Our presence in Canada

As one of the main partners of France for scientific research, Canada has a strong relationship with the CNRS.

International research laboratories

In 2020, there are 5 International Research Laboratories (IRL, ex-UMI) on the Canadian territory. These laboratories host research activities led jointly by French and Canadian researchers, on common scientific topics. In an identified site, they give structure to the lasting presence of scientists, from a limited number of French institutions (the partnership can only be with one foreign country).

All over the Canadian territory, these labs are focused on different fields:

  • The CNRS – Centre de Recherches Mathématiques (CRM) IRL
© CRM

Since its creation in 1968, the Mathematics Research Center (CRM) has had a central role in developing mathematics in Quebec and Canada. Thanks to the support of the National Research Council Canada (CNRC) and afterwards of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (CRSNG), the CRM has become a major international research center that gathers almost all of the active mathematicians of Québec and several other mathematicians from national and international level.

The creation of an IRL that links the CNRS (Institut National des Sciences Mathématiques et de leurs Intéractions) and the University of Montréal in 2011 acontributed to institutionalize the France-Québec cooperation in mathematics. Renewed in 2015, it is co-directed by Olivier Lafitte (FR) and Luc Vinet (CAN).

  • LN2, Laboratoire Nanotechnologies & Nanosystèmes

Created in 2012 in collaboration between the CNRS (Institut des Sciences de l’Ingénierie et des Systèmes), the University of Sherbrooke, INSA Lyon, Centrale Lyon, CPE Lyon and l’Université Grenoble Alpes, the Nanotechnologies & Nanosystems Laboratory is focusing on interdisciplinary research on micro-nanotechnologies. In an international context, it promotes unique partnerships between industrial and academic stakeholders, in France and Canada.

The research held at LN2 are applied to many fields: electronics, energy, health, tranposrts, ICT etc.

LN2 Team © LN2

Located in Sherbrooke, the lab’s funding agreement was renewed in 2016. Today, it is co-directed by Michael Canva (FR) and Vincent Aimez (CAN).

  • PIMS Europe, IRL CNRS – PIMS

The Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences (PIMS) is a consortium of universities created in 1996. Today, it gathers 9 canadian universities and 1 american university: University of Alberta, University of British Columbia, University of Calgary, Simon Fraser University, University of Victoria, University of Regina, University of Lethbridge, University of Manitoba, University of Saskatchewan, and University of Washington.

In 2007, PIMS and the CNRS signed a cooperation agreement that created PIMS-Europe to facilitate exchanges between French and North-American mathematicians. Located in Vancouver, within the University of British Columbia, the IRL is directed by James Colliander. The third agreement that sets the cooperation was signed in 2019.

Antoine Petit (CEO of CNRS) and James Colliander sign the renewal of PIMS Europe © CNRS
  • Takuvik, Centre International d’Etude et de Modélisation des Ecosystèmes et Géosystèmes Arctiques et Subarctiques

The Takuvik IRL was created in January 2011 through a partnership between University Laval (UL – Canada) and the CNRS (National Institute of Sciences of the UNiverse) as a joint laboratory studying the Arctic ecosystems. Takuvik’s scientific program is designed to study the impact of ongoing climatic and anthropogenic changes on Arctic marine and terrestrial ecosystems and geosystems. The Canada Excellence Research Chair in remote sensing of Canada’s new Arctic frontier, is one of the keystones of the program.

Located at UL, in Québec City, and directed by Marcel Babin, the Takuvik IRL was renewed in 2015.

IRL3376 TAKUVIK in Québec, Canada. © Laure CAILLOCE/Takuvik/CNRS Photothèque
  • iLab Spine – Biomécanique des Traumatismes et Pathologies du Rachis

Created in 2013 thanks to an A*midex international grant support, the iLab-Spine has been labeled by the CNRS in 2015 (renewal in 2019).
The iLab-Spine gathers 8 institutions including CNRS, Aix-Marseille University, IFSTTAR (Institut Français des Sciences et Technologies des Transports, de l’Aménagent des Réseaux), APHM (Assistance Publique / Hôpitaux de Marseille), ETSM (Ecole de technologie supérieure de Montréal), EPM (Ecole polytechnique de Montréal), Hôpital du Sacré-Cœur and Hôpital Sainte-Justine.

Signing of the agreement creating iLabSpine in Montréal © Lino Cipresso, ETS

The iLab-Spine research activities cover 3 main topics: knowledge & innovations in spine biomechanics and imaging (WP1) ; understanding, prevention & treatment of spinal trauma (WP2) and spinal pathologies (WP3).

Its main objectives are to better understand the pathophysiological mechanisms and to improve the treatment and protection of the spine and spinal cord in the context of traumas and degenerative pathologies using multidisciplinary approaches based on biomechanics, multimodal magnetic resonance imaging and modelling.

Its missions are to pool our research efforts, resources and expertise to generate knowledge in the field of biomechanics and spinal imaging, to apply this knowledge to solve or innovate in the fields of health, transportation, sports and life sciences, and to train the next generation of expert staff and researchers.

Many International Research Projects

14 International Research Projects (IRP, previously LIA) link several Canadian laboratories with CNRS laboratories. These research projects consolidate previous collaborations and scientific exchanges of more or less Ces projets de recherche collaborative viennent consolider des collaborations déjà établies à travers des échanges scientifiques de courte ou moyenne durées. Ce sont des outils importants en faveur des échanges scientifiques: ils ont pour objet l’organisation de réunions de travail ou de séminaires, le développement d’activités de recherche communes y compris des recherches de terrain, et l’encadrement d’étudiants.