OTTAWA, December 5, 2014 – The Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences welcomes Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s announcement to support world-class research at Canadian post-secondary education institutions, and is calling for a broad-based approach to innovation.
“We endorsed the creation of the new Canada First Research Excellence Fund in Budget 2014, and are pleased to see it get off the ground,” said Antonia Maioni, President of the Federation. “Our post-secondary education institutions will now have access to a dedicated fund, which must enable them to pursue outstanding interdisciplinary projects in support of people-centered solutions to some of society’s most pressing challenges.”
The first round of funds was launched in conjunction with a revised Science and Technology Strategy, with proposals to the Fund being required to align with the updated Strategy’s priorities and focus areas. In consultations, the Federation had called for a people-centred approach to innovation that recognizes how human behaviour, creativity, diversity and organizational dynamics are critical to understanding and unlocking the potential for Canadians to excel in a knowledge-based society.
“We note the addition of innovation as a new pillar in the updated Strategy,” said Jean-Marc Mangin, Executive Director of the Federation. “To be successful, this new emphasis must pay close attention to the interplay between content, context and technology. In implementing this Strategy, we cannot afford a narrow and strictly commercial interpretation of its priorities. In seizing its moment, Canada must mobilize and connect all fields of knowledge across the sciences, engineering, arts, social sciences and the humanities in ways that foster new cultures of innovation for social and economic benefit.”
Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
613-238-6112, ext. 351
About the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
The Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences promotes research, learning and an understanding of the contributions made by the humanities and the social sciences for a free and democratic society. Established in 1940, with a membership now comprising 160+ universities, colleges and scholarly associations, the Federation represents a diverse community of 85,000 researchers and graduate students across Canada. The Federation organizes Canada’s largest academic gathering, the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, bringing together more than 8,000 participants each year. For more information about the Federation, visit www.ideas-idees.ca.