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About Brain Canada

Brain Canada plays a unique and invaluable role as a national convenor of the community of those who support and advance brain research.

A greater understanding of how the brain works will contribute to the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and cure of disorders of the brain, thereby improving the health outcomes of Canadians.

Brain Canada’s main areas of focus are fundraising, granting and strengthening the brain research community.


To understand the brain, in health and illness, to improve lives and achieve societal impact.


Brain Canada is achieving its vision by:

  • Increasing the scale and scope of funding to accelerate the pace of Canadian brain research;
  • Creating a collective commitment to brain research across the public, private and voluntary sectors;
  • Delivering transformative, original and outstanding research programs.


One brain

Seeking to understand different brain functions and dysfunctions as part of a single interconnected system.

Dr. Fabio Rossi,
University of British Columbia
Dr. Jean-Paul Soucy,
McConnell Brain Imaging Centre,
Montreal Neurological Institute,
McGill University
Dr. Coral Ann Lewis,
University of British Columbia

Connecting with purpose

Meet our Science Advisory Council


Building mutually beneficial and transparent relationships with every partner.

Find out more
Ian Gerard,
Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital

Diverse perspectives and approaches

Fostering original insights and outcomes.

Outcome focused

Delivering value and benefits with efficiency and effectiveness.

Guang Yang,
The Hospital For Sick Children
Dr. Mirza Faisal Beg,
Simon Fraser University
Alan Evans,
Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, McGill University

Professional integrity

Ensuring the highest standards of ethical behaviour and good governance.

Meet our board of directors

One Brain,
One Community

Brain Canada was the first to make the case for the brain as a single, complex system underscoring the need for increased collaboration across disciplines and institutions.

Mr. Joe Gati, Associate Director and Department Manager;
Dr. Ravi Menon, Director; Dr. Kyle Gilbert, Research Scientist;
and Dr. Martyn Klassen, Research Scientist.

One Brain

  • We now know that the brain is a single, complex and integrated system with common mechanisms across disorders thanks to advances in research and technology.
  • The One Brain approach means that every discovery has the potential to have an impact across a spectrum of brain disorders, as well as on our understanding of brain functioning.
  • With Brain Canada’s support, researchers broaden their perspective, widen their scope of inquiry, and connect with scientists across disciplines, leading to insights into specific mechanisms and disorders, as well as their interconnections.
  • Along with increased potential to address disorders, brain research is driving innovations in artificial intelligence, as well as insights into brain plasticity and deep learning.

One Community

  • Brain Canada convenes and strengthens Canada’s brain community, which encompasses researchers and clinicians (and their institutions), governments, voluntary health organizations, philanthropists, business and community leaders, patients and caregivers.
  • Brain Canada facilitates linkages with the global brain science community: the exceptional quality of Canadian research contributes to broad technological, data-driven initiatives, as well as to bottom-up initiatives in labs from multiple countries.
  • Brain research extends beyond neuroscience to include, for example, genetics, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, computer science, the social sciences.


Since our founding in 1998, Brain Canada has significantly increased funding for brain research. We have established a track-record of success funding multidisciplinary research that pursues paradigm-changing ideas, and partnering with those who share our commitment to brain research. In 2011, the Canada Brain Research Fund (CBRF) was established and became the largest national fund in Canadian history devoted to brain research.


What would eventually be called Brain Canada is established under the name NeuroScience Canada Partnership and Foundation.


Launched the Brain Repair program.


Published The Case for Canada’s Increased Investment in Brain Research, which provided a calculation for the economic burden of brain disorders as one grouping.


Rallied health charities to speak with one voice to the government for a brain strategy.


Approached the Government of Canada to form a partnership to support brain research.


Changed name to Brain Canada Foundation to better reflect the focus on the brain, not only neuroscience. Established the Canada Brain Research Fund – a partnership with the government to match $100 million over five years.


Reached $100 million goal, 18 months ahead of schedule, for a total investment of $200 million.


Budget 2016 included an additional $20 million in matching funds for the CRBF, bringing the total fund to a potential $240 million.


Announced in Budget 2019, Health Canada committed an additional $40 million to be matched


The Government of Canada provides a $40 million funding extension for the Canada Brain Research Fund.

At a glance

Discover our research stories

We leverage every dollar with matching government, partner or donor funds.

Unorthodox and innovative collaborations across disciplines help to develop new approaches and solutions.

International collaboration and partnerships increase the visibility and participation of Canadian researchers in worldwide brain research.