Industry Canada

Industry Canada

March 26, 2010 14:30 ET

Government of Canada Invests in Research Excellence at University of Victoria and Across British Columbia

VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 26, 2010) - Thanks to an increased investment by the Government of Canada in the Canada Research Chairs program, Canada will strengthen its position as a world leader in university research and development, which will lead to greater economic opportunities for Canadians. The Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of State (Sport), today announced the Government of Canada is investing $23 million to support 28 Canada Research Chairs in British Columbia.

"Our government is investing in science and technology to create jobs, strengthen the economy and improve Canadians' quality of life," said Minister of State Lunn. "The Canada Research Chairs program is helping our universities develop and attract talented people, strengthening our capacity for leading-edge research, while creating jobs and economic opportunities for Canadians now and in the future."

Today's event at the University of Victoria featured Reuven Gordon, whose research involves shrinking light to the nanoscale (billionths of a metre) by using nanostructured metals to sense molecules, manipulate particles and enhance interactions with matter. As Canada Research Chair in Nanoplasmonics, Dr. Gordon's research will lead to the development of sensors for the early detection of cancers, new tools to study viral infection, and more efficient and cost-effective photovoltaic devices.

This new Canada Research Chair is part of a total of $165.5 million in funding for 187 Canada Research Chairs newly awarded or renewed at 44 Canadian universities announced today by the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology). The funding announced includes $8.8 million from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) for research infrastructure.

"This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Canada Research Chairs program," said Chad Gaffield, President of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and Head of the Canada Research Chairs program steering committee. "For the past decade, the program has been integral in funding research excellence in Canada by recruiting and retaining renowned international experts at Canadian universities. The program enables our universities to create the necessary environment for groundbreaking research and to offer first-class learning and training experiences to graduate students, thereby preparing them to become the next generation of world-class leaders in all sectors of society."

 "An innovative society depends on innovative people," said Eliot Phillipson, President and CEO of the CFI. "The partnership between the CFI and the Canada Research Chairs program helps ensure that Canada preserves its most critical resource in the knowledge economy — intellectual capital. The advancements and discoveries made by these researchers will have a real and lasting impact on the lives of all Canadians."

"The Canada Research Chairs program helps universities to attract and retain the best talent from around the world, assisting universities such as the University of Victoria to achieve research excellence in natural sciences and engineering, health sciences, and social sciences and humanities," said David Turpin, President, University of Victoria. "Dr. Gordon conducts leading-edge work that will push the limits of his study area with medical and sustainable energy applications. He joins a long list of University of Victoria researchers who have benefited from the program."

A full list of the 187 chairholders is available on the Canada Research Chairs website (

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
    Minister of State (Science and Technology)
    Gary Toft - Director of Communications
    Industry Canada
    Media Relations
    Canada Research Chairs Program
    Trevor Lynn
    Manager, Communications
    613-302-9879 (cell)
    Canada Foundation for Innovation
    Yves Melanson
    Coordinator, Media Relations
    613-447-1723 (cell)