About the Program

The Indirect Costs Program funds the hidden costs of research to help Canadian postsecondary institutions (universities and colleges)—and their affiliated research hospitals and institutes—make the most of the federal investment in academic research. Eligible institutions receive an annual grant through the program to help pay for a portion of their indirect costs of research.

Every year, the federal government invests in research excellence in the areas of health sciences, engineering, natural sciences, social sciences and humanities through its three granting agencies:

The Indirect Costs Program reinforces this research investment by helping institutions ensure that their federally funded research projects are conducted in world-class facilities with the best equipment and administrative support available.

The program was introduced in 2003 as part of the federal government’s strategy to make Canada one of the world’s top countries in research and development. It currently has a budget of $332 million and serves 126 postsecondary institutions across the country.

What are indirect costs?

Some examples of indirect or ‘hidden’ costs of research include: