U15 celebrates the first round of Canada First Research Excellence Fund awards

Ottawa, ON (July 31, 2015) – The U15 Group of Canadian Research Universities warmly welcomed the federal government’s announcement of the first round of Canada First Research Excellence Fund awards. Five institutions will receive support from this pioneering fund to pursue exceptional, world-class research excellence.

“This week’s announcement is a clear demonstration that the federal government is committed to supporting globally competitive research excellence through its largest investment in our sector in years,” says Feridun Hamdullahpur, Chair of the U15 and President and Vice-Chancellor of Waterloo University. “The projects and partnerships these Canadian universities submitted for funding demonstrate that we have the capacity and drive to be world leaders in research and innovation.”

The funded initiatives are:

  • $114 million dollars for University of Toronto’s Medicine by Design initiative, which will undertake transformative research and clinical translation in regenerative medicine, enhance capability in synthetic biology and computational biology and foster translation, commercialization and clinical impacts.
  • $37.2 million to the University of Saskatchewan where, under the leadership of the Global Institute for Food Security, leading-edge research and technology will be developed that will advance one of the world’s largest hubs of food-related researchers, help transform crop breeding and provide innovative solutions to national and global food security.
  • $66.5-million investment over seven years for the University of British Columbia’s Quantum Matter Institute (QMI), a world-class centre of excellence in quantum research. Discoveries stemming from quantum research will have dramatic impacts on computing, electronics, medicine and sustainable energy technologies.
  • $98 million for the University Laval’s Sentinel North initiative, a multi-disciplinary project to increase our understanding of the economic, social, health and scientific needs and opportunities of the Canadian arctic.
  • $33.5 million for University Sherbrooke’s “From Quantum Science to Quantum Technology” project which will use quantum materials to develop MRI scanners the size of a small laptop and electricity grids that are vastly more efficient.

“The successful initiatives announced this week will expand and enhance our research landscape in Canada. When the federal government announces the second-round recipients, we will have even more research excellence to celebrate,” says Suzanne Corbeil, Executive Director of the U15. “The ground-breaking research resulting from CFREF investments will advance our scientific understanding, boost our global position and cement Canada’s reputation as a top destination for work and study by the best and brightest researchers here at home and around the world.”

For further information, please contact:

Rob Rosenfeld

Director, Advocacy, U15

(613) 695-6755





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