Applied Quantum Computing Challenge program


Quantum computing represents a paradigm shift with the potential to bring transformative capabilities across a wide range of sectors and applications.  Intermediate‑scale quantum computers available through cloud platforms have made great progress in recent years. This advance is accompanied by a surge in research and development towards the discovery of new algorithms and applications that harness the power of these new computing capabilities. Canada leads the world in the commercialization of quantum applications with a robust and growing community of quantum software start‑ups.

The National Research Council of Canada is developing a new Challenge program for Applied Quantum Computing. The program will collaborate with industry and academia to support commercial innovation to build on Canada's position as a global leader in applied quantum computing. The program will also support quantum initiatives across the Government of Canada, working with federal departments, agencies and Crown corporations to explore applications of quantum computing for public service operations and program delivery.

The program is being developed in alignment with the development of the Government of Canada's National Quantum Strategy. The strategy will amplify Canada's significant strength in quantum research; grow our quantum‑ready technologies, companies and talent; and solidify Canada's global leadership in this area.

News and events


  • 2021: Initial program development discussions with potential collaborators

Getting involved

We invite researchers from the academic, public, not‑for‑profit and private sectors to express their interest in collaborating with the Program. We are currently seeking collaborators with research expertise in quantum algorithms and applications, as well as with problem owners and technology adopters looking to explore potential application areas.

Grant and contribution funding will be available through the NRC's National Program Office for eligible collaborators who offer complementary expertise. This may include support for collaborative R&D as well as equipment needed for research in fundamental areas.

Contact our team

Potential areas of focus

Quantum algorithm development

  • Quantum algorithms for large‑scale, fault‑tolerant quantum computers
  • Quantum algorithms and heuristics for noisy intermediate‑scale quantum (NISQ) computers
  • Problem formulation and new application areas
  • Molecular and materials simulations

The quantum software stack

  • Quantum error‑correcting codes and fault tolerance
  • Quantum compilers
  • Programming languages and workflows
  • Benchmarking

Special‑purpose architectures

  • Quantum and digital annealing
  • Optical quantum computing and boson sampling
  • Quantum‑inspired and hybrid approaches

Contact us

If you are interested in collaborating with us, making investments in this area, or if you have any questions, please contact:

Phil Kaye, PhD
Program Director, Applied Quantum Computing


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