Top Canadian scholars awarded over $ 1 million


 Ottawa, April 14, 2015 – The Canada Council for the Arts today announced the recipients of the 2015 Killam Program.  This prestigious program, administered by the Canada Council, is funded by a private endowment supporting creativity and innovation through research and higher learning.

Five Canadian researchers will receive $100,000 each in recognition of their exceptional career achievements in humanities, engineering, natural sciences, social sciences, health sciences, and interdisciplinary studies within these fields.  Another $840,000 will be awarded over 2 years in Killam Research Fellowships, granting six scholars full teaching and administrative release so they may pursue independent research.

Killam Prizes
The 2015 Killam Prize winners are world leaders in fields as varied as poetry, wireless communications, astrophysics, public policy and public administration, and virology.

Humanities – David Bentley, Western University, is a nationally acclaimed teacher and leading scholar of Canadian poetry.

Engineering – Vijay K. Bhargava, University of British Columbia, has had a profound impact in the field of wireless communications with his work.   

Natural Sciences – Victoria Kaspi, McGill University, has made major discoveries throughout her career in the study of rapidly spinning compact neutron stars called pulsars.  

Social Sciences – Donald Savoie, Université de Moncton, is a leading Canadian expert on public policy, public administration and federalism.

Health Sciences – Lorne Tyrrell, University of Alberta, participated in the discovery of several potent anti-virals against Hepatitis B.


Killam Research Fellowships

The Killam Research Fellowships support scholars engaged in ongoing projects of outstanding merit and widespread interest in their fields.  

Jonathan Abbatt, University of Toronto – Aerosol Particles and Climate: Addressing Fundamental Connections in the Canadian Arctic

Cathleen Crudden, Queen’s University – Organically Modified Metal Surfaces: Biosensing and Beyond

Troy Day, Queen’s University – Designing Evolution-Proof Cancer Chemotherapy with Mathematics

Robert H. Morris, University of Toronto – Developing Catalysts Based on Iron

James Retallack, University of Toronto – “The Workers’ Emperor”: August Bebel’s Struggle for Social Justice and Democratic Reform in Germany and the World, 1840-1913

Adrian Shubert, York University – The General of Two Worlds: Baldomero Espartero, Empire, Nation and Liberalism in Spain and Latin America, 1793-1879



“Every day Canadian artists, researchers and scientists apply their creativity and innovation to resolving the major issues of our times,” said the Canada Council for the Arts Director and CEO Simon Brault. “Through the Killam Program, we are proud to recognize and support the women and men whose groundbreaking research is expanding our knowledge and opening paths to new innovations.”

“As one of the largest private philanthropic trusts for higher education in Canada, the Killam Trusts are committed to building Canada’s future through advanced research, in collaboration with the Canada Council for the Arts,” said Killam Trusts Managing Trustee George Cooper.  “We are thrilled to welcome the 2015 Prize winners and Fellowship recipients to the Killam family and salute their exceptional contributions to society, towards a better understanding of the world.”

Prize ceremony

The Killam Prize presentation ceremony will be held at Rideau Hall on May 12. Media representatives wishing to cover the awards presentation should contact Dominique Collin at the Rideau Hall Press office at (613) 993-2569 or by email at


Learn more about the Killam Program

The Canada Council Killam Program, inaugurated with lifetime and testamentary gifts by Mrs. Dorothy J. Killam in memory of her husband Izaak Walton Killam, includes the Killam Prizes and the Killam Research Fellowships.  In total, the Killam Trusts are valued at approximately $425 million, of which the Canada Council portion is $57 million. For more information about the Killam Trusts, please visit


Canada Council for the Arts

The Canada Council for the Arts is Canada’s national public arts funder. We champion and invest in artistic excellence so that Canadians may enjoy and participate in a rich cultural life. In 2013-14 we allocated $153.6 million dollars towards artistic creation and innovation through our grants, prizes and payments. We also conduct research, convene activities and work with partners to advance the sector and help embed the arts more deeply in communities across the country. We are responsible for the Canadian Commission for UNESCO which promotes the values and programs of UNESCO to contribute to a more peaceful, equitable and sustainable future for Canadians. The Canada Council Art Bank operates art rental programs and helps further public engagement with contemporary arts.



Media contact:             

Mireille Allaire, Public Relations Officer

 613-566-4414 ext. 5226 or 613-218-0737 (cell.)

 Heather McAfee, Public Relations Officer

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