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Government of Canada Invests in High-Quality Jobs and Growth

New research partnerships between colleges and local businesses to foster innovation

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA -- (Marketwire) -- 11/13/12 -- New partnerships between colleges and businesses or universities will lead to innovation in the areas of information and communications technologies, environmental technologies, natural resources and energy, and health sciences. The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology), today announced the Government's support for these new research projects while visiting Red River College in Winnipeg.

"Collaboration among government, applied researchers and the private sector is vital to building an innovative economy," said Minister of State Goodyear. "The College and Community Innovation Program supports research collaborations between companies and colleges. It illustrates the importance our Government places on creating for small businesses the conditions for innovation and entrepreneurship."

In total, 50 innovative partnerships between colleges, universities and business partners will receive over $17 million in support over a period of up to five years through the College and Community Innovation (CCI) Program.

"These investments provide colleges with access to the people, resources and tools they need to be at the forefront of innovation," said Suzanne Fortier, President of NSERC. "The ultimate goal is to create sustainable partnerships that will help sharpen our innovative edge and have a positive impact on the bottom line of our country and industry."

The projects announced today were selected for funding following a peer-reviewed competition. This announcement builds on CCI investments announced in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012; bringing the total program investments to date to over $175 million for 321 grants at 69 colleges and CEGEPs.

Red River College is receiving almost $1.7 million through the CCI Program to establish the A2I2: Advanced Aerospace Innovation Initiative. This new technology access centre is aimed at helping aerospace companies improve their products. The research will create new job opportunities in the Winnipeg area by providing support to businesses in the form of research expertise, training support, and access to the latest technologies, as well as giving them access to the college's state-of-the-art technology and equipment.

The CCI Program is managed by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), in collaboration with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

NSERC is a federal agency that helps make Canada a country of discoverers and innovators for all Canadians. The agency supports some 30,000 post-secondary students and postdoctoral fellows in their advanced studies. NSERC promotes discovery by funding more than 12,000 professors every year and fosters innovation by encouraging about 2,000 Canadian companies to participate and invest in post-secondary research projects.

More information is available in the backgrounder.

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