U of S welcomes federal budget 2018’s strong support for research and innovation

University of Saskatchewan president Peter Stoicheff said federal budget 2018 ushers in a new era of Canadian discovery and innovation that will drive economic and social prosperity strengthened by diverse views and perspectives.


“This budget represents the strongest federal support for fundamental research in Canada’s history,” he said. “This investment will strengthen the University of Saskatchewan’s ability to contribute to knowledge and innovation in Saskatchewan, Canada and beyond.”

Stoicheff applauded the federal government for its visionary commitment to the post-secondary research and innovation sector, and particularly recognized Science Minister Kirsty Duncan, for commissioning the Fundamental Science Review two years ago. That review recommended investment in and changes to many aspects of Canadian post-secondary research and influenced important commitments of budget 2018.

In particular, Stoicheff noted that budget 2018 provides $1.2 billion in new funding for investigator-led research through Canada’s three federal research councils over the next five years.

“The commitment to support Canadian researchers through significantly increased Tri-Council investments is very welcome news. This investment will target increased funding for female, Indigenous, and early-career researchers. As a result, we will be training and diversifying more of the next-generation leaders.”

Of particular importance to the U of S, Stoicheff said, is the budget’s support for the tools and infrastructure necessary for Canada to be a global research leader.

“Given that two of Canada’s major research facilities are at the U of S—VIDO-InterVac and the Canadian Light Source, Canada’s only synchrotron—it is particularly encouraging to see increased and longer-term support for the Canada Foundation for Innovation, a major funder of our nationally important flagship facilities,” he said.

“It is also encouraging to see the budget’s commitment to developing a national strategy for ensuring the long-term sustainability of major research facilities like the CLS and VIDO-InterVac in 2018. These unique facilities enable us to contribute significantly to national research and innovation in health, agriculture, environment, and more, to the great benefit of Canadians.”

The U of S will continue to assess the impact of budget 2018 and its consequences for the university’s discovery mission, its faculty, students and researchers.