Simon Fraser University

SFU researchers succeed in NSERC competition

Jul 11, 2002 , vol. 24, no. 6

By Carol Thorbes
Seventeen of 35 Simon Fraser University applications were successful in the 2002 annual national competition for research tools and instruments grants (formerly equipment grants) from the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC).

With a success rate of 48.6 per cent, SFU was considerably above the national average of 29.9 per cent.

The university's performance was particularly noteworthy since money for NSERC tools and instruments grants has been at a premium the last few years.

That's because the number of first-time applicants nationally for Discovery grants (formerly research grants) has risen more than 50 per cent in the last five years, surpassing 750 this year.

“Money was tight because our number one priority is to fund new research grant applicants, which requires a minimum $12.5 million per year infusion,” says NSERC spokesperson Barney Laciak.

A seven-per cent funding increase from the federal government enabled NSERC to meet that goal.

SFU researchers were collectively awarded about $1 million for research tools and instruments. SFU researchers collectively secured $7.46 million in Discovery grants.

Fifty-four out of 65 applications (excluding SFU Surrey) were successful.
NSERC is the premier federal funding agency for science and technology research in Canada.