Canada is an uneven performer, according to the new report card that benchmarks Canada’s performance against that of leading OECD countries across six broad domains—Economy, Innovation, Environment, Education and Skills, Health and Society. With one “A,” three “B”s and two “D”s, our mediocre overall standing confirms the message the Conference Board has been reiterating for the last decade: Canada is not keeping up with the top performers in the new global economy.
Most startling and important to Canada’s competitiveness and sustainable prosperity is the “D” grade on Innovation, where Canada ranks fourth to last in the 17-country comparator group. Our only “A” grade is earned in Education and Skills where, despite our ability to deliver a high quality education to children and youth, a large percentage of adults with low level basic skills and literacy remain underserved. Additionally, we do not stimulate enough students to complete post-graduate degrees.