Federal budget 2018 submission

August 3, 2017
Publication
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Canada’s Global Moment

Universities Canada submission to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance

Canada’s universities are committed to enhancing the country’s productivity and competitiveness. Discovery, innovation and creativity are all at the heart of the university mission. The knowledge, capacity, talent and networks of Canada’s universities make our sector a vital asset in improving Canada’s global competitive advantage.

At a time of closing borders and closing minds, Canada’s universities are working hard to ensure that our country remains open to the world and succeeds as an international leader. This is Canada’s global moment. And seizing this moment means investing to ensure Canada can lead in higher education, research and innovation.

The report of the Fundamental Science Review Panel is the most comprehensive assessment of Canada’s research innovation system in four decades. It signals a once in-a-generation opportunity for Canada to become a global research powerhouse and provides a clear roadmap to get there. The report highlights the important role of federal government funding in helping universities achieve global excellence in research and innovation.

Fundamental science produces the discoveries that fuel an innovative economy and helps find solutions to the most pressing challenges facing our world. A well-funded research ecosystem is essential to creating economic growth, supporting innovation and creating jobs for middle-class Canadians. The science review panel clearly identifies this link; quite simply, if you don’t have well-resourced fundamental science at the front end, you’re not going to have the downstream benefits in entrepreneurship and innovation.

Our recommendations:

Universities Canada’s Budget 2018 priorities focus on Canada’s global competitiveness, highlighting three pivotal aspects of federal support for university research excellence.

We strongly urge that all financial recommendations of the fundamental science review panel be implemented, with most urgent attention to the following three priorities:

  1. Sustained increases in direct support for discovery research through the federal granting councils
  2. A dedicated support fund for international research collaboration
  3. Support for research infrastructure through the Canada Foundation for Innovation

Tagged:  Research and innovation

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