Alberta Innovates (AI) established the Postdoctoral Fellowships (AI PDF) Program to position postdoctoral fellows for high-impact careers in Alberta’s health research and innovation (R&I) ecosystem. Alberta Innovates’ Postdoctoral Fellowship program is designed to:
- Cultivate a world-class research and innovation system;
- Drive the discovery, development, and use of innovations that have high potential to improve the health of citizens while creating opportunity for economic diversification in Alberta; and
- Increase the competitiveness of Alberta as a destination for training in digital and data-enabled health innovation.
AI’s investment in the AI PDF Program enhances Alberta’s knowledge workforce in areas with high potential to diversify the economy and improve the health and well-being of citizens. To ensure the Program builds capacity in areas of strategic importance to the province, the following areas are prioritized:
Leveraging advances in connected devices, computational intensity, and data generation to enhance health research. The following types of projects are of strong relevance:
Developing advanced approaches to unlock greater value from health information. The following types of projects are relevant:
• Developing highly automated processes to collect and transform health-related data from connected devices, sensors, wearables, smart phone apps, diagnostic tools, or relevant databases,
Activities to increase the rate at which discoveries and promising academic outputs (e.g., IP, data assets, processes) are transformed into commercially viable health products or services. The range of relevant activity includes:
• Advancing early-stage health research that demonstrates high commercial potential,
Note: due to the need to build capacity in Health Technology Acceleration overall, this priority area is not restricted to Digital & Data-Enabled (D&DE) technologies.
Advancing the use of health technologies to enhance health and wellness outcomes, health system sustainability, or health care. This is restricted to:
• Exploring the use of D&DE technologies for prevention, to collect and distribute health information more effectively and efficiently, or to support the delivery of innovative models of care,
Note: developing clinical guidelines is not a strong fit for this priority area, unless it involves the use of D&DE technologies (either as part of a clinical intervention or in enhancing the generation of evidence for systematic evaluations).
There are no citizenship restrictions on this award. All trainees must:
- Have completed a PhD at the time of award implementation;
- Be less than five years into a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Lethbridge;
- Have applied no more than once before for a Fellowship from Alberta Innovates; and
- Meet the additional eligibility criteria for the type of fellowship award sought (as outlined below)
- Alberta Innovates Recruitment Fellowship. Be an incoming postdoctoral appointee at the University of Lethbridge. For this competition, "incoming" means appointee must start no later than 6 months from the application submission deadline (March 2024).
- Alberta Innovates Postdoctoral Fellowships in Health Innovation or Alberta Innovates Enhancement Fellowship. Have accepted or started a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Lethbridge.
The proposed projects must:
- Involve health-related R&I activities that are strongly aligned to at least one of the four priority areas;
- Be conducted at the University of Lethbridge; and
- Be approved for funding by Alberta Innovates.
Prospective postdoctoral fellows should first contact a Faculty member in the Department to which they wish to apply, who is willing to act as a potential supervisor for the Fellowship. Once a supervisor has been confirmed, applicants must complete the Alberta Innovates Postdoctoral Fellowship Application form.
Potential postdoctoral fellows must submit their complete application (points 1-4 noted below) as one PDF via email to email@example.com by Wednesday, September 13, 2023 at 11:59 pm MDT. A supervisor statement of support (item 5 noted below) and three letters of reference (item 6 noted below) may be sent directly to the Office of Research and Innovation Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) by September 13.
A complete application includes:
- Alberta Innovates Postdoctoral Fellowship Application coversheet
- Project proposal with statement on relevancy to AI priority areas (1 page maximum)
- Summary of career goals (1 page maximum)
- Applicant CV
- Supervisor statement of support (on institution letterhead and signed by the supervisor). The letter should address, at minimum, the fit of postdoctoral fellow candidate's research to own their research interests, the anticipated mutual benefits, and the commitments to support the postdoctoral fellow candidate (e.g., mentorship and professional development opportunities).
- Three Letters of Reference (on institutional letterhead and signed). As these letters are confidential, they must be submitted directly by the referees via email to email@example.com. Letters submitted by the applicant will not be accepted.
Please note the following:
- Applicants are responsible for supplying their referees with the documents necessary for them to write their respective letters.
- Applicants should contact their referees well in advance of the application deadline date.
- For items 2 (project proposal) and 3 (career goals), please write for a non-technical audience as applications will be reviewed by a multidisciplinary committee. Use Times New Roman 12-point font, single spaced. Do not condense the type.
- It is the applicant's responsibility to follow up with referees to ensure the letters are submitted prior to the application deadline. ORIS will not follow up regarding missing reference letters.
- ORIS may leverage internal review processes for other competitions (e.g., the Postdoctoral Fellows Recruitment Program) to triage applications for further consideration by AI for an AI Fellowship. Fellowship applicants identified in this way may be required to submit additional documents to assist in assessing relevancy to AI priorities.
- September 13, 2023: Deadline for applicants to submit their complete application. Three letters of reference are also due by September 13.
- September 14-18, 2023 Applications will be reviewed for eligibility and completeness. Incomplete applications will be removed from the competition. ORIS will not follow up regarding incomplete applications.
- September 19 to end October 2023: Review and committee adjudication.
- November 2023: Alberta Innovates review and approval of selected awardees.
- December 2023: Notices of Award/Decision sent to all applicants.
- January 1, 2024: Incoming PDFs with appointment start dates between January 1 and June 1, 2024.