The information on this website pertains to the University of Waterloo's application and adjudication process of the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships 2017 competition.
What is the Banting PDF?
The Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships (PDF) Program was created to attract and retain top-tier national and international postdoctoral talent, to develop their leadership potential and to position them for success as research leaders of tomorrow, positively contributing to Canada's economic, social and research-based growth through a research-intensive career.
With only 70 available annually, this fellowship is the most prestigious and competitive of those offered by the Federal Government. The Fellowship program is administered by and distributed equally among Canada’s three federal granting agencies:
- Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
- Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)
- Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)
The Banting PDF is valued at $70,000 per year (taxable) for two years. It is open to eligible Canadian and international applicants.
What are important application dates at Waterloo?
The application process at Waterloo is handled in two steps. The University requires that interested candidates complete a preliminary application web form by 5:00 p.m. EST on June 14, 2017.
Applicants who are supported to continue with the second step of the application process must e-mail a pdf of their application to Heidi Mussar in Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA) by 8:00 p.m. EST on July 19th, 2017. Under no circumstances will late applications be considered from prospective applicants or host supervisors. (additional timeline details at Waterloo can be found on the specific timeline web page).
Further details can be found in the critical steps section below.
How do applicants get considered?
Interested applicants must complete the Banting Postdoctoral Fellowships Program application, available now in ResearchNet, in collaboration with the proposed host institution. Without exception, Banting PDFs are tenable ONLY at the institution that supported the original application.
In an effort to support researchers in broadening their research horizons and seeking new challenges and opportunities, the Banting program strongly encourages candidates to pursue this fellowship at an institution where they have not been previously affiliated.
An institution is not provided with a quota on the number of fellowships it can host. However, institutions are typically strategic in determining the number of applicants they endorse, given the limited number of fellowships that are awarded. The selection process within institutions tends to be quite rigorous. To provide guidance on potential candidates’ likelihood of success, the following summarizes the qualifications of recent Banting recipients at the University of Waterloo:
- Has held tri-council funding, typically as a postdoctoral researcher and as a graduate student;
- Has held a number of institutional awards;
- NSERC researchers have about 10-15 journal articles (80% as first author) and an additional 10 competitive presentations;
- SSHRC researchers have 8-12 journal articles (75% as first author), four book chapters, and 12 competitive presentations;
- Actively engaged in community and scholarly activities, with an emphasis on research and knowledge dissemination
What are the critical steps in the application process?
1. Confirm eligibility
Canadian citizens, permanent residents and international students are eligible to apply for the Banting PDF.
Applicants can apply for both the Banting PDF and other agency-specific postdoctoral fellowship opportunities at the same time. An application for the Banting does not automatically mean an application is submitted to the agency-specific postdoctoral fellowship opportunity – a separate application must be submitted if eligibility requirements are met.
2. Contact the proposed supervisor
Critical components of the Banting assessment are the research interests shared by the candidate and the proposed supervisor, and the expected benefits produced by their collaboration. To find a potential supervisor, prospective postdoctoral fellows are encouraged to visit University of Waterloo department/school or Faculty websites. Once a partnership has been arranged, proposed supervisors will support the candidate’s application through a Supervisor’s Statement that emphasizes the academic and professional opportunities that are expected to emerge.
3. Complete Waterloo's preliminary application
Interested Banting PDF applicants must complete Waterloo’s Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship - preliminary application webform and submit it, along with a PDF copy of their CV, electronically by 5:00 p.m. EST on June 14th, 2017. All interested applicants are required to complete this step even if they have already been invited to apply by the proposed supervisor.
The package will be forwarded to the prospective supervisor who must provide support of the application. Heidi Mussar will provide applicants with a decision regarding whether they should continue the application process or not by June 30th.
All Banting PDF applicants must have a ResearchNet account in order to complete the Banting application. Additionally, a specific Vanier-Banting academic CCV completed on the Canadian Common CV website is required. The CV will get linked to the Banting application within ResearchNet.
5. Select and contact referees
Three referees, one of whom must be at arm’s length, are required. Referees must be able to provide relevant evidence, perspectives and insight to support the review of the application based on the selection criteria. The assessments contribute to a major part of the evaluation of the application and its potential success. It is the applicant’s responsibility to provide the referees with the information they require in order to complete an informed and strong assessment.
Strong assessments of the following criteria are required:
- research excellence and demonstrated leadership in the research domain;
- quality of applicant’s proposed research program;
- suitability of the proposed research environment for this research project
Applicants should contact their proposed referees as soon as possible after they receive confirmation, from Heidi Mussar, to proceed with the application (see step 3 above).
*Because institutions do not have access to the application documents and referee assessments through ResearchNet, referees MUST send a pdf copy of the actual assessment they complete within ResearchNet, electronically to Heidi Mussar by 8:00 p.m. EST on July 19th, 2017. This is required in order to conduct the institutional adjudication of applications.
It is highly recommended that the referees keep a Word copy of their assessment in case feedback is provided after the institutional adjudication and they are required to revise their assessment.
6. Fulfillment of degree requirements form
Applicants must obtain a completed Fulfillment of Degree Requirements Form from the institution that conferred (or will be conferring) the PhD, PhD-equivalent or health professional degree that confirms the date of fulfillment of all degree requirements.
7. Refer to the application guide
Applicants must refer to the step-by-step details found in the Application Guide to assist them in completing their application in ResearchNet and the Common CV. The guide provides essential details for each section of the application.
8. Applicant submits pdf copy of completed application to GSPA
Applicants who receive approval to proceed with the application process at the University of Waterloo (see step 3 above) must email a single pdf package containing the Banting PDF application and CCV to Heidi Mussar in GSPA no later than the NON-NEGOTIABLE deadline of 8:00 p.m. EST on July 19th, 2017. The following parts of the application (which can all be referenced from the official Application Guide on the Banting PDF website) are required by this firm deadline:
- CCV - using the Vanier-Banting academic template
- Banting application details - a pdf of the actual application that is completed in ResearchNet (a pdf of the preview version is required, not a print screen; normally 5-6 pages)
- Significance of Research Contributions - max. 1 page
- Significance of Leadership Contributions - max. 1 page
- Fulfillment of degree requirements form - even if PhD has not yet been completed
- Special Circumstances, if applicable - max. 1 page
- Research Proposal - max. 4 pages
- Bibliography - max. 4 pages
Waterloo's administrative review process
GSPA will compile application packages (including the letters of assessment from the three referees and the preliminary “supervisor’s statement”) by July 21st, 2017 for access by Faculty Associate Deans.
Faculty Associate Deans will select and notify GSPA and Department Chairs in August of their top 3 highly competitive candidates who should be brought forward for institutional consideration.
There will be an institutional adjudication of Faculty-selected applications at the beginning of September by a committee comprised of the Associate Vice President, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs, Associate Dean, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs and each of the six Faculty Associate Deans. Feedback is then provided to the proposed supervisor and applicants selected for institutional endorsement. Any outstanding documentation (i.e., institutional letter of endorsement and finalized supervisor statement) is provided to the endorsed applicants prior to the agency deadline of 8:00 p.m. EDT on September 20th, 2017.
For a complete timeline regarding Waterloo’s process, please visit the link below.
Visit the Waterloo timeline for details.
Questions about the Banting PDF program can be sent to Heidi Mussar in Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs.
Visit the Postdoctoral Studies website for more information about postdoctoral appointments at Waterloo.
May 2, 2017