For years, Canadian researchers have struggled with the problems of insufficient funding and inadequate career opportunities-- situations that have been responsible for a pronounced brain drain of promising young graduates to the United States. Partial relief was supposed to come in the form of a 4 percent-per-year hike in federal science funds, slated to take effect this year and carry on for two more years. But owing to Canada's serious budget shortfall, that relief will not be forthcoming.
Canada's major funding agencies, the Medical Research Council (MRC) and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), will instead have to make do with grant funds frozen at last year's level and a 5 percent decrease in administrative budgets over the next two years. And Canadian scientists say that the southward migration of talent will continue unabated.
MRC and NSERC provide funding for universities and research laboratories, roughly equivalent to the roles...
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