Understand what you need to apply for an Interdisciplinary Education Grant, and what happens if your proposal is successful. The application deadline has been extended and proposals are now due on May 24, 2021 at 5pm PST.


University graduates are entering a world characterized by climate change, biodiversity loss, food and water inequality, and upheaval in economic and social systems. Addressing these issues requires interdisciplinary perspectives, innovation, and new approaches. If you have a great idea for a new interdisciplinary course or program, we’d love to hear from you. This year, in response to UBC’s 2019 Declaration of a Climate Emergency, we will give priority to proposals related to climate change and climate justice education. Applications are due on May 24, 2021.

To apply for an Interdisciplinary Education Grant, submit a proposal with another faculty member from a different Faculty, Department or discipline. Both of you must be in ongoing roles at UBC. Additional faculty members are encouraged to participate, and there is no limit on team size. We encourage proposals from faculty members who have not previously engaged with UBC Sustainability Initiative’s curriculum grant programs.

Grants are awarded for either a one-year or two-year period. Proposals for up to $10,000 per year are accepted. If you are applying for a two-year grant, a maximum of $10,000 in year one and $10,000 in year two can be awarded.

The grant can be used for curriculum project work, including hiring students or consultants, attending conferences, purchasing resources, and a teaching buy-out if approved by the grant holder's home Department and/or Faculty.

By accepting the grant, you commit to participating as a Sustainability Fellow. You will meet once a month throughout the academic year with other grant holders to report on your project progress, share ideas and collaborate on emergent projects.  

If successful, the two main applicants will both also receive an annual fellowship stipend of $2,500 in addition to the grant.



1. Faculty Teams
We accept proposals from faculty who wish to work together to build or refine curriculum on sustainability issues or topics that demand an interdisciplinary approach. Both faculty members must be in ongoing roles at UBC.

2. For Credit
Curriculum projects can be any scale, but must focus on a for-credit option. For example, your proposal could be to revise or create a course, revise or create a cluster of courses around an issue or theme, or develop a minor or a major program. Proposals for field, summer and online courses are also accepted.

3. Appropriate Budget
All project proposals must include a project budget. Your proposal should reflect the scale and scope of the project. For example, a proposal to revise or create a new course will require less funds than a proposal to develop a new minor program. Funding for hiring students must align with UBC student salary guidelines.

4. Accessible
Curriculum must be accessible to students (undergraduate or graduate) from two or more Faculties.

Explore recently funded projects to understand what a successful project looks like.



1. Review the application form – including the eligibility requirements, your responsibilities as a project lead, and signature requirements.

2. Prepare your proposal – this includes providing a summary of the project, a statement of interest, a detailed project description, the deliverables and anticipated benefits, and a project budget.

3. Provide your Curriculum Vitae – we require an up-to-date version of your CV in short form (up to a maximum of five pages).

4. Submit your application to the review committee

The Selection Committee includes the UBCV Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President Academic Affairs,  the USI Academic Director and the USI Director of Teaching, Learning & Student Engagement.

Download application form




The UBC Sustainability Initiative not only funds the Interdisciplinary Education Grants program, we also offer a range of support services.

Throughout the duration of your project we will:

  • Manage the Sustainability Fellowship program to connect faculty members across disciplines and share curriculum development knowledge and practice
  • Provide sustainability curriculum resources, such as UBC’s Sustainability Education Framework, and other general resources
  • Link you to curriculum experts, including Senate representatives
  • Suggest co-curricular student engagement options
  • Help promote new sustainability courses or programs to students across campus
  • Provide comprehensive information on sustainability courses and interdisciplinary themes at UBC*

*We encourage you to review UBC’s existing courses that address sustainability-related issues. Our team curates an up-to-date database 600+ sustainability courses. We can organize these courses by interdisciplinary theme and help expose access (e.g. pre-requisites) and availability (e.g. course popularity) barriers.



Contact Jean Marcus, Director of Teaching, Learning & Student Engagement, if you have questions or would like to discuss your idea for a proposal.