The University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) is being recognized nationally for its growth in partnered research.
UNBC placed first in its category for corporate research income growth in the latest edition of the Canada’s Top 50 Research Universities ranking produced by Research Infosource Inc.
UNBC’s corporate research income grew by “an astounding” 177.3 per cent in fiscal year 2018 to $452,000, according to a news release from UNBC, which notes this was the largest increase of any university in the undergraduate tier.
“By partnering with industry, the work our researchers do in the field and the discoveries they make in the lab can be applied directly by companies who are looking to address complex challenges and make a difference in the lives of people in British Columbia and around the world,” UNBC President Dr. Daniel Weeks said in the release. “The knowledge our researchers possess in a wide variety of disciplines makes UNBC an ideal partner for many industries who are seeking answers to questions that our experts can answer.”
Overall, UNBC received more than $9 million in research funding in 2018, a slight decrease from the previous year. UNBC ranks 46th in the country for total research income.
In the past year, UNBC celebrated the opening of the Hakai Cryosphere Node, part of a $2.4-million joint research project between UNBC and Vancouver Island University, which focuses on the role seasonal snow cover and glaciers play in the hydrology of key watersheds in British Columbia.
As well, two new Canada Research Chairs were appointed at UNBC, and two others were re-appointed.
In the past year, UNBC also celebrated a $1.3-million five-year project to transform health service delivery in Northern British Columbia.
Another exciting development for the university is that UNBC and Carrier Sekani Family Services are partnering on a $1.5-million project to strengthen mental wellness and suicide prevention for Elders in the Northern Interior region of British Columbia.
Dr. Geoffrey Payne, UNBC’s Vice-President of Research says partnerships like these are very important to the university.
“As an engaged university, we are always looking for new ways to look beyond the traditional ‘four walls’ of the academy and elevate the great work that we do through partnerships,” he said. “The partnerships that we continue to forge are integral to our research mission.”