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What is the current state of science and technology and industrial research and development in Canada?

This is the central question that Wilfrid Laurier University President and Vice-Chancellor Max Blouw has been tasked to help answer as chair of a new expert panel.

The Council of Canadian Academies (CCA) has appointed Blouw to lead the Expert Panel on the State of Science and Technology (S&T) and Industrial Research and Development (IR&D) in Canada. As chair, he will work with experts from different fields of academic research, R&D, innovation, and research administration to address the aforementioned question, which was referred to the CCA by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED).

“I am very pleased to accept the position of chair for this assessment and I consider myself privileged to be working with such an eminent group of experts,” said Blouw. “The CCA’s previous reports on S&T and IR&D provided crucial insights into Canada’s strengths and weaknesses in these areas. I look forward to contributing to this important set of reports with new evidence and trends.”

Since joining Laurier in 2007, Blouw has made research a priority at Laurier, increasing the university’s focus on and capacity to conduct research, including the development of a Strategic Research Plan. Previously, Blouw had a distinguished career at the University of Northern British Columbia, where he served as vice-president of research, and at St. Francis Xavier University.

Blouw has been active in post-secondary affairs at the provincial and national level. He served as chair of the Council of Ontario Universities (COU) from 2013 to 2015, and currently serves as past chair and as a member of the COU’s Executive Committee, Holding Association Inc. and Nominations Committee. He also served two terms as the chair of the university advisory group to Industry Canada and was a member of the adjudication panel for the Ontario premier’s Discovery Awards, which recognize the province’s finest senior researchers. He recently chaired the International Review Committee of the NSERC Discovery Grants Program. Blouw holds Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in zoology from the University of Manitoba and a PhD in biology from the University of New Brunswick.

“Dr. Blouw is a widely respected leader with a strong background in research and academia,” said Eric M. Meslin, president and CEO of the CCA. “I am delighted he has agreed to serve as chair for an assessment that will contribute to the current policy discussion in Canada.”

The new CCA expert panel will deliver its final report by late 2017. The depth of the panel’s experience and expertise, paired with the CCA’s rigorous assessment methodology, will ensure the most authoritative, credible, and independent response to the question.

To learn more about the Council of Canadian Academies and the new expert panel, visit the CCA website.


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