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Driving Indigenous innovation through partnerships

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Build new research partnerships, collaborate with top-ranked students, and apply any time for funding support.

Businesses and SMEs

Solve R&D challenges with Canada’s top R&D talent, leverage your funding, and gain one-to-one support from Mitacs.


Discover job opportunities in your field, grow your professional network, receive training and funding.

Discover Indigenous Pathways with Mitacs

That’s where Mitacs comes in.

Like companies everywhere, Indigenous-owned businesses and organizations need to innovate in order to grow and achieve their strategic goals. But the tools you need to do that require talent, time, and budget — and finding the ideal combination of these three elements can be a challenge.

Through our Indigenous Pathways initiative, we can help you find the right academic talent to achieve your innovation goals. 

Projects are a minimum of four months in duration – they can be longer – and now your contribution is only 25% of the cost of projects that have an Indigenous partner organization and/or an intern who is Indigenous.

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Your project is co-funded; We fund up to 75% of the cost

Your R&D project can be
scalable and multidisciplinary

You are matched with the right talent and expertise

You gain access to our extensive global networks

Your key benefits

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We fund up to 75% of your project — a minimum of four months in duration.

If your project is bigger and requires more than four months, your investment remains at 25% of the cost.


In order to participate, one of the following requirements must be met:

The partner organization must be a for-profit organization with self-identifying Indigenous persons (First Nation, Metis, or Inuit) who hold 50% or greater ownership shares

The partner organization must be a not-for-profit organization with board membership consisting of 50% or greater self-identifying Indigenous Persons (First Nation, Metis, or Inuit)

The student assigned to the project must be a self-identifying Indigenous person (First Nation, Metis, or Inuit)

What does Indigenous innovation look like?

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We are also a Seed Sponsor for the Pow Wow Pitch, North America’s premier pitch competition for emerging Indigenous entrepreneurs. Founded by local Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg entrepreneur Sunshine Tenasco, the Pow Wow Pitch provides free resources, live training, and mentorship opportunities through the Indigenous Startup Program.



Mitacs is committed to supporting Indigenous communities and improving access to our programs. We are dedicated to strengthening our relationship with outstanding Indigenous innovators across Canada.

Check out episode 2 of The Edge where we explore female entrepreneurship in Canada with Sunshine Tenasco.

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Sunshine Quem Tenasco

Founder, Pow Wow Pitch and Her Braids

This researcher is improving access to Indigenous healthcare

Nikki Hunter-Porter, a Master of Nursing student at Thompson Rivers University, is using her expertise and lived experience in applying Indigenous methodology to address gaps in Indigenous mental health services. Her project has received additional Mitacs funding, extending it to two internships and a full year of research.

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This research team is working toward Indigenous data sovereignty

Dr. Moneca Sinclaire, member of Opaskwayak Cree Nation and researcher from the University of Manitoba is part of the inspiring team behind Our Data Indigenous, a novel survey tool that allows communities to retain ownership of the data they collect.

Success stories

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These First Nation leaders are developing community-based solutions to industrial impact

Simon Fraser University students collaborated with the Metlakatla Stewardship Society on a management program that equips the Metlakatla First Nation to make well-informed decisions on the cumulative effects of resource exploration within their territory.

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Education got us into this mess and education will get us out of this mess.”

—Senator Murray Sinclair

Senior Advisor, Indigenous Relations and Initiatives in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

David Plamondon

David Plamondon is a proud First Nations member of Treaty 8 living in amiskwaciy-wâskahikan/ ᐊᒥᐢᑲᐧᒋᐋᐧᐢᑲᐦᐃᑲᐣ (Edmonton) in Treaty 6 territory. Prior to joining Mitacs, David worked for over ten years in Indigenous community engagement and support, with a focus on Education and employment. He has a diploma in Business Management from Grant MacEwan University and is a successful entrepreneur in his own right.

In 2019, David founded Pe Metawe Consulting a community-focused Indigenous business that supports Indigenous capacity building and community engagement. His lived experience as a Cree person provides him with a unique perspective on the challenges and barriers Indigenous Peoples face in accessing education and training. David brings a proven history of promoting and supporting Indigenous entrepreneurship to his role as Senior Advisor, Indigenous Relations & Initiatives in Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Mitacs.

Get in touch with David

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About Mitacs

Mitacs is a catalyzing force in the Canadian innovation ecosystem. We build a world-class, diverse community of innovators through our collaborative model, attracting and deploying top talent to industry, and matching need with expertise to create ambitious solutions to real-world challenges.

Let's go on a journey together.

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