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Thursday, November 10 • 08:30 - 10:00
Plenary Presentation - Converging science: fostering innovation through a new model of transdisciplinary research

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Convergence is the combination of insights and approaches from originally distinct fields. Researchers trained at the nexus of converging disciplines are developing unique perspectives that stimulate the emergence of new areas of research. By promoting a diversity of approaches that transcend the traditional discipline barriers, convergence has the potential to nurture innovative solutions to both new and persistent challenges.

Cutting-edge research, and the innovation that comes from it, increasingly depends on developing original ways to stimulate discoveries. For example, many modern developments in drug delivery would not have been possible without an integrated transdisciplinary approach combining fields such as nanotechnology and pharmaceutical research. The convergence revolution is also creating major new opportunities in neuroscience, integrating methodologies adopted from a variety of STEM disciplines including the life, physical and engineering sciences. This same dynamic is taking place in a wide variety of fields, such as the convergence of psychology and economics, computer science and astronomy, digital technologies and the humanities, chemistry, biology and engineering, etc.

This session aims to:

  • Identify opportunities and barriers to the convergence of disciplines and fields of  research,
  • Discuss strategies that could be developed to enable the potential of convergence,
  • Debate the possibility of developing and implementing new strategies and organizational structures that could improve the effectiveness of the Canadian research enterprise.

avatar for Darren Gilmour

Darren Gilmour

Executive Director, The Royal Society of Canada
Darren Gilmour is the Executive Director of the Royal Society of Canada. In recent years the RSC has established the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists; acquired its first permanent home in downtown Ottawa; considerably expanded its institutional membership; completed... Read More →

avatar for Alan Bernstein

Alan Bernstein

President and CEO, Canadian Institute for Advanced Research
Alan Bernstein is the President and CEO of CIFAR (Canadian Institute for Advanced Research) a global research organization that brings together some of the world’s preeminent researchers to address questions of importance to the world.  Dr. Bernstein received the AAAS James Loudon... Read More →
avatar for Graham Carr

Graham Carr

VP Research and Graduate Studies, Concordia University
Graham Carr is Provost and Vice-President Academic Affairs at Concordia University. He served previously as Vice-President for Research and Graduate Studies and as Dean of Graduate Studies.An historian by training, he is a graduate of Queen’s University (BA Hons; MA) and the University... Read More →
avatar for Ilse Treurnicht

Ilse Treurnicht

CEO, MaRS Discovery District
Ilse Treurnicht is the CEO of MaRS Discovery District, a leading innovation hub in Toronto. MaRS supports entrepreneurs building young high growth firms in the health, cleantech, work & learning, as well as finance & commerce sectors, and works with partners to catalyze, scale and... Read More →

Thursday November 10, 2016 08:30 - 10:00 EST