The Alberta Innovation Network (AIN) is investing $18.7 million over three years into eight Regional Innovation Networks (RIN) across the province.
The Wood Buffalo Regional Innovation Network (WBRIN) is included in that group and is set to receive $735,000 from the Alberta Government.
Over the next three years, the funds will be used to build upon the programs WBRIN has been piloting over the past two years and to co-create new programs and services with local and provincial partners in support of commercializing technology and knowledge-based businesses in our region.
WBRIN is an entrepreneur-centric, community-based network with the goal of providing programs and services to accelerate the growth of technology and knowledge-based businesses.
Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo Economic Development & Tourism, Keyano College, Fort McMurray Chamber of Commerce, Community Futures Wood Buffalo, Oil Sands Community Alliance, and Alberta Innovates are the six organizations that make up the network.
“Keyano has focused on the expansion of new technologies in the classroom that is driven by industry need, the introduction of new tools for teaching and learning, and the development, enhancement, and introduction of new programs that align with regional needs and that align with the WBRIN primary goals,” said Fred Russell, Vice President Academic of Keyano College.
“There is much work to be done but we are working hard to make it happen and are very pleased to see this new funding come to the region.”
AIN was developed to help ensure that Alberta innovators and entrepreneurs have access to the support they need to bring their products and solutions to market and grow their businesses.
“Alberta has some of the most ambitious and industrious entrepreneurs anywhere. We want to ensure they can get connected with regional innovation networks where they can draw on world-renowned business and technical experts to accelerate the growth of their businesses, diversify the economy and create jobs,” said Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Jobs, Economy, and Innovation.
WBRIN says this investment is important to capture innovation on the front lines, attract technologies and talent to our community, and inspire a whole new generation of entrepreneurs across Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo.