Research Resources

General Information

Learn how to stay informed about research opportunities, view links to sources of support, and find out about orientations for recently hired faculty.


Taraneh Sowlati

Dr. Taraneh Sowlati, Associate Dean Research and Innovation

Dr. Sowlati provides leadership in research and innovation within the Faculty of Forestry. She promotes the Faculty’s research and innovation agenda inside and outside the university. Moreover, she identifies and coordinates research award nominations for our faculty members. She is the liaison with the UBC office of the VPRI, and liaises with the federal funding agencies through UBC’s Research Advisors.

Dr. Pia Smets, Research Development and Awards Officer

Dr. Smets provides individual support to faculty members in two areas. The first is research grant development. This includes providing information about potential funding sources and competition requirements. It also involves editing grant proposals at various stages of development. The second area is that of award nominations. She helps to identify opportunities for nominations and assists with the preparation of nomination packages. She introduces newly recruited faculty to the Canadian landscape of research funding. If you have a question about research funding, she will try to help you find the answer.

Faculty of Forestry Research Support Available

Pia Smets

Dr. Pia Smets, Research Development and Awards Officer, Faculty of Forestry / SPARC.

I provide faculty members with grant and award nomination support, including advising on and editing grant proposals; identifying and providing information about potential funding sources and competitions; identifying research award opportunities; and assisting in the preparation of nominations.


Contact me directly for questions specific to your planned proposal, internal deadlines, eligibility issues, overhead, review procedures, etc. I will point you to the right sources or liaise with people who know answers, either inside UBC or in the funding agencies.

The SPARC office (Support Programs to Advance Research Capacity) is my part-time home base and provides workshops to support the preparation of your grant, online guidelines, signup for grant review, internal peer review, and access to the grant library (using campus-wide login or CWL).


A written review will be provided for logic, coherence, and alignment with competition criteria. Please contact me to arrange a review. Hearing about your planned proposal early allows me to provide better assistance.


Where can you learn about new funding and award opportunities on an ongoing basis? Subscribe to the UBC Research Digest, a monthly summary of opportunities, deadlines, workshops, and news from the UBC research community. The Forestry Connect Express, the weekly newsletter of our Faculty, also advertises funding and award deadlines. Subscribe to this newsletter by emailing


Units within the Vice-President Research and Innovation portfolio (VPRI) support faculty through the research project cycle, from finding funding through to mobilizing knowledge.

Below I list some of the units you will interact with at the early stages of establishing your research program.

The Office of Research Services (ORS) will help submit your grants and set-up an account when you are funded. RISe (Researcher Information Services) is the online research administration tool used by researchers and administrators to manage applications online from application to status tracking, approval, certification and awarding of funds.

The RPIF (Research Project Information Form) is a vital UBC administrative form for every research project and requires signatures from your department and faculty. Your CV is likewise an important component of the funding application: different funding agencies have very different and strict templates.

Ethics approval can be obtained from the Office of Research Ethics.


ADRI: Associate Dean Research and Innovation, also referred to as ADR: Dr. Taraneh Sowlati
Department Head: sets up your mentorship committee
Department Administrator: contact your administrator for questions regarding Human Resources

I look forward to setting up an individual consultation with you to discuss the most common avenues for funding, where your research fits with regard to the major funding agencies, and answer any questions you may have.

UBC Sources of Support

We encourage you to visit the website of SPARC – Support Programs to Advance Research Capacity, a unit in the Vice President Research and Innovation (VPRI) portfolio that provides strategic research development services and resources to faculty applying for Tri-agency (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC) funding. VPRI offers this excellent overview of the research project cycle.

The Office of Research Services (ORS) provides administrative support, as outlined in this roadmap.

  • Various open access discounts are available through the UBC library, after you have exhausted Faculty resources, but the easiest way to publish open access is to deposit a copy in UBC cIRcle (free).
  • Indigenous Strategic Initiatives (ISI) funding: is not for a research-driven project, but seed funding for new initiatives that will be sustained by your unit long-term. The initiative must advance the UBC ISP (indigenous strategic plan).


Both UBC and the Faculty of Forestry organize orientations or jumpstart days for cohorts of incoming researchers.

Pia Smets offers individual consultations to all incoming professors in the research stream routinely, even before their arrival as desired, and later on as need arises.

We’ve held a few Faculty of Forestry group orientation sessions in panel format, with Q&A. Below, we provide a link to notes of these sessions, and links to the recordings are available from Pia upon request.

  1. Graduate student recruitment notes
  2. Graduate student success notes

Acronyms used in Research Funding

Listed in alphabetical order

Alliance – Grant for teams with a cash-contributing partner, for projects based in the NSE
ARC – Advanced Research Computing: large computing infrastructure already present at UBC
ADRI – Associate Dean Research and Innovation in the Faculty of Forestry.
BREB – UBC’s Behavioral Research Ethics Board
cIRcle – UBC’s open access digital repository, via UBC library
CFI – Canada Foundation for Innovation: infrastructure grants
CUES – Community-University Engagement Support: for charitable organizations to build partnerships with UBC
CTLT – Centre for Teaching and Learning Technology
CWL – Campus-wide login
DG – Discovery Grant (NSERC): program grant
DH – Discovery Horizons (NSERC) : project grant for interdisciplinary research based in the natural sciences
IDG – Insight Development Grant (SSHRC)
IF – Innovation Fund (CFI) for infrastructure
IG – Insight Grant (SSHRC) [Committee #24 for interdisciplinary research based in the social sciences]
IPO – Institutional Programs Office at UBC: support for infrastructure funding applications (e.g., CFI funds)
JELF – John R. Evans Leaders Fund (CFI) for infrastructure
Mitacs – nonprofit national research organization, graduate student internships, PDF training programs.
NFRF-E – New Frontiers in Research Fund – Exploration stream (interdisciplinary)
NSE – Natural Sciences and Engineering
NSERC – Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council
ORS – Office of Research Services: competition internal deadlines, RPIF forms, etc.
PG – Partnership grants (SSHRC): full PG, P Engage G, and P Development G: not restricted to social sciences, even though SSHRC is administering the competition and the grants.
RISe – Research Information Systems: online research administration tool. You will access it via Workday, the UBC software suite for Human Resources and administration.
RPIF – Research Project Information Form: all research grant applications must be accompanied by an RPIF.
RTI – Research Tools and Instruments grant (NSERC)
SSHRC – Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
UILO – University-Industry Liaison Office (UBC): enables research and innovation partnerships with industry, entrepreneurs, government and non-profit organizations
VPRI – Office of the Vice President Research and Innovation

Here is a list of acronyms used by the UBC Board of Governors:

Research Impact


In order to increase social media visibility and gain meaningful media publicity for faculty research on a regular basis, an online submission form was created. Your publications and research can be featured in UBC Forestry marketing and communications channels (social media, TV, radio, print, online, Forestry Connect Bulletin, website, and more). Please consider the quality/impact of research and quality/reputation of the journal before submitting.