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Departmental Performance Report

National Research Council Canada

Supplementary Information (Tables)

Table of Contents

Sources of Respendable and Non-Respendable Revenue

Respendable Revenue
($ millions)
Research and Development (R&D)
Fee for Service 49.5 49.7 37.7 37.7 45.6 40.5
Rentals 3.8 3.8 3.5 3.5 4.1 4.1
Royalties 8.6 8.8 7.9 7.9 9.3 9.3
Publications 3.1 3.7 2.9 2.9 3.5 3.5
Other 0.0 5.2        
Revenues Available for Use from Prior Years         60.7 60.7
Technology and Industry Support (TIS)
Fee for Service 12.6 10.4 11.7 11.7 7.3 7.3
Publications 2.2 2.8 4.0 4.0 2.5 2.5
Other 4.9   6.3 6.3 4.7 4.7
Revenues Available for Use from Prior Years         6.3 6.3
Total Respendable Revenue 84.6 90.6 79.0 79.0 155.9 155.9
Notes: In accordance with section 5.1(e) of the National Research Council Act, NRC is authorized to spend its operating revenues and therefore does not net-vote.
Due to rounding, figures may not add to total shown.

User Fees Reporting

Table A: User Fees

User Fee: Fees charged for the processing of access requests filed under the Access to Information Act (ATIA)

Fee Type: Other products and services

Fee-setting Authority: Access to Information Act (ATIA)

Date Last Modified: 1992

Performance Standards: Response provided within 30 days following receipt of request; the response time may be extended pursuant to Section 9 of the ATIA. Notice of extension to be sent within 30 days after receipt of request. The Access to Information Act provides fuller details.

Performance Results: NRC received 23 access to information requests; 32 consultations from other government departments.

NRC routinely waives fees in accordance with TBS guidelines.

2009-2010 Planning Years
Forecast Revenue Actual Revenue Full Cost Fiscal Year Forecast Revenue Estimated Full Cost
500 125 203,400 2010-2011 500 250,000
2011-2012 500 250,000
2012-2013 500 250,000

Table B: External Fees

External Fee Service Standard Performance Results Stakeholder Consultation
Certified Reference Materials Program (NRC-INMS) 3 business days turnaround time between reception of order and shipping of order Of the 616 orders received this fiscal year, 74.5% met the 3-day standard. Only 1 of 616 customers responded to NRC's survey. The response was "very satisfied." The low response rate was taken as a indicative of general satisfaction with the Program. All comments and complaints with possible action items were reviewed.
Fees charged for Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (NRC-CISTI) Document Delivery NRC offered three levels of document delivery services. Urgent orders were guaranteed delivery within 2 hours. Direct service orders were filled within 24 hours. Extended service had no deadlines since suppliers from around the world were used to supply documents. Overall, the document delivery services had a fill rate of 87% with a low reported problems rate of 3.1%. The Urgent service guaranteed delivery time was met for over 99% of orders. The document delivery service was scheduled to be discontinued in 2010 so no stakeholder consultation was done. Service standards remained the same as in previous years.
Sale of National Code Documents and other documents Orders processed (shipped) 1-14 days after receipt of all required information. 93.1% of orders processed within 1-14 days. 99.7% satisfaction; in 4556 orders, 6 orders required further follow-up in response to a concern or complaint, all resolved to clients' satisfaction.

Details of Transfer Payment Programs (TPPs)

  • NRC-Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP)
  • International Telescope Program

Name of Transfer Payment Program: NRC-Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP)

Start date: April 1, 2008

End date: March 31, 2010

Description: NRC-IRAP provides customized value-added advice, information, referrals and financial assistance to Canadian small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and builds effective regional innovation system relationships for the benefit of SMEs. As well, the program supports the placement of graduates in SMEs through its participation in the delivery of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada's Youth Employment Strategy (YES).

Strategic Outcome: An innovative, knowledge-based economy for Canada through research and development, technology commercialization and industry support

Results Achieved:

NRC-IRAP funded 3,827 innovation projects that supported 11,928 jobs and 781 recent graduates. These results were delivered through this transfer payment program plus additional funding of $15.9 M received by financial arrangement with Industry Canada. For further details, see the main body of the Departmental Performance Report.

Program Activity:
($ millions)
Total Contributions 86.1 86.5 82.2 217.6 215.1 (132.9)
Total Program Activities 86.1 86.5 82.2 217.6 215.1 (132.9)

Comments on Variances: The Planned Spending amount of $82.2 M represents the best known forecast amount at the time the Main Estimates were prepared prior to Budget 2009. The Total Authorities includes Planned Spending, amounts from Budget 2009, amounts from Supplementary Estimates, and other statutory authorities. The difference between the Planned Spending and the Total Authorities is $135.4 M ($100.0 M for Canada's Economic Action Plan for NRC-IRAP and $27.5 M for a transfer from Industry Canada for FedDev Ontario, a $7.7 M internal transfer to NRC-IRAP, other $0.02 M). The $2.5 M difference between the Total Authorities and the Actual Spending is principally due to a lapse in the contribution budget for NRC-IRAP.

Audit completed or planned: 2010-2011

Evaluation completed or planned: 2011-2012

Name of Transfer Payment Program: TRIUMF

Start date: 1976

End date: Continuing

Description: TRIUMF functions as Canada's national laboratory for research in subatomic physics and as Canada's gateway to international subatomic physics. It is operated as a joint venture by a consortium of more than 11 Canadian universities. TRIUMF houses a particle accelerator that produces energetic beams of subatomic particles for fundamental research in nuclear and particle physics and in nuclear medicine. This research lays the foundation for new technologies in the physical and life sciences, the facility being a unique and major contributor to advanced materials research in Canada and abroad. TRIUMF also operates four smaller cyclotrons used for medical research and to produce medical isotopes for the diagnosis and treatment of disease.

Strategic Outcome: An innovative, knowledge-based economy for Canada through research and development, technology commercialization and industry support

Results Achieved:


  • Provided training and employment opportunities for 113 graduate and undergraduate students.
  • The graduate accelerator science course taught at University of British Columbia (UBC) by TRIUMF accelerator scientists was extended to the University of Victoria.
  • 676 external scientists visited TRIUMF one or more times.
  • 88 users from 26 different companies and institutions used TRIUMF's beams for research, medical and commercial activities. The company D-Pace, a TRIUMF spin-off, was recognized as a Canadian Innovation leader by NRC-IRAP.
  • 202 publications in scientific journals.
  • TRIUMF signed memoranda of understanding with the national atomic research centres of India and of Japan to collaborate in accelerator-based science and technology. These international connections have already resulted in multi-million dollars in sales to India for the Canadian-based PAVAC Industries Inc.

Nuclear Science and Particle Physics

  • TRIUMF's Tier-1 Data Analysis Centre was launched as Canada's largest academic computer, putting Canada at the forefront of grid technology.
  • In collaboration with Toyota Laboratories, borohydrides were studied for their ability to take up and release hydrogen. The results revealed practical consequences for application in hydrogen power systems.

Nuclear Medicine

  • Provided radioisotopes to help alleviate the critical global shortfall.
  • Supplied approximately 300 patient doses per month of Fluorine-18 to the BC Cancer Agency for medical imaging.
  • TRIUMF proton beams treated 15 patients with otherwise incurable ocular cancer.
  • Initiated a collaboration agreement with GE Global Research on developing Carbon-11 labeled amino-acids for medical testing.
Program Activity:
($ millions)
Total Contributions 51.5 43.5 44.1 44.1 44.0 0.1
Total Program Activities 51.5 43.5 44.1 44.1 44.0 0.1

Comments on Variances:

Audit completed or planned: NRC prepares a multi-year risk based audit plan that is updated and approved annually. The TRIUMF Transfer Payment Program was assessed as low risk, so no internal audit is planned.

Evaluation completed or planned: 2013-2014

Name of Transfer Payment Program: International Telescope Program

Start date: 1978

End date: Ongoing

Description: NRC, in partnership with other international bodies, provides financial contributions that support the management and operation of observatories maintained by the Canadian government and participates in the oversight and direction of the facilities and research.

Strategic Outcome: An innovative, knowledge-based economy for Canada through research and development, technology commercialization and industry support

Results Achieved:

  • 4 million files of astronomical data comprising 120 terabytes were downloaded from the Canadian Astronomy Data Centre.
  • 307 scientific papers were published based on Gemini data and on research done at the Canada-France-Hawaii and at the James Clerk Maxwell telescopes. This included a landmark paper in Nature, which was covered widely by national and international media.
  • NRC initiated a collaboration agreement with Lyrtech Signal Processing of Quebec City and the University of Victoria on developing advanced electronic systems for controlling large-scale adaptive optics systems demanded by future observatories, such as the Thirty Meter Telescope. The work has broad applications with potential commercial applications in wireless communications and multi-beam radar.
Program Activity:
($ millions)
Total Contributions 9.2 10.5 13.2 11.4 10.7 2.5
Total Program Activities 9.2 10.5 13.2 11.4 10.7 2.5

Comments on Variances:

Audit completed or planned: NRC prepares a multi-year risk based audit plan that is updated and approved annually. The Telescope Transfer Payment Program was assessed as low risk, so no internal audit is planned.

Evaluation completed or planned: 2010-2011

Horizontal Initiatives

  • Genomics R&D Initiative (GRDI)

Name of Horizontal Initiative: Genomics R&D Initiative (GRDI)

Name of Lead Department: National Research Council Canada (NRC)

Lead Department Program Activity: Research and Development (R&D)

Start Date of the Horizontal Initiative: April 1999

End Date of the Horizontal Initiative: March 2011

Total Federal Funding Allocation (start to end date): $234.1 M

Description of the Horizontal Initiative (including funding agreement): The Initiative was established to build and maintain genomics research capacity in government and to deliver value-added applications for responding to national priorities and government mandates as well as for building wealth for Canadians.

Shared Outcome: Genomic contributions for enhancing the quality of life for Canadians in terms of health, safety, environment, and social and economic development.

Governance Structure: An interdepartmental Genomics R&D ADM Committee manages and coordinates the Initiative. The Committee ensures that effective priority setting mechanisms are established within departments and that investments are focused and strategic. It also ensures that common management principles are implemented and that horizontal collaborations between organizations are pursued. The Committee is represented by Industry Canada plus each of the Federal Partners: NRC, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), Health Canada (HC), Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), Environment Canada (EC), and Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR). An Interdepartmental Working Group (WG) provides recommendations and advice to the ADM Coordinating Committee regarding strategic priority setting and overall management. It also supports evaluation and reporting. The NRC chairs the Committee and the WG.

($ millions)
Federal Partners Federal Partner Program Activity (PA) Names of Programs for Federal Partners Total Allocation (from Start to End Date) Planned Spending for
Actual Spending for
Expected Results for
Results Achieved in
National Research Council (NRC) Research and Development Genomics and Health Initiative 71.1 6.0 6.0 See Note 1 See Notes 1.1 and 1.2
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) Innovation and Renewal Canadian Crop Genomics Initiative 71.1 6.0 6.0 See Note 2 See Note 2.1
Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) Aquaculture Aquatic Biotechnology and Genomics R&D 10.6 0.9 0.9 See Note 3 See Note 3.1
Health Canada (HC) Health Products HC/PHAC Genomics Initiative 46.0 4.0 4.0 See Note 4 See Note 4.1
Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) Natural Resource and Landmass Knowledge for Canadians NRCan-CFS Genomics R&D Initiative 23.0 2.0 2.0 See Note 5 See Notes 5.1, 5.2 and 5.3
Environment Canada (EC) Canadians Adopt Sustainable Consumption and Production Approaches Strategic Applications of Genomics in the Environment 12.0 1.0 1.0 See Note 6 See Note 6.1
Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) N/A N/A 0.5 N/A N/A See Note 7 N/A
Total 234.1 19.9 19.9    


1. Commercially-relevant advances in genomics R&D related to human health

1.1 A waveguide-based biosensor array was developed for detecting micro-organisms that cause disease in humans.

1.2 Alethia Biotherapeutics, a Canadian biotechnology company, licensed the rights on 1) NRC's anti-clusterin antibody technology, which reduces cancer growth; and 2) NRC's peptide-based tumour imaging agent.

2. Improvements in crop value of cereals, soybean and canola

2.1 Specific genes were identified for improving 1) cold tolerance, blackleg disease resistance, and oil content of canola; 2) isoflavonoid content, and hence the health benefits, of soybeans; and 3) resistance to rust diseases and to Fusarium Blight in wheat.

3. Genomic knowledge for sustainable management of aquatic resources

3.1 Research milestones were reached on-target in such ongoing projects as development of genome-based monitoring of population genetics of fish and whale species of importance to Canada.

4. Genomic knowledge for the Canadian health regulatory system

4.1 Genes have been identified as potential biomarkers for 1) exposure to radiation to natural sources and to such devices as cellular telephones; and 2) exposure to complex mixtures of chemical carcinogens. Such biomarkers, when validated, will lead to a better understanding of the respective biological mechanisms. This will assist regulatory decision-making.

5. Genomic knowledge for forest generation and protection

5.1 Several potential insect-killing viruses and fungi were discovered for use as bio-control agents pending further investigation of their effects.

5.2 Genes related to laminated root rot disease in Douglas Fir were characterized in both the tree and in the fungus that causes the disease.

5.3 Molecular markers were identified in 11,599 candidate genes involved in wood growth, wood quality, and defence against insect pests.

6. Genomic applications for environmental regulation and enforcement

6.1 Tools and approaches were developed for assessing risk of such priority substances as personal care products and pharmaceuticals.

7. CIHR received a single allocation in 1999-2000 to assist in creation of Genome Canada Secretariat. There are no expected results.

Comments on Variances: No variance was reported.

Results to be achieved by non-federal partners (if applicable): N/A

Contact information:

Gary Fudge, P. Eng.
Director, Life Sciences Horizontal Initiatives
National Research Council

Green Procurement

Meeting Policy Requirements

Has the department incorporated environmental performance considerations in its procurement decision-making processes?
In progress

Summary of initiatives to incorporate environmental performance considerations in procurement decision-making processes:

Green procurement and environmental considerations continue to evolve at NRC. Training objectives have been established for all Procurement Officers. A training program will also be extended to end-users holding acquisition cards to facilitate green procurement. Performance evaluations of supervisors and managers are also planned. For green procurement, NRC relies heavily on the Standing Offers that Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) has put in place and the green considerations that were built into them. NRC also now has green reporting capability in its SAP accounting system. Procurement officers have been using it regularly to capture green procurement purchase activity.

Results achieved:

  • Training of Procurement Officers and Materiel Management (MM) staff started in 2009-2010.
  • In 2009-2010, NRC processed 1008 "Green" purchase order lines (with multiple item quantities per line) valued at $993,351. Of the 1008 lines processed, 896 lines or 89% were call-ups against PWGSC Standing Offers.
  • Two additional hybrid vehicles were purchased in the past fiscal year; and an E85 van is being used as a delivery vehicle doing 30,000 km/year, significantly reducing greenhouse gases.
  • NRC continues to specify environmentally friendly products meeting the Green Seal Standard in its Janitorial Contracts requirements.
  • Remediation efforts are underway to clean up contaminated sites in Montreal, Ottawa and Penticton.
  • Four Purchase Orders were issued in British Columbia in the area of Clean Energy to identify opportunities, partnerships, technology, and strategy for Growing Clean Energy.
  • Replaced steam boilers in Montreal with Energy Efficient units.
  • Installed high efficiency lighting in growth rooms in Saskatoon, resulting in $27,000 annual savings.
  • Replaced windows costing $846 K in Saskatoon resulting in energy savings.
  • Purchased 2 nitrogen generators, which use less nitrogen as it recycles the nitrogen.

Contributions to facilitate government-wide implementation of green procurement:

NRC continues to participate on the Green Procurement Working Group for government departments in order to stay abreast of developments and to develop improved green procurement plans and initiatives.

Green Procurement Targets

Has the department established green procurement targets?
Green procurement objectives have been established but only for 2010-2011

Summary of green procurement targets:

  • Training of Procurement and Materiel Management staff in 2009-2010 and 2010-2011
  • Training of end-users with acquisition cards in 2010-2011
  • Performance Evaluations for Procurement/Materiel Management managers in 2010-2011
  • Extensive use of PWGSC Green Standing offers

Results achieved:

Fifteen percent of procurement staff has completed the Green procurement training in 2009-2010.

Response to Parliamentary Committees and External Audits

Response to Parliamentary Committees
The Standing Committee on Public Accounts, in follow-up to the chapter on intellectual property in the Spring 2009 Report of the Auditor General (AG), invited departments and agencies named in the chapter, including NRC, to appear before the Committee on November 16, 2009 to discuss the AG's recommendations and to table action plans. Only one of the AG's recommendations pertained to NRC, specifically that NRC more accurately identify the intellectual property expected to result from Crown procurement contracts and ensure that it is accurately reported. NRC's action plan to address this concern has been fully implemented. NRC was identified by both the AG and the Standing Committee on Public Accounts as being a source of best practices and expertise for federal intellectual property management and is currently examining the feasibility of tailoring some of its existing offerings for other departmental mandates.
Response to the Auditor General (including to the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development)
The OAG made recommendations emanating from their follow-up in 2007 to their 2004 performance audit of NRC Management of Leading Edge Research pertaining to governance, human resource management, business planning, research project management and performance data collection and reporting. All of the recommendations have been fully implemented. Web links: 2004 report; 2007 report.
External Audits (Note: These refer to other external audits conducted by the Public Service Commission of Canada or the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages)
NRC was one of 18 departments scoped in the Office of the Comptroller General's Horizontal Internal Audit of High-Risk Expenditure Controls in Large Departments and Agencies. Of the seven recommendations identified in the report, four were applicable to NRC; these included developing policies and procedures to guide risk based account verification processes, management representation for identifying risks, sampling of low risk payments, and reporting of results. All of the recommendations have been fully implemented.

NRC was one of eight departments scoped in the Office of the Procurement Ombudsman's Procurement Practices Review of Verification of Suppliers' Records, which recommended that departments include a guideline for how and when to use the audit provision for cost-reimbursable contracts. While no management action plan was required, NRC will take into consideration risks posed by these contracts when identifying audit risks. The summary findings of this report are included in the Procurement Ombudsman's Annual Report.

Internal Audits and Evaluations

Internal Audits (current reporting period)

Name of Internal Audit Audit Type Status Completion Date
Review of NRC's Values and Ethics Management Framework Corporate Governance Processes Completed June 23, 2009
Audit of Facilities Management Corporate Administrative Processes Completed January 12, 2010
Audit of Acquisition Cards – 2008-2009 Transactions Corporate Administrative Processes Completed January 12, 2010
Audit of Occupational Safety and Health Corporate Governance Processes In progress September 2010
Audit of Integrated Risk Management Corporate Governance Processes Completed June 22, 2010
Continuous Audits – Canada Economic Action Plan Funds Transfer Payments and Construction Contracts In progress N/A – continuous

Approved Audit Reports are posted on the National Research Council's web site.

Evaluations (current reporting period)

Name of Evaluation Program Activity Evaluation Type Status Completion Date
Portfolio Evaluation of the NRC Technology Cluster Initiatives Manufacturing Technologies; Information and Communications Technologies and Emerging Technologies; Health and Life Science Technologies; Energy and Environmental Technologies; Industrial Research Assistance Summative Completed 2009-2010
Portfolio Evaluation of the Institute for National Measurement Standards National Measurement Standards Summative Completed 2009-2010
Evaluation of the International Affiliations Internal Services Summative In Progress 2010-2011
Evaluation of the Indoor Air Quality Theme of the Clean Air Agenda Construction Research and Support Summative In Progress 2010-2011
Evaluation of the NRC Institute for Aerospace Research Aerospace Research Summative In Progress 2010-2011
Evaluation of the Genomics R&D Initiative Genomics and Health Technology Summative In Progress 2010-2011
Evaluation of the NRC Health and Related Life Sciences Technologies Health and Life Science Technologies Summative In Progress 2011-2012

Evaluations are posted on the National Research Council's web site.