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India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnerships to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability - IC-IMPACTS

$22 million for 2012-24
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India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnerships to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability

University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia

CEO and Scientific Director
Nemkumar Banthia Nemkumar Banthia

Board chair
Barj Dhahan Barj Dhahan
Founder & President, Sandhurst Group of Companies
Co-Founder & Director, Canada India Education Society (CIES)

Canada and India share expertise to help local communities

The opportunity

Efforts to ensure the availability of safe drinking water, sustainable infrastructure, and good public health practices are complex global issues that require multiple stakeholders and scientific disciplines to generate cost-effective and sustainable solutions. Canada and India share strong bilateral ties, including a well-established history of research collaborations. The Government of India has also made public-private partnerships a priority to tackle an infrastructure deficit that compromises public health and economic growth. This opens opportunities for technology sharing, professional development, and partnerships with Canada.

How IC-IMPACTS is seizing the opportunity

The India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnerships to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability (IC-IMPACTS) and its partners are developing and implementing community-based solutions to meet the most urgent needs faced by some communities in Canada and India: poor water quality, unsafe and unsustainable infrastructure, and poor health from water-borne and infectious diseases. Under IC-IMPACTS’ leadership, researchers, industry innovators, community organizations and government agencies work collaboratively to develop and test local solutions that can be scaled up across India and Canada. The centre also provides training and professional development to address critical skills shortages.

Among the results

  • Under a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding, signed in May 2022 between India’s Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Department of Science and Technology (DST), and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), IC-IMPACTS was identified as the lead delivery agency on Canada-India Science and Technology collaborations.
  • Through 76 funded projects, IC-IMPACTS researchers have launched 8 start-up companies, produced 1,561 scientific publications, filed 34 patents and technology disclosures, and created 400 partnerships. There have been 25 deployments in remote and indigenous communities.
  • Since 2013, IC-IMPACTS has trained a total of 1,434 Highly Qualified Personnel, including graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, research associates and research staff, 1% of whom are non-binary and 34% of whom are female. 95% of IC-IMPACTS graduates are employed in either academic, industry, or government bodies.
  • Researchers at the University of British Columbia, in partnership with the Lytton Creek First Nation, Bi Pure Water, Kerr Wood Leidal, and Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, successfully deployed a water treatment technology in Lytton Creek First Nation, lifting the boil water advisory for the first time after 10 years.
  • Dr. Nemy Banthia’s project with Metro Vancouver resulted in the successful installation of the novel concrete pipe coating material at a sewer chamber in Delta, British Columbia. Metro Vancouver, has around 9,000 kilometers of sewer pipes which will at some point in the near future need to be repaired. The demonstration project proved the material to be scalable and easy to apply, ideal for use as repair material for deteriorating sewerage infrastructure.
  • Dr. Mira Johri of University of Montreal, in a collaboration with IIT-Delhi, established an emergency network of civil society partners to aid in India’s COVID-19 response and to evaluate and learn from the work. During the project’s first 100 days, the research team initiated a COVID-19 response network reaching 1.15 million individuals with audio content to aid in awareness and health promotion.
  • With IC-IMPACTS’ innovative self-healing pavement technology in Thondebhavi, India, residents now have access to markets for their crops and the economy has been stimulated, all while reducing greenhouse gases, decreasing construction material requirements, and reducing costs. A second, more enhanced, self-healing pavement has been installed at the Chawathil First Nation Community in British Ccolumbia. The material is continuously being monitored using smart sensors which were installed in the pavement at the time of construction.

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February 16, 2021