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November 24, 2010

The Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Rita Colwell as Chair of the Expert Panel on Science Performance and Research Funding.  Dr. Colwell is internationally known for her work in the area of infectious diseases and water issues.  As a distinguished member of the scientific community, Dr. Colwell’s appointment is a demonstration of the Council’s proven ability to attract the best minds from Canada and abroad.

Dr. Rita Colwell is a distinguished university Professor at both the University of Maryland at College Park and at Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is also the Senior Advisor and Chairman Emeritus at Canon US Life Sciences, Inc. and President and CEO of CosmosID Inc.

Dr. Colwell has authored or co-authored 17 books and more than 750 scientific publications. She is the recipient of numerous awards including, most recently, the 2010 Stockholm Water Prize awarded September 9, 2010 by the King of Sweden. 

As Chair of the Expert Panel, Dr. Colwell will work with the Panel to assess the evidence on international practices used in measuring performance of research in the natural sciences and engineering disciplines. This assessment will address the question posed by the Minister of Industry, on behalf of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC):

What do the scientific evidence and the approaches used by other funding agencies globally have to offer, in terms of performance indicators and related best practices in the context of research in the natural sciences and engineering, carried out at universities, colleges, and polytechnics?

Lack of a “one-size-fits all” solution to monitoring and measuring research performance is driving a growing international need to develop and implement new methods, and share best practices and lessons learned. The Council’s assessment will draw from both international and national approaches for evaluating research performance.

The Council looks forward to the Panel’s first meeting on January 5-6, 2011, in Ottawa. The full composition of the Expert Panel will be announced on Council’s website in the coming weeks.

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