Postdoctoral Fellowships 2019/2020

BBDC Postdoctoral Fellowships
BBDC Fellowship In Diabetes Care (Funded By Eli Lilly & Boehringer Ingelheim)
Heffel Postdoctoral Fellowship
Sellers Postdoctoral Fellowship



The fellowships offered by the Banting & Best Diabetes Centre (BBDC) are in-training awards for individuals who hold (or are expecting to complete) a doctoral degree (PhD) or medical degree (MD). The objective of these awards is to attract and foster young investigators to initiate and/or continue research training in the field of diabetes.

The one-year fellowships are to be used for full-time diabetes research training at the University of Toronto or one of its affiliated institutions. These awards become tenable July 1, 2019 (and no later than September 1, 2019).

Eligibility Requirements:

  • The applicant’s proposed supervisor must be conducting diabetes research and must hold a faculty appointment with the University of Toronto at the level of Assistant, Associate or Full Professor.
  • The proposed supervisor must be employed full-time by the University of Toronto or a University of Toronto-affiliated institution.
  • The proposed supervisor must also be a registered member* of the BBDC at the time of application submission. (*Faculty who are new to the field of diabetes research and are not members of the BBDC can request free membership by contacting the Centre prior to submitting an application. For more information, please see the Membership section of this website.)
  • Applicants must have received a PhD after July 2015, or an MD after July 2010 and must be within their first four (4) years of post-graduate research training as of July 1, 2019. Candidates with more than four years of post-graduate research experience are not eligible to apply for this award. Interruptions or delays in a candidate’s post-graduate research training may be taken into account in determining eligibility. Valid interruptions include parental leaves, illness, or health-related family responsibilities. In rare instances where an individual who holds an MD has been in continuous accredited clinical specialty or subspecialty training since receiving an MD, such an individual may apply for a BBDC fellowship within the first 36 months after completing their clinical specialty or subspecialty training. Interruptions or delays should be discussed with the BBDC to determine eligibility prior to submission of an application.
  • Applicants must have received a PhD or MD, or expect to receive either degree by the award commencement date of July 1, 2019 (and no later than September 1, 2019). Documentation of degree completion will be required prior to the initiation of funding. The BBDC will not release funding to successful applicants who have not completed a PhD or MD at the time of the award commencement.
  • The applicant cannot be registered in another training program at the time of award commencement (e.g. clinical post-graduate training).
  • Applicants (including licensed MDs with clinical obligations) must be able to meet the minimum commitment of 90% of their time to the research proposed in the BBDC fellowship application.
  • Candidate may, but need not be pursuing a graduate degree.
  • This program is not restricted to Canadian citizens.
  • The research must be carried out at the University of Toronto or one of its fully affiliated institutions.
  • Applicants who were awarded a BBDC postdoctoral fellowship once before may apply for a second year of funding by submitting an new and complete application. Those who have received two postdoctoral fellowships from the BBDC are not eligible to apply.
  • IMPORTANT: The BBDC will not fund applicants who do not apply to national granting agencies for personal support such as the CIHR, NSERC, Diabetes Canada, etc. between September 1, 2018 and May 31, 2019.  Proof of application(s) submitted must be presented to the BBDC before funding will be released to successful applicants. Exceptions may be made for first year postdoctoral fellows who joined the supervisor’s lab after September 2018.
  • Potential applicants who are not sure if they meet the eligibility requirements of this funding program should contact the BBDC prior to submitting an application.


The stipend is determined by the degree and licensure held by the recipient at the time of commencement of funding:

  • PhD: $40,000 CAD
  • MD who does not hold a full or educational license to practice in a province or territory of Canada: $40,000 CAD
  • MD who holds a full or educational license to practice in a province or territory of Canada: $50,000 CAD

A travel or research allowance is not provided.

Duration of Support:

One year (for twelve consecutive months) normally starting on July 1, 2019 but no later than September 1, 2019.

Evaluation Criteria:

Applications will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • The research proposal, including relevance to diabetes
  • The training environment in which the applicant will carry out their research project
  • The candidate’s academic record and perceived potential as indicated by the transcripts and the letters of recommendation submitted with the application
  • Research or professional experience, awards/prizes received, and publication record (compared to others at the same academic level)
  • A minor component of the evaluation will be based on other factors that the reviewers consider relevant to the potential success of the applicant’s fellowship

Application Procedure:

Submit a completed application form to the BBDC by the deadline date. See the application form for complete instructions.

Download the 2019/2020 BBDC post-doctoral fellowships application form and submission instructions (PDF)

Application Deadline:

Applications must be received by 4 p.m., February 26, 2019.  Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.


All applicants will be notified of the funding decisions in May 2019. Funding decisions will also be posted on the this website.

Other Terms:

Other Awards: If a successful candidate is also successful in obtaining another award, he/she must accept that funding. If that award has a lower monetary value than the BBDC fellowship, the BBDC will make up the difference, but only if the research proposal of the other award is identical to the research proposed in the BBDC fellowship application.

Ethics Approvals: It is imperative that the research undertaken by the fellow conforms to ethical standards. The primary responsibility for ethical conduct lies with the Supervisor of the research project and their institution, which must have the appropriate ethics committees in place to review and authorize research proposals. By signing and submitting an application to the BBDC, the supervisor and fellow undertake the responsibility to ensure that the research they are conducting complies with all relevant guidelines involving human subjects, animals, biohazards, stem cells, etc.

Foreign Fellows:  Successful applicants who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada are responsible for obtaining all necessary documents required to work in Canada prior to commencing the fellowship (e.g. entry visa, work permit, social insurance number, etc.)

Presentation: Fellows will be required to give a presentation (either oral presentation or poster presentation) at the BBDC Annual Scientific Day to be held in May 2020.

Acknowledgements:  Successful applicants are required to acknowledge support from the Banting & Best Diabetes Centre post-doctoral fellowships program in publications, presentations, and communications arising from the supported research.  Failure to acknowledge this support will result in future ineligibility for BBDC funding programs for both the fellow and supervisor.

Reporting Requirement:

Successful applicants are required to provide a progress report and copies of publications arising from this funding within 60 days of the end of the funding period. Failure to provide this report will result in future ineligibility for BBDC funding programs for both the fellow and supervisor.


Rose LaBarbera
Phone: (416) 978-4656


The history of the Sellers Postdoctoral Fellowship