Research development officer increases competitiveness of applications

Collaboration is a key element of success at the University of Waterloo and it plays an important role in securing funds for research.

In the Faculty of Science, a Research Development Officer provides guidance to researchers by reviewing proposals and offering suggestions to strengthen them along with writing/editing support.

With over five years of experience in reviewing funding applications at Waterloo, Kim Arnold who is based in the Science Research Office, provides this service to researchers in her faculty. During her reviews, she ensures that proposals for funding are well-written and convey the research in a way the reviewer can relate to. She helps the researcher to clarify the purpose and potential outcomes of the research while ensuring the language is suited to the reviewing audience for each grant. As addressing barriers associated with equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) are valued in research activities and in the recruiting and training of students, she acts as an advocate to support faculty drafting their EDI plans in grant applications.

Providing an objective view, she helps researchers strengthen their applications by offering suggestions to more clearly outline their research plans and the steps that will enhance the impact of their research. Overall, she helps to increase the competitiveness of each application that is submitted, which can also boost the success rate of funding for the Faculty.

Her assistance with applications extends beyond researchers to students who may be applying for graduate scholarships and need support in showcasing their leadership, research and other successes.

As the co-chair of the Indigenization working group in the Faculty, she is also actively involved in determining what steps the Faculty can take to advance and support initiatives stemming from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

Her role is funded through the Research Support Fund which provides assistance for expenses associated with managing research.

September, 2021