Budget 2018: Investing in Canada's innovators, scientists and researchers

News release

March 6, 2018 – St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

Canadians have always understood that better is possible, and time after time we have used curiosity, courage, creativity and collaboration to create positive change for ourselves—and the world. But progress does not happen without commitment, effort and the innovative spirit of Canadians—from junior researchers and scientists to entrepreneurs.

Today, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Veterans Affairs, Associate Minister of National Defence and Member of Parliament for St. John’s South–Mount Pearl, and Nick Whelan, Member of Parliament for St. John’s East, were at Memorial University to discuss how, through Budget 2018, the Government is taking significant steps to support leading-edge science by investing in the new generation of research and researchers, including women, visible minorities and Indigenous peoples. The Government is investing in the people behind the ideas that will change the way we live our lives—new investments of nearly $4 billion over five years to support the next generation of Canadian research and researchers.

To transform government innovation programs so that they better meet the needs of Canadian businesses, Budget 2018 builds on the Government’s Innovation and Skills Plan, increasing its funding while consolidating business innovation programs to make them easier to navigate and more responsive to the challenges and opportunities businesses face today and will face in the future.

In Budget 2018, the Government is also introducing the Women Entrepreneurship Strategy, which focuses on skills and access to capital, mentorship and networking to help empower women to more fully participate in and benefit from a growing economy. These investments will help more women-owned companies grow into world-class businesses so that they continue driving economic growth that benefits all.

With Budget 2018, the Government proposes to:

  • Invest in the next generation of Canadian research and researchers by providing more than $1.7 billion over five years to:
    • support the granting councils and research institutes so they can provide increased support and training opportunities for the work of some 21,000 researchers, students and high-quality personnel every year, including funding targeted specifically at research that promotes collaboration and is international and interdisciplinary;
    • ensure researchers have the necessary space and support to undertake high-quality multidisciplinary research, providing funding for the Research Support Fund that provides universities with resources to cover the indirect costs of research; and
    • attract and retain leading, young and early-career researchers at post-secondary institutions across the country through new funding for the Canada Research Chairs Program.
  • Invest $1.3 billion over five years to ensure researchers have access to the world-class research laboratories and equipment they need at Canadian universities, polytechnics, colleges and research hospitals, including $763 million for the Canada Foundation for Innovation and $572.5 million for a Digital Research Infrastructure Strategy.

With Budget 2018, the Government also proposes to renew its commitment to supporting scientific research:

  • Enhance National Research Council Canada to reinforce its research strengths and its role as a trusted partner with large-scale national teams committed to exploring disruptive technologies and cutting-edge innovation.
  • Bring together federal scientists and researchers across the country, proposing $2.8 billion on a cash basis over five years to build collaborative federal science and technology facilities.

Through Budget 2018, the Government also proposes to provide $2.6 billion over five years in additional support to make it easier for Canadians to do business and for entrepreneurs to access the resources they need to innovate, scale up, create jobs and reach new customers around the world.


“With this budget, our government has made the largest investment in science in Canada’s history. By supporting scientific research and discovery, we’ll transform Canada’s economy into an innovation economy and generate thousands of well-paying middle-class jobs for this generation and the next. And because innovation must be for the many and not just the few, this feminist budget will empower women in all areas of our economy because we know that equality is essential to our success.”

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

With Budget 2018, we are making historic investments that support innovation and help the next generation of scientists to meet the challenges of the changing economy, including right here in Newfoundland and Labrador. Canada can be a global leader in attracting and increasing research jobs and in creating the technology that helps us navigate our everyday lives. This includes empowering girls and women to pursue an education and career in the sciences that will help drive innovation and support the middle class.”

– The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence

“I have received an incredible response on this budget and what it means for Canadians, not only in supporting fundamental science research but also in addressing historical gender inequities in science and innovation. The women and men of St. John’s, including me, are clearly proud of the direction this government is taking the country with a budget that is progressive and inclusive, that works to correct systemic inequity and that strengthens Canada’s position as a prosperous, innovative nation of discovery.”

– Nick Whalen, Member of Parliament for St. John’s East

Related products


Follow the department on Twitter: @ISED_CA

Karl W. Sasseville
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: