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UNB's Centre for Advanced Studies receives millions to collaborate on software for global companies

Author: UNB Newsroom

Posted on Jun 26, 2018

Category: UNB Fredericton

UNB’s IBM Centre for Advanced Studies (CAS) – Atlantic has received a multi-million-dollar funding package to help deliver a new project that will improve and develop runtime software.

The funding, which was announced by Fredericton MP Matt DeCourcey, was awarded by the federal government through the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation and IBM.

Established in 2011, IBM CAS – Atlantic promotes collaborative research between UNB and IBM and explores innovation, education and research goals in the context of real-world application.

This project builds upon UNB and IBM’s past collaborations to develop state-of-the-art runtime systems, which control a computer’s workflow and functionality.

“Computers are now everywhere from smartphones to watches and automobiles,” says Dr. Kenneth Kent, executive director of IBM CAS – Atlantic. “A huge part of the utility of these devices comes from their connections to each other and to the cloud. Working with IBM, we are developing next-generation tools and ideas to help build software systems with more functionality, better security and lower cost.”

The Government of Canada is providing a non-repayable contribution of $2.99 million to the initiative under ACOA’s Atlantic Innovation Fund. The New Brunswick Innovation Foundation contributed $75,000, while IBM contributed $2.65 million.

The project will build on the federal and provincial government’s commitment to driving economic growth in Atlantic Canada through the Atlantic Growth Strategy, which prioritizes innovation.

“The work being done by UNB and IBM through the Centre for Advance Studies – Atlantic stands to benefit our entire region, strengthening our partnerships with global companies and cultivating a spirit of innovation,” says Matt DeCourcey, member of Parliament for Fredericton. “The skills being developed are highly specialized and sought after, and will help us to grow New Brunswick’s information and communications technology sector, which has been identified as critical to the growth of our economy.”

IBM CAS – Atlantic is one of five Centres for Advanced Studies in Canada and the first and only in Atlantic Canada. It provides UNB with a structured collaboration point between university faculty and IBM technical staff and is a focal point for a coordinated approach to relations between the university and industry.

“Together with the University of New Brunswick, a long time and valued collaborator of IBM, we believe it important to demonstrate our commitment to drive innovation in Canada that is making a real difference and positioning Canada to succeed,” said Regan Watts, head of innovation, citizenship and government affairs with IBM. “With UNB and IBM coming together on this and other related projects, we are confident that together we can drive significant outcomes such as high-quality software prototypes, architectures, patents, position papers, and assessments, not to mention engage and develop important skills, that directly influence Canada's and New Brunswick's influence and impact in the global marketplace."

Media contacts

  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency: Jennifer Houle, 506-261-5534
  • New Brunswick Innovation Foundation: Vanessa Matthews, 506-452-8598
  • University of New Brunswick: Hannah Classen