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Research Grants and Scholarships

For more than 50 years, the RCGS has contributed to growing geographical understanding of Canada – its people, places, culture, environment and economic challenges – by funding research to broaden Canadians’ knowledge and appreciation of Canada.

As one of the oldest organizations in Canada funding geographical research, RCGS research grants and scholarships have enabled students to pursue their passion for geography, sometimes leading to ground-breaking results. This much-needed support has also helped launch the careers of Canada’s brightest minds in geography. 

The 2013 St. John’s Declaration states, among other tenets, “that geography needs to improve, update and advance geographic education” and that “spatial thinking increasingly informs scholarship in the natural, social and health sciences and the humanities.” As a signatory to that declaration, the RCGS believes this is a judicious and timely opportunity to move our Research and Grants Program forward.

We have restructured our awards to address the changing needs of Canadian university students and independent researchers as they tackle Canada’s emerging geographical issues. Our new directives will support the following target groups:

  1. Only graduate students registered in a Canadian university.
  2. Independent researchers, either as individuals or as a group. 

We have also established a new funding category, the “RCGS Graduate Scholarships,” open to any Canadian graduate student. This scholarship allows any graduate student whose focus is on geography and environmental studies in any region of Canada to apply for funding.

Our deadline for submissions is February 14.

Funding categories include:

  1. The James Bourque Northern Doctoral Scholarship (up to $6,000)
  2. The James Maxwell Human Geography Scholarship (up to $6,000)
  3. RCGS Graduate Research Scholarships (up to a total of $13,000 to be allocated to several submissions, with no one submission exceeding $5,000)
  4. RCGS Independent Research Grants (up to a total of $5,000)


Grant and scholarship recipients by year:

Selection of Independent Research Grants since 2000
James Maxwell Human Geography Scholarship since 1996
James Bourque Northern Doctoral Scholarship since 2000
RCGS Graduate Research Scholarships since 2014
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