The Materials Innovation Lab is designed to match materials and manufacturing challenges from industry with student capacity from advanced design, engineering, and technical programs at Vancouver’s universities and colleges.


Why is this important?

Over the past year, we have engaged with design educators, instructors and academics who have been struggling to find meaningful and impactful design and engineering projects for their students and student-researchers.

At the same time, our work with green economy businesses has revealed a need for better access to research, design, and prototyping resources for tackling circular economy challenges.

This project aims to strengthen circular economy research & development by matching real challenges from industry with researchers, designers, and prototyping resources in academia and the community.




Why is this the first prototype?

MIL-PROTO1 will start as a match-making program between industry and academia. Based on the outcomes from this process, we will continue to explore opportunities for expanding the Materials Innovation Lab to include additional research and development programming, such as:

  • Landing a materials innovation incubator or accelerator program
  • Developing a colocation hub for early-stage smart materials businesses
  • Building out an intern support program to help businesses employ emerging researchers, designers, and engineers to solve specific challenges