The Research Support Fund: Supporting an Open Innovation Model

The Government of Canada’s Research Support Fund covers the salaries of staff within SFU’s Industry Engagement.

SFU’s Industry Engagement (IE) assists SFU innovators in assessing the potential of new technologies and research innovations to benefit communities, society and the economy of British Columbia and Canada. IE services include confidential invention disclosure reviews, technology assessments, patentability reviews, market assessments, intellectual property protection and commercialization assistance. Crucially important is attracting industry and government to partner in mobilizing SFU research. The Research Support Fund (RSF) covers the salaries of certain positions within IE. The funding is essential in helping SFU researchers build effective working relationships and partnerships with industry, governments, NGOs and non-profits and communities, to increase the solution capability of SFU innovators. It ensures that SFU is able to continue to be effective in operating an open innovation model.

“Industry Engagement says to everyone—be it people within the government, organizations in multiple sectors, other institutions, venture capitalists—that SFU is open for business," says Dr. Begg, director, Industry Engagement.  “We’re intimately connected to SFU’s culture of innovation, so in a way, we’re really in the business of mobilizing research.”

Dr. Iain Begg is the director of Industry Engagement at SFU and brings a wealth of academic and industrial experience to IE and to SFU Innovates — a university-wide strategy that builds on our dynamic culture and seeks to strengthen SFU’s commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship. Dr. Begg has a reputation for innovation — leading many large and small-scale research projects, some of which have been in visual analytics, analysis in finance, as well as healthcare and operations from smaller Fortune 500 companies.

As a seasoned entrepreneur, mentor, professor and researcher, he is well known for sourcing, attracting and developing opportunities for initiatives that have social and environmental benefits both locally and globally, ultimately resulting in the strengthening of communities. IE supports one of the four interconnected pillars of SFU Innovates, being Industry and Community Research Partnerships. This pillar focuses on bridging the gap to create innovations that benefit society.

IE challenges the research, which encourages SFU researchers to do more — to take it to that next level. By pushing in this way, IE helps SFU deliver on being Canada’s engaged university.

Learn more about SFU’s Industry Engagement.

About SFU's Industry Engagement

The mission of Industry Engagement at Simon Fraser University is to facilitate the creation of new university-industry research and development partnerships, and to assist in commercializing the results of university-based innovations.


Collaboration: to work with internal and external groups to connect SFU innovators with the programs and services to address their innovations and associations involved in technology transfer and development.

Technology Management: to effectively manage Intellectual Property (IP) creation and commercialization (encouraging IP creation and technology disclosures, assessment, valuation and protection) for SFU researchers, students and staff.

Information: to communicate the impact of SFU research innovations to corporate, government, university stakeholders, media and the community.