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Greater Montréal: a leader for patents held and scientific publications in Canada and North America

February 13, 2013

Greater Montréal is often associated with high technology, innovation, as well as research and development (R&D). There are several indicators to gauge a city’s performance in these areas. UQAM’s Observatoire des sciences et des technologies (OST) – an organization devoted to the measurement of science, technology and innovation (STI) – has compiled, at our request, comparative data on patents and publications for major metropolitan areas in North America.

Here are some key figures for Greater Montréal:

– Ranked 1st in Canada for the number of patents held for the 2001-2011 period (16,458)

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– Ranked 7th among the 20 largest metropolitan areas in North America for the number of scientific publications per 100,000 residents for the 2001-2011 period (1,869)

– Ranked 6th in North America for the number of scientific publications resulting from an international collaboration per 100,000 residents for the 2001-2011 period (845)

These impressive results are a testament to the structured system of innovation that exists in Québec and Greater Montréal. Businesses and talent that set up in the metropolis have access to a large number of potential partners, with specialized knowledge, to support them in fulfilling their projects. Case in point, the Montréal metropolitan area is one of the main university capitals in North America. The region has 11 university institutions, comprising world-class research centres and chairs, where there is significant collaboration with the private sector.

Lastly, the competitive taxation and incentives offered by the governments of Canada and Québec reduce the cost of R&D in Greater Montréal. According to KPMG (2012), the region is top among a group of 55 major urban centres in the world in terms of the competitiveness of the fiscal burden on R&D firms.

Source: UQAM’s Observatoire des sciences et des technologies (OST), 2013

Mathieu Lefort, Analyst, Economic Research Division, Montréal International

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