Researcher Mobility Awards – Call for applications

The Emerging and Pandemic Infections Consortium (EPIC) aims to support the next generation of infectious diseases research leaders by providing trainees with opportunities to enhance their training, explore new topics and build new connections.   

The EPIC Research Mobility Awards supports high-calibre doctoral students or postdoctoral fellows developing new skillsets and strengthening global linkages by providing financial support for them to undertake research training or complete collaborative field work outside of Toronto. Through these opportunities, Research Mobility Award recipients will bring back new knowledge and techniques to our local infectious disease research community and strengthen our research network’s ties to national and international research partners.   

EPIC is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from racialized persons / persons of colour, women, Indigenous / Aboriginal People of North America, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2S+ persons, and others who may contribute to the further diversification of ideas. 

Recipients of the EPIC Research Mobility Awards will be invited to present a poster at the annual EPIC research symposium to share their experiences and key learnings from their research travels.  

  • Registered as a full-time graduate student at U of T or employed as a postdoctoral researcher at one of EPIC’s partner institutions (see last bullet) for the duration of the research travel period  
  • Pursuing a research project with an infectious disease focus 
  • Complete the majority of the travel between January 1st and December 31, 2023 
  • Return to complete your degree or employment term at your EPIC partner institution. 
  • Supervisor must have a primary affiliation at one of EPIC’s partner institutions (Hospital for Sick Children, Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Sunnybrook Research Institute, Unity Health Toronto, University Health Network and University of Toronto)  
Host/Collaborating Institution and Supervisor

A key element of the EPIC Research Mobility Award program is expanding and nurturing our community’s collaborative reach. Information regarding the key collaborators and the location (ie. host institution or field site) at which training will take place is required as part of the application process.  

Host/collaborating institutions can include universities, inter-university research centers, international or national research institutes or laboratories, or other institutions, such as government and non-governmental organizations, with a research mandate. They can also include field sites. 

A host/collaborating supervisor will be a researcher affiliated with and employed full time at a host/collaborating institution.  

The choice of host institution/organization and host supervisor must be justified in your application. The application must also explain how the research travel experience will further your research and training goals. 

Note: If you are unsure about the details of your particular host supervisor or host institution, contact us prior to submitting your application. 

Value and Eligible Expenses

The value of EPIC Researcher Mobility Awards is $4,000 for training or field work undertaken at North American host institutions/sites, and $6,000 for training or field work undertaken at research institutions/sites in other countries. The award will be paid directly to the recipient’s primary supervisor at their home institution. The awards are non-renewable. 

Eligible expenses include travel, living and other expenses including accommodation, meals, insurance, training and/or course fees, and other necessary costs unrelated to direct research expenses during the research travel period. Costs directly related to research must be covered by other sources. 

Note: If you are unsure about the eligibility of an expense, please contact us before applying.  

We anticipate funding between eight and twelve Researcher Mobility Awards for the 2023 term.  

Recipient Responsibilities

EPIC Researcher Mobility Award recipients will automatically become members of EPIC and be expected to participate in EPIC programming and activities with other recipients and present their research to the EPIC community and at profiled events. Students who receive the Researcher Mobility Award are expected to complete the U of T Safety Abroad requirements before their trip. Awardees will be expected to present their work from their research travel period at the EPIC trainee seminar series and as a poster at the EPIC research symposium.  


Awardees are required to acknowledge EPIC funding and support in publications, presentations and communications resulting from their award. 

Selection Criteria

Applications for the EPIC Researcher Mobility Awards will be evaluated using the following selection criteria: 

  • Linkage between applicant’s thesis project and/or future career plans and the proposed research activities for the research travel period  
  • Significance, feasibility and merit of proposed research activities at the host institution 
  • Justification of the choice of host institution/field site and/or host supervisor 
  • Relevance and anticipated benefits of the proposed activities to the applicant’s training and to the EPIC community at large 

      Application materials

      Please submit the application and all supporting documents, including letters of support, as a single, combined PDF via email to PDF documents should follow the naming convention: Mobility_Last name_First name. 

      For any questions or concerns, please email with “Researcher Mobility Award” in the subject line. 

        Please download and complete the PDF application form with information about yourself, your supervisor and your research project. You will also be asked to provide details about your proposed travel including the name and location of the host/collaborating institute and information about your host/collaborating supervisor.

        Proposal (maximum 500 words): Describe your research project and the research activities you intend to undertake at the host institution. Please also include a description of how the proposed field work or research experience relate to your research and of the potential benefits you will gain from the experience. Include a description of how you will share the knowledge and expertise you gained with other members of the EPIC community. 


        Transcript (graduate students only)

        Primary supervisor letter (maximum one page): Provide a letter from your primary supervisor detailing their support for your research travel period, their connection to collaborators at the host institution/organization and confirming that your proposed research aligns with your thesis project. 

        Host supervisor letter (maximum one page): Provide a letter from your host supervisor detailing their support for your research study period and the resources they have available to support your planned research activities. These resources can include equipment, supervision, access to samples/data, training with new techniques/technology, etc… 

        Demographic Survey

        Both the applicant and primary supervisor will be asked to complete our demographic survey. While this survey is required, there is an option to select “Prefer not to answer” for all questions.


        All forms and supporting materials must be received by May 19, 2023 at 11:59 pm EST.