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Canadian scientists win prestigious Killam Research Fellowships


Ottawa, ON Some of Canada’s top scientists have been awarded Killam Research Fellowships this year. Among Canada’s most distinguished research awards, the Canada Council for the Arts, the fellowships are made possible by a bequest of Mrs Dorothy J Killam and a gift she made before her death in 1965. The awards support scholars engaged in research projects of outstanding merit in fields including natural sciences, health sciences, engineering and interdisciplinary studies within these fields.

Killam Research Fellowships enable Canada’s best scientists and scholars to devote two years to full-time research and writing.

This year’s winner in biological sciences, Bernard Crespi of Simon Fraser University. His focus is comparative social evolution: convergent and divergent patterns in the phylogenesis of cooperation. In chemistry, Queen’s University’s Axel D Becke won. His work examines density functional quantum chemistry: a new approach. In physics, Clifford Burgess of McGill University, McMaster University and the Perimeter Institute, won. Dr Burgess’s work is in the area of string cosmology.

Fellowships renewed for a second year included Ron M Clowes, in the earth and ocean sciences category. Dr Clowes is at University of British Columbia and his project focusses on revealing the evolution of a continent synthesis of Canada’s lithoprobe project. Also renewed, in physics, is Mike Thewalt, of Simon Fraser University, who is studying a redefinition of the limits of semiconductor spectroscopy. In zoology, Anthony RE Sinclair of the University of British Columbia was also renewed for a second year. He is studying biodiversity change and ecosystem dynamics in the Serengeti, East Africa. Finally, Barbara Sherwood Lollar was also renewed for a second year. Working at University of Toronto in geochemistry, her project examines origin of hydrogen and hydrocarbon gases in the subsurface: implications for the deep biosphere.