Project Grant Program – Individuals and Collectives

Project Grant Program – Individuals and Collectives

This document has been updated as of February 7, 2022.
Download the Terms of Reference as a PDF

The purpose of this document is to outline the roles and responsibilities of the volunteer assessment committee for the 2022 Project Grant Program for Individuals and Collectives. Committee members must review, understand, and adhere to these terms, the program guidelines, and to Calgary Arts Development’s group agreements.

Calgary Arts Development reserves the right to adjust assessment processes and the program timeline due to application volume. Applicants and assessors will be notified if significant changes occur.

Assessment committees will review applications in the online granting interface, and evaluate each application according to the criteria outlined in the Program Criteria & Scoring section of the guidelines.

Calgary Arts Development staff will download assessor evaluations into a scoresheet and assign numerical scores to the ratings. Each criteria statement will be weighted equally. The score assigned to each rating will be consistent across all criteria statements (e.g.: ‘Strongly Agree’ will always equal the same number of points).

The committee will discuss applications in a meeting facilitated by the program specialist for individuals and collectives. The committee’s final scores will result in a list of projects recommended for funding. Calgary Arts Development staff will review these recommendations and finalize the funding list.

Assessors are required to declare conflicts of interest according to the Conflict of Interest Policy. Calgary Arts Development thinks of conflicts of interest as close family members, people who are involved in the activity being applied for or where there is a real or perceived financial benefit. If in doubt, assessors are encouraged to talk with Calgary Arts Development staff. If a committee member has applied to the program or declared a conflict of interest, they will not assess those specific applications or be present for any discussions of those applications.

Assessors will report to Calgary Arts Development staff. All deliberations of the assessment committee as well as all records, material, and information obtained by a member and not generally available to the public shall be considered confidential.

Adhering to the Confidentiality Policy, assessors shall maintain the confidentiality of their deliberations and shall safeguard such records and information from improper access.

Calgary Arts Development reserves the right to remove individuals from the process or assessment committee if they do not adhere to the terms of reference, program guidelines, group agreements, conflict of interest policy, or confidentiality policy, or if their conduct is otherwise counter to the stated values and expectations of this program.

This program is intended to provide one-time project funding to individual artists and artist collectives in Calgary (known as Mohkínsstsisi in Blackfoot) working in any artistic discipline who pursue a professional practice. Assessors will be required to review, understand, and adhere to the program goals and criteria outlined in the Program Guidelines in their assessment of applications.

The Project Grant Program seeks to support projects that align with any of the following priority areas:

  • Projects that reflect and contribute to the vibrancy and vitality of Calgary’s arts sector and create opportunities for Calgarians to access artistic experiences.
  • Projects that support individual artistic and career development, including creation, professional development, business development, research, and experimentation.
  • Arts-centered projects that encourage everyday creativity, including cross-sector collaboration, creative economy, and neighbourhood-level community initiatives.

Projects may include:

  • Research, creation, development, production, presentation or dissemination of artistic work.
  • Professional, business or artistic career development activities.
  • Experimentation or development of new or adapted approaches to practice.
  • Cross-sector collaboration, creative economy and neighborhood level initiatives.

Our team is available to answer questions and to offer support at any time during the assessment process. Please contact the program specialist as early as you can to ensure they can provide the best support possible.

Calgary Arts Development is committed to open, fair and transparent processes. We will work one-on-one with assessors who experience barriers to access to develop accommodations that suit their abilities. Some examples of accommodations are:

  • Translation of written materials.
  • Interpretation for meetings.
  • Braille transcription.

Please contact with any questions. 

We acknowledge that we are on the traditional territory of the Blackfoot Nations—Siksika, the Piikani, and the Kainai; and also acknowledge the Beaver people of the Tsuut’ina and the Bearspaw, Chiniki and Wesley bands of the Stoney Nakoda First Nations, the Métis People of Region 3, and Indigenous peoples who make the Treaty 7 region their home.

As part of our responsibility to Calgarians to ensure equitable access to public funding, Calgary Arts Development is dedicated to addressing and working to eliminate institutional inequity in our programs, policies, and practices. We also acknowledge that our actions—both conscious and unconscious, past and present—have benefited some communities while limiting opportunities and outcomes for others including Indigenous communities, Black communities, persons of colour, persons with disabilities, Deaf communities, as well as persons with diverse sexual orientations or gender identities.

We envision a city where all artists have the freedom, agency and platform to share and amplify their stories, art, cultures and experiences: a city where Calgarians of all backgrounds can access, create and participate in art as part of their everyday lives.

To that end, Calgary Arts Development’s community investment team is accountable to ensuring that lines of communication are welcoming, clear, and open, and that the scoring process is fair and deeply considerate. Do not hesitate to reach out to us to support your questions, both philosophical and technical, especially where personal tastes and biases intersect with or complicate your ability to evaluate this program.

If there are applications that are assessed equally but insufficient funds in the grant budget to support these applications, projects proposed by artists belonging to an equity priority group (or in the case of a collective, where the majority are artists from equity priority groups) will be prioritized.

Applicants will be asked to fill out a voluntary self-identification form, however all questions are optional. Applicants that self-identify as belonging to one or more of these equity priority groups are automatically considered for this equity measure.

Responses are not visible to assessors. Access to this information is limited to the research and impact team and the grant program staff at Calgary Arts Development.

The equity priority groups identified for this program are Indigenous, Black, persons of colour, Deaf persons, persons with disabilities, persons living with mental illness, and 2SLGBTQIAP+ individuals. For details on each of these equity priority groups, please refer to the equity priority group descriptions.

Calgary Arts Development has adapted these priorities and descriptions from the Toronto Arts Council’s Equity Framework. We are grateful to the Toronto Arts Council for their work in this area.

Voluntary self-identification information may be used in aggregate to:

  • Generate statistics to measure how well Calgary Arts Development’s programs are reaching members of equity groups.
  • Ensure there is diverse representation in the membership of peer assessment committees and grant review panels.
  • Gather information to help Calgary Arts Development design, review and evaluate and improve its programs.
  • Plan outreach activities.
  • Report to Calgary Arts Development’s board and committees.

The membership of the peer assessment committees will be chosen through public nominations and staff expertise.

Anyone can ask to participate on a Calgary Arts Development assessment committee by completing the assessor nomination form or by emailing

Assessment committees are chosen to represent the broad diversity of Calgary and its artistic communities, including but not limited to: artistic discipline, gender, sexuality, age, religion, beliefs, nation, physical and neurological identities, etc.

  • Five to Seven-Member Committees: Each program stream will be assessed by a different committee. The volume of applications received will determine the number and size of committees required.
  • Committee Membership: Individual artists and arts workers with experience and knowledge from a variety of artistic disciplines and practices, who actively participate in, experience, and advocate for the work of the arts community.
  • Relevant skills, experience, and knowledge that will accommodate the range of applicants to be juried.
  • A generous spirit, exceptional listening skills and a willingness and ability to embrace change, complexity and different viewpoints.
  • An openness to productively and respectfully check in with bias.
  • An understanding and awareness of Calgary and region, and an insight into our social and cultural climate.
  • The respect of peers in the community.
  • The ability to function well within a committee structure.

Assessors are responsible for participating in training sessions, the full application review process, as well as any scheduled assessment meetings with the rest of the committee. Participation in each part of the assessment process is mandatory to ensure all perspectives are present throughout the process and applied fairly to each application assigned. Assessors’ time commitment for this program is:

April 2022: Assessor training

  • Participate in online training and orientation sessions, hosted by Calgary Arts Development, in preparation for the review process. Specific dates TBD.

April – June 2022: Online review process

  • Read and review each application assigned in full. Submit initial evaluations online in the grant interface, according to the program criteria.
  • Applications are expected to take between 30 to 45 minutes each to review.

June 2021: Assessment meetings

  • Participate in up to four full-day assessment meetings to discuss each application as a committee, and make final recommendations for funding. As regulations for gatherings and physical distancing remain in flux, assessments will likely occur remotely using online meeting tools, such as Zoom. Specific dates TBD.
  • Online meetings will not exceed five hours, including one hour for lunch and regularly scheduled breaks.

April 2022 – December 2023: Experience art

  • We strongly encourage assessors to attend arts activities of the applicants being assessed—during and after assessment. As part of your participation in the assessment process, Calgary Arts Development will provide up to two tickets anonymously on your behalf to any applicant’s public events, to ensure that you’re able to experience the work you are assessing within the community. Beyond this process, we hope that you will advocate for the arts in Calgary and encourage your respective communities to participate in Calgary’s arts sector.

Calgary Arts Development will provide an honorarium to assessors as a gift to recognize their time. The honorarium will be provided to assessors after the reviewing process is completed. Assessors may be reimbursed for additional expenses related to the assessment process—please contact us to discuss.

Honorarium rates for this program are as follows:

  • Reading Fee: $7.50 per application
  • Meeting Fees: For orientations and assessment meetings
    • Under four hours, $100
    • Over four hours, $300

Please contact the Specialist, Individuals and Collectives Programs, Taylor Poitras, with any questions about the assessment process and program at or 403.264.5330 ext.215.

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