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$465M funding from NSERC for discovery research


Hamilton, ON – The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) has announced over $465 million for more than 4,000 awards that are the result of the NSERC’s 2016 competition for the discovery research programs. The programs, which include funds for scholarships, fellowships, research supplements and equipment grants, support researchers and students who are furthering our understanding of the world and how it works.

The announcement was made at McMaster University and featured the work of Dr. Leyla Soleymani, an engineering physicist who is investigating the relationship between light, electronics, molecules, and nanomaterials. Her goal is to fabricate a handheld device sensitive enough to detect trace amounts of genetic material that signal the presence of illnesses ranging from cancer to infectious diseases. Dr. Soleymani is receiving a Discovery Grant along with a special $120,000 supplement in recognition of the promising nature of her research.

“Today’s investment will allow many of Canada’s scientists and engineers to explore the frontiers of knowledge where they can make exciting new discoveries,” said Kirsty Duncan, federal minister of science, at the announcement. “Our government is committed to investing in these future research leaders and in the cutting-edge ideas that will lead Canada to social and economic growth for a better tomorrow.”

The $341 million support for NSERC’s flagship Discovery Grants Program will foster research excellence in the full range of science and engineering disciplines. These grants, which are subject to rigorous quality assurance, support ongoing research programs with long-term goals and build the foundation for innovation.

The more than $82 million in Scholarship and Fellowships will launch a new generation of scientists and engineers, with support at levels of study from graduate to postdoctoral.

Researchers will share an additional $26 million in Research Tools and Instruments Grants, to purchase new research equipment needed for world-leading discovery, innovation and training.

In addition, NSERC is providing $15 million for resources to selected researchers to accelerate progress and maximize the impact of their promising research proposals through the Discovery Accelerator Supplements Program.

At small universities, 43 researchers will receive Discovery Development Grants, totaling $860,000, to support their research.

A full list of recipients is available here.