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“Ontario Allocates $4.6 Million to Foster Homegrown Innovations in Colleges and Universities”

Intellectual Property Ontario (IPON), an agency established by the provincial government in 2022, has declared its commitment to fostering intellectual property (IP) capacity within Ontario’s postsecondary sector by investing $4.6 million. This investment comprises $2.9 million allocated to 10 newly selected program recipients and an additional $1.7 million to expand an existing pilot funding program. With this announcement, IPON’s total funding commitment amounts to $6.6 million since April 2023, benefiting eight colleges and 12 universities to date.

The investment aligns with the Government of Ontario’s Commercialization Mandate Policy Framework, which aims to facilitate the commercialization of ideas and products stemming from research and innovation conducted within publicly assisted colleges and universities, fostering a culture of innovation and economic growth.

Dan Herman, CEO of IPON, expressed enthusiasm about the funding allocation, stating, “We’re thrilled to extend funding to 10 new postsecondary recipients to support their efforts to build IP capacity and better support their researchers and innovators.” He emphasized that the funding will empower institutions across the province to translate research into commercially viable innovations while ensuring robust development and protection of foundational IP assets.

Among the institutions receiving a portion of the $2.9 million in funding are esteemed names such as Brock University, Carleton University, and the University of Toronto, while participants in IPON’s pilot funding program include Collège La Cité and York University, among others.

Marc-Antoine Benglia, Director of the Office of Applied Research and Innovation at Collège La Cité, highlighted the strategic significance of IPON’s support in fostering technology development and commercialization within applied research labs. He emphasized the critical role played by IP protection and the end-to-end IP strategy facilitated by IPON’s funding in ensuring sustained commercial success for innovators.

IPON remains dedicated to collaborating with publicly funded postsecondary institutions across Ontario, serving as a strategic partner in enhancing IP-related capabilities and facilitating the development, protection, and commercialization of knowledge and ideas generated on campuses across the province. Additionally, the agency is spearheading a joint working group on commercialization metrics and exploring avenues to bolster technology transfer and applied research offices, thereby amplifying the impact of Ontario’s research community.

Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities, underscored the pivotal role of Ontario’s postsecondary institutions in fostering innovation and commercialization within a global knowledge-based economy. She lauded the province’s support of IPON as a means of retaining the social and economic benefits of publicly funded research within Ontario, thereby ensuring that Ontarians and the provincial economy reap the rewards of groundbreaking discoveries and innovations.

Minister Dunlop announced the new funding and its recipients at an event hosted by IPON, aimed at fostering further collaboration and advancing innovation and IP commercialization among colleges and universities. Representatives from government, academia, and industry were present, collectively contributing to the advancement of Ontario’s innovation ecosystem.

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