Thirteen new Canada Research Chairs for U of T

October 16th, 2014

Ed Holder, Minister of State for Science and Technology, makes announcement on campus

Jenny Hall

The University of Toronto continues to perform well in the Canada Research Chairs program, seeing 13 new researchers named chairs and 12 retain their existing chairs.

Ed Holder, Canada’s Minister of State for Science and Technology, was on campus to make the announcement of $118 million in funding across Canada, $29.6 million which will go to U of T researchers.

The new chairholders are:

  • Evdokia Anagnostou, Department of Paediatrics and Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, CRC in Translational Therapeutics in ASD;
  • Daniel Bender, Department of Historical and Cultural Studies, U of T Scarborough, CRC in Global Culture;
  • Aimy Bazylak, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, CRC in Thermofluidics for Clean Energy;
  • Craig E. Boutilier, Department of Computer Science, CRC in Adaptive Decision Making for Intelligent Systems;
  • Elizabeth A. Edwards, Department of Chemical Engineering and Applied Chemistry, CRC in Anaerobic Biotechnology;
  • Anver M. Emon, Faculty of Law, CRC in Religion, Pluralism, and the Rule of Law;
  • Prabhat Jha, Dalla Lana School of Public Health and St. Michael’s Hospital, CRC in Global Health;
  • Gillian King, Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy and Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, CRC in Optimal Care for Children with Disabilities;
  • Goldie Nejat, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, CRC in Robots for Society;
  • Peter Roy, Department of Molecular Genetics, CRC in Chemical Genetics;
  • John Rubinstein, Department of Biochemistry and the Hospital for Sick Children, CRC in Electron Cryomicroscopy;
  • Bianca Schroeder, Department of Computer and Mathematical Sciences, U of T Scarborough, CRC in Data Center Technologies; and
  • Dvira D.S. Segal, Department of Chemistry, CRC in Theoretical Chemistry.

“We are grateful to the government of Canada for this investment,” says Professor Peter Lewis, U of T’s interim vice-president, research and innovation. “The program has been critical to the university’s ability to attract and retain the best researchers from around the world — and to Canada’s as a nation.”

Peter Lewis, U of T's interim vice-president, research and innovation; Ed Holder, Canada's Minister of State for Science and Technology, Professor Goldie Nejat of mechanical and industrial engineering; Mark Adler, MPP for York Centre. Photo: Canadian Press Images.

Peter Lewis, U of T’s interim vice-president, research and innovation; Ed Holder, Canada’s Minister of State for Science and Technology, Professor Goldie Nejat of mechanical and industrial engineering; Mark Adler, MPP for York Centre. Photo: Canadian Press Images.

Nejat, holder of the new Canada Research Chair in Robots for Society, spoke at the event, thanking the government for its investment and describing the research it will support in her lab.

“Our main application is to design robots to help people. We want these robots to improve quality of life, quality of care and the health of all Canadians, including our vulnerable populations.”

She is particularly interested in developing robots to assist elderly people with dementia, noting that the funding is “helping us develop made-in-Canada assistive technologies.

“The idea is to use these robots to provide cognitive and social interventions and to help people with the activities of daily living that some of us may take for granted, such as brushing our teeth or making a meal.”

In addition to funding the new chairs, 12 chairs were renewed:

  • Stuart Foster, Department of Medical Biophysics and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, CRC in Ultrasound Imaging;
  • Richard Horner, Department of Medicine, CRC in Sleep and Respiratory Neurobiology;
  • Brad Inwood, Departments of Classics and Philosophy, CRC in Ancient Philosophy;
  • David Jenkins, Department of Nutritional Sciences and St. Michael’s Hospital, CRC in Nutrition, Metabolism and Vascular Biology;
  • Lewis E. Kay, Department of Molecular Genetics, CRC in Proteomics, Bioinformatics and Functional Genomics;
  • Tak W. Mak, Department of Medical Biophysics and University Health Network, CRC in Inflammation Responses and Traumatic Injury;
  • Norman Murray, Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics, CRC in Theoretical Astrophysics;
  • Benjamin Neel, Department of Medical Biophysics and University Health Network, CRC in Signal Transduction and Human Disease;
  • Linda Z. Penn, Department of Medical Biophysics and University Health Network, CRC in Molecular Oncology;
  • Martin Post, Department of Paediatrics and the Hospital for Sick Children, CRC in Fetal, Neonatal and Maternal Health;
  • Philip Sherman, Department of Paediatrics and the Hospital for Sick Children, CRC in Gastrointestinal Disease; and
  • Douglas W. Stephan, Department of Chemistry, CRC in Catalysis and Materials.

 

Professor Goldie Nejat, centre, holder of a new Canada Research Chair, leading a tour of her lab. Left to right: Brian the robot, PhD student Derek McColl; Nejat; Mark Adler, Member of Parliament for York Centre; Ed Holder, Minister of State for Science and Technology and Member of Parliament for London West. Photo: Canadian Press Images.

Professor Goldie Nejat, centre, holder of a new Canada Research Chair, leading a tour of her lab. Left to right: Brian the robot, PhD student Derek McColl; Nejat; Mark Adler, Member of Parliament for York Centre; Ed Holder, Minister of State for Science and Technology and Member of Parliament for London West. Photo: Canadian Press Images.