CFI Celebrates Excellence in Canadian Science Writing, Awards Second Annual ‘Superstars of Innovation Writer’s Award’

June 26, 2006

OTTAWA, June 26, 2006 - Canadian science writing took centre stage this weekend when the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) presented its second annual Superstars of Innovation Writer’s Award at the Canadian Science Writer’s Association (CSWA) annual meeting in St-John’s, Newfoundland. This year’s honour went to freelance writer Brian Bergman, who won for his article entitled “Stem Cell Central,” a brilliant, in-depth account of the pioneering stem-cell research being carried out across Canada. The article appeared in the May 30, 2005 issue of Maclean’s magazine.

“Writing about scientific research and innovation is one of the most challenging and interesting things a journalist can do,” said winner Brian Bergman. “In this article, I tried to throw a spotlight on a remarkable group of scientists who are making Canada a world leader in stem cell research, a field that holds the potential to treat such debilitating conditions as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease, and spinal cord injuries. I’m delighted at winning this award and hope that in some small way it helps publicize the amazing research that’s going on in Canada.”

The Superstars of Innovation Writer’s Award, presented by the CFI in collaboration with the CSWA, was created to recognize the writer of an outstanding story about a talented person or team pushing the boundaries of knowledge and innovation in Canada.

“This award was designed to help promote both the outstanding innovators working in Canada, as well as the top-notch science writers that help bring their critical work to the attention of the public,” said Dr. Eliot Phillipson, President and CEO of the CFI. “By demystifying a complex subject in an intelligent and accessible way, Brian’s article proves that science writing is indeed alive and well in Canada.”

“Brian Bergman's article isn't just about stem cells, although it does describe how dynamic that field of research is,” said Jay Ingram, Chair of the judging panel. “Brian also demonstrates how progress in understanding stem cells has been made possible by involving scientists across the country. That is how good science works and that is how Canada can compete in the global scientific arena.”

The Judging Panel

  • Jay Ingram, Host/Producer, Discovery Channel (Panel Chair)
  • Robert Davidson, Director, Programs and Operations, CFI
  • Isabelle Fontaine, Director of Communications, Office of the Honorable Maxime Bernier, Minister of Industry
  • Peter Nicholson, President Council of Canadian Academies
  • Kathryn O’Hara, CTV Chair in Science Broadcast Journalism, Carleton University
  • Owen Roberts, Director, Research Communications, University of Guelph
  • David Spurgeon, Freelance medical and science journalist

The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) is an independent corporation created by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI’s mandate is to strengthen the capacity of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and non-profit research institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that benefits Canadians.

For more information:

Angus McKinnon
Coordinator, Media Relations
Canada Foundation for Innovation
(613) 996-3160
angus.mckinnon [at] innovation.ca