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Province Funds Creation of Innovation Cluster

Cluster to focus on critical minerals, cleantech, and battery electric technologies.

(April 21, 2023) - New funding from the Province of Ontario will grow intellectual property literacy within multiple institutions and ecosystems across Northern and rural areas of Ontario. This funding, distributed by Intellectual Property Ontario (IPON), will foster the creation of a Northern and rural innovation cluster focused on critical minerals, cleantech, and battery electric technologies. Led by Laurentian, the partnership includes Lakehead, Trent, and Nipissing Universities and will provide $294,000 for the one-year pilot project.

“This cluster will enable researchers to benefit from a variety of connections, mentors, and expertise, which will increase the velocity and impact of their innovative work. Our communities hold exceptional potential within these sectors and this funding will help us unlock that potential. It will allow businesses to strengthen their capacity to grow, enhancing economic development through collaboration,” said Dr. Tammy Eger, Vice-President of Research, Laurentian

The funding will support the hiring of an Industry Liaison Officer, shared across the four institutions, to leverage IPON’s educational and commercialization resources to augment intellectual property (IP) literacy, improve connectivity between stakeholders, and facilitate economic development through industry and academic collaboration in research and innovation.

“This cluster will provide an important link not only between industry and academia but also between industry and IPON in an area identified by the province as high priority for economic development but with limited access to intellectual property service providers,” said Gisele Roberts, Director, Research and Innovation, Laurentian University.

The initiative aligns with Ontario’s Critical Minerals Strategy, linking research and commercialization expertise at post-secondary institutions with industry and innovation ecosystem partners to accelerate the development and adoption of new technologies.

IPON was created by the Government of Ontario in April 2022 to provide intellectual property supports and services to help businesses and researchers innovate and grow.