Numbers

Number 20 / Volume 23 / December 21, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

The future of Canada’s nuclear industry is now in full play but so far the government is revealing only a few of the cards in its hand. The announcement of a formal bidding process for the CANDU business of Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd (AECL) does little to clarify the future of the crown agency’s research and technology division and reliance on a 53-year old reactor well past its prime (see page 3).

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The Ninth Annual RE$EARCH MONEY Conference

The Ninth Annual RE$EARCH MONEY Conference

“Industrial R&D: Is Canada Really Lagging”
March 25, 2010 at the National Arts Centre

The large industrial research lab is no longer the norm. Multinational firms now globally distribute their R&D and collaborate with partners in public and private sector institutions.

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Opinion Leader:
Paul Dufour

Paul Dufour

Perspectives in science policy
How to Recognize a Minister for the Future
By Paul Dufour

I have yet to meet someone with a business card that says Minister for the Future — at least not yet. Some would say it is almost an oxymoron.

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St Arnaud leaves CANARIE after 15 years

Bill St Arnaud, CANARIE’s chief research officer (CRO) and an internationally recognized expert on research and education (R&E) networks and network energy usage, has left the organization after a 15-year career, effective immediately.

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News Bites

News Briefs

CATA calls for elimination of key barrier to US VC

Carleton Univ spin-off Canada's most innovative

CFI awards $59.4 million in new LOF funding

NanoQuebec issues call for targeted research projects

Ontario launches $10-million pilot digital IP fund

NRC and Agrisoma Biosciences launch project

People

Dr Jeff Zabudsky

Penny Park

Rod Charko

Number 19 / Volume 23 / December 9, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Alignment is the name of the game as Canada’s S&T policy makers seek to streamline and re-focus their efforts towards greater commercial and social outcomes. The rush to re-align organizations created ad hoc over the past several years is becoming a national and provincial pastime with Alberta and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council the latest converts (pages 1 & 5).

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The Ninth Annual RE$EARCH MONEY Conference

The Ninth Annual RE$EARCH MONEY Conference

“Industrial R&D: Is Canada Really Lagging”
March 25, 2010 at the National Arts Centre

The large industrial research lab is no longer the norm. Multinational firms now globally distribute their R&D and collaborate with partners in public and private sector institutions.

Read More

Three new centres added as NCE program emerges as key driver of innovation agenda

Conforming to STIC sub-priorities

The Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) continue their impressive growth which has seen the program triple in size over the past 10 years. Three more networks added to the roster last week are the first to operate under revamped criteria aimed at encouraging commercialization and tied closely to the government’s priorities and sub-priorities for science and technology.

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Opinion Leader:
Adam Holbrook

Adam Holbrook

A new approach to S&T policy
By Adam Holbrook

At the end of October, a very unusual but important event occurred in Toronto. Young scientists and engineers from Canada got together and held their own S&T Policy conference because they perceived a lack of guidance from the usual sources of S&T policy.

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Alberta set to unveil four new corporations to better connect science and industry

Still seeking federal engagement

Alberta’s S&T community will mark the New Year with four new corporations designed to better connect players in the provincial innovation system and beyond. The dramatic re-alignment of its key programs reduces the number of S&T organizations from 11 to four, and is part of a long-awaited strategy to connect industry with scientific expertise and build on the billions of dollars Alberta has invested in its research base.

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News Bites

News Briefs

New company to develop, market brain fitness products

DNA-based wheat test receives $8.9 million

COM DEV receives $5.2M for micro-satellite program

Caisse and Solidarity invest $78.3M in GLV acquisition

Ontario demo fund invests in Vive Nano technology

iNovia invests in online ad metrics platform

RSC to examine climate change & marine biodiversity

Second round of college projects receives $20 million

BDC to finance CANMET MTL move to McMaster

BC clean energy cooperative formed to assist sector

JDRF and feds fund diabetes clinical trials network

CANARIE part of new IceLink

People

Dr David Lizius

Karimah Es Sabar

Howard Gwin

Number 18 / Volume 23 / November 23, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

The 20th anniversary of the launch of Canada’s Networks of Centres of Excellence (NCE) finds the program larger and more diverse than at any time in its history. Three distinct streams of centres now occupy centre stage in the suite of federal programs underpinning S&T and commercialization.

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Opinion Leader:
Dr Chad Gaffield

Dr Chad Gaffield

Innovating Canada for the Digital Age
By Dr Chad Gaffield

Researchers and students across the social sciences and humanities are now at the heart of research and innovation as digital content and the use of digital media become the focus of attention in the Digital Age.

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News Bites

News Briefs

CANARIE announces Green IT project winners

Xenon Pharmaceuticals to collaborate with CDRD

CVCA calls for immediate action to address VC crisis

SR&ED changes to benefit companies that export

Feds pumps nearly $31 million into Ontario firms

CSA provides $8 million for 26 R&D contracts

People

Dr Gary Kachanoski

Number 17 / Volume 23 / November 9, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Since the implosion of the tech and dot com bubbles in 2001, the field of photonics has undergone a massive transformation that is largely unappreciated by policy makers and the public. Once exclusively associated with telecommunications, photonics is increasing important in a diverse range of sectors from aerospace and automotive to environmental technologies and health.

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Opinion Leader:
Dr Robert Crawhall

Dr Robert Crawhall

Nanotechnology: Canada stands on fringe of greatness
By Dr Robert Crawhall

I recently watched my first episode of the “science fiction” TV show Fringe. The opening sequence provides a carefully crafted list of science and pseudo science designed to entice and disturb the intellectual end of the Fox networks viewing audience — psychokenesis, paranormal communication, teleportation, precognition, transmogrification — and there it was…nanotechnology.

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News Bites

News Briefs

Alberta innovation system realignment proceeding

Precarn funds 14 start-ups through T-GAP program

$5-million gift boosts mental health & addictions research

Saskatchewan enhances immigration program

NRC, Agfa and McMaster to create medical test registry

People

Dr Gary Albach

Dr Darren Lawless

Tyler Nelson

Number 16 / Volume 23 / October 26, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

It’s been a long haul for Canadian policy makers aiming to increase the funding pool for health research. Since the 1990s when cash-starved health researchers were unable to compete internationally, a series of champions have advocated a simple target of 1% of health care costs devoted to research.

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Genome Canada head abruptly resigns

Dr Martin Godbout has resigned as president and CEO of Genome Canada after 10 years in the position, effective immediately. Godbout’s departure was announced in a statement from Genome Canada board chair Dr Thomas Caskey, which said he was returning to the private sector “and pursue other opportunities in the genomics field”.

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Opinion Leader:
Dr Peter Morand

Peter Morand

Closing the gap between policy implementation & high impact technologies
By Dr Peter Morand

At the Canadian Science Policy Conference to be held in Toronto October 28-30, the topic of one of the panels is Governance of Emerging Technologies.

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News Bites

News Briefs

CANARIE upgrades network, funds new projects.

CIDA unveils food security research program

People

Dr Pierre Coulombe

Dr Peter Hackett

Ray Bassett

Dr David Bernard

Brent Herbert-Copley

Number 15 / Volume 23 / October 8, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Science policy and effective communications are becoming critical components of the S&T enterprise these days and no wonder. With an approaching federal Budget, tight government finances and looming deadlines for key S&T organizations, it’s increasingly important that both governments and the public appreciate the importance of strategically funding activities to keep Canada competitive and on the cutting edge of innovation.

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Science media centre officially launched

A bold initiative to increase the quality and quantity of science stories in the media was officially launched last week with the unveiling of the Science Media Centre of Canada (SMCC). Conceived three years ago as a behind-the-scenes facilitator of science information, the SMCC is raising its initial funding requirements with charter memberships of $5,000 each and is aiming to commence operations next summer.

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Opinion Leader:
Denzil Doyle

Denzil Doyle

Finding receptors for Canadian technology
By Denzil Doyle

Anyone who is involved in the management of our publicly funded R&D facilities — whether they be in our universities or government laboratories — will tell you that they are under enormous pressure to generate revenue from the technology that flows from their R&D.

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News Bites

News Briefs

U of A and Helmholtz team to conduct oilsands research

Rice University and nanoAlberta join forces

Saskatchewan launches first health research chair

Peraso technologies secures $10 million in financing

New $5-million software engineering chair at Queen's

Chairs program funds another 181 chairholders

People

Sylvain Cofsky

Steve Romanyshyn

Royal Hinther

Number 14 / Volume 23 / September 22, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

It’s an unfortunate fact of political life that the four-year election cycle and minorities governments are inherently opposed the support of R&D with long-term potential. Witness the perplexing decline in support for the hydrogen and fuel cell sector.

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New microelectronics innovation centre aims to link Canada into emerging North American research corridor

The federal and Quebec governments are making a pitch to carve out a world class niche in the microelectronics sector with $178-million in grants to establish a research centre in Bromont QC. With a focus on microchip assembly and packaging and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), the Centre’s backers say it fits strategically with the growing North American microelectronics corridor that stretches throughout the northeastern part of the continent.

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Feds support CLS operating funds

The Canadian Light Source (CLS) has received $44 million over four years bringing it a step closer to securing the necessary support to operate the growing national synchrotron facility over the next several years.

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Opinion Leader:
Mark Betteridge

Mark Betteridge

Is Canada becoming a one-RIM wonder?
By Mark Betteridge

In Canada we’ve got 26 research parks. The pipelines in the emerging economies of India and China are each packed with 20 to 30 new research parks that are coming online in the next few years.

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News Bites

News Briefs

Bioniche follows good FY, with promising new deal

Energy ministers strategy includes sharing R&D

MDA signs imagery data deal with ESA

Canada improves competitiveness ranking

MDS Inc's R&D outlays and revenue decline

S&T funding for Southern Ontario re-announced

RIM ranks 8th globally for wireless telecom patents

Ontario Genomics Institute launches affiliates program

People

Steve West

Dr Sara Diamond

Raymond Leduc

Drs Louise Proulx

Number 13 / Volume 23 / September 2, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Each year, Canadian academic institutions participate in about 15,000 research contracts, with a sizeable number undertaken with industry. The problem is, there’s no aggregate data to demonstrate the extent to which industry collaborates with academia.

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Opinion Leader:
Dr Jonathan D. Linton

Dr Jonathan D. Linton

Capitalism from Stalin’s gulags
By Dr Jonathan D. Linton

No needn’t look any further than Stalin’s gulags to see that brilliant ideas can be stifled. But their impact – in this case on understanding the nature of science and technologies’ interaction with the economy – cannot.

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News Bites

News Briefs

Major microelectronics centre for Bromont unveiled

Nexterra receives $7.7 million for biomass energy system

BDC first up with FedDev funding for Southern Ontario

SAIT unveils design for huge trades and tech complex

People

Dr Anthony De Vuono

Dr Prakash Patnaik

Mitch Davies

Iain Stewart

Dr Molly Shoichet

Number 12 / Volume 23 / July 29, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Nortel Networks’s bankruptcy fire sale of key technology assets presents the federal government with another difficult and depressing dilemma over whether to intervene in the marketplace and block their sale to foreign entities.

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Alberta Ingenuity support resources industry by adding fifth centre for geomatics research

Alberta Ingenuity is launching a new centre to meet surging demand for new research into resource management, utilizing approximately $85 million in provincial, federal and private sector funding. Described as the first research centre of its kind in the world, Tecterra will focus on geomatics research collaboration between industry and researchers from Alberta’s three universities as well as other players.

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Pfizer invests $6 million in colon cancer research in Ontario

Pfizer invests $6 million in colon cancer research in Ontario

Pfizer Global Research and Development is investing $6 million over three years and working with a team of Ontario-based scientists to develop a large clinical biobank to identify molecular signatures for colorectal cancer.

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Opinion Leader:
Ron Freedman

Ron Freedman

Zero Sum Gain
By Ron Freedman

It is not often that governments get something for nothing and in the process do the right thing. This year and next are exceptions. This year the federal government doubled the budget of the National Research Council’s IRAP (Industrial Research Assistance Program) by adding an extra $100 million to the pot.

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IRAP and NRC funding announced

The federal government has been making a flurry of funding announcements for the National Research Council (NRC) and its Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) as it strives to keep the spotlight on S&T during the dog days of summer.

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News Bites

News Briefs

Hydro One contributes $2.5 million to Univ of Waterloo

NRC's PBI teams with Dutch plant genomics consortium

Innovative new engineering firm locates in Waterloo

Allostera raised $17 million in VC financing

Wi-LAN boosts wireless patent portfolio to 370

People

Robert Dunlop

Dr Feridun Hamdullahpur

Mark Romoff

Number 11 / Volume 23 / July 8, 2009

Editorial:
Mark Henderson, Editor

Ontario’s decision to rationalize its commercialization programs is good news for companies seeking to capitalize on the province’s large and growing stock of promising S&T. With a strong client focus and proposed reward system for the most effective organizations, industry will be relieved from navigating the current maze of programs on offer.

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Opinion Leader:
Denzil Doyle

Denzil Doyle

How latter day Nortel lost its “money gene”
By Denzil Doyle

To say that Nortel will be missed on the Ottawa high-tech scene is the understatement of the decade. Over the years, it has served as a convenient source of people and technology for companies of every size.

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Ontario invests in Toronto Ubisoft studio

The Ontario government is investing $263 million over 10 years to bring video game developer Ubisoft to Toronto — the French company’s first Canadian expansion outside of Quebec and British Columbia.

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Feds boost BDC venture capital to help offset retreat of private sector funds

The federal government has made its largest single injection of funds into the Business Development Bank of Canada’s (BDC) venture capital (VC) operations with $350 million over three years. The size and focus of the government’s intervention reflects the serious decline in VC financing from the private sector as firms become increasingly desperate for growth financing to fund technology development and marketing.

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News Bites

News Briefs

Support boosted for former Soviet weapons scientists

MDS sells Phase II-IV operations to INC Research

MaRS Innovation to commercialize two technologies

Test bed urged to stimulate government procurement

MSBi Valorisation introduces new management team

Correction

TRIUMF adds three new members

People

John Milloy

Peter MacArthur

Gord Owen

Dr Peter Nicholson