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Research and innovation

Research funding competitions

Genome Canada investments build cutting-edge capacity and fuel the research and innovation pipeline—from discovery to applied research to commercialization.

Our research funding competitions follow a rigorous peer review and selection process and encourage cross-sectoral and multi-disciplinary collaboration. These programs include genomics-related research undertaken from the perspective of the social sciences and humanities–known as GE³LS research (i.e. genomics and its ethical, environmental, economic, legal and social aspects).

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Large-scale research

Large-scale research is central to our approach to research impact. Genome Canada’s investments in this area support large-scale interdisciplinary research projects with industry or other users employing genomic approaches to address key challenges in strategic priority areas for Canada.

Our large-scale research program features open competitions and directed processes that encourage multiple approaches towards common goals, resulting in a portfolio of projects that diversifies risk and improves odds of success for our challenge-driven genomics initiatives. Projects are interdisciplinary and include research on the societal implications of genomics as a key element. Research outcomes are geared towards maximizing the impact of our initiatives.

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Infrastructure and capacity building

Support for Canada’s genomics infrastructure is vital to strengthening national genomics capacity and a key driver of Genome Canada’s impact. This includes investment in genomics technologies and platforms, as well as disruptive innovation. We have invested in world-leading technology platforms for more than 20 years, alongside programs in technology development, bioinformatics and computational biology. These investments provide the necessary expertise and technologies to support cutting-edge genomics research and power our impact through challenge-driven initiatives.

Current technology platforms


Collaborative, user-driven research projects are a key mechanism for connecting researchers with receptors in industry, government and non-profits to develop and deploy genomics-enabled solutions to specific challenges. Genome Canada invests in user-driven research projects within our challenge-driven initiatives and outside the structure of these initiatives to drive broad uptake of advanced genomics technologies across economic sectors, harnessing genomics to meet the emerging needs of industry, the public sector and society at large.


Genomics is a data science. Genome Canada’s research generates enormous volumes of complex data that continues to grow rapidly. Our capacity to draw value from these massive data sets is also rapidly expanding with the emergence of powerful analytical tools such as artificial intelligence. As such, investment and collaboration to strengthen Canada’s data capabilities is a vital pillar of our challenge-driven initiatives, as is the development of tools and policies to ensure this data is shared widely.

We are committed to making data representative of Canada’s diversity. And we are working to advance data sharing and accessibility across Canada as our initiatives develop essential and valuable data assets. This includes developing novel data assets to support broad innovation and inform public decision making on key priorities, including health, food and agriculture, and environmental sustainability.

International collaboration

Genomics is an international science. Genome Canada’s mission-driven approach leverages our international networks to ensure Canada contributes to—and derives maximum benefit from—research and innovation around the world. We achieve this through membership and leadership in international consortia and through joint multinational funding as well as representing Canada in global genomics fora.

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