The Short Report: Jan. 19, 2022: $550M in federal research investments, a review of Canada’s energy policies, COVID-19’s impacts on children, and more

Cindy Graham
January 19, 2022


The Government of Canada will contribute more than $550 million to support Canada's science and research sector. More than 5,500 researchers will benefit from funding through the New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF) Transformation stream, ($144 million over six years to seven Canadian-led research teams for large-scale, interdisciplinary research projects), the Canada Research Chairs program ($151 million to support 188 new and renewed chairs and their research teams at 43 Canadian institutions), and the tri-council granting agencies’ scholarships and fellowships programs, (more than $260 million for over 5,300 graduate students and emerging researchers). GoC

The Government of Ontario has launched a two-year, $40-million program to enable advanced manufacturers in capital-intensive industries (including automotive, aerospace, life sciences, information technology, steel, and chemical) to invest in new technology and equipment. The Advanced Manufacturing and Innovation Competitiveness (AMIC) program is a new stream of Ontario's Regional Development Program, which supports small- and medium-sized businesses expanding in eastern and southwestern Ontario. The deadline for AMIC's first round of applications is February 10. Ontario Government

The Government of Alberta is providing $30 million from its Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) fund to Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) in support of its Carbon Capture Kickstart funding competition. The funding will accelerate industrial-scale carbon capture and transportation technology solutions in Alberta across industrial sectors including power generation, cement production, manufacturing, oil and gas, and more. All proposals must target specific large final emitter sites in Alberta. ERA


Venture capital firm 500 Global has begun a ten-week training program through the Alberta Accelerator by 500, a program chosen by Alberta Innovates to provide local technology companies with experience in entrepreneurial ecosystem development. The accelerator was one of four proposals to receive a collective total of about $35 million in federal, provincial and municipal funding under the Alberta Innovates Scaleup and Growth Accelerator Program (Scaleup GAP). Alberta Innovates

MYND Life Sciences announced it entered into a collaborative research agreement with the University of British Columbia focused on developing novel therapies for neurological diseases. The research will test new compounds, including analogues of psilocybin. The aim is to develop, validate and patent the ability of these compounds to modify outcomes in disease. MYND

The University of Saskatchewan, national non-profit organization Palette Skills, Winnipeg-based non-profit Enterprise and Machine Learning Initiative and Economic Development Regina will develop a new $1.08-million specialized training program to prepare under-represented workers for jobs in the agri-food sector, where Canada faces a labour shortage. The pilot program in Saskatchewan will train and place 50 workers The Protein Industries Canada supercluster is investing $1.01 million and partner organizations are investing the remainder. USask

Telesat and Canada’s ENCQOR 5G announced a new strategic partnership to advance 5G technology, investment and collaboration in ultra-high-speed communications infrastructure. The ENCQOR 5G program is funded by the governments of Canada, Quebec and Ontario, along with leading industry players Ericsson, Ciena, Thales, CGI and IBM. Telesat, using its Low Earth Orbit satellite network, in cooperation with ENCQOR 5G’s testbed and using national and international 5G infrastructures, will conduct demonstrations, trials and pilots to advance 5G connectivity, particularly to industries operating in rural areas. Stockhouse


An international study co-led by a team of researchers at The University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago and University of California-Davis Medical Center found that approximately three percent of more than 3,200 children who visited hospital emergency departments and tested positive for COVID-19 experienced severe outcomes within two weeks of their visit. Severe outcomes included cardiac or cardiovascular complications such as myocarditis, as well as neurologic, respiratory or infectious problems. The team followed more than 10,300 children at emergency departments in 10 countries. UCalgary


Brampton-based space technology company MDA has been awarded a second contract from an "undisclosed US-based space company" for a landing sensor for a 2023 mission to the Moon. MDA's lunar landing sensor technology was developed in partnership with MDA’s Harwell UK office. MDA

Canada Foundation for Innovation has launched its 2022 College Fund Competition to assist Canadian colleges with research equipment and laboratories needed to support collaborations with a range of partners. The College Fund aims to enhance and optimize the proven applied research capacity of colleges and generate social, economic, health or environmental benefits. Deadline to submit notices of intent for this competition is April 7, 2022. CFI

Calgary-based Provision Analytics has raised $6 million, bringing its total funding to $8.2 million. The latest round will enable the startup to develop and expand its automated food safety software “at a time when food regulators are changing policies to enforce food safety after a persistent growth in food recalls over the last decade.” Level 46 Investments led the round along with Trailhead Capital (Denver), Serra Ventures (Illinois), Waterpoint Lane (Toronto), and Voyager Capital (New Jersey). Betakit

Interactive Health International (IHI) has received funding from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program and the Canadian Space Agency to further develop IHI’s CyberPatient™ technology and the maintenance of competencies for medical crews involved in deep-space flight missions. IHI, a spin-off company of the University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute, helps “shift medical education into the future,” according to its CEO, Dr. Karim Qayumi. IHI

Goldman Sachs Asset Management has invested $315 million CAD in Toronto-based Hydrostar to support the development and expansion of its energy storage projects. Hydrostar’s existing investors also include ArcTern Ventures (Toronto), Lorem Partners (Calgary), Canoe Financial (Montreal) and the Business Development Bank of Canada. Hydrostar


The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released a review of Canada’s energy policies, the first review since 2015. It recommends improving the rate of energy technology innovation and advises the federal government to promote a comprehensive energy efficiency strategy in consultation with provinces and territories that sets clear targets for energy efficiency in the buildings, industry and transport sectors to manage the transformation of the Canadian energy sector. IEA2022 Report

An Ipsos survey for the World Economic Forum finds that Canadians are less likely to say they are knowledgeable about aspects of artificial intelligence (AI) and how it will affect their lives in the near future, compared to respondents from 27 other countries. The survey shows there is a gap between Canadians and citizens of most other countries on knowledge about AI, trusting companies that use AI and having a positive outlook on the impact of AI-powered products and services. Canadians scored above the global average in skepticism towards AI: half (49 percent) agree that AI products and services make them nervous (+10 vs. global average) and only a third (34 percent) agree that they trust companies that use AI as much as they trust other companies. Ipsos


Rhonda Barnet has been appointed interim CEO of Palette Skills, a nonprofit that helps organizations access untapped talent and create pathways for unemployed or underemployed workers. Barnet replaces Arvind Gupta. She is the director of Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen Canada) and a member of the Canada Economic Strategy Council. Cision

The Ontario Government has awarded its prestigious 2021 Polanyi Prize to five researchers: Dr. Farnaz Heidar-Zadeh (Chemistry); Dr. Adam Lavecchia (Economic science); Dr. Gwendolyn Eadie (Physics); Dr. Eno Hysi (Physics); Dr. Fumin Guo (Physiology/medicine). Each researcher received $20,000. Ontario established the prizes in 1987 under the name of Dr. John Charles Polanyi, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry. Council of Ontario Universities selects prize recipients. Ontario Government

André Gagné has been appointed president and CEO of digital transformation company GFT Canada (Quebec City), succeeding Alain Lamothe. Gagné has been with GFT Canada for nine years and has worked on its management team and serving as vice president of its development centre. Cision

Catherine McKenna, Canada's former minister of environment and climate change, is joining Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy and Columbia's Climate School as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow. Columbia’s Center on Global Energy Policy

RELATED: Q&A: Former environment and climate change minister Catherine McKenna on COP26 and Canada’s climate plans

The Students for the Exploration and Development of Space have selected four university teams to compete in their annual Canadian Reduced Gravity Experiment Design Challenge for 2022. The competition is also supported by the Canadian Space Agency and allows students to test a small scientific payload on the National Research Council of Canada’s Falcon 20 research aircraft. The chosen teams were: Team Mission Spacewalker (UAlberta), Team MEMEs (UAlberta), UVIC Rocketry (UVic), Team MICRO2 (Concordia). SEDS-Canada


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

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.