Canada has identified 100 Chinese, Russian, and Iranian research institutions that it claims pose a risk to the country’s security.

Movie DetailerPolitics Canada has identified 100 Chinese, Russian, and Iranian research institutions that it claims pose a risk to the country’s security.
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Canadian universities and researchers studying advanced and emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, will soon be ineligible for federal grants if they have affiliations with foreign institutions that the government considers a threat to national security.
On Tuesday, the federal government identified over 100 institutions in China, Russia, and Iran that it deems to pose the “highest risk” to Canada’s national security. According to the government, these listed institutions are connected to the military and state security agencies of their respective countries.
The government also released a compilation of “sensitive” research areas, which encompass advanced weapons, quantum technologies, robotics, aerospace, space and satellite technology, as well as medical and health-care technology.
In order to apply for federal grants in any of these fields, researchers must confirm that they are not collaborating with or receiving funding from any of the foreign organizations and institutions identified by Ottawa as threats to national security.
Although the new policy will officially take effect in the coming spring, the government stated that it can immediately consider research affiliations if there is a perceived risk.
This announcement coincides with growing concerns about foreign entities unlawfully accessing Canadian research and intellectual property. Just last month, the head of Canada’s spy agency cautioned against underestimating China’s attempts to steal Canadian research and interfere with its internal affairs.
“While Canadian-led research is renowned for its excellence and collaborative nature, its openness also makes it susceptible to foreign influence, thereby increasing the potential risks of misappropriation, which could be detrimental to national security,” stated Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne, Public Safety Minister Dominic LeBlanc, and Health Minister Mark Holland in a joint statement on Tuesday.
Government officials responsible for briefing reporters on the new policy have admitted that they do not possess a comprehensive understanding of the extent of the issue.
These officials, speaking unofficially and off the record, acknowledged lacking “precise” information regarding the number of Canadian research entities that have collaborated with the institutions from China, Russia, and Iran, which are now classified as threats to national security.
The new policy solely applies to grant applications submitted to federal granting councils, namely, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), and the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI).
However, one official who spoke to reporters stated that they hope by identifying sensitive research areas and problematic institutions, Canada can send a clear message to researchers and provincial governments, discouraging collaboration.
The government emphasized that the list of institutions was compiled using both public and classified sources and is subject to updates in case of emerging concerns.

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