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Canada-Japan Corporate Co-innovation Program

1. Introduction

The National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) has identified Japan as a priority market to assist Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to engage in co-innovation partnerships to access Japanese global value chains. In Japan, much of the innovation activity and budget resides with its large corporations. As a result, NRC IRAP has developed a program to support Canadian SMEs to engage in a collaborative research and development (R&D) project with Japanese multinational corporations.

This program is designed to help Canadian SMEs adapt, validate and integrate their technologies with Japanese corporate partners. Successful applicants that can develop a co-innovative proof of concept project with Japanese partners may be eligible to receive NRC IRAP funding support to execute the project.

2. Application deadlines

3. Sectors of focus

Although this call invites proposals related to any technological or market area, priority is being given to the following sectors:

4. Eligibility requirements

In order to participate in this initiative, applicants must form a proof-of-concept collaborative research and development (R&D) project that meets the following criteria:

4.1 Consortium

4.2 Project

4.3 Canadian applicant

4.4 Japanese eligibility requirements

The Japanese corporate partner will participate in this collaborative project on a self-funded basis. The ideal Japanese corporate partner must:

Any existing contractual sales or procurement contracts must be unrelated to activities in the proposed project.

5. Funding

Eligible Canadian SMEs may receive up to 50% reimbursement of eligible project costs up to a maximum total funding amount of $75,000 CAD over 6 to 8 months. All selected projects must start after July 15, 2024.

Upon the successful completion of the proof-of-concept project, Canadian SMEs may be eligible for further funding to support to further co-innovation developments with the same Japanese corporate partner.

Through this program, the Japanese corporate partner will be participating on a self-funded basis. In addition, they must provide in-kind resources to the Canadian applicants, such as:

Note: Canadian SME applicants must be eligible for funding as NRC IRAP clients before they can be considered for funding through this call for proposals. For more information on NRC IRAP eligibility and becoming an NRC IRAP client, please contact NRC IRAP at 1‑877‑994‑4727.

6. How to apply

Interested Canadian applicant must Register using the register button at the bottom of this page.

A Proof-of-Concept Project form will be provided to potentially eligible applicants. The application form will request additional information about the applicant, organization, technology and co innovation opportunities of interest, as well as their Japanese corporate partner’s Letter of Intent (LOI) or written confirmation of partner's engagement in the project.

Each Canadian applicant is encouraged to contact their NRC IRAP representative to discuss their project idea and receive guidance on preparing their submission.

Successful and selected Canadian SMEs will work with their NRC IRAP representative to prepare an NRC IRAP Proposal for Small Projects and contribution agreement.

7. Contacts

For more information, contact the NRC IRAP International Office at or Harvey Lam, NRC IRAP Japan National Program Coordinator at

8. Registration

Canadian SME participants must be registered NRC IRAP clients. If not already an NRC IRAP client, Canadian SMEs must contact 1‑877‑994‑4727 to determine if they might be eligible for support through NRC IRAP.

To begin the application process, interested Canadian participants must register for this opportunity by clicking the Register button.

If there is no register button visible below this line, it means the call for proposals has closed. Please contact the NRC IRAP International Office at for more information.

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From: National Research Council Canada

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