Queen’s Engineering granted five prestigious Canada Research Chairs

Posted on December 03, 2021


Some of the most prestigious research positions in Canada are being created at Queen’s – five of them in Queen’s Engineering. The Faculty will see its international research prominence increase even further with the addition of five Canada Research Chairs.

“This is a deserved recognition of Queen’s Engineering as one of Canada’s leading engineering research institutions,” says Amir Fam, Associate Dean (Research) at the Faculty. “Canada Research Chairs recognize people at the pinnacle of academia, and we are looking forward to welcoming more global talent to the already top-tier research community here at Queen’s.”

Established by the federal government as a tri-agency initiative between Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Canada Research Chair (CRC) program invests almost $300 million per year nationally to attract and retain world-class researchers at Canadian institutions.

The five CRCs represent three Tier 1 and two Tier 2 chairs. “A Tier 1 CRC represents a researcher at the apex of their career, tackling global challenges with profound implications,” says Fam. “Tier 2 CRCs represent internationally recognized research leaders, as a ‘rising’ star’ category that positions future leaders for ongoing success.”

Addressing a known gap in diversity in engineering academia and the industry, all five Canada Research Chairs at Queen’s Engineering will be women. “The government of Canada has set bold targets for the Canada Research Chair program to address structural deficiencies in representation,” says Kevin Deluzio, Dean of Queen’s Engineering. “It is very welcome: Queen’s recognizes the traditional underrepresentation of women in the engineering industry and academic research.  This continues the efforts we have already put in place, such as our Chair for Women in Engineering, to help address these gaps.”

“Ensuring that women will hold these trailblazer roles in engineering research is something Queen’s is eager to support.”

The Chairs will hold positions across the engineering faculty, embedded across its departments. “We will be bringing more global talent to bolster research strength in five strategic areas” Dean Deluzio says. “Queen’s engineering is already recognized as leaders in these fields, and these Canada Research Chairs will only further enhance our international reputation as research leaders.”

Tier 1 Chairs:

Tier 2 Chairs:

“The addition of both a Tier 1 and a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair to the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering will substantially augment our already widely recognized research profile,” says Keith Pilkey, Department Head. “Mechanical and Materials Engineering is the home department of the inaugural Queen’s Chair for Women in Engineering, Professor Heidi Ploeg. We look forward to building upon Prof. Ploeg's tremendous leadership with additional prestigious research positions held by leading women in engineering academia.”

The postings, which can be found at https://engineering.queensu.ca/employment-opportunities/faculty-positions/index.html, will be reviewed for candidates beginning in late January 2022.

“We’re grateful for this opportunity to further increase the top-tier research being conducted at Queen’s Engineering,” Fam says, “and I am excited by the research impact these new chairs will create.”