Government of Canada stimulates world-class R&D - Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research solve problems, advance innovation and create jobs



    OTTAWA, Jan. 15 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of
State (Science and Technology) today announced the establishment of new
Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECRs).
    "I congratulate the successful applicants to the recent competitions for
CECRs," said Minister Goodyear. "Research and development creates jobs,
improves the quality of life of all Canadians and builds a more diverse and
resilient economy over the long-term. That's why we are proud to support these
world-class organizations."
    The Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research bring
together partners from the academic, private and public sectors to advance
research and facilitate commercialization of technologies, products and
services. The Minister announced that the Centre of Excellence for Integrated
Resource Management in Calgary will receive a contribution of $11.6 million
over five years. More information on this new centre is provided in the
attached backgrounder.
    The new Centres join the 11 CECRs launched by the Government of Canada in
a $163-million announcement one year ago.
    The CECR program is a key commitment of Canada's Science and Technology
Strategy, Mobilizing Science and Technology to Canada's Advantage, announced
in May 2007. Through Budgets 2007 and 2008, this Government has invested
significantly in support of the S&T strategy's objectives, which aim at
building a stronger future for Canadian families and businesses.
    This program is administered by the Networks of Centres of Excellence
(NCE) Secretariat. Launched in 1989, the NCE is an initiative of the three
federal granting agencies-the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research
Council of Canada (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council
of Canada (SSHRC) and the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR)-in
partnership with Industry Canada.
    "The NCE program is proud to be a part of the Government's vision for a
more prosperous, advanced and competitive Canada," said Dr. Suzanne Fortier,
Chair of the NCE Steering Committee and President of NSERC. "These new CECRs
will work on important, multifaceted Canadian problems while bringing the very
best ideas to the marketplace. We look forward to helping them achieve their
maximum potential and impact."
    The total funding requested by the successful applicants came to $62.3
million. Information on the other Centres will be announced shortly.

    
                                 BACKGROUNDER

           Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research

    The new Centres of Excellence for Commercialization and Research (CECRs)
bring together partners from the academic, private and public sectors to
advance research and facilitate commercialization of technologies, products
and services. They are a key element of the Government of Canada's Science and
Technology (S&T) Strategy, Mobilizing Science and Technology to Canada's
Advantage, introduced in May 2007. This multi-year framework is creating an
environment that encourages innovation partnerships between the academic,
private and public sectors, and will guide the intelligent, strategic
investment of public funds.
    Budget 2007 provided $195 million over two years to create the CECRs. The
first competition, worth $165 million, was launched in June 2007 and was aimed
at creating Centres in the four S&T priority areas: health and life sciences,
information and communications technologies (ICT), natural resources and
energy, and environmental sciences and technologies. The Government of Canada
announced 11 CECRs in February 2008. The second competition, worth $62
million, was launched in May 2008 and targeted the ICT and environment
sectors. The Centres are funded for five years and are expected to be
self-sufficient at the end of that period.

    Centre of Excellence for Integrated Resource Management (CEIRM),
    Calgary, AB

    The Centre of Excellence for Integrated Resource Management's vision is to
develop intelligent, integrated resource management tools to observe, monitor,
forecast and manage Alberta's land and natural resources. A partnership
involving the Universities of Calgary, Alberta and Lethbridge, the Alberta
Information and Communications Technology Institute, the Province of Alberta
and industry, the Centre will build a substantial, sustainable geomatics-based
ICT capability in Alberta and Canada. The CEIRM will be involved in four
activities critical to the advancement of integrated resource management:
education and training; R&D; pre-commercialization of R&D, and partnering with
and providing services to industry. The Centre will go well beyond traditional
R&D, ensuring real potential for geomatics commercialization by confirming
industry needs up-front, taking a collaborative approach and clearing paths
toward deployment.

    Centre Director: Dr. Naser El-Sheimy, Professor and Head of the Department
of Geomatics Engineering, Schulich School of Engineering, University of
Calgary.
    




For further information:

For further information: Gary Toft, Director of Communications, Office
of the Minister of State (Science and Technology), (613) 943-7599; Natasha
Gauthier, Communications Manager, Networks of Centres of Excellence, (613)
996-0390, (613) 668-0214 (cell)


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