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New competition launches for 10 Canada Excellence Research Chairs


Waterloo, ON – The federal government has announced the launch of a competition to fund 10 new Canada Excellence Research Chairs. The announcement was made by Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology).

The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of supporting leading-edge research and world-class researchers,” he said. “Canada Excellence Research Chairholders are some of the world’s leading minds, and their presence in our universities will create jobs and long-term economic growth, as well as enable Canada to be at the cutting edge of innovative research.”

The federal government is committing $53.5 million over five years for the creation of the 10 new chairs.

Launched in 2008, the CERC program was designed to attract and retain the world’s best researchers. The first group of chairholders was announced in May 2010.

Chairholders will be selected through a competitive and rigorous two-stage process. In Phase 1, Canadian universities will compete for the opportunity to establish chairs at their institution. In Phase 2, short-listed universities will nominate leading researchers to a limited number of positions. An independent selection board recommends the appointment of chairholders to the program steering committee, based on the highest standards of research excellence. Derek Burney, senior strategic advisor to Norton Rose OR LLP, and Shirley Tilghman, president of Princeton University, have been appointed chair and co-chair of the selection board, respectively.

“This announcement is very good news for the Canadian research community,” said Suzanne Fortier, president of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). “The presence in our universities of the Canada Excellence Research Chairs significantly strengthens Canada’s research capacity and enables Canada to be at the cutting edge of innovative research.”

Further details about the competition are available at www.cerc.gc.ca.