FAQ

On this page:

  1. Why collaborate with Science?
  2. Who do I contact?
  3. How do I find an expert in my area/sector of interest?
  4. How do I work with the University?
  5. What costs are involved in working with the University?
  6. How is Intellectual Property handled?
  7. Is there government support for industry to collaborate with the University?
  8. Are there other funding programs available to better leverage my company’s funds?
  9. Is there a low risk way for my company to start working with the University?
  10. How do I find talented undergraduate students or graduates to hire?
  11. Still unsure?

  1. Why collaborate with Science?

    • The Faculty of Science is one of the finest faculties in Canada with over 6500 undergraduate and 1300 graduate students mentored by award winning researchers. With over $69 million annual research revenue, we are at the forefront of innovative research and novel discoveries. Collaborating with the University will allow companies to access expertise, high value equipment, and government funding programs that require industry-academic partnership. We are ready to collaborate with industry and open to exploring ways for us to work together.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. Who do I contact?


  2. Back to the Top
  1. How do I find an expert in my area/sector of interest?

    • The Faculty of Science is home to 300 active researchers with a wide breadth of expertise. Try our Find an Expert page to find a researcher working in your area, or contact us to connect you with the appropriate researcher(s).

  2. Back to the Top
  1. How do I work with the University?

    • Depending on your needs, companies can work directly with the University researcher via a simple award letter (minimal terms; all funds come from the company), fully funded research agreement (terms to be negotiated; all funds come from the company), a research collaboration grant (terms follow established program guidelines or are negotiated; partial funds come from the company, remainder come from other funding sources eg. Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, NSERC), or technical service agreement (using established assays to analyze samples). In all cases, the terms of the relationship are clarified before any work starts. The University makes every effort to ensure all concerns are resolved to ensure the success of the project. All research funding coming into the University is administered via the Research Services Office. Information on negotiating agreements/contracts can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. What costs are involved in working with the University?

    • Depending on the project, companies can cover the entire cost of the research, or partner with another funding agency to have their own funds leveraged for additional funding. In most cases, company funds are assessed the direct costs (personnel, materials, travel etc required to complete the project) as well as indirect costs/overhead at 20%. A small portion of the indirect costs/overhead funds are re-directed to cover central administrative costs but the majority (85%) is re-directed back to the Faculties to assist them with costs related to equipment, facility renovations, hiring of core technical personnel etc. Some exceptions apply, for example industry funds for the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Collaborative Research and Development program (NSERC CRD) are indirect cost/overhead exempt, as are industry matching funds to the MITACs Accelerate internship program. Some companies are also eligible for reimbursements/tax credits from the government National Research Council - Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) or Scientific Research and Experimental Development Tax Incentive (SR&ED) programs.
      Information on indirect costs can be found here.
      Information on NSERC CRD here and information on MITACs Accelerate can be found here.
      Information on NRC-IRAP can be found here and information on SR&ED can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. How is Intellectual Property handled?

    • All patentable intellectual property arising from research at the University by default belongs to the researcher/research team that creates it. Our researchers can then guide the University in how they want this to be licensed or managed. In some cases, researchers/the University may transfer rights to the company, agree to a negotiated licensing or royalty structure, or agree to an open access distribution model. In all cases, the University must reserve a non-transferable, royalty-free license to use the research results for non-commercial education and research purposes. Information on intellectual property can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. Is there government support for industry to collaborate with the University?

    • The National Research Council - Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP) offers business and technical advisory services (e.g. identify opportunities, problem solving, facilitate introductions) and a suite of funding programs (e.g. direct contributions to companies to: access academia, increase R&D intensity, hire new graduates). Information on NRC-IRAP can be found here.
    • Industry may be eligible for federal tax incentives under the Scientific Research and Experimental Development Tax Incentive (SR&ED) Program. Information on the SR&ED program can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. Are there other funding programs available to better leverage my company’s funds?

    • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) has a suite of programs designed to facilitate industry - academia partnerships. The Collaborative Research Development program (NSERC CRD) provides federal funds to match industry cash and in kind. All industry cash is indirect cost/overhead exempt and the company would work out an agreement on terms directly with the University. The NSERC CRD has a high success rate and funds typically flow for 1-3 years. Information on NSERC partnership programs like the CRD can be found here.
    • Industry may be eligible to leverage funding from the federally funded Mitacs Accelerate program to hire current graduate students or postdoctoral fellows for collaborative research internships lasting 4 months or more (up to 3 years for PhD students). To find an appropriate graduate student or postdoctoral fellow, search our Find an Expert page to find the researcher working in your area, or contact us. Information on the Mitacs Accelerate program can be found here.
    • There are many other funding programs targeting partnerships between Universities and industry. Information on government funding programs for industry can be found here.

      In some cases, these funding programs can be used concurrently with other government supports to minimize company cash commitment and risk. For more information, please contact us.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. Is there a low risk way for my company to start working with the University?

    • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) has the “Connect –level 1” program to fund travel for our researchers to your company for an initial meeting (max $5,000); and the “Engage” program to fund a 6 month company focused project where any resultant intellectual property is automatically owned by the company (max $25,000). There is no cash requirement from your company for either program and the application process for each is relatively easy. Information on the NSERC Connect- level 1 can be found here and information on NSERC Engage can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. How do I find talented undergraduate students or graduates to hire?

    • The Faculty of Science has a successful Science Internship Program which enables industry to hire our current senior undergraduates for 4, 8, 12, or 16 month internships. Information on the Science Internship Program can be found here.
    • University of Alberta students and alumni are among the best and the brightest emerging talent; CAPS connects you directly to this valuable resource. Companies can post their job opportunities on the CAPS Job Board or meet our students at career fairs or mixers. Information on CAPS can be found here.

  2. Back to the Top
  1. Still unsure?

    • For examples of previous successful Science - Industry projects, or for names of companies open to sharing testimonials, please contact us.

  2. Back to the Top

 

“United we grow. Divided we status quo.” –Jonathan Schaeffer, Dean Faculty of Science