Man sitting at table reading on his laptop


As part of our commitment to the Future Skills Centre, the Conference Board will research the skills Canadians are going to need and deliver insights on labour markets and learning ecosystems.

Our work focuses on the skills people need to make their livings and the paths they need to take to get there. We look at the impact of automation, sustainable livelihoods, career pathways, in-demand skills, and take a skills perspective on labour market information.

As well, we examine the role of post-secondary education and how skills are developed through work-integrated and experiential learning and apprenticeships to better understand how to prepare for the future.


Publication outputs

Latest Releases

Strengthening Interprofessional Collaboration in Diabetic Foot Care

Health    July 18, 2024

Canadians at risk of developing diabetic foot ulcers currently need to navigate complex pathways to find effective, affordable, timely, and culturally responsive care. There is often limited communication and coordination between their healthcare practitioners, and a lack of continuity between different sectors of the health and care ecosystem.

Issue briefing  •  8-min read

Diabetic Foot Care and Lower Limb Preservation

Health    July 18, 2024

Diabetic foot ulcers impact patients’ mobility, employment and quality of life. They frequently become infected and, if not appropriately managed in a timely manner, can result in amputation. Lower extremity amputations have life-changing physical, mental wellness, and economic impacts.

Issue briefing  •  17-min read

Who Is Using Generative AI in Higher Education?

Education & Skills    July 8, 2024

While institutions scramble to craft policies for generative AI use, one in five students report using it most or all of the time, and 35 per cent report using it some of the time. But how does the uptake of generative AI vary across social groups in the student population?

Data briefing  •  10-min read

Research by Theme

Canadians with disabilities have the potential to be highly engaged and productive employees, but many face barriers in accessing employment and often do not receive the supports and accommodations they need to facilitate their access to leadership-track positions. Our work examines how to better support workers living with both visible and non-visible disabilities by creating diverse and inclusive work environments.

Education & Skills     June 3, 2024

International students are an integral part of Canada’s labour force, now and into the future. But after graduation they have poorer economic outcomes than Canadian-born students. What’s needed to improve international students’ study-to-work transitions?

Online experience  •  8-min read

Education & Skills, Inclusion     September 11, 2023

People with disabilities often face barriers to employment and career progression. Only 59 per cent of Canadians with disabilities reported being employed in 2017, compared with 80 per cent of Canadians without disabilities.

Issue briefing  •  18-min read

Inclusion     March 28, 2023

There are many benefits to creating a neuroinclusive workspace. Yet neurodivergent Canadians continue to face barriers to employment and career progression. With many Canadian companies experiencing significant labour shortages, employers can benefit from recruiting and supporting talent from underrepresented groups, including neurodivergent workers.

Summary for executives  •  2-min read

Two women training in office

Inclusion     March 14, 2023

Canadian companies have a lot to gain from embracing neurodiversity in the workplace. Yet neurodivergent Canadians continue to face barriers to employment and career progression.

Impact paper  •  45-min read

Smiling man and woman in a meeting

Inclusion     November 10, 2022

Neurodivergent individuals experience barriers in accessing employment and often lack the supports and accommodations that facilitate career progression and access to leadership-track positions. These barriers stem from an undervaluing of neurodivergent workers’ strengths in the workplace, as well as biases against the way that neurodivergent individuals may present themselves and/or communicate with others during the interview process or within the work environment.

Issue briefing  •  9-min read

Woman in virtual meeting at home

Education & Skills     March 16, 2021

Employment in Canada is going to look different in the future. The types of education, abilities, skills, and experiences that employers seek are evolving amid a confluence of forces reshaping the nature of work around the world. Disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence and robotics, unmanned vehicles, and the Internet of Things, the growing share of knowledge-based services, and the rise of technology-enabled platforms will reshape careers.

Primer  •  20-min read

A revolution is coming to the skilled trades, and tradespeople will need a range of new digital skills to keep pace with the future of work. Our research explores the future of work in skilled trades and the role that apprenticeships can play in preparing for an increasingly dynamic workforce. Focusing on several sectors undergoing change, our research lays the groundwork for additional work in experiential learning.

Three construction workers silhouetted against a sunset

Education & Skills     December 14, 2021

The construction trades workforce is changing. Tradespeople are tackling new challenges in multi-generational and increasingly diverse workplaces. What skills do tradespeople need to adapt to these trends?

Issue briefing  •  15-min read

Mechanics working on car engine

Education & Skills     December 14, 2020

As the automotive industry shifts toward connected, autonomous, shared, and electric (CASE) vehicles, tradespeople will need stronger digital competencies. To work with new tools on smart vehicles, tradespeople need seven core digital skills.

Issue briefing  •  15-min read

Two workers in safety gear in industrial setting

Education & Skills     December 14, 2020

The manufacturing sector is becoming more technologically advanced. Tradespeople need 21st-century digital skills to adapt to these 21st-century workplaces. But the sector is struggling to attract young people and women into the trades..

Summary for executives  •  4-min read

Two chefs working in kitchen

Education & Skills     December 14, 2020

Commercial kitchens are becoming more automated, connected, and diverse workplaces. Repetitive tasks are being automated, freeing up time for workers. Food‑delivery apps and the increasing use of social media are changing the way customers and restaurants interact. And labour shortages mean employers need to work harder to find the skilled talent they need, especially Red Seal‑certified cooks.

Issue briefing  •  20-min read

Young man in virtual meeting with older man looking on

Education & Skills     September 15, 2020

Tradespeople will need a range of new digital skills to keep pace with the future of work. These are the technical and non-technical skills needed to thrive in digitally connected workplaces. The next generation of tradespeople will need them to operate computerized equipment, access blueprints on digital devices, and use digital diagnostic tools, among other tasks.

Impact paper  •  30-min read

Young man working on laptop

Education & Skills     September 15, 2020

Tradespeople identified seven core 21st-century digital skills that are needed to adapt to the future of the trades. These skills require knowledge of digital tools and interact with both trade-specific technical knowledge and social/emotional skills, which evolve over a person’s lifespan.

Summary for executives  •  4-min read

Two construction workers in empty space

Education & Skills     April 8, 2020

The revolution is being sparked by automation, low-carbon economies, digitization, and other emerging work trends. These new technologies need skills that are not usually at the core of a trade school education.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Building on our previous research on occupations at-risk from automation, this work examines the pathways people might take to transition to more stable careers. Starting with the growing occupations in the clean economy, we look at skills, jobs, and training data to identify occupations that will become important. We examine the human factors in job transitions, and start to clear a path from at-risk to rapid growth.

Man at desk on his computer.

Education & Skills     March 29, 2023

Advances in digital and automation technologies are fundamentally changing how goods and services are produced and delivered and will have huge implications for the labour market. While investment in technology and the resulting productivity gains are a desired outcome for the economy, it creates uncertainty for workers whose skills become obsolete in this process.

Impact paper  •  65-min read

Masked woman taking inventory

Innovation & Technology     July 28, 2022

One in five Canadian employees works at a job that’s vulnerable to automation. The clean economy is a rapid-growth sector that needs workers. Is there a way to solve for both? Employees working high-risk, low-mobility (HRLM) jobs have few options to transition into lower-risk occupations without undergoing retraining.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Worker constructing solar panel

Innovation & Technology     June 3, 2021

Could the clean economy offer brighter futures for workers at risk of automation? In a previous study, we identified 92 occupations at a high risk of automation with few desirable opportunities to transition into lower-risk ones. These high-risk, low-mobility (HRLM) occupations account for one in five employees in Canada. Is your industry vulnerable to automation?

Online experience  •  8-min read

We examine the major factors that shape career pathways for Indigenous finance and management professionals and identify resources that have helped Indigenous professionals establish their careers. This work seeks to understand what’s needed to grow the talent pool of Indigenous corporate services professionals.

Indigenous woman working on computer

Indigenous & Northern Communities     June 22, 2022

As reflected in recent Supreme Court decisions, parliamentary debates, and public opinion polls, Indigenous rights are increasingly part of major project decisions. This spans sectors such as power generation, mining, and oil and gas. While at times contentious, the assertion of Indigenous rights presents a bold new vision of economic reconciliation with opportunities for Indigenous communities looking to determine their economic futures.

Impact paper  •  29-min read

Hand holding tablet displaying data

Indigenous & Northern Communities     April 27, 2022

To shape Canada’s economy in partnership with Indigenous people, we need to understand how a dynamic new generation of Indigenous professionals can take the lead in managing their communities’ unique corporate services. Indigenous skilled labour is critical to realizing a new vision of economic reconciliation where First Nations, Métis, and Inuit communities control their economic futures.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Two teepees

Indigenous & Northern Communities     June 4, 2020

To shape Canada’s future economy and build Indigenous communities across the country, we need more Indigenous people in finance and management roles in both Indigenous and non-Indigenous organizations.

Online experience  •  4-min read

There are many forms of Indigenous-centred post-secondary education in Canada trying to help Indigenous students do well in school. Our work identifies the best practices that leading Indigenous institutes have developed to help First Nation, Métis, and Inuit students succeed in post-secondary fields and the job market. It also explores how Indigenous institutes compare with, and complement, public post-secondary institutions.

Small airplane in the sky

Filling in the Map of Indigenous Controlled Post-Secondary Education in Canada

Indigenous & Northern Communities     March 17, 2021

Many Indigenous groups across Canada mandate, govern, and control their own post-secondary institutions. These Indigenous Institutes support lifelong learning as defined by Indigenous Peoples. They also offer education grounded in Indigenous languages, pedagogies, cultures, and worldviews.

Online experience  •  17-min read

Two Indigenous teenagers laughing

Indigenous & Northern Communities     December 7, 2020

Indigenous Institutes play an essential role in helping Indigenous peoples—Canada’s fastest-growing population prepare for the labour market. And they bring a distinctly Indigenous lens to higher education. Many are looking for ways to support Indigenous learners and provide culturally safe spaces for learning and research.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Handing holding pencil over open book

Old School/New School: Comparing Indigenous-Centred Post-Secondary Education in Canada

Indigenous & Northern Communities     March 26, 2020

In 1972 the Assembly of First Nations—launched a movement by First Nations to reclaim control of their education. Fifty years on, many forms of Indigenous-centred post-secondary education (PSE) exist in Canada. All of them aspire to help Indigenous students succeed.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Can cross-cultural curricula help Indigenous learners transition to, and graduate from, post-secondary STEM fields? And will they open doors to employment opportunities? Our research identifies best practices for designing, teaching, and supporting cross-cultural STEM curricula for First Nation, Métis, and Inuit students. It also looks at how sectoral change is affecting employment in STEM fields and the skills development ecosystems that serve Indigenous learners—and what can be done to seize emerging opportunities.

Person fixing chainsaw with assitance

Indigenous & Northern Communities     November 30, 2021

The Canadian forest sector is facing a challenge to attract, train, and retain workers. In this boom-and-bust industry, forestry companies must increase efficiency in order to remain competitive when the market is weak while also responding to growing demand for sustainable practices and high-value wood products. Indigenous forestry businesses are no strangers to this dilemma.

Case study  •  25-min read

Two miners with drills in a mine

Indigenous & Northern Communities     November 4, 2021

For many northern Indigenous communities, mineral exploration properties and active mines are the closest employers. Mining is big business in northern Manitoba. The industry has been a strong source of employment for Indigenous workers, with accessible entry-level positions and opportunities to learn on the job. While the benefits of short-term job training are attractive, Indigenous communities are having to make complicated decisions about economic development that have long-term implications.

Case study  •  15-min read

Worker cutting tree with chainsaw

Indigenous & Northern Communities     September 9, 2021

Occupations and in-demand skills are changing. Two-thirds of workers expect their jobs to be changed by technology every five years. Other forces driving labour market change in Northern Canada include commodity cycles, demographic change, climate change, modern treaties, and Indigenous self-government. Understanding how these changes impact workforce development across Northern Canada requires looking beyond the training institutions that deliver skills for jobs.

Primer  •  30-min read

Machine pouring dirt onto a pile

Indigenous & Northern Communities     May 20, 2021

The economy in Northern Canada is changing. Sectors, such as mining, forestry, and tourism, can quickly expand or contract. Advancing technology is one factor driving those changes. As technologies change, jobs and occupations evolve. Skills development must keep pace if workers are to seize future employment opportunities in the North.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Indigenous mother teaching her two children

Indigenous & Northern Communities     December 9, 2020

In response to a national conversation about reconciliation, governments, the formal education system, and non-profit organizations are wanting to address educational gaps and improve the representation of Indigenous peoples in STEM with extra attention and resources. This awareness, combined with an increasing focus on equity issues in STEM, has increased efforts to bring STEM outreach to Indigenous students.

Impact paper  •  25-min read

Woman working with lab equipment

Indigenous STEM Access Programs: Leading Post-Secondary Inclusion

Indigenous & Northern Communities     December 9, 2020

The transition from high school to post-secondary education (PSE) is a time of uncertainty for many students. Educational, cultural, and economic challenges make this transition even more complex for Indigenous learners transferring into PSE in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Issue briefing  •  14-min read

Child building a robot

Indigenous & Northern Communities     October 15, 2020

The Indigenous population in Canada is younger and growing more rapidly than any other socio-demographic segment in the country. Expanding resource development opportunities and increasing recognition of Indigenous rights are creating unique economic opportunities for Indigenous peoples.

Impact paper  •  32-min read

Woman fixing electronic equipment

Indigenous & Northern Communities     June 11, 2020

When educators use a culturally responsive curriculum—one that bridges Indigenous ways of knowing with Western science—Indigenous students are more engaged and perform better.

Primer  •  40-min read

Child making molecule with toys

Indigenous & Northern Communities     March 26, 2020

About 4 per cent of Canadian adults are Indigenous. But less than 2 per cent of people working in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) occupations are. Improving Indigenous participation and leadership in major economic sectors, such as science, technology, and finance, is an important part of the reconciliation journey.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Automation-enabling technologies will cause swift changes in the skills many industries need. In our work, we identify which employees are at high risk from automation and have limited ability to transition into new roles. We also examine where these jobs are concentrated—both in terms of industries and regions—and which technologies are most likely to disrupt labour markets.

Two men fixing electronic equipment

Innovation & Technology     April 15, 2021

The Automation Vulnerability Index (AVI) measures how susceptible a region is to disruption by automation. It ranges from 0 to 1, with higher index scores indicating more vulnerability. The Index comprises five indicators with equal weights.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Woman wearing safety goggle working in a lab

Innovation & Technology     April 8, 2021

Our leaders need to be ready. Automation-enabling technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics will cause swift changes in the skills many industries need. In Canada, nearly one in five employees are already in an occupation at high risk of automation, where transitioning into a lower-risk occupation would require significant retraining.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Worker in safety gear and laptop at a construction site

Innovation & Technology     March 15, 2021

Employment declines in occupations that involve routine tasks have been under way for decades. However, it is unclear how advances in artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics will impact local economies. As some occupations and industries are more vulnerable to automation than others, and regional economies have different occupational and industry mixes, regions may experience the impact of automation differently.

Issue briefing  •  15-min read

Hands using tablet in industrial setting

Innovation & Technology     January 28, 2021

Canadian industries have experienced rapid technological change with the advent of several transformative innovations over the past decade. Different technologies pose different re-skilling and occupational transition challenges across industries. Business leaders need to be mindful of which technology they adopt.

Impact paper  •  20-min read

Woman operating machinery

Innovation & Technology     May 28, 2020

In an era of lightning-fast technological change, it’s more important than ever that Canadian leaders understand how the adoption of new technologies will impact Canada’s labour force..

Online experience  •  8-min read

Our novel research applies a skills framework based on international sources and job postings data to Canadian labour data. This will allow us to identify skill vacancies and provide longer-term supply and demand forecasts of skills under different assumptions. It will also help us understand how skills cluster together, how skills are developed, how the market values skills, and to identify viable and desirable career transitions for workers.

Education & Skills    October 10, 2023

Canada’s insurance industry is poised for significant growth in the coming years, even with the abundance of job vacancies already existing. This additional growth will create even more demand for skilled professionals to fill numerous job opportunities.

Issue briefing  •  12-min read

a young woman is woodworking in a workshop

Education & Skills     May 23, 2023

A key ingredient for a successful and financially rewarding career is having useful and valuable skills that enable people to perform specific jobs. Accordingly, we expect workers with in-demand skills to earn higher wages and salaries, reflecting the need for those skills in the workplace.

Impact paper  •  33-min read

woman, girl, person, woman outside, maple leaf

Education & Skills     March 3, 2023

To avert the worst impacts of climate change, Canada has set an ambitious goal of achieving net-zero GHG emissions by 2050. Transitioning to a net-zero economy is expected to be disruptive, but it will also create new global employment opportunities.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Two people working on laptop in server room

Canadian Economics     October 11, 2022

To help prepare Canadians for the future of work, our researchers and data scientists proudly developed the MOST on behalf of the Future Skills Centre. A sophisticated and data-rich projection tool, the MOST is designed to offer unique insights into the skills that will power Canada’s future labour markets.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Man working on laptop in office

Canadian Economics     August 3, 2022

In Canada’s modern, knowledge-based, and service-centric economy, employers are increasingly thinking about work from a skills perspective. Old-fashioned labels like “blue collar” and “white collar” are no longer relevant. As well, factors such as educational attainment or work experience are only proxies for assessing the skills of workers. This means that we need a more sophisticated way to talk about employment opportunities.

Issue briefing  •  10-min read

Two girls learning to build technological devices

Education & Skills     June 14, 2022

In February 2022, The Conference Board of Canada presented the Future Skills Centre’s first national summit. The virtual summit hosted more than 1,700 participants and 55 speakers. It included plenaries, fireside chats, panel discussions, and ActionLabs that profiled key learnings from ongoing Future Skills Centre projects. Here, we summarize the learnings from the summit.

Issue briefing  •  19-min read

Man with Downs Syndrome working in store

Inclusion     May 16, 2022

Everyone needs career options, including people with disabilities. The Conference Board of Canada, on behalf of the Future Skills Centre, is leading a study to support the job transitions of people with disabilities. The study aims to promote labour market retention and career mobility for this equity-deserving group.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Woman writing post-it note to add to white board

Canadian Economics     March 2, 2022

When an employer wants to fill a vacant job, they are really looking for a set of skills to help them complete specific tasks. Until that employer can recruit a new employee, they don’t have access to the skills they need. So job vacancies can actually be thought of as skill-set vacancies: an unmet need for particular skills.

Online experience  •  8-min read

CN Tower in Toronto

Canadian Economics     April 23, 2021

Tourism and hospitality is one of Ontario’s key economic drivers. In 2019, the sector employed over 620,000 Ontarians and generated nearly $21 billion in labour income. Before the pandemic-related disruptions, employment in the sector had been stable and sustainable. However, Ontario’s labour market is steadily evolving and, for some tourism and hospitality workers, this evolution has led to job losses, and the COVID-19 pandemic has increased and accelerated these pressures.

Impact paper  •  15-min read

Smiling man working in bakery

Education & Skills     April 8, 2021

A new solution for a changing job market. Switching careers can be hard—but what if there were an easier way to identify, assess and pursue new opportunities? The Conference Board of Canada and the Future Skills Centre are excited to launch a free online tool designed to help job placement professionals, jobseekers and employers quickly and easily explore viable career transition pathways.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Smiling man working on tablet

Education & Skills     March 16, 2021

Workers considering a career change need to better understand how to capitalize on their current skills, education, abilities, experience, and knowledge. Similarly, human resource professionals, educational institutions, and labour market policy-makers need a better sense of what skills, education, abilities, experience, and knowledge characteristics make someone more employable, today and in the future.

Impact paper  •  25-min read

Welder in helmet at work

Canadian Economics     March 24, 2021

The skills that workers need are changing thanks to automation and new technologies. That means it’s more important than ever to find reliable ways to identify the gaps between the skills workers have and the skills employers need, and how those gaps will change over time.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Identifying the skills that will be needed for tomorrow’s world of work.

Train tracks bearing right in an empty landscape

Education & Skills     March 14, 2022

In collaboration with the Future Skills Centre (FSC), The Conference Board of Canada engaged Canadians who are actively engaged in the country’s skills and training community, as well as individuals interested in learning more about skills development and the future of work.

Online experience  •  8-min read

The most in-demand job skills aren’t technical—they’re social and emotional. These include skills like communication, leadership, cultural competence, resiliency, and problem-solving. Our research in this area explores several aspects of social and emotional skills—how they are perceived and valued in the workplace, how they are measured, and their potential to help workers transition between jobs.

Health     July 18, 2024

Diabetic foot ulcers impact patients’ mobility, employment and quality of life. They frequently become infected and, if not appropriately managed in a timely manner, can result in amputation. Lower extremity amputations have life-changing physical, mental wellness, and economic impacts.

Issue briefing  •  17-min read

Health     July 18, 2024

Canadians at risk of developing diabetic foot ulcers currently need to navigate complex pathways to find effective, affordable, timely, and culturally responsive care. There is often limited communication and coordination between their healthcare practitioners, and a lack of continuity between different sectors of the health and care ecosystem.

Issue briefing  •  8-min read

Education & Skills     July 8, 2024

While institutions scramble to craft policies for generative AI use, one in five students report using it most or all of the time, and 35 per cent report using it some of the time. But how does the uptake of generative AI vary across social groups in the student population?

Data briefing  •  10-min read

Education & Skills     June 13, 2024

Social and emotional skills (SES) play a vital role in navigating the complexities of the modern workplace. As artificial intelligence (AI) continues to reshape industries and automate routine tasks, employers are recognizing the significance of fostering SES in the workforce.

Data briefing  •  15-min read

Education & Skills     June 13, 2024

We asked employers about the kinds of SES they want in new hires, how they assess SES during hiring, and the challenges they face when recruiting for and evaluating these skills.

Issue briefing  •  13-min read

Education & Skills     June 13, 2024

Social and emotional skills (SES)—also called soft, human, or people skills—are increasingly important for the future of work. What types of SES are employers looking for? How do they assess these skills? What challenges are employers facing recruiting employees with strong SES.

Summary for executives  •  3-min read

Education & Skills     June 6, 2024

The threat of climate change is driving an urgent need to decrease reliance on unsustainable practices and technologies in the workplace. The transition to the green economy is expected to create new employment opportunities and surging demand for green expertise for the sustainable jobs of today and tomorrow.

Data briefing  •  10-min read

Situating Neurodiversity in Post-Secondary Education

Education & Skills     May 30, 2024

Canadian post-secondary institutions (PSIs) have a responsibility to provide inclusive opportunities for all learners. But they don’t yet have the knowledge and evidence-based strategies needed to address the current challenges neurodiverse students face.

Online experience  •  3-min read

Students walking down a pathway through a park.

AI and the Future of Post-Secondary Education: Navigating the AI Revolution

Education & Skills     January 4, 2024

Despite the many potential benefits of generative AI for teaching and learning, there are also concerns around academic integrity, accuracy, reliability, privacy, and data security. But generative AI is here to stay. Are Canadian post-secondary institutions ready?

Online experience  •  8-min read

Education & Skills     November 16, 2023

Black Canadians perceive that employers undervalue their skills and knowledge. Not valuing people’s skills, and feeling that your skills are not recognized, can create barriers to inclusive workplaces, which ultimately holds Black employees back.

Impact paper •  30-min read

Conversational hands at a table with a laptop and a notebook.

Education & Skills     October 24, 2023

The Conference Board of Canada, on behalf of the Future Skills Centre, is exploring how Canadian employers identify and assess social and emotional skills (SES) in new and potential employees.

Online experience •  17-min read

Young person embracing forest standing in sunbeams illuminating the trees

Education & Skills     August 3, 2023

The Conference Board of Canada, on behalf of the Future Skills Centre, is studying how Canadian post-secondary institutions (PSIs) are preparing future graduates with the green skills that are needed for a more sustainable future.

Online experience •  8-min read

Smiling woman taking notes in class

Education & Skills     July 12, 2023

Post-secondary institutions have an important role in developing social and emotional skills (SES). SES include skills such as active listening, empathy, communication, collaboration, and resilience. These skills are in high demand by employers, despite the ongoing digitization in workplaces.

Issue briefing  •  20-min read

Cropped shot of a group of business colleagues having a meeting in the office boardroom.

Education & Skills     March 7, 2023

When it comes to digital skills, Canada is falling behind. How can we ensure that Canadian employers have the skills they need to adapt, innovate, and grow in an increasingly digital future?

Impact paper  •  15-min read

Woman working from home in a virtual meeting

Education & Skills     September 27, 2022

The pandemic changed how many Canadian workers do their job. For some, this change is minor. For others, it is seismic. A central feature of the shifts in working is the increased interaction with, and reliance on, digital tools. These tools—and the skills needed to use them—are largely what helped Canada weather the economic storm the pandemic caused and continue to support Canadian businesses in a strong recovery.

Issue briefing  •  12-min read

Hand holding pen about to sign document

Education & Skills     July 28, 2022

The Employability Skills Toolkit is a guide to the skills needed to adapt and succeed in the world of work. It includes explanations and descriptions of these skills and ways to build them. The Toolkit includes key information about how to become job-ready and exercises to practice and apply what you have learned.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Hands holding mouse and using keyboard

Education & Skills     May 11, 2022

Our world has become more and more digital in recent decades. Prior to the pandemic, the pace of digitalization was consistently increasing with the non-stop introduction of new digital tools and technologies. The pandemic hit, and that pace accelerated even more.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Smiling man with ear buds around neck out of doors

Education & Skills     April 13, 2022

We know that social and emotional skills (SES)—such as communication, collaboration, and leadership—are critical for life success. Yet the bulk of programs that teach SES end after high school. We continue developing SES in adulthood—through informal experiences like employment, co-ops, volunteering, extracurriculars, and caregiving, as well as formal instruction. These skills are important. So how are post-secondary institutions teaching them?

Online experience  •  8-min read

Black man in suit and hardhat in front of office building

Education & Skills     April 13, 2022

According to previous work by The Conference Board of Canada, the changing nature of work is increasing the demand not only for technical skills, but also for social and emotional skills (SES). SES are associated with employability and include skills like leadership, cultural competence, active listening, problem-solving, resiliency, collaboration, and communication.

Issue briefing  •  9-min read

Woman shaking man's hand inside restaurant

Education & Skills     September 21, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted the tourism and hospitality (T&H) sector, leading to business closures and employee layoffs. Traditionally, the T&H sector attracts young Canadians with little to no work experience. Yet young T&H workers who have no work experience outside of the sector have been severely impacted by layoffs.

Impact paper  •  15-min read

Waitress using tablet

Education & Skills     September 21, 2021

The tourism and hospitality sector was hit especially hard by the pandemic. The International Monetary Fund reported that the industry “will continue to struggle until people feel safe to travel en masse again.” Helping displaced workers in the sector find new and meaningful employment is crucial to both the people who have been directly affected and the broader economic recovery.

Issue briefing  •  15-min read

Young woman studying

Education & Skills     January 25, 2021

When we asked people across Canada to identify the most important skills for career success, they overwhelmingly identified social and emotional skills (SES), like communication, critical thinking, and interpersonal skills, along with leadership and adaptability.

Summary for executives  •  4-min read

Two people studying in a library

What Are Canadian Post-Secondary Institutions Saying and Doing?

Education & Skills     January 21, 2021

Beyond what institutions are saying, we also wanted to understand what they are doing to develop student social and emotional skills (SES). Post-secondary activities that promote SES development fall into two categories: extra-curricular or embedded within programs and curricula. We scanned PSI program and departmental websites to find examples from across Canada.

Issue briefing  •  15-min read

Three people conferring during a meeting

Education & Skills     November 10, 2020

The demand for social and emotional skills (SES) is growing. But few reliable tools are available to measure SES in adolescents and adults, and it can be difficult to figure out which existing tools are best. Also, there’s little consensus among researchers and practitioners on how to best define and measure SES.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Smiling young man with freckles

Education & Skills     April 29, 2020

More and more, employers require new hires who possess not only specialized knowledge and technical skills, but also social and emotional or “human” skills.

Summary for executives  •  4-min read

Two people fixing computer parts

Education & Skills     April 8, 2020

Demand for skilled employees is not new, but the skills considered “in demand” have evolved. While developing skills is a life long endeavour, the skills that Canadians learn through post-secondary training are key to workplace success. But demand for social and emotional skills (SES) is growing. Are we doing enough to prepare Canadians for the evolving workplace?

Online experience  •  8-min read

Two women talking

Education & Skills     April 8, 2020

The most in-demand skills for today’s and tomorrow’s labour market aren’t technical—they’re social and emotional. Academic research and industry surveys on skills needs indicate that social and emotional skills (SES), or human skills, are critical for employability and career success. But are Canada’s education and training systems doing enough to prepare students for work?

Impact paper  •  38-min read

This work examines career pathways for Indigenous workers in Inuit Nunangat and how Inuit skills, knowledge, and values can be applied to market-based employment opportunities. To help understand the context, we identified factors that create non-standard employment conditions for Inuit labour in Northern Canada. Our work also describes and analyzes resources that have helped Northern Inuit workers establish their careers.

a landscape of a northern community in Canada

Indigenous & Northern Communities     June 20, 2023

This toolkit will help employers with recruitment and retention in Inuit Nunangat through meaningful inclusion practices, policies that accommodate traditional practices and community responsibilities, and clear career paths.

Online experience •  30-min read

an Inuit man is ice fishing

Indigenous & Northern Communities     April 17, 2023

Hunters play an important role in the mixed economy of Inuit Nunangat, the Inuit homeland across the Arctic expanse in Canada. Hunting and harvesting skills are critically linked to food security, physical and mental well-being, and sustainable livelihoods in the North.

Issue briefing •  13-min read

Person driving skidoo across wintery tundra

Indigenous & Northern Communities     April 11, 2022

Employers need better tools to address employment gaps within their organizations. Understanding Inuit strengths, skills, and cultural knowledge can help. Industries and public institutions tied to Inuit communities have a responsibility to empower Inuit employment and lead by example. Those that do will also benefit from increased capacity, Inuit expertise, and social investments.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Group of Inuit people working on animal hide

Indigenous & Northern Communities     December 20, 2021

The relationship between the wage economy and the traditional land-based economy in Inuit Nunangat is complex—as is Inuit participation in both. Traditional land-based activities such as hunting and harvesting are integral to community food security and cultural continuity, but the ways in which Inuit experience and earn these livelihoods continue to evolve.

Primer  •  18-min read

Boat approaching iceberg in ocean

Indigenous & Northern Communities     December 14, 2021

Nunavut’s economy is largely dependent on mining and public administration. But the territory’s commercial fishery and associated marine capacity has continued to grow over the past two decades. Just prior to COVID-19, the Nunavut Fisheries Alliance estimated that the territory’s commercial fishery added $112 million to Canada’s 2019 GDP. This includes the fishery’s direct operations, its companies’ supply chains, and associated consumer spending.

Impact paper  •  30-min read

Person steering dog sled across the snow

Indigenous & Northern Communities     May 13, 2021

Economic opportunities in the region can benefit from Inuit skillsets, strengths, and knowledge. And Inuit have told us they are interested in finding a balance between market participation and traditional land-based activities. Our research will provide insights to help Northern economies grow and support sustainable livelihoods.

Summary for executives  •  4-min read

Inuit man drawing

Indigenous & Northern Communities     May 13, 2021

Many Inuit want to find a balance between market participation and traditional land-based activities. They want diverse jobs that strengthen their communities’ social resources—and that expand on existing cultural knowledge and traditional skill sets. And they want to see their social and cultural values reflected in the sectors that dominate Northern GDP.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Indigenous elder teaching foraging

Indigenous & Northern Communities     June 9, 2020

Economic growth in Canada’s North has outpaced the rest of the country. This primer discusses the challenges still faced by Indigenous people in the North, who continue to experience socio-economic disparities.

Primer  •  25-min read

Northern community at winter

Indigenous & Northern Communities     March 26, 2020

In Canada, there are consistent gaps in both employment and income between Indigenous and non-Indigenous populations. These gaps aren’t uniform, either. Between on-reserve First Nations, off-reserve First Nations, Inuit, and Métis, as well as between men and women, noticeable differences exist. This is holding back economic growth and hurting economic reconciliation.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Canadian businesses need talent with practical experience and future-relevant skills. One of the most promising ways to do this is work-integrated learning (WIL). We talked to stakeholders across the country about how to improve access to WIL.

Education & Skills     February 8, 2024

Experiential learning (EL)—or learning by doing—is an essential component of many post-secondary education (PSE) programs. This type of training lets people develop hands-on skills and apply what they’ve learned in class to real-life situations.

Issue briefing  •  20-min read

nurse, nurse on computer, nurse teaching

Education & Skills     January 30, 2023

Experiential learning (EL), or learning by doing, lets students train in real-life settings. It helps them develop their technical and social and emotional skills (SES), discover career options, and set goals. Traditionally, EL takes place in person, and students develop skills through hands-on practice. But the COVID-19 pandemic forced many programs that include EL to find alternative ways to deliver education.

Issue briefing  •  20-min read

Masked student studying in classroom

Education & Skills     April 7, 2022

Across Canada, in-person learning opportunities for nursing students became limited or stopped completely at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. To meet learning criteria, nursing programs had to pivot. For example, some expanded the use of virtual simulations and scenarios as an alternative to in-person care in hospitals, long-term facilities, or community-based experiences.

Online experience  •  8-min read

Student studying in library

Education & Skills     December 23, 2020

To stay competitive in the wake of COVID-19, Canadian businesses will need talent with practical experience and future-relevant skills.

Online experience  •  8-min read

In Partnership With

Toronto Metropolitan University
The Conference Board of Canada
Government of Canada