Research and development is a critical aspect of many businesses’ ongoing growth. To stay competitive in international markets, companies need to invest in new product development, product iterations, and process improvements. The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has recognized this need, and in an effort to encourage Canadian businesses to invest in research they have developed the Industrial Research Assistance Program, or IRAP. IRAP is an umbrella of Canadian government grant and funding incentive programs designed to support innovative research. The program can help companies address technical challenges facing their business, as well as support innovation and R&D collaboration.
Within IRAP there are several different Canadian government grants and funding programs to support differing business needs. In this article we highlight some of the more popular IRAP programs.
IRAP Accelerated Review Process (IRAP-ARP): Max $50K Grant
IRAP-ARP funding is suited for smaller research projects including:
- Software implementation;
- Productivity improvements; and
- Production design/marketing projects. Companies can receive up to $50,000 in Canadian government funding to support internal labour and 3rd party Canadian sub-contractor costs. IRAP-ARP is ideal for companies completing shorter research projects with definitive timelines and a clear technical challenge.
IRAP Mid-Sized Projects: ~65% Grant for Internal R&D
IRAP Mid-Sized Projects is similar to IRAP-ARP, but it is geared toward projects with a total expenditure in the $200K-$250K range. This program also aims to help companies address clear technical challenges but can have more flexible completion timelines and a larger overall scope and complexity. The average grant size for this program varies from $50K+ to $150K.
IRAP Business Innovation Access Program (BIAP): Max $50K Research Voucher
IRAP-BIAP provides Canadian small businesses with direct access to leading researchers and resources at Canadian Colleges, Universities, and Research Institutions. Through this program, companies can receive up to $50,000 in vouchers for R&D projects to access research resources. This program is ideally suited for companies who may not have access to adequate internal R&D tools or personnel.
IRAP General Eligibility Requirements:
Although each variant of IRAP has unique eligibility criteria, in general to be eligible for this Canadian government funding program companies must have between 1-500 full time permanent employees, conduct internal R&D, and at least two years since their incorporation. It is also important to note that you cannot overlap IRAP and SR&ED expenses. It’s important to pick the most suitable program for your specific project; we can help you decide if you send us an overview of your project.
Learn more about IRAP and other Funding Programs
If you are interested in learning more about Canadian government funding and other research-focused grant programs you can contact one of our Canadian government funding experts directly or attend an upcoming small business funding workshop or webinar. As always, follow me on Twitter and sign up for our free Canadian government funding e-newsletter to stay up to date with funding news.