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REF NO.: 56
SUBJECT: Bringing innovations to the market: Springboard launches Interns in Innovation
DATE: Oct. 20,2005
Memorial University, on behalf of the Springboard Network, has received funding from the Government of Canada to help accelerate technology and knowledge transfer in Atlantic Canada. Industry Minister David L. Emerson and Health Minister Ujjal Dosanjh recently announced $576,000 over three years in funding under the Intellectual Property Mobilization (IPM) Program to Springboard for its Interns in Innovation program.
The Interns in Innovation training program will provide mentoring and job shadowing opportunities at the technology commercialization offices of the member universities of Springboard. The program will create an unprecedented cohort of highly qualified technology professionals who can accelerate innovation and commercialization in the Atlantic region. A rigorous training program will build around national and regional training modules and will allow interns to become fully versed in the technological aspects and operational elements of intellectual property management, transfer of technology and the business of bringing innovations to the marketplace. Interns will develop a network of contacts throughout the Atlantic region and Canadaand can avail of placements with venture capital and technology companies to expand their knowledge of how technologies are evaluated, financed and nurtured from discovery to market.
Awarded to Memorial University of Newfoundland, the funding will support the development and commercialization of research at the university and at the 13 other universities in Atlantic Canada which comprise Springboard’s membership.
“Discoveries that lend themselves to commercialization must first be turned into technologies and then technologies into products,” said Dr. Christopher Loomis, vice-president (research), MemorialUniversity. “The critical element is highly qualified people who can enable this transformation. The Springboard Internship initiative will ensure that Atlantic Universities will have the trained technology transfer personnel that are essential for success.”
The Intellectual Property Mobilization program is funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).
”Universities in Atlantic Canada carry out the majority of research and development conducted in the region,” said Sara Jane Snook, executive director of Springboard. “Springboard’s university members will lead the commercialization of research in the region and highly trained people are key to that effort.”
Springboard is a consortium which links university research with the private sector. Its goals are to promote technology transfer and to advance economic growth through the commercialization of university-based research.
“Springboard is an excellent example of what we are trying to achieve with the tri-agency Intellectual Property Mobilization program,” said Janet Walden, NSERC vice-president for Research Partnerships Programs. “This is a concerted effort among academic institutions in Atlantic Canada to increase the commercialization of research in the region through the effective sharing of resources to manage and protect intellectual property, to encourage entrepreneurship and make industry more aware of the knowledge and technology resources at their disposal.”
The members of Springboard are: Memorial University, Acadia University, Cape Breton University, Dalhousie University, Mount Allison University, Mount Saint Vincent University, Nova Scotia Agricultural College, NSCAD University, St. Francis Xavier University, Saint Mary's University, St. Thomas University, l'Université de Moncton, the University of New Brunswick and the University of Prince Edward Island.
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