Media Releases

Ontario universities celebrate contribution of federal Canada Research Chairs program

November 19, 2010

TORONTO, ON – The Council of Ontario Universities (COU) congratulates Ontario’s 700 Canada Research Chairs (CRCs), who are marking a decade of impact with the 10th anniversary of the program, which attracts talent from across Canada and around the world to help answer big questions about how people live, work and play.

“This program has made a major contribution to quality research, attracting highly skilled people to our institutions, and contributing to the economic and social well-being of our province and country,” says Sheldon Levy, Chair of COU and President of Ryerson University. “We applaud the Government of Canada for its support of this program and thank the Government of Ontario for enabling this important work to be done by providing funding for labs, equipment and other infrastructure costs.”

The program was established in response to major concerns about a “brain drain” – the loss of talented researchers and teachers to other parts of the world. The CRC program has helped reverse that, creating a “brain gain.” In addition to attracting domestic talent, 46 per cent of internationally recruited CRCs are Canadians who have been repatriated from universities abroad.

Titled Thinking Ahead for a Strong Future, a CRC celebration and conference will be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre on November 24 and 25, and will showcase the contribution of the chairs to research in areas such as health, food, technology, the environment and the economy. The event has been made possible through a collaboration of the federal government, the Public Policy Forum, Tourism Toronto, the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and COU.

“Ontarians can be proud of the robust programs at our universities that cover the full spectrum of research, from discovery research that expands the boundaries of knowledge, to applied research that drives economic activity, shapes social policy and enriches our lives,” says Bonnie M. Patterson, President and CEO of COU. “Research support is critical to ensuring that Ontario is successful in maintaining our quality of life in the years ahead.”

The successes that have been achieved and the advancements that continue to be made in research and discovery are only possible through collective efforts. “Collaboration on research between business and postsecondary institutions is one of the critical factors in driving Ontario’s prosperity and progress,” says Len Crispino, President of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. “We are proud to celebrate, promote and be partners in developing the innovation capacity of our province.”

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For more information, please contact:

Hannah Yakobi
Communications Coordinator
416-979-2165 ext. 238
hyakobi@cou.on.ca