Government of Canada

Government of Canada

February 25, 2009 18:00 ET

New NSERC Program Helps Colleges Work With Local Businesses

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 25, 2009) - Member of Parliament Royal Galipeau (Ottawa-Orleans), on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), and Janet Walden, Vice-President of Research Partnerships Programs at the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), officially announced the expansion of the College and Community Innovation (CCI) Program and the results of the first CCI competition.

"The Government of Canada invests in innovation because it creates jobs, improves the quality of life of Canadians and strengthens the economy for future generations. Budget 2009 Canada's Economic Action Plan outlined S&T funding of over $5.1 billion in support of Canada's science and technology strategy," said Mr. Galipeau. "Today's announcement of the College and Community Innovation Program will help colleges and CEGEPs work together with communities to increase their research capacity."

The Government of Canada has invested $48 million in the CCI Program. The program aims to increase innovation in communities by enabling Canadian colleges to increase their capacity to work with local companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises. It supports applied research and collaboration that helps move innovations from the lab to the marketplace. The program also encourages the transfer, adaptation and adoption of new technologies.

The Canadian Institutes for Health Research and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada are collaborating with NSERC, the lead agency administering the program.

Today's announcement builds on an NSERC pilot program. The pilot confirmed the important role Canadian colleges play in augmenting the innovative capacity and competitiveness of local industries. This initiative will bring together necessary expertise across the natural, social and health sciences, as well as engineering and humanities to address business-driven problems.

"The CCI Program builds on NSERC's earlier initiatives to foster college-industry research and development interactions," said Ms. Walden. "Our pilot program showed that Canadian colleges and CEGEPs are well positioned to accelerate innovation at the local level by working with industry and communities on applied R&D projects."


The following eight projects, under the CCI Program's first competition, were announced today. Each project will receive $2.3 million over five years:

- Clothing/Textiles Advancements: Sensor Development and Human Performance Enhancement, led by Tim Walzak at Camosun College;

- Developpement de plates-formes de soudage laser et de soudage hybride laser/GMAW optimisees pour l'amelioration de produits et de procedes dans l'industrie manufacturiere, led by Lorraine Blais at Cegep de La Pocatiere;

- Recherche appliquee et support aux PME de l'Abitibi-Temiscamingue et du Nord-du-Quebec pour la valorisation de la biomasse residuelle, led by Ahcene Bourihane at Cegep de l'Abitibi-Temiscamingue;

- Developpement de vetements de pompier du futur et applications derivees a d'autres travailleurs, led by Dominic Tessier at Cegep de Saint-Hyacinthe;

- George Brown Research Labs, led by Robert Luke at George Brown College of Applied Arts and Technology;

- Soutien a l'innovation dans les enterprises liees aux bioressources, led by Herve Bernier at the Institut de technologie agroalimentaire;

- Sustain Niagara: Supporting Innovation in Land Management, led by Marti Jurmain at Niagara College; and

- Biodiesel Production, Alternative Feedstocks and Commercial Adoption, led by Abimbola Abiola at Olds College.

About Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)

NSERC is a federal agency whose vision is to help make Canada a country of discoverers and innovators for the benefit of all Canadians. The agency supports some 26,500 university students and postdoctoral fellows in their advanced studies. NSERC promotes discovery by funding more than 11,800 university professors every year and fosters innovation by encouraging more than 1,400 Canadian companies to participate and invest in post-secondary research projects.

About the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) is the Government of Canada's agency for health research. CIHR's mission is to create new scientific knowledge and to catalyze its translation into improved health, more effective health services and products, and a strengthened Canadian health care system. Composed of 13 institutes, CIHR provides leadership and support to over 12,000 health researchers and trainees across Canada.

About Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)

The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) is an independent federal government agency that funds post-secondary-based research and graduate training through national peer-review competitions. SSHRC also partners with public and private sector organizations to focus research and aid the development of better policies and practices in key areas of Canada's social, cultural and economic life.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of State (Science and Technology)
    Gary Toft
    Director of Communications
    Shannon Cobb
    Media Relations and Public Affairs Officer
    Mobile: 613-286-0662