Nova, the Ontario Arts Council’s (OAC) new online grant application and management system, will be a reality as of mid-December 2016.
Beginning mid-December 2016, applicants will be able to apply online to 2017 granting program deadlines. The new application process will be easier for applicants – eliminating the paper-driven steps that included photocopying and postage. This process will be more straightforward, efficient and cost-effective for both applicants and OAC.
A small number of programs with fall 2016 deadlines have been chosen as Nova pilot projects. We have begun with two programs for operating funding, Theatre Organizations and Presenter/Producer. We expect to pilot three programs for project funding. These will be identified on their program pages on OAC’s website, two months before the existing 2016 program deadline. Applicants to all other 2016 granting programs will continue to follow the paper process to apply.
In preparation for Nova, OAC has also developed a new Funding Framework organizing all of our programs under the four funding streams below. OAC’s six priority groups remain a key focus in all programs and streams.
The OAC currently has 86 granting programs. Under the new funding framework, we are reducing the number of OAC programs in 2017, by 27 per cent. This reorganization will introduce more consistency across OAC and make it easier for applicants to find funding opportunities. The OAC will maintain its commitment to discipline-based programs and peer assessment processes.
Where programs are merged under the new funding framework, their budgets will be combined as well. No reductions to 2017-18 program budgets are planned.
Most program modifications will be implemented in 2017-18. Some program areas (Indigenous Arts and Francophone Arts) will not change until 2018-19.
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When OAC held province-wide consultations to develop the 2014 Strategic Plan, Vital Arts and Public Value, we received significant feedback. One of the things we heard was that applicants wanted OAC to significantly simplify its processes and programs.
The implementation of Nova provided the impetus to review OAC’s program design and find opportunities to standardize programs wherever possible.
As part of our move to online applications, many 2017 program deadlines will shift to new dates. Some programs will now have additional deadlines. More details on 2017 programs will be available over the coming weeks. All remaining 2016 deadlines will stay the same.
The OAC will launch a new website in mid-December to coincide with the shift to Nova. The website will be much easier to navigate than OAC’s current site – for example, you will soon be able to search for granting programs based on type of activity, priority group and more.
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