Red River College ranks first among its Canadian contemporaries in the category of research partnership growth, and eighth overall on a new list of the nation's Top 50 research colleges.
Announced today, the findings mark the third year in a row that RRC has placed in the Top 10 of the annual ranking, first released by Research Infosource in 2013.
“Applied Research & Commercialization at the College continues to create and deliver more applied research and innovation resources for our partners and the communities we serve,” says RRC President Paul Vogt.
“Next to workforce-ready graduates, applied research offerings are key to our business community. They have led to many innovations in products, production methods and services delivered by Manitoba enterprises.”
Along with leading the nation in partnership growth (a new category), RRC increased its ranking in total number of research partnerships from twelfth to sixth, and total number of research projects from fifteenth to eleventh.
Other than slpping from sixth to eighth spot overall, the only other category where RRC’s ranking dropped was that of research intensity, calculations for which are based on total research income and number of researchers engaged.
“While our research income remained relatively stable in 2014, we engaged more researchers in our projects,” says Ray Hoemsen, director of Applied Research and Commercialization at RRC. “An increase in researchers engaged translates to a net benefit towards curriculum development and applied student learning, and contributes to the long-term growth of our research capacity.”
Overall, Canadian college research income growth took a sharp decline in 2014, going from over 30 per cent growth in 2012 and 2013 to only 4.7 per cent in 2014.
“Our relative research income stability in 2014 is a testament to our role and integration into Manitoba’s business and innovation ecosystems,” says Vogt. “Our initiatives are predominantly tied to solving problems for businesses, and helping them innovate. That also happens to be what the federal funders are looking for from colleges — practical and meaningful research tied to a business case.”
The College’s research income in 2014 was tied to focus areas, including aerospace and manufacturing; sustainable transportation (e.g., the Zero Emissions Transit Bus Project), and social innovation (e.g., the Science of Early Child Development).