CIFAR makes major investment in genetics, economics and social sciences research with new five-year mandates
TORONTO - The Canadian Institute for Advanced Research is pleased to announce a major new investment totaling approximately $6 million over five years to support two of the Institute's research programs in genetics, and economics and social sciences.
The Genetic Networks program is creating new ways of understanding how genes interact with one another, research that could identify the root causes of many complex genetic diseases, and lead to new treatments and preventive measures.
The Institute's Social Interactions, Identity and Well-Being program is focused on developing richer economic models by integrating social science concepts such as the influence of social identity and relationships on well-being and economic motivation.
These programs have each been in existence for nearly five years, the point at which all CIFAR programs undergo rigorous peer review. To conduct the review, CIFAR convenes internationally renowned scholars to participate on external review panels. These panels evaluate whether the program is meeting CIFAR's high standards of research excellence and leadership. Both of these programs received high praise from the panels.
"This team is changing the face of science in the area of genetic interactions and is bringing great distinction to Canadian science and their international collaborators," stated the Genetic Networks review panel.
The Social Interactions, Identity and Well-Being panel noted that, "None of us had ever seen an academic collaboration involving as many people of such high calibre working so enthusiastically well together."
At its February board meeting, CIFAR's Board of Directors approved the new five-year investment in both research programs.
"CIFAR is about identifying globally important research questions and creating teams of leading Canadian and international researchers to study them over time," says Martha Piper, Vice-Chair of CIFAR's Board of Directors. "Both of these programs exemplify the excellence, collaboration and interdisciplinary thinking that we have come to expect from CIFAR's research."
CIFAR is also committed to helping Canadian research institutions attract leading talent to Canada. In particular, the Genetic Networks panel remarked, "This broadly integrated investigation of genetic interactions is unique in the world and has helped to recruit eminent researchers from the United Kingdom and the United States to Canada to conduct their work."
The Genetic Networks program is led by Program Director Brenda Andrews (University of Toronto). The Social Interactions, Identity and Well-being program is led by Program Co-Directors George Akerlof, Nobel Laureate (University of California, Berkeley) and John F. Helliwell (University of British Columbia).
The Canadian Institute for Advanced Research
The Canadian Institute for Advanced Research enables Canadian researchers to work on international research teams that are custom built to transform their fields of study. Founded in 1982 with a groundbreaking collaborative research model, CIFAR has been extraordinarily successful at creating knowledge breakthroughs, advancing Canada's research community and fuelling innovation.
Today, the Institute mobilizes 385 researchers from 107 institutions in 16 countries to conduct research of scientific, economic, social and cultural importance.
CIFAR is a not-for-profit institution supported by donations from individuals, foundations and corporations, and funding from the Government of Canada and the governments of Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta.