2010-2011 Graduate Research Awards for Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation

2010-2011 competition is CLOSED FOR APPLICATIONS

The Graduate Research Awards for Disarmament, Arms Control and Non-Proliferation are offered by The Simons Foundation and the International Security Research and Outreach Programme (ISROP) of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT). The primary objective of the awards is to enhance Canadian graduate-level scholarship on disarmament, arms control and non-proliferation issues.

Eight (8) awards of CAD$5,000 are available to master's and/or doctoral students to support the research and writing of short position papers that will be presented in a debate format at the Graduate Research Awards (GRA) Consultations hosted by DFAIT. Awards include travel support to Ottawa (domestic transportation, accommodation and meals), where successful candidates will be required to present their completed position papers in the form of a one-to-one debate during a special consultation at DFAIT in January 2011.

Deadline for applications: October 18, 2010
Shortlist of 16 candidates: November 22, 2010
Deadline for position papers: December 10, 2010
Selection of award recipients: January 7, 2011


Applications must include:

  • A letter of interest that supports your candidacy for the GRA programme
  • A writing sample (1,000 words) that addresses Non-Proliferation, Arms Control and Disarmament (NACD) issues
  • A resumé, including citizenship status (Canadians and Canadian Landed Immigrants are eligible)
  • Complete official transcripts of grades (in order to meet the deadline for applications, copies of official transcripts may be sent by fax or email, with the originals to follow by mail)
  • A letter of reference* from your supervisor
  • A second letter of reference*

*Please note that letters of reference must be on letterhead and include the writer’s signature.

Complete applications must be received by close of business on October 18, 2010 and may be sent by email to the attention of Elaine Hynes at The Simons Foundation:  elaine_hynes@sfu.ca


Following the initial review of applications, 16 candidates will be shortlisted for further consideration. Applicants will be contacted by November 22, 2010 to be advised if they have been selected as one of the 16 shortlisted candidates.

Each of the 16 shortlisted candidates will be assigned one of four debate topics (see below) and will be required to research and write, individually and independently, a 1,000-word position paper arguing for or against, as instructed. Reading lists for each topic will be provided, along with a position paper template. The position paper must be submitted by December 10, 2010.

The students whose position paper is deemed to make the strongest argument for and against each of the four debate topics will receive an award of CAD$5,000. Selection of the eight (8) award recipients will be made by January 7, 2011.


Award winners will be required to debate their positions at the GRA Consultations hosted by DFAIT in Ottawa in early 2011. The debates will be subject to the Chatham House Rule. At the debates, additional monetary awards of $2,000 and $1,500 will be presented to the two (2) students who make the most effective arguments in support of their position; $1,500 will be awarded to the runner-up. Winning position papers will be published by The Simons Foundation.

Please note that attendance at the GRA Consultations is a mandatory requirement of the award. Travel, accommodation and meal expenses will be provided for by ISROP, in accordance with Government of Canada Treasury Board Guidelines.

Successful award recipients will be notified by January 7, 2011.


  • Should nuclear capabilities remain an essential element of NATO’s defence strategy?
  • Should the Biological Weapons Convention Review Conference in 2011 revive the verification debate or focus instead on compliance?
  • In accordance with Canadian NACD policies, should Canada support the multilateralization of nuclear fuel cycle as a non-proliferation measure?
  • In order to be both effective and enforceable, should the scope of an Arms Trade Treaty be broad or narrow?

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