As many of the founders we talk to tell us, a key differentiating factor of Canada’s economy is the country’s remarkable postsecondary system, which provides entrepreneurs with a continuous pipeline of new research and great talent. A massive new research investment by the Government of Canada announced last week is further fueling some of the research driving the Canadian startup scene.

The $900-million Canada First Research Excellence Fund will strategically invest in leading-edge research areas at 13 national postsecondary institutions. For example, University of Waterloo will receive over $76 million for a quantum technology initiative that brings together theoretical and experimental physics, computer science and engineering to enhance technologies that can be applied to medicine, communication and quantum sensation, as well as to help develop a universal quantum processor.

The potential practical applications of the Waterloo investment are even more exciting due to the industry resources available in the region, such as Quantum Valley Investments, a new fund developed by Blackberry founder Mike Lazaridis that invests in the commercialization of quantum technology.

Ontario startups and their peers across the country will undoubtedly be taking advantage of both the research and the talent that is stimulated by this federal investment – it’s another example of how collaboration between government, education, industry and finance is helping to develop Canada into a world-leading hub for 21st-century growth companies.