National Research Council (NRC)

Institute for Research in Construction (IRC)

The NRC Institute for Research in Construction (NRC-IRC) is the leading construction research agency in Canada. Equipped with world-class facilities, the NRC-IRC carries out applied and contract research on issues of strategic importance to the Canadian construction sector. Through an integrated, multi­disciplinary approach, the NRC-IRC assists the construction sector to become more competitive through innovation and to foster the provision of safe and sustainable built environments.

Core Research Programs

Building Envelope and Structure: technologies for the design, construction, and operation of durable, energy-efficient, and cost-effective building systems. These technologies address both new construction and repair or renovation, for all types of buildings and some concrete building structures. Expanding from a traditional emphasis on systems for cold climates, the program now encompasses technology development for conditions in key export markets.

Fire Research: technologies for advancing the fire safety design and operation of buildings and transportation systems, enhancing fire detection and suppression systems, and reducing the risks and costs of fire. Experiments, computer modeling and consideration of human factors all figure in the research.

Indoor Environment: cost-effective and energy-efficient technologies and tools for the design and operation of indoor environments that optimize the comfort, satisfaction and health of building occupants. The research addresses acoustics, lighting, thermal comfort, and ventilation and air quality.

Urban Infrastructure: technologies for the design and rehabilitation of infrastructure systems, and innovative tools and techniques for the evaluation and management of these systems. The research focuses on buried utilities and concrete structures (Ottawa) and sustainable infrastructure for water and wastewater systems (Regina).

Codes and Evaluation

The NRC-IRC further contributes to safety and efficiency in construction through its code support and product evaluation service. The Canadian Codes Centre supports the development of the National Building Code and other national codes on which construction regulation across Canada is based. The Canadian Construction Materials Centre determines the suitability of new building materials in accordance with code requirements.

Technology Transfer

The NRC-IRC delivers results and solutions to the construction sector through its research contracts, consortium projects, license agreements, its newsletter Construction Innovation, technical publications such as Construction Technology Updates, national seminars, and many other means.

Organization Type:
Government and Agency - Federal
Repository Name: 
Institute for Research in Construction (IRC)

acoustics, building codes, Building envelopes, building materials, fire prevention. indoor air quality, healthy buildings, infrastructure, lighting; insulation, technology transfer, ventilation, water and wastewater systems

Date range of documents: 
English, French
Format of repository and documents: 

NRC-IRC's large collection of publications, papers and reports issued since its founding in 1947 are in a database accessible from the website.

You can search in 3 ways:

  • By keyword;
  • Using the advanced search, you can search with multiple keywords, by author, by date, language and report number;
  • Browsing by topic:

1.    Acoustics;
2.    Building Envelope;
3.    Fire;
4.    Healthy Buildings;
5.    Infrastructure;
6.    Lighting;
7.    Materials;
8.    Nanotechnology;
9.    Offices;
10.    Product Evaluations.

Most publications are available full text in HTML or PDF format and are free.
A few are available in print format only.


Geographic focus: 
Canada, the U.S. and international
Intended audience: 
building/fire/plumbing officials and regulators, home builders, manufacturers, the media, professors/educators/students, property and asset owners/managers, other industry professionals, researchers

Contact information

Street address: 
Institute for Research in Construction, National Research Council of Canada
1200 Montreal Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R6

Mailing address: 
Institute for Research in Construction, National Research Council of Canada
1200 Montreal Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0R6

Main phone number: 
(613) 993-2607
Main fax number: 
(613) 952-7673
Special features / Comments: 

It is also possible to search exclusively for IRC documents through the CISTI library catalogue.

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