The federal government has shortlisted nine innovative industry hubs across the country to become Canada’s new superclusters as part of its $950M strategy to generate public-private partnerships.
- Superclusters are dense areas of business activity that attract companies that collaborate with universities, colleges or nonprofits to turn ideas into solutions that can be brought to market.
- The Government announced in May that it was accepting letters of intent to participate in the Innovation Superclusters Initiative, which provides funding for innovative industries to develop in different regions across Canada.
- The Government received more than 50 proposals. Of these, nine were shortlisted and have been invited to submit a full application by Nov. 24.
- Up to five applicants will be selected to receive grants between $125M and $250M.
- The nine shortlisted applicants are as follows:
- Advanced Manufacturing in ON. The ‘Building an Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster for Canada’ would: Position manufacturers as the ultimate tech integrators; Drive collaboration between technology and manufacturing sectors using the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, sensor technology and intelligent machines; and Create and apply new solutions that scale production, speed adoption and improve efficiency. Lead applicants are Communitech and MaRS Discovery District in partnership with 100 innovation organizations.
- Infrastructure in AB. The ‘Smart, Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure (SSRI) Supercluster’ would: Transform Canada’s built environment to make it more resilient, sustainable, productive and cost effective; Revolutionize the design, construction and operations of infrastructure; and Make Canada a world leader in the use of advanced digital communications, cutting-edge tools, and interconnected applications and services. The lead applicant is Stantec Consulting in partnership with 25 innovation organizations.
- Clean Mining in ON, QC and BC. The ‘Clean, Low-energy, Effective, Engaged and Remediated (CLEER) Supercluster: Powering Clean Growth Through Mining Innovation’ would: Seek to transform the mining sector and position Canada as a global leader in clean resources, cleantech and responsible sourcing of metals; Tackle global challenges of energy intensity, water use and environmental footprint through collaborative innovation; Initiate export pathways; and Create new skilled jobs. The lead applicant is the Canada Mining Innovation Council in collaboration with 90 innovation organizations.
- AI in QC. The ‘AI-powered Supply Chains Supercluster’ would bolster Canadian leadership in artificial intelligence and data science to impact the retail, manufacturing and infrastructure sectors. The lead applicant is Optel Group in partnership with 80 innovation organizations.
- Mobility Systems in QC, ON, BC and Atlantic Canada. The ‘Mobility Systems and Technologies for the 21st Century (MOST21) Supercluster’ would leverage digital technologies to advance Canadian leadership in next-generation mobility products and services for the aerospace, ground transportation and advanced manufacturing sectors. The lead applicant is CAE in partnership with 170 innovation organizations.
- Digital Technology in BC. ‘Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster’ would aim to make Canada faster, smarter and more collaborative in inventing, developing and applying digital technologies. It would advance data collection, analysis and visualization to drive competitiveness across environment and resource technologies, precision health and manufacturing. The lead applicant is TELUS in partnership with 70 innovation organizations.
- Agri-food in AB. The ‘Smart Agri-food Supercluster’ would: Make Canada the preferred global supplier of sustainable, high-quality, safe food; and Advance market competitiveness by building information technologies, which includes data analysis and quality verification platforms to add informatics, connectivity and traceability in the crop, livestock and agri-food processing sectors. The lead applicant is Agrium in partnership with 50 innovation organizations.
- Ocean Supercluster in Atlantic Canada. The ‘Ocean Supercluster’ would: Maximize the economic potential and sustainable development of Canada’s ocean economy; and Address shared innovation needs to improve productivity and global competitiveness by investing in digital ocean technologies for industries such as aquaculture, capture fishery, offshore oil and gas, and clean energy. The lead applicant is Petroleum Research Newfoundland and Labrador in partnership with 25 innovation organizations.
- Protein Innovations in SK. The ‘Protein Innovations Canada (PIC) Supercluster: Unleashing the Potential of Canadian Crops’ would position Canada as the world’s paramount supplier of plant-based proteins and related products. It would capture the massive export-market opportunity for safe, nutritious plant-based food and feed by stimulating collaboration on novel technologies and value-added supply-chain infrastructure. The lead applicant is Ag-West Bio in partnership with 60 innovation organizations.
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