AI-Powered Supply Chains Supercluster (SCALE.AI) | Mentor Works

The government of Canada has been actively working to establish and position Canada as a leader in global innovation. This has been done through initiatives for national businesses and research and post-secondary institutions to recommend strategies for developing superclusters of innovation.

A total federal investment of up to $950M has transitioned into five successful business-led innovation superclusters, including SCALE.AI (Supply Chains and Logistics Excellence AI) coming to life in 2018.

SCALE.AI is an industry-led consortium shaping a new global supply chain platform – strengthening Canada’s leadership in artificial intelligence, and accelerating industry adoption of enabling technologies through collaborative and incremental projects.

SCALE.AI will provide up to 40% of eligible costs for projects that can accelerate the adoption and commercialization of AI for supply chains.

The program has a three-stage application process including a project form, eligibility application, and if called forward, a full detailed project application. The program is currently open; however, funding is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and a program membership is required for all project partners.

About SCALE.AI R&D Supercluster Funding

Canada is one of the strongholds for artificial intelligence (AI) and home to some of the world’s most advanced AI organizations and companies. The Supply Chains and Logistics Excellence AI (SCALE.AI) supercluster is a government funding program that enhances Canada’s existing supply chain practices by boosting economic development through faster adoption and integration of artificial intelligence (AI). It seeks to connect researchers and industries to establish Canada as a global AI development hub.

SCALE.AI support offsets collaborative investments in projects that leverage AI to enhance existing Supply Chain procedures and improve Canada’s global competitiveness.

The scope for the SCALE.AI initiative encompasses topics such as:

  • AI;
  • Digital technology; and
  • Supply chains.

On the industry side, SCALE.AI will support multiple sectors such as:

  • Consumer Goods;
  • Manufacturing;
  • Logistics;
  • Infrastructure; and
  • Intra-hospital Logistics.

SCALE.AI Strategies

Eligible projects should align with the following SCALE.AI strategies:

  • Adoption of AI-Powered Supply Chain: Drive productivity and competitiveness of Canadian firms by fostering deeper and better use of AI technologies in supply chain operations.
  • Commercialization of AI-Powered Supply Chain Solutions: Enhance the offering and go-to-market of solution providers by developing, industrializing, and expanding AI-powered products and services applied to supply chain management.
  • SME AI Scale-Up Support: Scale-up SMEs and grow the world’s best AI services and product providers by supporting a range of initiatives including mentorship, incubation, and business connection-building.
  • Current and Future Workforce Development in AI: Boost the skills and diversity of SCALE.AI’s talent pool by enhancing the pipeline of future talent, reinforcing the links between academia and the industry, and upskilling the industrial workforce.
  • Collaboration Development: Facilitate collaborations and maximize synergies in the ecosystem.

Applicant Eligibility: SCALE.AI Supercluster Funding

To be eligible to receive SCALE.AI innovation funding, collaborations should fall under the following criteria:

  • Projects must have at least two contributing partner companies. At least one partner in the consortium must be a SME and at least one partner must be an adopter of the technology.
  • Projects must reflect collaborations across large and small enterprises, research institutions, and academia.
  • Project contributors must be SCALE.AI members. Membership fees vary depending on size of the organization.

Project Eligibility: SCALE.AI Supercluster Funding

Projects eligible for research and development grants from SCALE.AI should encompass technology development to improve Supply Chain processes by adopting AI. Projects should:

  • Be transformational in scale or impact for its participants;
  • Have a wider benefit to Canada’s Supply Chain ecosystem; and
  • Help Canadian Supply Chain companies compete globally.

Eligible Expenses

  • Research dissemination costs;
  • Gross wages, salaries, or contracts incurred specifically for project-related activities;
  • Capital expenses;
  • Select travel, meal, and accommodation costs; and
  • Equipment, facilities, materials, and supplies used specifically for project-related activities.

All eligible expenses must be incurred no later than March 31, 2023

Bring Your AI Projects to Life with SCALE.AI Innovation Funding

The program has a three-stage application process:

  1. SOI – Confirm eligibility with the program and submit a project summary/idea.
  2. Full Application – Submit a detailed project proposal upon approval of the project eligibility from SCALE.AI.
  3. SCALE.AI review and selection based on the following categories:
    • Strategic alignment with SCALE.AI
    • Team and project plan
    • Ecosystem impact
    • Business impact

The AI-Powered Supply Chains Supercluster (SCALE.AI) program is open and accepting applications on a first-come, first-served basis.

To discuss your eligibility for SCALE.AI and explore how your company can optimize the application process, please contact Mentor Works.

 Apply for Canadian Government Funding

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Written by

As Marketing Coordinator at Mentor Works, an organization that helps optimize the funding discovery and application process, Myra educates and inspires leaders on ways to enhance their business’ growth projects through blog and web publication, social media, and event management. To read more of Myra’s government funding content, view Mentor Works’ blog.

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