Post-Secondary Education


University of Ottawa

Post Secondary Education

Statement on Canadian University Research - November 1, 2017

Inquiry regarding small and mid-sized universities - February 14, 2017

Inquiry on contributions of Canadian universities to innovation and research - June 18, 2013

Question on funding for science and research - March 26, 2013

Question on eliminating interest on federal student loans - February 12, 2013

Statement on the University of Ottawa’s French Common Law Program - November 8, 2012

Question on the promotion of Canada as a destination for postsecondary education - November 7, 2012

Question on access to postsecondary education for Aboriginal students - October 25, 2012

Question on consular services for Iranian students in Canada - October 4, 2012

Question on the phasing out of the Understanding Canada Program - May 30, 2012

Question on access to postsecondary education for Aboriginal students - November 29, 2011

Question on the adoption of a national learning strategy - November 15, 2011

Statement on World Teachers’ Day - October 6, 2011

Question on the 2011 budget and student loans - June 9, 2011

Press Release - Senator Claudette Tardif salutes the participants in the fifth annual Sommet de Débat de l’honorable Claudette Tardif - les 6 et 7 mai 2011

Statement on post-secondary education - October 20, 2010

Questions on the elimination of surveys for post-secondary education - October 19, 2010

Questions on recruitment of University Professors - June 3, 2010

Inquiry on Postsecondary Research - November 26, 2009

Tribute to Ernie Ingles - October 27, 2009

Statement on the 100th Anniversary of the University of Alberta and of Campus St-Jean - February 5, 2008

Inquiry on Postsecondary Education - May 13, 2008

Statement on the Institute for Nanotechnology - February 20, 2007

Inquiry on the State of Literacy - November 8, 2006

Inquiry on the State of Post Secondary Education - June 16, 2005

The future of scientific research in Canada

On November 26, 2009, I spoke to the inquiry of the Honourable Senator Cowan calling the attention of the Senate to the critical importance of scientific research to the future of Canada and to the well-being of Canadians. I had the privilege of meeting with several medical researchers at the University of Alberta who shared their concerns with me about funding for scientific research.

I noted that, “although this government focused on investments in knowledge infrastructure in the 2009 budget to build new laboratories and renovate research facilities, there is not enough money to fund the staff required to do research in these laboratories.” The lack of funding for scientific research will jeopardize Canada’s future, since many new researchers will want to pursue their studies in other countries where funding is more abundant and more readily available.


“In the words of one of the researchers at the University of Alberta, ‘it appears that the government is robbing Peter to pay Paul.’ He notes that the funds for the scholarships and CFI ( Canadian Foundation for Innovation) programs will be obtained by ‘streamlining’ budgets for NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada), CIHR (Canadian Institutes of Health Research) and SSHRC (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council) [...] This is unsustainable and will lead to a decline in the quality of research.”

To tackle this problem, the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) recommended in its pre-budget consultation submission to the Minister of Finance that “investments in university research be increased through the three federal research granting agencies.” Moreover, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries recommended that the “federal government increase funding for the indirect costs of research from the current 23.3 per cent of direct research funding to 40 per cent.”

However, the current state of scientific research in Canada is not merely a matter of funding. As Dr. Paul Cappon of the Canadian Council on Learning said, we need a “national strategy on post-secondary education” if we want to excel on the world stage as a leader in scientific research.

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