Apr 20, 2020

Government increases investment in innovation to combat COVID-19

Source: Western Economic Development

The Government of Canada has announced measures to mobilize industry to combat COVID-19 and to help stabilize the economy. These initiatives will direct several streams of government investments towards manufacturing, commercializing and researching in-demand products and services needed during the pandemic:

PPE Manufacturers: If your company is able to help the Government of Canada meet its needs for medical supplies, please apply here and a federal representative will contact you.

Near-to-Market Solutions: The Government of Canada is offering financial support from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP) for companies to refine and sell their product or solution to meet a COVID-19 related challenge. Current open challenges are listed below.

Research Assistance: NRC IRAP is helping academic and business researchers seeking to collaborate on medium-term projects to address COVID-19 and related infectious disease challenges. The NRC will use the pool of registrants to create project teams around several challenge areas including:

  • Rapid detection and diagnosis
  • Therapeutics and vaccine development
  • Digital health

If you are a researcher with related expertise and are interested in participating, click here to contact the NRC. The NRC will reach out to those with relevant experience in the coming weeks.


Regulatory Information: Please see links below if you require further information about regulatory processes and authorizations for the following items:


The Government of Alberta also has a number of resources:

The Government of Alberta has announced its Bits and Pieces Program, which coordinates the outstanding efforts of Albertans to contribute to the fight against COVID-19. If your company or organization has a product or service to offer, please submit your information here. If there is a requirement for your product or service, you will be contacted by a representative of the Government of Alberta.

  • Alberta Health Services has a number of resources related to PPE:
    • For companies interested in donating PPE to AHS, it has created a single point of contact at This email is monitored by AHS staff who respond to each request.
    • For companies that have potential products and solutions under development (e.g. in the prototyping or testing stage of development), they can connect with AHS available here and submit a proposal to

Creative Destruction Labs

The Creative Destruction Labs (CDL), which includes Calgary-based CDL-Rockies, has launched a new CDL-Recovery: Rapid Response Innovation Program for companies and teams that can quickly respond to critical health or economic recovery challenges created by COVID-19. The program would follow the regular CDL process, but at twice the speed. CDL is accepting applications immediately.


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