Step 1


Take about 15 minutes to search online for information regarding funding agency judges and what they do. Go to the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) website and explore SSHRC merit reviews.

Did you know that...

A research council typically consists of a number of eminent scholars and distinguished experts from industry and government who have been selected by the governing body of a funding agency. At the federal level in Canada, the Ministry of Industry oversees the operations of three federal granting agencies, referred to as the Tri-Council.

The Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) is one of these three councils, the others being Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC).

Combined, their mandate is to support post-secondary scientific inquiry in academia and in the public and private sectors. Council members are selected for their expertise and professionalism and are usually drawn from different sectors of society.


Based on your search of SSHRC, provide brief responses to the following questions: 

  1. What is meant by an independent merit review process?
  2. Briefly explain the value of a few of the principles that guide this process.
  3. What are the main qualifications for becoming a SSHRC reviewer (judge)?

Take another 15 minutes to explore the governance section of the SSHRC website. Look for prospects for a role-play name and title. Discuss the prospects with your fellow judges. Choose a name, professional title and institutional affiliation.

What is your: 

  1. Role-play name?
  2. Professional role-play title? e.g., Dr., Chairperson, Director, Lead researcher…
  3. Institutional affiliation? e.g., a university or research centre…

Assign each judge a specialized council position, such as President, Vice-President, Chairperson, Secretary, or Treasurer.

  1. What is your specialized position on the council?
  2. What are the other positions?