Person: Kirsty Duncan

Editorial 31-7

The National Research Council is embarking on a re-alignment of its core strengths by reaching out to academia and other players in the federal innovation system (see lead article). NEOMED is making major strides retaining critical pharmaceutical talent in the Montreal region and its actively considering a third site for its potent combination of research expertise and business collaboration

Pressure grows to increase support for fundamental research, tie funding levels to demand

Canada’s support for fundamental research has fallen by a third between 2005 and 2015, but many in the Canadian research community are concerned the federal government doesn’t appear to be in any hurry to take action. The deterioration in federal support — occurring over a period closely corresponding to the decade in which the government of Stephen Harper was in power — witnessed a major swing in funding from fundamental to applied research, with 40% of researchers reporting a similar shift in their focus.

R$ talks with Dr. Rebecca Keiser — NSF international chief pursues new collaborations with Canada

President Donald Trump intention to slash key areas of his government’s research spending is inadvertently providing an incentive for new research collaborations between the United States and Canada.
The president’s fiscal 2018 budget, unveiled earlier this year, proposed massive cuts for climate science, medical research and energy projects across government, including major granting organizations such as the National Science Foundation (NSF), National Institutes of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency. Despite a reprieve in early May when Congress voted to mostly maintain current budgets for the rest of 2017, it’s uncertain whether the axe can be avoided again in 2018.

Arctic Council produces agreement on scientific cooperation

The Arctic Council wrapped its 10th Annual Council Ministerial meeting in Fairbanks AK with the signing of Agreement on Enhancing International Arctic Scientific Cooperation and the passing of the chairmanship from the US to Finland. The meeting — attended by Foreign Affairs minister Chrystia Freeland — also witnessed the signing of the Fairbanks Declaration —…

Basic science needs better oversight and coordination, and more money: Expert panel

R$ talks to David Naylor

A federally commissioned blue-chip panel calling for greater coherence and financial support for fundamental research has made a series of 35 recommendations, including a $1.3-billion increase in the budgets of the three granting councils, the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) and related entities over the next four years.

Is Canada’s Innovation Budget ambitious enough?

Opinion is decidedly split on the federal government’s delivery of its promised innovation Budget. The March 22 budgetary planning document contains a wide range of measures related to skills, company financing, program consolidation and clean technology.

Anne Dawson

Anne Dawson has been appointed chief of staff to Science minister Kirsty Duncan, effective this month. Dawson is a former reporter and past president of the Parliamentary Press Gallery and comes to the minister’s office from Armstrong Strategy Group where she was a senior associate for the past several months. She also co-founded and managed…

NSERC announces 2017 winners for top research prizes

Dr Jeff Dahn has been awarded the Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering for his pioneering research to improve lithium ion battery technology – one of a clutch of high-profile awards announced last night by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council…