The coming into force of Bill 130 on July 1, 2011 signaled, among other things, the restructuring of Québec's research funding agencies. Grouped together under the banner "Fonds de recherche du Québec" (FRQ) and under the leadership of the Chief Scientist, the three Fonds (Nature et technologies, Santé, Société et culture) continue to pursue their mission to promote and financially support research, knowledge dissemination and student training in Québec in their respective fields. The reform principally aimed to ensure strong management regarding the support and promotion of Québec research and to foster and enhance synergies and partnerships between different research sectors in order to meet the major challenges facing Québec in the 21st century. The restructuring had the additional goal of improving administrative efficiency in accordance with best practices in governance and the principles of sustainable development. The Common General Rules reflect the will for close collaboration between the three Fonds in every aspect of their mission.
These rules aim to ensure consistency with the values put forward by the Fonds in their strategic plan. As such, they:
- respect academic freedom;
- promote the protection of intellectual property, for the benefit of the community;
- ensure the integrity of the evaluation processes so that funding decisions are made with rigor and fairness;
- emphasize the protection of personal and confidential information received by the Fonds in accordance with the Act respecting access to documents held by public bodies and the protection of personal information;
- reaffirm the importance of ethics in research;
- present the terms under which the public funds are to be awarded and
- managed with the highest standards of rigor and transparency and in accordance with the laws and standards in force;
- specify the conditions for the dissemination and valorization of the outcomes of research funded by the Fonds.