Challenge Questions Initiative


The COVID-19 Challenge Questions Initiative has been established by Ontario’s Ministry of Health to help ensure that researchers accessing the Ontario Health Data Platform (OHDP) address high priority COVID-19 research questions that are responsive to the needs of government. The initiative is also open to researchers not using OHDP.

The objective of the COVID-19 Challenge Questions Initiative is to accelerate the generation and translation of research and data analytic insights into action. It is meant to quickly generate responses with researchers working collaboratively with knowledge users to respond to Ontario’s most pressing needs. Projects ideally will provide fulsome responses to posted Challenge Questions in short timelines.

COVID-19 Challenge Questions are complex questions that are aligned with government priorities and the COVID-19 Health Research Priorities Framework. The COVID-19 Challenge Question Initiative serves as a call to action for collaboration across machine learning and the wider health research community. It will be based on an integrated knowledge translation (iKT) approach and challenges researchers to answer complex questions with actionable solutions.

Research areas and Challenge Questions have been developed through discussions with key Ministry COVID-19 advisory committees (for example the Science Advisory Table, Data Modelling Table, Evidence Synthesis Table) and with practitioners, researchers, data experts, policy knowledge users, and patients/family advisors.

Please note that the COVID-19 Challenge Questions Initiative is not a research grant funding opportunity. It is an opportunity for integrated knowledge translation. Expressions of Interest to the Challenge Questions should have sufficient funding to undertake the work.

Research Areas:

The Challenge Questions are grouped into seven broad research areas. Please click on each research area for more information on the Challenge Questions.

The submission process is outlined here.

Date modified: 2021-07-21