It was launched during the 7th Consortium for Research and Innovation in Aerospace in Québec (CRIAQ) Forum - and its own 1st Forum - an event that brought together the Canadian aerospace community. The occasion marked the launch of the selection process for the technological projects considered to be most pertinent to Canadian industry.
A joint initiative of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada (AIAC) and CRIAQ, CARIC is a national research and technology network that unites stakeholders from industry, universities, colleges and research institutions; bringing together the best of the entire Canadian industry to identify strategic aerospace technology areas and facilitate collaborative research and development. The network's model is based upon that of CRIAQ, which was unanimously recognized by the aerospace industry as a best practice for collaborative research in Canada.
Mr. Clément Fortin, President and CEO of CRIAQ, welcomed the establishment of this network for the Canadian aerospace industry, citing the many benefits of collaborative research for the sector. "The establishment of CARIC offers participating organizations a competitive advantage and boosts aerospace innovation, while giving Canada a strategic expertise that consolidates its global leadership," he said.
"The principal objective of this national initiative is to reach and connect the aerospace Research and Technology community across Canada, contribute to the country's technology roadmap and foster scientific skills penetration in industry while training highly qualified people through research," he added.
"CRIAQ is proud to leverage its collaborative research expertise to support the creation of a national consortium. Through CARIC, collaboration will be at the heart of Canadian aerospace research. This will allow the various industry stakeholders to propel the Canadian aerospace community to a new level," he concluded.
"The launch of CARIC is a milestone event for Canadian aerospace," said Jim Quick, President and CEO of AIAC.
"AIAC has worked in close partnership with CRIAQ to develop a national network that will foster Canadian collaboration, innovation, and knowledge. We are confident that CARIC will be a significant driver of our ability to produce cutting-edge technologies and stay ahead in the fiercely competitive global markets."
Today's announcement was also welcomed by the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Industry, who considers the national network of aerospace research and collaboration to be a prime example of the leadership of Canadian industry. "The launch of CARIC, the new industry-led National Aerospace Research Network, is a tremendous milestone for our aerospace industry and I congratulate their leaders on this major accomplishment. It shows the commitment of the industry, and its stakeholders, to keeping Canada'saerospace industry flying high. I am proud of all that Canada has accomplished to guarantee the future of its innovative aerospace industry," declared Minister Moore.
The establishment of CARIC reflects the recommendations of the Aerospace Review Report, led by the Honourable David Emerson, who conducted a comprehensive review of policies and programs specific to the aerospace sector that was mandated by the Government of Canadain 2011. The report recommended that the government co-finance a Canada-wide initiative to facilitate communication and collaboration among aerospace companies, researchers and academics. CRIAQ was cited as an example in the Report for its approach to collaborative research, which is applicable to all of Canada.
The Operation and Financing of CARIC
Based upon the CRIAQ model, which puts forward a light networked structure, CARIC will be industry-driven with strong academic presence and collaboration. The network will both capitalize and build on existing industry networks, welcoming their close working relationships with existing R & D consortia, while seeking to involve the entire sector, particularly SMEs.
The network's administrators will be chosen through an election process, depending on their level of involvement in the network and governance will ensure representation of the different regions of the Canada recognized for their aerospace innovation capabilities.
CARIC will be financially supported by industry, the federal and provincial governments, universities and research institutions. Industry must co-finance all projects through cash and/or in-kind contributions. The network's operating budget will be set at approximately $ 3.75 million per year. Once fully operational, the value of the network's collaborative research projects could reach more than $20 million per year.
The research projects selected will enable the industry to ensure its competitiveness and help overcome "silo" effects, promoting the joint use of research infrastructures, while strengthening research efforts and technological development.
For more, visit the AIAC website.