Institutes model review: background

The thirteen Institutes constitute the core of CIHR's structural model. The original slate of Institutes was designed to ensure not only representation of all sectors and "pillars" of health research, but also to provide a home base for each health researcher in Canada. This shelter role, however, has evolved with time and has been largely superseded by capacity building and research development activities.

Over the years, Institutes have been increasingly challenged by the evolving nature of the health research landscape, namely the increasing inter-disciplinary nature of health research and the need for convergence with non- health disciplines (e.g. physics, mathematics, computer sciences, engineering), that require concerted rather than sectorial approaches.

Furthermore, they have lately been facing a new set of demands on the part of government and non-academic stakeholders (e.g. pressures for research commercialization and socio-economic impacts) which force them into new types of partnerships, and activities that go beyond their traditional research funders' role.

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