NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Strategic Construction Modeling and Delivery

Industry Partners

The people we work with are integral to our construction research and development activities. The NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Strategic Construction Modeling and Delivery collaborates closely with industry partners in working toward our goal of using advanced modeling techniques to deliver effective solutions to practical industry problems.

The Chair strives to meet the needs of partner organizations with specialized solutions designed for individual parties, as well as joint collaborative projects involving multiple partners. We are proud to count construction owners, owner associations, contractors, contractor associations, labour associations, and labour unions as our industry partners. Each partner organization is profiled below.

Collaborative Relationships

We value our industry partners as true collaborators. Representatives from our partner organizations provide oversight and guidance for the Chair's research program through the Management Advisory Committee, which defines research directions, provides strategic support, and manages financial contributions from our partner organizations. Members of the Technical Advisory Committee work closely with our researchers to investigate and implement the specific details of each research project, and to transfer discoveries and new technologies from their research and development phase to their industrial application.

Our partner organizations provide us with extensive in-kind support in the form of facilities, training, data, and personnel time. These close working relationships are the key to our success: the high level of partner support we enjoy results in informed research, innovative development, and effective solutions that can be applied directly within our industry partner organizations.

Industry Partner Organizations

Capital Power

Capital Power produces power in North America – reliably, competitively, and responsibly. Established in July 2009, Capital Power (TSX: CPX) is a growth-oriented North American power producer headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, that develops, acquires, operates, optimizes and builds power generation capabilities with energy-efficient technology and lower-carbon fuel and renewable sources. The company has a foundation of operational excellence and financial strength with well-maintained assets, a strong balance sheet, and an investment-grade credit rating.

Christian Labour Association of Canada

The Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC) is an independent Canadian labour union representing 50,000 workers in many sectors across Canada – construction, healthcare, retail, service, transportation, manufacturing, and mining. Based on principles that promote the values of fairness, respect, dignity and integrity, CLAC’s approach to labour relations stresses membership advocacy, cooperation, and the long term interests of the workplace community. Certified since 1952, CLAC is a full service union that provides representation and a wide range of benefits and training for its members. The union serves its members from 14 regional offices in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and its head office near Toronto.

Construction Owners Association of Alberta

Founded in 1973, the Construction Owners Association of Alberta (COAA) represents a broad crosssection of owners’ interests and is associated with many sectors of the Alberta construction community. It is comprised of two groups: 1) principal members who are users of construction services in their day-today operations, and 2) association members who provide construction services and other activities. It engages with owners, construction and engineering contractors, government, labour groups, and other construction industry associations, and provides leadership to enable its members’ success in their drive for safe, effective, and productive project execution in the construction industry. The (COAA) continues to provide value to its member companies and the wider construction industry in a number of different ways. The COAA serves as a unique forum for industry dialogue and cooperation. Through partnerships with BuildForce Canada (national forecast) and the Government of Alberta (provincial projection), we serve as a major information base for project and policy decisions regarding workforce supply and demand. The COAA also provides important benchmarking services in collecting and analysing confidential data for Alberta major projects.

With 30± best practices issued over the last 20 years in areas regarding safety, workforce development, construction performance, and contracts, the COAA also plays a major role in creating and championing practices to improve our industry. We have also fostered a number of long-standing research and training partnerships with various industry and academic groups including the Construction Industry Institute, Productivity Alberta, and the University of Alberta’s Hole School of Construction Engineering. Furthermore, since 1993, the COAA has held its annual Best Practices Conference, which is well attended by over 500 delegates from across Alberta and Canada.

The COAA also contributes to improved industry leadership by providing new ideas for the leaders of company and government groups. The following include some of the COAA’s most notable publications: “Canadian Model for Providing a Safe Workplace”; “Heavy Industrial Construction Maintenance Workforce Challenges in Alberta” (white paper); and “Call to Action: Twice as Safe, Twice as Productive by 2020”. Over the years, the COAA has become a respected advocate for industry initiatives and government policies. We have developed a solid working relationship with various government departments and are regularly asked to provide an industry perspective on important issues. Furthermore, the COAA is a strong champion for construction safety, the apprenticeship system, stable labour relations, interprovincial workforce mobility, and the appropriate use of skilled temporary foreign workers.

Finally, the COAA places a strong focus on talent development and has over 200+ volunteers on active committees. We are dedicated to broadening perspectives for key leaders and rising stars; establishing growth opportunities as committee chairs, workshop presenters, and industry ambassadors; and helping to develop networking and leadership skills for your team members.

Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta

On November 29, 1962, the Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta (ECAA) was incorporated and registered with the Alberta Registrar of Companies. At the beginning of its development, the ECAA was basically an amalgamation of a number of local associations who recognized the need for a provincial agency uniting all contractors operating in Alberta. Today, the ECAA is the voice and information centre of the electrical industry, a self-governing body working to ensure a professional membership through education, safety, and strong stakeholder relationships. The organization represents both union and non-union electrical contractors, with a membership of over 865 firms in all areas of Alberta. It also has associate members who are actively engaged in activities related to electrical contracting. The primary objectives of the ECAA are as follows: (a) to act as the voice of the electrical contractors operating in Alberta; (b) to unite members in an association for their mutual improvement, protection, and general welfare; (c) to promote better relationships between members, owners, architects, engineers, suppliers, manufacturers, contractors, and other segments of the electrical industry; (d) to establish, maintain, and advance methods of practice between the members within the industry, and without limiting the generality of the foregoing, to enact a code of ethics; (e) to acquire and disseminate information concerning the electrical industry; and (f) to provide a medium whereby members, chapters, and affiliates may exchange opinions and coordinate their efforts. The ECAA is committed to undertaking activities that inform and advance the practices of our members, including research, education, and training.

 Progressive Contractors Association of Canada

PCA logoThe Progressive Contractors Association of Canada (PCA) is a national contractor’s association for progressive unionized employers in Canada’s construction industry. The association works to ensure fair access to work opportunities for its members by promoting a legislative framework and industry practices that result in a level playing field for all construction industry participants. PCA advances its members’ interests through public advocacy and the provision of labour relations advice and services. PCA member companies employ over 25,000 skilled workers across Canada, represented primarily by the Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC).


Suncor Energy Inc. (Suncor) is an integrated energy company strategically focused on developing Canada’s Athabasca oil sands. Suncor’s operations include oil sands development and upgrading, conventional and offshore oil and gas production, petroleum refining, and product marketing under the Petro-Canada brand. While working to responsibly develop petroleum resources, Suncor is also developing a growing renewable energy portfolio. Suncor’s common shares (symbol: SU) are listed on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges.

Alberta Roadbuilders and Heavy Construction Association

The Alberta Roadbuilders and Heavy Construction Association (ARHCA) is the largest heavy construction association in Canada, with more than 1,000 corporate members. The ARHCA supports long-term, stable investment in our transportation infrastructure at the best possible value to the taxpayer. The ARHCA also believes that a strong transportation system is essential to Canada’s future, providing a costeffective method of moving goods and services to local and world markets, and giving Canadians a safe and efficient way to travel. We represent both union and non-union contractors who work on the construction and rehabilitation of highways, municipal roads, bridges, sewer, and water projects, as well as the suppliers (such as equipment dealers, finance companies, aggregate suppliers, law firms, etc.), and consulting engineers who work with them. ARHCA member companies can also be found constructing streets, curbs and gutters, sewer and water systems, and other infrastructure for residential, commercial, oilfield, oil sands and forestry projects.

Merit Contractors Association

Merit Contractors Association (Merit Alberta) was established in 1986, and operates offices in Edmonton and Calgary. It is a founding member of Merit Canada. The Alberta association has 1,450 members, including most of Alberta's large generals and trade contractors. It focuses on the human resource needs of its members, and researches and advocates public policy to promote free enterprise, individual merit, economy, and efficiency in the construction industry, plus sound legislation in workers’ compensation, safety standards, apprenticeship training, and unemployment compensation. Merit Alberta’s services also include retirement programs, job placement services, and employment youth initiatives, plus the Merit College of Construction that offers construction skill training programs, supervisor training programs, apprenticeship support programs, and e-learning management training. Its programs are being used throughout Canada.