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Winter  2016 - Volume 40 No. 1

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In This Issue

Physicist Arthur McDonald Awarded Nobel Prize

On December 10, 2015, Dr. Arthur B. McDonald of Queen’s University was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics at a ceremony held in Stockholm, Sweden. NSERC congratulates Dr. McDonald on this prestigious recognition and takes pride in noting that the agency has previously celebrated his work with the Herzberg Canada Gold Medal in 2003.

This link will take you to another Web site Watch a short video of NSERC’s interview with Dr. McDonald at the SNOLAB facilities in Sudbury, Ontario.

The Future Starts Now

We are extremely pleased to announce the release of our new strategic plan, entitled NSERC 2020. Thank you to the many members of the community who provided input on this plan during consultations. Input from NSERC stakeholders has helped us articulate a clear mission for NSERC: to be the focal point for discovery and innovation in the natural sciences and engineering in Canada.

NSERC 2020 outlines five clear goals. These goals address factors critical to the success of discovery and innovation in Canada, such as:

  • helping the next generation of researchers launch their independent careers;
  • fostering science culture to improve awareness and understanding of science and engineering;
  • increasing the diversity (populations, institutions, disciplines, regions, sectors) and competitiveness of the research base;
  • strengthening the dynamic between discovery and innovation; and
  • going global to increase Canadian participation in and access to international research.

We invite you to learn more about NSERC’s new strategic plan and we look forward to your support as we move forward with this ambitious vision.

Upcoming NSERC Deadlines

January 20 - February 3, 2016 Accepting Submissions for NSERC's Science, Action! Video Contest
December 3, 2015 – February 19, 2016 Accepting Submissions for NSERC’s Science Exposed
March 1, 2016

Nominations: Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering
Nominations: The Brockhouse Canada Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Engineering
Nominations: NSERC John C. Polanyi Award

April 1, 2016 Preliminary Application: Strategic Partnership Grants for Networks
Application: Strategic Partnership Grants for Projects
April 15, 2016 Nominations: Synergy Awards for Innovation

Connecting With Our NSERC Leaders

We recently hosted two meetings with our NSERC Leaders — a group of senior administrators who provide insight and advice on key NSERC initiatives. At both the group’s inaugural meeting in Ottawa in July and at a teleconference earlier this month, participants joined NSERC’s President, B. Mario Pinto, in a dialogue on NSERC’s future. Representatives from universities across Canada discussed new initiatives, including the strategic goals outlined in NSERC 2020. The discussion at these meetings touched on big-picture topics, such as addressing the generation and gender gaps in the sciences and engineering, the discovery-innovation dynamic, the regional flavour of innovation, and opportunities for going global. The next NSERC Leaders’ meeting is slated for Spring 2016.

Ten Days of Fun With Science and Engineering!

You don’t want to miss this experience!

It is with great enthusiasm that we inform you that, starting in May 2016, NSERC will take on the stewardship, planning and coordination of the annual National Science and Technology Week. Typically held in October each year, the week will now take place in May, to coincide with several other regional science and technology (S&T) events and further profile Canada’s S&T successes through leveraging activities. This initiative fits squarely with our vision for 2020 of building a strong science and engineering culture in Canada. It is also a great opportunity to engage and inspire young Canadians and the general public with S&T accomplishments coming from Canada’s prolific scientific community, including our research community, Promoscience partners, government science departments and industry partners.

NSERC Launches Video and Image Contests

As part of NSERC’s goal of fostering science culture in Canada under its new 2020 strategy, we are launching two contests in December that challenge Canadians to combine their creativity and science for the chance to win cash prizes.

Science Exposed is an image contest organized by NSERC in collaboration with the Association francophone pour le savoir (Acfas). The French contest called La preuve par l’image, is managed by Acfas and the English version is managed by NSERC. The contest highlights vibrant and exciting images of the research being done in either the public or private sector.

Contestants are eligible to win one of four cash prizes worth up to $2,000. NSERC and Acfas will be accepting submissions from December 3 to February 19, 2016. 

Be sure to review the rules before capturing your image.

NSERC's Science, Action! video contest returns for its second year. The contest challenges postsecondary students to film a one-minute video about the research and innovations that are transforming Canadian lives.

Contestants are eligible to win one of 15 cash prizes worth up to $5,000. NSERC will be accepting submissions from January 20 to February 3, 2016.

Be sure to review the rules before creating your video.

Nominate Your Peers for NSERC Awards

The nomination deadlines for NSERC’s top research prizes are coming up. Show us where to shine the spotlight, and nominate your peers and colleagues for their outstanding research.

March 1, 2016 is the deadline for nominations for the Gerhard Herzberg Canada Gold Medal for Science and Engineering, the Brockhouse Canada Prize for Interdisciplinary Research in Science and Engineering, and the NSERC John C. Polanyi Award.

April 15, 2016 is the deadline for the Synergy Awards for Innovation, which recognize university-industry research and development (R&D) partnerships in the natural sciences and engineering. In addition to the three categories for universities, the awards include a category for colleges to highlight the impact and lasting benefits of their applied R&D collaborations with industry partners.

Learn more about the prizes and find nomination forms on NSERC’s website.

New Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering Video

We have produced a This link will take you to another Web site short video featuring NSERC’s Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering describing the importance of mentoring and encouraging more women to build careers in science and engineering. The video features all five chairholders, including our two newest, Dr. Eve Langelier of Université de Sherbrooke and Dr. Lesley Shannon of Simon Fraser University.

Launch of New Discover Section of NSERC’s Website

NSERC has launched a new Discover section on its website as part of our ongoing redesign. The new webpage highlights one of the two core themes for NSERC and complements the Innovate section previously launched in April.

The new Discover webpage demonstrates NSERC’s commitment to delivering online content that is more accessible, user-friendly and optimized for mobile devices.

Ministerial Mandate Letters Released

On November 13, 2015, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released the This link will take you to another Web site Ministerial Mandate Letters outlining expectations and priorities for each Cabinet Minister.

NSERC Welcomes Three Newest Members to Council

On September 3, 2015, NSERC welcomed Christian Leuprecht, Tracey Scarlett and John Weissenberger as the newest members to join NSERC's Council.

Eureka! Canada: A Magnet for the Science Community

NSERCís This link will take you to another Web site Eureka! Canada Facebook page has been a huge success, gaining an audience of more than 50,000 since it was created in 2011. Building on this success, we are proud to announce that our Facebook page will now become the official hub for all science and engineering content for the Government of Canada. Several science-based federal departments will work together to contribute to the page and showcase their accomplishments. This will help make Canadaís discoveries and innovations more accessible than ever to Canadians and people around the world.