Ontario government kills prestigious Platinum research award program

Guest Contributor
May 27, 2004

The Ontario government has cancelled the Premier’s Platinum Medal for Research Excellence (PPMRE), a four-year-old program established by the previous administration and one of the largest single research awards in the world. The program — which offers a cash prize $1 million to support the winner’s research — was cancelled as nominations for the next award were being evaluated.

“This program was just beginning to be recognized as a uniquely Canadian model for research,” says Dr Allan Bromley, a distinguished physics researcher and professor who served as an international referee for the PPMRE program. “The termination will be noted worldwide.”

Bromley was informed that his services were no longer needed by William Winegard, chair of the program’s advisory board.

“I was supposed to have received a list but I received nothing for two weeks,” says Bromley, a former Canadian and sterling professor of the Sciences at Yale Univ. “Then I got a letter from Winegard informing me that the Ontario government terminated the program. I have long maintained that science in Canadian universities has been systematically underfunded for generations. That makes it difficult for Canadian scientists to excel on the world stage. I felt this program was therefore extraordinarily important. It marked a change in attitude for Canada. I made this point to Winegard.”

The Ministry of Economic Development and Trade administers the $10-million, six-year program. A ministry official would only confirm that the program was cancelled several weeks ago in the midst of the third competition. The first two competition yielded four winners.

The larger, more established Premier's Research Excellence Awards (PREA) is being maintained. That program — funded t $127.5 million over five years — makes awards worth $100,000 to researchers on a competitive basis. The awards must be matched on a 2:1 basis with funding from a research institute or private sector partner. There have been 600 awarded winners to date and the closing date for the latest PREA competition was May 14/04. Both PREA and PPMRE share the same advisory board.


Other News

Events For Leaders in
Science, Tech, Innovation, and Policy

Discuss and learn from those in the know at our virtual and in-person events.

See Upcoming Events

You have 1 free article remaining.
Don't miss out - start your free trial today.

Start your FREE trial    Already a member? Log in


By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies.
We use cookies to provide you with a great experience and to help our website run effectively
in accordance with our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.