CANADIAN BRAIN DRAIN (Articlel from Reuters)

Brian Fristensky frist at cc.umanitoba.ca
Thu Mar 26 12:47:34 EST 1998


Graham Dellaire wrote:

> FEATURE-Taxes, low funding dull Canada scientific cutting edge
>
>
>             By Gilbert Le Gras
>             TORONTO (Reuters) - Ask any expatriate scientist, engineer
> or doctor why a growing number of Canada's best and brightest
> emigrate and you are likely to get this answer: ``I couldn't get
> the job I wanted in Canada at the pay I wanted.''

There's yet another way in which Canada is systematically
driving scientists out. In recent years, the funding system for
academic research has been shifted almost entirely to
matching funds and 'strategic' focus areas. First, if you're
not in one of the key strategic areas, you're not elegible
to apply to many programs. Secondly, if you look at
the NSERC granting programs. all but one now require
that you FIRST obtain funding from industry, either
in dollars or in-kind contributions. Only if  you have
funding from industry, are you then eligible to
apply to programs like the Strategic Grants, the Research
Partnership Program, etc. Networked Centres of Excellence
must have industry partners. The only program remaining
that does not still require industry support is the
Research Grants (formerly Operating Grants) that
are small grants with high success rates. Only one
Research Grant can be held by a recipient, and the
funding is typicaly barely enough for one graduate student
and some supplies.

This says to me that NSERC  (probably due to pressure
at higher governmental levels) has all but abandoned
basic, non-profit-driven,  research. If you want
to do basic research, Canada is not the place to be.

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Brian Fristensky                |
Department of Plant Science     |  "... the lingering after-winter,
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frist at cc.umanitoba.ca           |  people who don't drink what a
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