Economic Action Plan 2013 Act, No. 1 (Bill C-60)

Elizabeth May: Mr. Speaker, I admit there is money going to science. However, the fundamental problem is that ever since the budget in 2012, in which federal contributions to science were described as having to be “business-led” and “industry-relevant”, we are hobbling the best brains.

We are going to have nothing but better studies of widgets. We do not get good science by insisting that something be commercially directed. Alexander Graham Bell was not trying to invent the telephone; he was trying to figure out how the human ear works so that he could help the deaf.

We will never be a leader in science in Canada if we are only focused on immediate commercial benefit.

Earl Dreeshen: Mr. Speaker, when I take a look at the types of intellect we have here in this country, I know that if we simply talk about the dollars being invested into industry-led initiatives, we would be frustrated. However, that is not what is happening. To make the suggestion that it is the only channel that is being followed is inaccurate. Certainly I put my faith and trust in the researchers we have in this country.