posted on Jan. 31: Ottawa vows to double federal research, development money by 2010


The federal government promised yesterday to “at least” double current research and development dollars by 2010 in a move to make Canada one of the top five countries in research performance.

Ottawa will strengthen research capacity at universities and will give the Canadian Institutes of Health Research more money, Gov. Gen Adrienne Clarkson said, reading the throne speech on behalf of Prime Minister Jean Chretien.

The throne speech is a blueprint for the direction the federal government will take during the next session of Parliament.

Clarkson said: “In making new investments, the government will:

  • continue to pursue excellence in Canadian research by strengthening the research capacity of Canadian universities and government laboratories and institutions;
  • accelerate Canada's ability to commercialize research discoveries, turning them into new products and services; and
  • pursue a global strategy for Canadian science and technology, supporting more collaborative international research at the frontiers of knowledge.”

Gerhard Gerber, vice-president research and international affairs, said: “Yesterday's throne speech is great news for McMaster. As this federal
plan is implemented, and assuming we maintain our competitive position in
research, we expect our funding to double to more than $60-million a year
from the three funding councils alone — the Natural Sciences and
Engineering Research Council, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research
Council and the Canadian Institutes for Health Research.”

The federal government said the new money will “include strategically targeted research that is co-ordinated with partners.” Areas that should benefit include health, water quality, the environment, natural resources management, and oceans research.