Investments in research infrastructure encourage college-industry collaborations

May 5, 2017

OTTAWA, ONTARIO — Minister of Science, Kirsty Duncan, announced more than $4.9 million in funding for state-of-the-art research infrastructure for four colleges at the annual conference of Colleges and Institutes Canada in Ottawa on May 2. The investments support research collaborations between colleges and industry that range from developing mobile technology to serve healthcare needs and making aircraft more energy efficient to fostering a smart economy and making better use of pulp and paper by-products.

The infrastructure awarded to Sheridan College, for example, will enhance the institution's mobile innovation technology expertise and will offer dozens of students each year opportunities to advance their training in solving real-world industry problems. One application of the research will focus on using biomedical sensors, wearable devices and other mobile technologies for gathering health data and detecting and treating disease.

The funding was made by the Government of Canada through the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) College-Industry Innovation Fund (CIIF), which aims to help colleges work with Canadian businesses to innovate and thrive, and through the Infrastructure Operating Fund, which helps institutions operate and maintain the new infrastructure. Sheridan College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning in Oakville, Ont., George Brown and Centennial colleges in Toronto, and Cégep Trois-Rivières in Québec all received funding.

Quotes

"Investing in research infrastructure is investing in the country's future success, as it gives talented people at colleges the tools and opportunities they need to thrive in leading industries, including the biotechnology sector. The successful partnerships that occur when researchers, students and entrepreneurs work together often lead to new jobs, new innovations and a stronger middle class.”

The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science

"It is exciting to see how applied research at colleges, Cégeps and polytechnics across Canada is benefiting businesses, and ultimately, the Canadian economy, " says Gilles Patry, President and CEO of the Canada Foundation for Innovation. "Investing in cutting-edge research equipment and labs offers colleges an opportunity to advance their capacity to solve real-world challenges." 

Gilles Patry, President and CEO, Canada Foundation for Innovation

Quick facts

Created in 1997, the CFI is contributing $3,800,676 for tools and equipment through the College-Industry Innovation Fund (CIIF) to four projects.

The CIIF enhances the capacity of colleges to support business innovation in Canada by giving them state-of-the-art, industry-relevant research infrastructure to build partnerships with the private sector in a specific area of strategic priority to the institution.

As part of this announcement, an additional $1,140,203 is being awarded under the Infrastructure Operating Fund, which helps institutions with the operating and maintenance costs associated with the new infrastructure.

This CIIF was announced along with the NSERC College and Community Innovation Program in support of university-college research collaboration, equipment, technology access centres and partnerships between colleges and companies.

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Associated links

College-Industry Innovation Fund
The CFI Research Facilities Navigator – An online directory of CFI-funded labs that are available to collaborate with the private sector.

Contacts

Malorie Bertrand
Media Relations and Social Media Specialist
Canada Foundation for Innovation
613.943.2580 (office)
613.447.1723 (mobile)
malorie.bertrand [at] innovation.ca

Media Relations
Innovation, Science, and Economic
Development Canada
343.291.1777
ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic [at] canada.ca

Stéfanie Power
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Science
343.291.2600
stefanie.power [at] canada.ca

College-Industry Innovation Fund (CIIF)

The College-Industry Innovation Fund provides colleges with funds to acquire significant research infrastructure that will enable partnerships with the private sector to support business innovation. This will boost their applied research and technology development capacity in any field of the natural and social sciences, engineering, humanities and health sciences, in order to help them expand existing partnership opportunities and attract additional private-sector partners.

Projects funded

Institution

Project title 

Maximum CFI contribution 

Cégep de Trois-Rivières

Optimisation des procédés de conditionnement pour le développement des produits biosour

cés

820,400 $

Centennial College

Deploying the Next Generation of Landing Gear for Energy Efficient Aircraft at Centennial College

$997,810

George Brown College

Design Centre for the Smart Economy

$982,466

Sheridan College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

Centre for Mobile Innovation

$1,000,000

TOTAL

4 projects 

$3,800,676

NOTE:
As part of this announcement, an additional $1,140,203 was awarded under the Infrastructure Operating Fund, a mechanism that assists institutions with the incremental operating and maintenance costs associated with the new infrastructure.