The chair will involve research, development and innovation in the use of transformational technologies that can drive collaboration, productivity and efficiency in the health-care sector in Canada and around the world.
"The University of Alberta has a long history of advancing health research by translating ideas that began as concepts in a lab and applying them to create new technologies that save lives," said Lorne Babiuk, vice-president of research at the U of A. "This collaboration with Cisco will help the U of A spearhead new research and discoveries, with a goal of improving the quality of life for more patients and further entrench Alberta as a global centre of innovation."
Cisco is providing $2 million over 10 years to establish the research chair. The chair will also foster development between and among the health-care industry and government while supporting and leading academic research, development and innovation at the university.
"Cisco is focused on building collaborative partnerships with universities, governments and leading organizations across the country to help foster innovation, increase productivity and support economic and social development," said Nitin Kawale, president of Cisco Canada. "The University of Alberta has a global reputation for leadership in health research. The establishment of this chair is part of a long-term plan to explore the significant role technology can play in improving productivity and health-care service delivery. We look forward to continuing to work with the university, the Government of Alberta and Alberta Health Services to develop a strategic plan to share expertise, foster innovation and implement advanced technologies to further advance Alberta's leadership in health care."
The Cisco Research Chair in Healthcare Solutions is Pierre Boulanger of the Department of Computing Science. Boulanger will use advanced technologies and strategies to create a research, development and innovation program that will lead to transformational architectures, technologies and solutions for health care.
Boulanger's work will help advance the U of A's reputation as one of the world's top research-intensive universities while working closely with the university's other chairs to enhance innovation, training and educational activities.
"Information and communication technologies have great potential to address many challenges facing health-care systems around the world in providing accessible, cost-effective, high-quality services," said Boulanger. "In North America, information technology already contributes in significant ways to enhancing health-care delivery and improving quality of life. One of the challenges and goals of my chair will be deploying new technologies and information science in developing countries where we have only scratched the surface. With this spirit of collaboration, we have a great opportunity to deliver meaningful results that will lead to better health systems and healthier patients."
About the University of Alberta The University of Alberta in Edmonton is one of Canada's top teaching and research universities, with an international reputation for excellence across the humanities, sciences, creative arts, business, engineering, and health sciences. Home to more than 39,000 students and 15,000 faculty and staff, the university has an annual budget of $1.7 billion and attracts nearly $450 million in sponsored research revenue. The U of A offers close to 400 rigorous undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs in 18 faculties on five campuses—including one rural and one francophone campus. The university has almost 250,000 alumni worldwide. The university and its people remain dedicated to the promise made in 1908 by founding president Henry Marshall Tory that knowledge shall be used for "uplifting the whole people."
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