National Killam Program


Administration of the Killam Program by the NRC

The Killam Trusts, the Canada Council for the Arts (CCA) and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) signed a memorandum of understanding for the transfer of the administration of the Killam Program to the NRC starting in spring 2022 for the 2023 program cycle.

The NRC's role

As Canada's largest federal research and development organization with a strong commitment to research excellence, the NRC will work alongside the Killam Trusts and CCA in 2022 to co‑deliver the 2022 Killam celebration, before solely administrating the National Killam Program in 2023. In addition, the NRC will engage with key stakeholders and lead the redesign of Killam Research Fellowships to relaunch the program in spring 2022.

The NRC is committed to making a positive difference for its stakeholders and serving Canada with integrity, accountability, and openness. In support of the National Killam Program, the NRC has developed a robust conflict of interest management procedure and internal governance framework to manage real or perceived conflict of interest. The NRC’s role is to administer and deliver the National Killam Program.  The NRC has no role in decision making regarding winners of the Killam Prize and Killam Research Fellowships. Clear policies, responsibilities and decision making authority have been implemented to ensure that the National Killam Program is administered and delivered by the NRC with integrity and transparency.

Division of National Killam Program information

The NRC’s webpage will house all administrative elements of the National Killam Program including program guidelines and the application portal. The Killam Trusts webpage will house the history of the National Killam Program, updates on program redesign, and major program announcements.

Overview of the Killam Program

The National Killam Program is privately funded through the generous contribution of Dorothy J. Killam to build Canada's future by encouraging advanced study. Since its inception, the Killam Trusts have provided more than $1 billion for higher education in Canada and there are more than 7,500 Killam laureates worldwide.

The Program's vision, mission and values are:

Vision: Building Canada's future through advanced study.

Mission: To provide scholarships, fellowships, prizes and other funding to scholars who contribute to building Canada's future and increasing the scientific attainment of Canadians through research excellence.

Values: Research excellence, innovation, humanity and multidisciplinary research.

The CCA Killam Program is the only national-scale Program in that it invites nominations for Canadian citizens from any research organization within Canada or abroad. The Program will assume the banner of the National Killam Program after the transition to the NRC.

Killam Prizes and Killam Research Fellowships

The National Killam Program consists of the Killam Prizes and the Killam Research Fellowships. The Killam Prizes are awarded to active Canadian scholars who have distinguished themselves through sustained research excellence, making a significant impact in their respective fields in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences, and engineering.

2021 Killam Prize winners

The Killam Research Fellowships provide support to scholars of exceptional ability by granting them time to pursue research projects of broad significance and widespread interest within the disciplines of the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, health sciences, engineering or studies linking any of these disciplines.

2020 Killam Research Fellowship winners

Vision for the redesigning of the 2023 National Killam Program

In preparation for the relaunch of the Killam Research Fellowships in spring 2022, the NRC will engage in consultations with stakeholders to shape the vision of the program. Further, the following bodies have been created to enable the administration and delivery of the National Killam Program by the NRC:

National Killam Program Advisory Board (NK PAB): The NRC will be guided in its work by the NK PAB to align the program’s new direction with the Killam Trustees Vision.

National Killam Peer Review Panel (NK PRP): The NK PRP will be responsible for reviewing applications to the National Killam Program and providing recommendations for recipients to the Killam Trusts.

National Killam Program Office (NKPO): The NKPO, hosted by the NRC, will administer the National Killam Program starting with the 2023 program cycle. The NKPO works directly with the Killam Trusts and the NRC to shape National Killam Program direction, to report progress, and plan program activities.


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