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FAQ for Contributions Program applicants

What kind of projects do you fund?

The OPC is interested in receiving research proposals for projects aimed at promoting privacy and the protection of personal information in the private sector. We are specifically inviting proposals for projects that will help anticipate and elucidate some of the defining privacy issues that will have the most significant impact on Canadians in the coming years. Some examples of emerging issues include:

  • Game-changing privacy issues raised by big data analytics
  • Emerging payment systems and how these are impacting the privacy of Canadians with respect to their financial information
  • Privacy and security challenges of rising “bring your own device” (BYOD) practices in the workplace
  • Legal, social and ethical challenges of online reputation management
  • Innovative solutions for online identification and authentication challenges
  • New generations of biometric technologies
  • Privacy implications and solutions related to the Internet of Things
  • Increased collection and novel uses of genetic/genomic information
  • Unmasking of covert surveillance systems and the increased role of private sector entities in providing customer data to governments
  • Privacy implications and effectiveness of enhanced security screening measures in employment and/or airline security
  • Exploration of the private sector’s role in border and aviation security programs

The OPC Contributions Program is structured to fund one-year projects that are initiated and completed within the same fiscal year that funding is provided (April 1 - March 31). The OPC may occasionally fund projects that extend beyond the end of the fiscal year in cases where the research requires more time to be completed.

Who is eligible for funding?

Academic institutions and not-for-profit organizations are eligible for funding.  This includes industry associations, consumer and voluntary organizations, trade associations and advocacy organizations.

How much funding is available?

The budget for the OPC's Contribution Program is $500,000 annually. This amount is subject to cancellation, reduction or increase in the event that funding levels are changed by Parliament.

The maximum amount that can be awarded for any single project is $50,000 and a maximum of $100,000 can be awarded per organization. 

When can I apply?

The call for proposals for the Contributions Program is generally issued between September and December each calendar year.

How do I apply?

An Applicant’s Guide is issued with each call for proposals to help applicants prepare a project proposal for funding under the Contributions Program. It includes instructions for completing the application form as well as information about the assessment process.

How are applicants selected?

All proposals are evaluated by the OPC and an external review committee on the basis of merit.

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