Volume 93, Issue 78

Thursday, February 17, 2000


White Paper talks reveal concerns

Breast cancer study pays off

Research projects rake in funds

Harris speaks out on gun control

City task force targets housing

Gas prices lead to finger pointing

Internet use decreases social interaction


Caught on campus

Research projects rake in funds

By Stephanie Cesca
Gazette Staff

Several Western researchers were smiling this week after a Health Canada announcement earmarked $10 million in funding towards Western research projects.

Marcel Chartrand, director of communications for the Medical Research Council of Canada, said Health Minister Allan Rock announced last week that $165 million would be distributed to research projects throughout the nation. Approximately 1,200 applications were collected and 500 were awarded funding, he said.

Although the federal government provides the money, it is the MRC's responsibility to distribute it accordingly, he explained, adding quality and relevance were the leading determinants when deciding which projects should receive funding.

"Ontario always gets more than any other province," he said, adding it was because Ontario has five medical schools. In addition, Chartrand said Western was always highly successful in grant competitions.

In April, Ontario would receive $58,290,134 in research funding. The funds would be allocated between the school's researchers over the next three to five years, he added.

Derek Kent, spokesperson for Health Canada, said this move recognized a need for more funding in the research industry. "It's been a very positive response," he said.

Jack Bend, director of research in the faculty of medicine and dentistry, said he was thrilled Western was successful in this competition. "It's excellent news. The nice thing is the federal government has made significant increases in the funding," he said.

Approximately 53 per cent of Western's applicants to the MRC were awarded funding, he said, marking the highest success rate for the school to date. He added each researcher was awarded between $60,000 and $90,000.

Another breakthrough for Western was the fact six of the successful proposals were first-time recipients. "Those folks are all at the assistant professor level. That's really, really important for getting a scientific career started," Bend said.

To Contact The News Department:

Copyright The Gazette 2000