Purchase for Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) & Ontario Research Fund (ORF) Projects

What do I need before I can begin?


  • 'Fair market value' is the agreed upon price, negotiated at arm’s length, in an open and unrestricted market; it is calculated between knowledgeable and willing parties who are fully informed and not compelled to transact
  • 'Useful life of infrastructure' is the period of time, of a minimum of five years, over which the infrastructure provides benefits and is usable for its intended purpose
  • 'In-kind contributions' are are eligible non-monetary resources provided by external eligible partners

CFI Expectations for Award Management

The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) requires that the award recipient will use and manage funds according to the following expectations.

  • Maintain a verifiable audit trail to track expenditures and in-kind contributions, including the maintenance of accurate financial records and the retention of supporting documentation.
  • The sponsor recognizes eligible items involving in-kind contributions at fair market value. During the purchasing process, exercise careful judgment and ensure that in-kind contributions from vendors are real, properly valued and supported by documentation.
  • Install infrastructure in a timely fashion, as described in the proposal, and keep it operational over its useful life.
  • Use CFI funds to purchase infrastructure as identified in the proposal. Changes to infrastructure and cost variances exceeding $50,000 require approval from the sponsor.
  • Construction and renovation, when funded by the sponsor, are supported for essential housing and effective use of the infrastructure. Start construction or renovation within 18 months of the funding decision.

Essential Tools and Templates

Get Help with Expenditure Eligibility

Please contact the Research Services Office or Innovations & Partnership Office staff member, indicated as the Research Officer in the header section of the UTRAC.


  • Provide guidance and clarification on CFI/ORF expense eligibility
  • Assist in determining whether an expense is eligible on a specific research award
  • Support department and divisional staff in the application of expense eligibility rules and guidelines

VPRI Contact



Elizabeth Nguyen

Research Funding Officer
Research Services Office (RSO)
(416) 978-8489

Other Resources