Science POP Competition


A Quebec-wide Scientific Communication Initiative 

Science POP is a Quebec-wide scientific communication competition brought forward by the IRCM and supported by the FRQS with the mission of promoting dialogue between science and society.

The Science POP initiative is part of a common vision of research institutions and funding agencies to put science to the benefit of society. In this spirit, this competition aims to awaken scientific curiosity in the general population of Quebec and to encourage the training of the next generation of scientists, beyond the laboratory experience: to pass on knowledge; to promote research; to be an actor of change. 

Download the Guide (in French) Participate Now

The Science POP

Science POP offers three distinct challenges briefly described below.

Learn more : Download Information about the challenges

Internal competitions

Following the official launch in September 2022, Science POP will develop across the province of Quebec in the form of internal competitions, held between April 1 and 30, 2023 by institutions devoted to Health Sciences research and to training graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Finalists will then proceed to the next step: a Grand Final, provincial-level contest organized by the IRCM. For its 2022-2023 edition, Science POP is aiming for fifteen (15) participating institutions, from all regions of Quebec!

The Grand Final

The Science POP Grand Final will be held in late May 2023, in the Greater Montreal area. Details of the event (date, place, etc.) will be announced in November 2022. Finalists will have to attend the competition in person before a diverse audience. The presentations will, however, be broadcast live and online to facilitate remote access to the event. Award winners of the Science POP competition will be honoured during the closing ceremony of the provincial final. A public announcement of the overall winners will be published during the following week by the Governance Committee.

How to

The Science POP Governance Committee is proud to announce that the 2022-2023 edition of the competition will host the following institutions across the province (in alphabetical order):

Douglas Research Centre
Nicolas Cermakian, Deputy Director – Academic Affairs

Montreal Heart Institute Research Centre
Frederic Lesage, Deputy Director – Research Centre

Université de Montréal Hospital Research Centre
Nathalie Grandvaux, Deputy Scientific Director – Student and Postdoctoral Affairs

CHU de Québec-Université Laval Research Centre
Aline Dumas, Event Coordinator

CHU Sainte-Justine Research Centre
Marianne Arteau, Principal Advisor – Academic Affairs

Structural Biology Research Centre / McGill University
Jean-François Trempe, Professor and Member of the executive committee

Sustainable Health Research Centre
Marie-Anik Robitaille, Research Development Advisor

Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation of Greater Montreal
Chantal Bibeau, Information Agent

Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration
Martine Légaré, Communications Technician

Montreal East Island Integrated University Health and Social Services Center
Caroline Lamarche, Assistant Professor

Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer
Julie Mantovani, Manager – Academic Affairs

Montreal Clinical Research Institute
Christine Matte, Academic Affairs Coordinator

Institut national de la recherche scientifique
Yannick Machabée, Research Agent – Student Life Services Officer

Université de Montréal
Catherine Fouron, Advisor – Professional development

As a reminder, all Quebec universities offering graduate programs and postdoctoral fellowships in health sciences research and all research centers or institutes associated with a Quebec-based university and whose main mission is to train the next generation of students in health sciences are eligible to hold a Science POP competition. It is not possible to hold more than one competition in the same institution (departments, programs, campuses, etc.). 

Organize an internal Science POP competition
Participating institutions will be offered support from the Science POP coordinator, Sara Marullo, in the organization of their venue and will have access to a variety of resources via the Toolbox, whether to promote the event, to encourage student participation, to secure sponsorships or to recruit volunteers.

For more details:

Download the Guide (in French)  Participating Institution Contract (in French)  Date Derogation Request (in French) Acknowledgement of participation - Internal competition (Word format)

Sign up for a challenge
Individuals eligible to take up a Science POP challenge are: 

  • Students registered full-time in a master's or a doctoral program at a university based in the Quebec Province, and carrying out research activities related to health sciences; 
  • Researchers conducting a postdoctoral fellowship in health sciences at a university, a research center or an institute based in the Quebec Province;
  • Graduate students from another Canadian province or from abroad, doing a research internship at a university, center, or research institute based in the Quebec Province. 

How to prepare
Virtual training workshops, given by specialists in communication, science outreach or journalism, will be provided free of charge to candidates who wish to be advised for their Science POP presentation. These workshops, offered in French and English, will be held in March 2023. The dates and registration procedures will be announced shortly. Download the information about the challenges

Download information about the challenges Candidate Commitment Form

At the end of the Science POP Grand Final contest, the judges will submit their evaluation grids to the Governance Committee, which will determine the 1st and 2nd place finalists for each challenge. In addition, audience members will have the opportunity to express their appreciation of each with an online rating (1 to 5 stars).

For each challenge, a special mention will be given to the candidate who represents the "People’s choice". The three finalists in each challenge will receive an honorary plaque and a cash prize valued at: 

•    1st place: $1000 - Chief Scientist Award 
•    2nd place: $500  
•    Special Mention: $250 — People's Choice Award 

One of the objectives of the Science POP contest is to contribute to the training of the next generation of scientists. The 1st finalists of each challenge will be given the opportunity to live an immersive experience in the field of scientific communication. To this end, in addition to the Chief Scientist Award, the winners will be offered the chance to complete a one-week internship in a relevant professional environment of their choice, from a predetermined list of options. Details about the internship opportunities will be given in November 2022.

Important dates
to remember

Whether as an institution or as a participant in the challenges, stay tuned for the main steps of the competition until the Grand Final in 2023.

October 3 to 31, 2022
Application period for participating institutions. Applications will be received between October 3 at 12 p.m. and October 31, 2022, at 12 p.m.
April 1 to 30, 2023
Holding of internal competitions of participating institutions.
May 1, 2023
Deadline for institutions to register the winners of their internal competition for the grand finale.
End of May 2023
Holding of the Grand Final organized by the IRCM and announcement of the finalists for the 2023 Science POP edition.

Joining the
Science POP Initiative, means...

For students
in biomedical sciences:

… to develop scientific communication skills

… to engage with your community

For the general public:

… to acquire on biomedical research

… to learn more about the benefits and impact of scientific research

For the Quebec Society:

… to counter misinformation

… to contribute to developing a strong scientific literacy


« Thanks to one of the presentations,
I was able to recognize the characteristics of the syndrome mirror movements in my son. I quickly communicated with the researcher supervising this
research project and my boy will
soon join a clinical study. »

Valérie Lavastre
Audience Member, 2021 Edition

The IRCM's

With Science POP, the IRCM is offering a scientific popularization event aimed at bringing together around science Quebec's main biomedical research players in, their next generation of scientists and the general public, in a spirit of healthy competition, exchanges and of learning. In keeping with the long tradition of collaboration between the IRCM and other research institutions in Quebec, this competition’s impact is intended to be provincial and collective. Above all, Science POP is thus a unique opportunity to create a healthy bridge between the scientific community and the population, by promoting the excellent work carried out in all the research institutions of the province and making it accessible to all.
The IRCM understands that this exercise only makes sense if it respects the fundamental principles that govern scientific thinking and give it its strength: observation, rigour and collegiality. Consequently, the IRCM is committed to take all necessary and commonly accepted measures to conduct Science POP with respect, transparency, fairness and impartiality.
Good luck to all!    



Sara Marullo, 
Project Coordinator – Scientific popularization, IRCM
Christine Matte, 
Coordinator – Academic Affairs, IRCM
Sébastien Sabbagh, 
Director – Academic Affairs, IRCM
Jennifer Estall, 
Associate Vice President – Scientific Life, IRCM
Michel Cayouette, 
Vice president – Research and Academic Affairs, IRCM
Valérie Morquette, 
Senior Advisor – Communications and Public Affairs, IRCM
Florence Meney, 
Director – Communications and Public Affairs, IRCM
Maria Galipeau, 
Representant – Students' Association, IRCM
Michaël Bernier, 
Program Manager, FRQS
Manon Pelletier, 
Director, Development of projects and partnerships, FRQ


Contact us

Sara Marullo
(514) 987-5783

Media Contact: Florence Meney
(514) 755-2516


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