Attracting top talent to Montreal

Frédérique Le Roux, Evelyne de Leeuw et Carlos Silva

Frédérique Le Roux, Evelyne de Leeuw et Carlos Silva

Credit: Amélie Philibert, Université de Montréal

In 5 seconds

Université de Montréal welcomes three new Canada Excellence Research Chairs.

Université de Monteal today welcomes three new Canada Excellence Research Chairs (CERCs), named today by the federal government, adding to the university's growing roster of prestigious top-tier scientists.

With grants totaling $20 million over the next eight years, Frédérique Le Roux (microbiology), Evelyne de Leeuw (public health) and Carlos Silva (physics) are among the latest cohort in the federal program, established in 2008 to attract exceptional new talent to Canadian research institutions.

"These Chairs are some of the most prestigious in the world, and these three appointments confirm the drawing power of our institution," said Daniel Jutras, the university's rector. "Professors Le Roux, de Leeuw and Silva have already established the scope of their fields of study and will find UdeM fertile ground to advance their research, with dedicated teams well-connected to their communities. I wish them the warmest of welcomes."

The three federal granting agencies who manage the CERC program - the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research - this morning announced a total of 34 new CERCs at 18 postsecondary institutions, an investment of $248 million.

A Q&A on stage

The announcement was made at Simon Fraser University, in Burnaby, B.C. Representing UdeM, Le Roux was on hand for the ceremony and participated in a question-and-answer panel of three newly named CERCs on stage following the announcement.

An expert in bacteriophages, Le Roux arrives at UdeM from her native France, where she conducted research at the oceanside Roscoff Biological Station in Brittany. De Leeuw, for her part, is a Dutch public-health expert specializing in cities; she arrives from the University of New South Wales, in Sydney, Australia. Silva, who specializes in quantum photonics, is a Mexican-born academic who taught at UdeM from 2005 and 2015, left for the U.S.'s Georgia Tech in 2017 and returned to Montreal in 2023 to resume teaching and head up UdeM's new Institut Courtois.

"These three new Chairs reinforce some well-recognized areas of excellence at Université de Montréal," said Marie-Josée Hébert, the university's vice-rector of research, discovery, innovation and creation. "We are delighted to welcome three scientists of this stature to conduct ambitious research projects in collaboration with our research teams and multiple partners."

To learn more

Read our in-depth profiles of all three of UdeM's new CERCS here.

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