Montréal, innovation central

According to an exhaustive study by RE$EARCH Infosource, Greater Montréal continues to be Canada’s R&D capital, in both private sector and university-based R&D. The city’s international reputation in the field of science is a major reason for this. It is also one of the reasons why Montréal ranks as the top host city for international associative events.

An article appearing in the December 27 issue of the daily La Presse described Montréal as one of the world’s Top 30 cities in the field of science, primarily due to its research collaborations with international teams.

This success is rooted in the high concentration of research centres in the region. In fact, Greater Montréal constitutes the metropolitan area with the most research centres in Canada. It also leads all other Canadian cities for number of university researchers, with nearly 6,000.

Montréal leads all other Canadian cities in terms of sums of money invested in university research as well. Montréal-based universities received over $7 billion between 2000 and 2007. This accounted for 20% of the entire amount invested in Canada during that same period.

Another measure of the scope of R&D is scientific publications per capita, and in this regard Greater Montréal ranked 4th in North America in 2007, due to its sizeable concentration of reputable institutions of higher learning, researchers and university professors.

During that same period, Greater Montréal remained Canada’s leader in the number of joint university-private sector scientific publications. This formidable synergy between the business and academic communities, both of which thrive on the city’s innovative spirit, is also revealed in the results of a survey titled The Québec university system: Business weighs in, unveiled by the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal last October just ahead of the inaugural 2010 Rendez-vous du Savoir forum on higher learning.

According to the survey, most companies (81%) believe that university-industry collaboration is relevant for business growth and visibility. Over half (53%) of the companies surveyed have collaborated with universities in the last three years. Moreover, the Québec university system is generally perceived as good, especially with respect to teaching quality (94%), research quality (87%) and graduate employability (82%).

Source: Attractiveness Indicators 2009-2010, Montréal International