- News Home
17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
- About Us
Canada's Plan to Spur Innovation
12 February 2002 (All day)
OTTAWA--Canadian scientists are wondering if the rhetoric will match the reality in a new 10-year research innovation plan unveiled here today. The plan reaffirms the Canadian government's commitment to double annual R&D spending, to US$9.2 billion, by 2010. It also backs greater commercialization of publicly funded academic research and demands that universities "more aggressively" contribute to industrial innovation if they want more money.
The paper reiterates the government's stated goal of making Canada one of the world's top five R&D performing nations. But that won't happen, says Industry Minister Allan Rock, unless Canadians start to "do everything we now do, smarter." Among the few specifics in the document is a proposal to set up at least 10 Silicon Valley-like "technology clusters" in areas such as biopharmaceuticals, photonics, and nanotechnology. The plan also contains commitments to cover part of indirect research costs at universities and address the growing gap between have and have-not institutions (Science, 1 February, p. 788). The government also pledges to increase the budgets of the nation's three research granting councils (but doesn't specify by how much), to double the number of graduate fellowships awarded by the councils, and to give graduate students a chance to conduct applied research in industrial settings.
But although the additional money would make it easier to deepen the nation's scientific talent pool, the councils and universities will still shoulder much of the responsibility, says Thomas Brzustowski, president of Canada's Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council: "Even if the funding is increased, the granting councils and the universities together have to learn to translate that into accelerated graduation rates of highly qualified personnel."
The long-overdue white paper kicks off 7 months of meetings leading up to a national innovation summit in October. Following the summit, the government will draw up its official plan. "The real test will be, of course, whether the government is prepared to properly fund these initiatives," says Robert Giroux, president of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.