Minister Goodale announces $77,840,000 to transform research at the University of Saskatchewan

News Release

Significant funding for landmark initiatives through the Canada First Research Excellence Fund

September 6, 2016 – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The Government of Canada values the critical role the nation's post-secondary institutions play in attracting world-class researchers, catalyzing discoveries that improve our health and environment, and contributing to an innovative economy that leads to more opportunities for the middle class and those working hard to join it.

To underscore this commitment, the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, on behalf of the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, celebrated $77,840,000 in funding for the World Water Futures initiative at the University of Saskatchewan. The funding is part of a landmark investment of $900 million in 13 post-secondary institutions through the Canada First Research Excellence Fund. The Fund strategically invests in areas where Canada's post-secondary research institutions have the key research strengths to become global leaders.

World Water Futures will provide an unprecedented assembly of leading Canadian water research expertise and international partners to study water science for the world's cold regions. The initiative will also balance competing water needs and employ innovative strategies and policy tools to enable communities, industries and governments to reduce and manage water threats.

The 12 other initiatives funded today focus on developing areas of similar competitive advantage. They include sustainably developing our oceans; developing next-generation medical technologies; increasing the capacity, sustainability and safety of our food production systems; and improving human brain health.

The initiatives were selected for funding following an open competitive process among Canadian post-secondary institutions. The competition was judged by a panel of Canadian and international scientific experts.

Information about each of the 13 funded initiatives is available at www.cfref-apogee.gc.ca.

Quotes

"The Canada First Research Excellence Fund will equip Canada to respond to some of the most pressing issues it will face in the future: brain health, sustainable food and water supplies, environmental concerns and future energy supplies. The research supported through the Fund will make the country stronger."

– The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science

"Today's investment by the Government of Canada enables our leading post-secondary research institutions to capitalize on areas in which they excel. Indeed, it promises to make them world leaders in these areas and to strengthen Canada's position as the destination of choice for innovation and cutting-edge research."

– Dr. Ted Hewitt, President, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and Chair, Canada First Research Excellence Fund Steering Committee

"The Canada First Research Excellence Fund helps Canadian universities, colleges and polytechnics compete with the best in the world. This funding will allow researchers and students at the University of Saskatchewan to better position Canada as a global hub for leading-edge, user-driven water science for the world's cold regions. With the steady march of climate change and its impact on water, this knowledge base will be increasingly important for our vital efforts to mitigate and adapt to rapidly evolving circumstances—including right here in Saskatchewan."

– The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

"Through this major investment—believed to be the largest water research grant ever funded worldwide—the University of Saskatchewan and its many national and international partners will transform the way communities, governments and industries in Canada and other cold regions of the world prepare for and manage water-related threats, such as devastating floods and droughts, in this era of unprecedented global change."

– Dr. Peter Stoicheff, President, University of Saskatchewan

Quick facts

  • This is the second Canada First Research Excellence Fund competition. In July 2015, five initiatives received a total of $350 million in funding.
  • A total of $900 million is being awarded to 13 projects, with the largest single award of $93,732,000 going to Dalhousie University for its Safe and Sustainable Development of the Ocean Frontier initiative.
  • The Fund is administered by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, on behalf of the three federal granting agencies, which include the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

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Associated links

Follow Minister Duncan on social media.
Twitter: @ScienceMin
Instagram: sciencemin

Contacts

Véronique Perron
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Science
343-291-2600

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
343-291-1777
ic.mediarelations-mediasrelations.ic@canada.ca


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