** Joint Seed Information Session - Thursday, February 10, 2022, 12-1:30pm **

** Registration Link: https://uoft.me/7tg **


Expanding research impact through inter-disciplinary collaboration

XSeed is an interdivisional research funding program designed to promote multi-disciplinary research and catalyze new innovative partnerships between a co-PI from the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering (FASE) and a co-PI from outside Engineering. Partner divisions for XSeed are the Faculty of Arts and Science (FAS), University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM), University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC), Dalla Lana School of Public Health (DLSPH), as well as other UofT Divisions.

Funding is available for a maximum of seventeen (17) new collaborative projects beginning in early September 2021.


The budget for each Seed project will be $60,000 CAD/year for two (2) years, starting September 2022 (PIs may request for an early start of May 1, 2022, subject to approval of the partner divisions). In exceptional cases, a no-cost extension for an additional year will be considered. The $60,000 CAD/year amount for each project is the sum of total cash invested by each of the participating Faculties and departments/institutes.


  1. The above-mentioned contributions are cash contributions, i.e. the contributors must all explicitly agree to transfer the funds in support of the project into the PI account.
  2. The above contributions will be conditional on success in the adjudication process.
  3. Additional in-kind support, on top of and beyond the cash contributions, may also be expressed in the letters of support and will be taken into consideration in the adjudication process.
  4. For PIs from a single-department Faculty, one letter of support indicating the cash support of $30k/year will suffice.
  5. Ethical approval and other regulatory approvals, as required, should be in place ahead of the project start date.

Use of funds:

This funding will prioritize the use of funds to support the stipend and research expenses of one graduate student earning a degree in an Engineering unit and one graduate student (or in exceptional cases, one PDF) in the Partner Division.

PI Eligibility:

  1. Each co-PI should be eligible to hold, as PI, Tri-council agency grants (NSERC, CIHR, or SSHRC).
  2. A PI can hold a maximum of one XSeed funded project at any point in time.
  3. One PI should have a primary appointment with an Engineering unit, and one PI should have his/her primary appointment outside Engineering as outlined below:
    One faculty member should have a tenure track appointment status at FAS, UTM, UTSC, DLSPH, and other UofT divisions.


Successful proposals must demonstrate the following criteria:

  1. A new opportunity.
    Typically, PIs have not previously collaborated – EMHSeed and XSeed seeks to enable new partnerships.  
  2. A clear overarching goal.
    The project should have a clear end goal, such as a key finding, a compelling prototype, or a persuasive data set that paves the way for larger funded projects.
  3. Excellence in research.
    The researchers should provide evidence of established or emerging leadership in their area(s); and should show how their expertise will compellingly be united to solve an important, unsolved, interdisciplinary problem.
  4. A clear plan on collaboration.
    Successful applications should demonstrate how graduate students work together, and how goals and milestones for the students will ensure meaningful partnership. The graduate students will be jointly advised by the coPIs and will work together on an interdisciplinary project focusing on an important problem whose solution will unlock a large partnership or innovation opportunity. The proposal should also demonstrate how research planning, use of space, use of infrastructure, and supervision would all be shared and harmonized across the collaborating teams.
  5. Compelling annual milestones.
    The project will offer compelling milestones that will form the foundation for continued collaborations and joint funding applications.
  6. A gateway to a major funded partnership.
    Successful proposals should indicate how the anticipated results of the project will provide the basis of joint grant applications, to be submitted before the 2nd year anniversary of their Seed project start, to programs such as CIHR Project Scheme, Genome Canada, ORF-Research Excellence, CIHR Team Grant, CIHR POP, SSHRC Partnership, NSERC-CIHR CHRP (Collaborative Health Research Project), New Frontiers, DARPA, etc. In addition, coPIs should specify the dates of competitions they intend to apply to.

Submission Process:

Applications including all supporting documents are due by email to vdr@engineering.utoronto.ca by 12p.m. on Monday, March 7, 2022. Please include the term "Joint Seed" in the subject line.

Complete submissions should include: 1) completed Application Form (available here), 2) Letters of support confirming cash contributions from each of the collaborating departments/institutes, and 3) Short CVs of co-PIs (limit your CV to 3 pages).

Information Session: 

Thursday, February 10, 2022, from 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm.
Registration Link: https://uoft.me/7tg

Adjudication process:

An adjudication committee composed of representatives from Partner Divisions will review proposals received by the submission deadline against program criteria. Decisions will be reported by the end of April 2022.


A final report must be completed and will be due upon the completion of the project.


2022 Joint Seed Call for Proposals

2022-24 Joint EMHSeed and XSeed Application Form

UTM XSeed Winning Recipients:

Competition Name Department Project
2018 Matthew Adams Geography Quantifying the effects of public transit interventions on urban environments and public health
2018 Tracey Galloway Anthropology Prioritizing airport infrastructure upgrades to improve social sustainability and well-being in remote Northern Ontario communities
2019 Jessica Burgner- Kahrs MCS Continuum Magnetic Robots for Minimally-Invasive Robotic Surgery and Industrial Inspection
2019 Josh Milstein CPS Exploiting Oxidative Stress to Enhance Antibacterial Treatment of Tuberculosis
2019 Jumi Shin CPS A New Strategy for Asthma Drug Discovery: Organ-on-a-Chip enabled Protein Engineering
2019 Florian Shkurti MCS Active and Sample-Efficient Robot Learning with Human Guidance: Algorithm Development and Robot Demonstrations
2020 Ulrich Fekl CPS Novel Synthetic Diamond-like Material: Computational Engineering and Chemical Synthesis Join Forces
2020 Animesh Garg MCS Neural Representation Learning on Continuous Manifolds for Robotics
2020 Alexandra Gillespie English & Drama Quantitative Book Science: Material and structural Analysis of Premodern Manuscripts Using μCT
2020 Loren Martin Psychology Designing a Sensing System for Managing Phantom Limb Pain 
2021 Lueder Kahrs MCS Multi-Sensor Fusion and Control of Robotic Needle Insertion for Remote Stroke Surgery
2021 Trevor Porter GGE Hydrogen Isotopes to Track Hydroclimatic Processes
2022 Alana F. Ogata CPS Understanding Nanozyme MOFs for the Design of Novel Materials and Development of Advanced Characterization Technologies