposal).

Timeline: 4 months prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 8

The aggregate scores are shared at the meeting protecting anonymity of the reviewers and is used to frame a discussion on the likelihood that the renewal is likely to receive a positive external review when submitted to the CRCP. The Review Committee votes on the decision whether or not to renew the chair holder and provides a memo to the AVP SRCA and Dean of the outcome incorporating rationale for the decision.

Timeline:  2 months prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 9

The Dean prepares a letter without the vote results and sends it to the renewal candidate providing them with 14 days to respond to the Dean with their comments. The chair holder will also be provided with a copy of the letter and guidelines for evaluation that was sent to the external referees, and a copy of the criteria and scoring that are referenced in review of the candidate.

Timeline: 1 month prior to date of submission to CRC

Step 10

Where renewals are supported, the grants facilitator and chair holder will prepare the nomination package as per the “Nomination Process” for new nominations.  Where renewals are not supported, the chair holder assumes a regular faculty position following the end of their term.

Timeline: one month prior to submission date identified by the CRC

Criteria for Renewal

The criteria for successful review align with the CRCP renewal criteria and include:

Track record of successful performance on the original 5-year plan (40 points)

  1. Is there evidence that the Chair holder actively pursued and accomplished the targets that were laid out in their original plan?  
  2. Has the chair holder carried out a research program that is producing leading-edge research that are making significant impact as identified in the original proposal? What knowledge has the Chair holder created or co-created during their term? How has the knowledge been mobilized to reach the audiences identified in the original proposal?   
  3. Does the Chair have a provincial, national or international reputation for the work that they have done in the past 5 years?    
  4. Have they been successful at leading significant initiatives/projects or programs aligned to their plan? 
  5. Have they been successful at applying for and securing external funding to operationalize their plan?
  6. Has their track record been commensurate for a faculty member receiving 75% protected time for research compared to faculty without protected time for example)?

Impact of the Chair (30%)

  1. What impact has the 5-year plan had on the audiences identified in the original proposal?   
  2. Has the work of the chair enhanced the reputation of VIU in the region (region as defined in the proposal)? Has the work of the Chair holder aided communities or other groups to address issues/needs?  What level of engagement and buy in has the Chair established within the region for their work? How has the Chair shared their work with relevant groups in the VIU region? 
  3. Has the work of the Chair holder created a positive impact at VIU?  Has their work raised the profile and reputation of the institution, Faculty or research center?  
  4. Have they mentored other faculty and benefited their research performance?
  5. Have they contributed to the culture of scholarship, research and creative activity at VIU?

Research training and mentorship of high quality personnel (HQP) (30%)

  1. Has the chair successfully attracted, developed and retained excellent trainees and students to the postsecondary institution or affiliated institute? (Number, level, indicators of success such as publications, presentations, awards, funding)
  2. What level of funding has been dedicated to the development of HQP?    

Stage 2 External Review

Renewal nominations, like new nominations, follow CRCP’s peer review process, which is governed by the College of Reviewers and the Interdisciplinary Adjudication Committee.


  • You are required to have 3 referees that will each provide a letter of reference. The referee will receive an email with instructions on how to attach their letter.

The referee must not be:

Letters of Reference

  1. One of the letters must be from a recognized international authority in the nominee’s field who does not reside in the country in which the nominee is currently working.
  2. All 3 letters:
    • must be from established authorities in the field; and
    • should emphasize the nominee's accomplishments in their previous term as a Canada Research Chair.
    • For more guidance, please read the instructions for institutions.

Please note: the Nominee must have completed their eligibility for you to proceed with invitations to Referees. Also, note that email addresses are not verified and bounce backs are not registered. If a referee has not attached their reference letter, follow up with them to confirm they have received the email.

  • You are required to have 3 referees. The referees are required to attach their letter of reference.

Suggested Reviewers

You are encouraged to suggest a diverse cross-section of potential reviewers with appropriate expertise (Canadian, international, established and early career researchers, individuals from equity seeking groups*, from academic and non-academic institutions). *This includes but is not limited to: women, persons with disabilities, Indigenous peoples, members of visible minorities, individuals from LGBTQ2+ communities.

1. You must provide 3 reviewers, who:

  • are not in a conflict of interest with the nominee
  • are not from your own institution
  • are from different institutions
  • can provide an independent assessment of your application
  • are capable of reviewing your application in the language in which it is written

Note: You must not contact suggested external reviewers in advance

2. Reviewers assess renewal nominations against the following evaluation criteria:

  • quality of the chair holder and the proposed research program, and;
  • quality of the institutional environment, institutional commitment, and;
  • fit of the proposed chair with the institution's strategic research plan.

Criteria for Review by Reviewers

Quality of the chair holder and the proposed research program

In applying to renew a Tier 2 Chair, the institution must clearly demonstrate that the chair holder:

    • is developing into an outstanding researcher of world-class calibre and is poised to become a leader in their field;
    • has successfully attracted, developed and retained—and will continue to attract, develop and retain—excellent trainees and students to the postsecondary institution or affiliated institute;
    • is carrying out a research program that is producing important results that are making a significant impact in the field; and
    • Is proposing an original, innovative and high-quality research program.
    • In addition, the renewal nomination form includes a performance report that requires the institution to clearly demonstrate how the chair holder has achieved the objectives set out in the original nomination; that the chair holder has upheld the program's standards of excellence; and what the added value has been of holding a Canada Research Chair at the institution.

Quality of the institutional environment, institutional commitment, and fit of the proposed chair with the institution's strategic research plan

Institutional environment

The institution must describe the quality of the environment that the chair will continue to function in and contribute to, including opportunities for collaboration with other researchers working in the same or related areas at the institution, in the same region, within Canada and abroad.

Institutional commitment

The institution must demonstrate that it and any affiliated institutions, hospitals, institutes (as applicable) will continue to provide chair holders with the support they need to ensure the success of their work, such as protected time for research (e.g., release from teaching or administrative duties), time for mentoring (if applicable), additional funds, office space, administrative support, and hiring of other faculty members.

Fit with strategic research plan

  • The institution is required to demonstrate the fit of the proposed Chair with the institution’s strategic research plan and the importance of the proposed chair to the attainment of the institution’s objectives.

All renewal nominations must be submitted through the Convergence Portal by the relevant nomination deadline. Nominations received after the deadline will be withdrawn from the cycle. Please see the summary of nomination process table to ensure the nomination is complete.

  • Step 1:  Institution ensures that the strategic research plan and summary are up to date.
  • Step 2:  Institution creates renewal and invites chair holder via the Convergence platform.
  • Step 3:  Institution invites referees to upload letters of reference to Convergence.
    • Nominee completes the self- identification and CV.
    • Nominee and institution complete the related renewal documents and complete CFI requests if applicable.
  • Step 4:  Institution validates content and senior official submits renewal in Convergence.
  • Step 5:  Institution submits CV updates, if applicable by deadline outlined in CR timelines.  
  • Step 6:  Institution submits updated chair holder profile

Documentation to be submitted in the Convergence Portal includes:

To be submitted with application on the Convergence Platform by the date listed in the CRC timeline:

  1. Rationale – for renewing to be submitted with the renewal
  2. Institutional Strategic Research Plan (5 – 10 pages)
  3. Strategic Research Plan Summary (2-5 pages)
  4. Chair holder Progress report – 6 pages –
  5. Performance Report – peer reviewed by CRC- upload as supporting document on the Convergence platform.
  6. Letters of Reference from referees – submitted by referee on Convergence platform
  7. Description of proposed research program (max 6 pages) – upload as supporting document on the Convergence platform.
  8. Quality of institutional environment, commitment and fit of proposed Chair with institutions SRP – upload as supporting document on the Convergence platform.

Date listed on the CRC timeline (4 – 5 months prior to renewal start date)

  1. Updated CV submitted by the institution to TIPS
  2. Chair holder profile – submitted by institution