Reports

Access Canadian research reports in HR, education, diversity, immigration, public policy, economic forecasts, and more. Non-partisan research publications in topics that matter to Canadians.

Inflation and Interest Rates Bring New Challenges: Major City Insights

While ongoing supply chain issues and other challenges sparked by the pandemic are still headaches, COVID-19 is no longer the biggest risk to the economies of most major cities across Canada. The main concern in the near term is the impact of stubbornly high inflation and rising interest rates.

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 21, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Shocks and Struts: Canadian Outlook

The main forces shaping Canada’s economic outlook have changed little over the past several months, but they have evidently become more intense. The result will be a virtual stoppage of economic growth in this country. Whether the economy steers past a recession will depend on the robustness of its shock absorbers.

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 18, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Doctor checking patients pulse
Different Is Necessary

Value is defined as achieving the best patient-centred clinical and operational outcomes at the lowest total cost over the full care cycle. This is a big shift from the traditional approach of focusing on the lowest possible acquisition price. Across Canada, trail-blazing policies, legislation, and practices are laying the foundation for the application of value-based procurement (VBP).

Impact paper  |  24-min read
October 7, 2022
Focus Area—Health

Two men talking
The “Canadian Experience” Disconnect

Canada has increasingly relied on international students and temporary foreign workers as future permanent residents over the last decade. The pandemic has further reinforced this trend. More immigrants with pre-admission work or study experience in Canada were admitted during the pandemic than in the preceding five years.

Impact paper  |  31-min read
October 4, 2022
Focus Area—Immigration

Canadian Industries are Writing a New Chapter: Industry Lens

As businesses across Canada embark on a new era, there are plenty of bright prospects across several industries in the Canadian economy. But which sectors will come out ahead?

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 4, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Girls in front of pc
Canadian Human Resources Metrics Benchmarking

Build and refine your Human Resources practices for managing your teams. Understand the current business environment, and know what’s changing. Our data from across Canadian industries and regions will help you see where you excel and where you can grow.

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 3, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

A village with houses covered in snow during a sunset
Indigenous Ownership

First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities across Canada are emerging as successful major project leaders, but not all of them have the necessary resources to make informed decisions, manage risks, and finance large-scale investments in their futures.

Online experience  |  8-min read
September 29, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Woman at a desk in an office smiling at a laptop while holding a phone and pen
Digital Skills for Today and Tomorrow

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
September 27, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Woman staring down and focusing at a laptop
Rising Rates Hit Home: Provincial Outlook

After an extended period in coasting mode, the Bank of Canada has put interest rates in gear and stomped on the accelerator. Along with the US Federal Reserve (the Fed), the Bank’s goal is to bring inflation to heel before it becomes more embedded in the psyche of businesses and consumers. With luck, the two financial institutions have gotten the timing right.

Online experience  |  8-min read
September 21, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Man holding a bag of groceries in front of an escalator and looking at a receipt
Price Watch: U.S. Outlook

Is the U.S. economy about to slip into recession over the near term? The signs are certainly ominous, as stock markets have been trending downward and consumer confidence has slipped over the past few months. High inflation is closely linked to the pandemic, which disrupted global supply chains; the massive stimulus implemented by the federal government; and the war in Ukraine, which has led to surging prices for commodities like oil and wheat.

Online experience  |  8-min read
August 26, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Man in the dark staring at a computer screen with hand against head
Pandemic, Inflation, and War: Assessing the Risk of Recession for Canada

Over the past 30 months, the global and Canadian economies have experienced more dramatic change and volatility, by most measures, than in the prior 30 years. Pandemic, inflation, and war have made prognostications about the future, or the path ahead for the economy, challenging at best. And even as we hope for pandemic waves to settle and the war to end, a return to “normal” may in fact look very different from the pre-pandemic past.

Issue briefing  |  12-min read
August 15, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Two people holding plastic bottles over a recycling container of plastic
Tipping Points: Toward Policies for Plastics Recycling in Businesses and Institutions

Government and private sector efforts to develop and regulate plastic recycling in Canada have largely been confined to the residential sector. However, Canada’s industrial, commercial, and institutional (ICI) sector is where most plastic waste is generated. It is also where collection and recycling rates are the lowest. Canada needs to broaden its focus beyond the residential sector and include ICI entities.

Impact paper  |  22-min read
August 12, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Two people sitting at a desk with a laptop and talking
C-Suite Challenge: Attracting and Retaining Talent Through Global Volatility

Organizations planning to return to the office full-time need to understand that their employees may have a different agenda and that it may impact the organization’s ability to attract and retain talent. Overwhelming research shows that many employees who have been working from home for the past two years do not want, and are not willing, to return to the office full-time.

Issue briefing  |  7-min read
August 11, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

Man deep in thought with hand to face, sitting at a desk with a coffee and staring at a laptop
A Wing and a Prayer: World Outlook

Before the war in Ukraine began toward the end of February, we expected the global economy to expand this year. The war has added to the inflationary pressures in the world economy that were already in place. Energy and food prices have surged even higher while, at the same time, supply chain disruptions, while easing, remain challenging.

Online experience  |  8-min read
August 11, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Woman in hospital room adjusting mask, wearing doctor atire
Setting the Stage: The Status of Value-Based Procurement in Canada

Value-based procurement of health technologies and services is an advanced approach to procurement at the system or organizational level. In contrast to the traditional focus on lowest acquisition price or short-term savings, VBP looks at the overall value of a product or solution in terms of its ability to improve patient outcomes and experiences from healthcare interactions.

Issue briefing  |  10-min read
August 5, 2022
Focus Area—Health

Two men sitting at a desk with thier computers
Beyond Blue and White Collar: A Skills-Based Approach to Canadian Job Groupings

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
August 3, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Masked woman inspecting product on shelf
Transitioning to Jobs in the Clean Economy

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
July 28, 2022
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Person holding  apen and writing on a piee of paper
Finding Your Employability Skills

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
July 28, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Infinite Cycles: Canada’s Innovation Competitiveness In Chemical Plastics Recycling

Canada’s petrochemical plastics production industry is at a turning point. Its ability to integrate recycled plastics as part of its core business will be a key determinant of its long-term growth, longevity, and social licence. This is because the industry’s current greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and plastic pollution footprint will be incompatible with a net-zero and circular economy. The industry is ripe for systemic change.

Impact paper  |  38-min read
July 25, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Woman sitting on a couch looking off into the distance with her head on her hands
Mortality Due to Cancer 2022: Understanding the Drivers of Variability in Interprovincial Cancer Mortality

Slow but consistent declines in cancer incidence and mortality rates have been observed over the past decade. Yet, interprovincial disparities in cancer outcomes persist. Canada’s universal healthcare system is not unique in offering the promise of equitable access to needed healthcare regardless of geographical location, age, gender, income, level of education, race, or health status.

Primer  |  31-min read
July 6, 2022
Focus Area—Health

Person serving fancy food on a plate
Minimum Wage: Pulling the Thorns From a Prickly Debate

Minimum wage policies and their effects have long been studied in academic circles. But with social and economic inequality commanding more of the public’s attention these days, the issue has taken on fresher interest. Newer and more granular sources of data have allowed for different analytical techniques and new findings.

Issue briefing  |  7-min read
July 5, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Indigenous woman sitting at a desk and typing on a computer
Indigenous Finance and Management Professionals

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
June 22, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

People crossing the street
Increases in Immigration to Help Offset Effects of Population Aging: Canada’s Outlook to 2045

Once the pandemic loosens its grip on Canada and the world, economic growth will slow down sharply from the plus 4.0 per cent increase forecast for 2022 as the economy returns to some state of normalcy. Growth prospects are comparatively weak because the aging of Canada’s population will lead to a slowdown in labour force growth, which will limit consumer and investment spending.

Online experience  |  8-min read
June 21, 2022
Focus Area— Canadian Economics

Two women working and focused on an experiment in a classroom
Future Skills Summit 2022 Insights Summary

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
June 14, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Tall glass building
Under Pressure: Tight Labour Markets Are Driving Major Change

Although wage growth remains below its pre-pandemic peak, it too has begun to accelerate as the final missing piece in the labour market puzzle falls into place. It is true that some individuals have not fully benefited from the recovery. But, in aggregate, Canada’s labour market is the tightest it has been in decades.

Issue briefing  |  9-min read
June 7, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Telecommunication
Competition in Canadian Telecom: Implications of Consolidation

At the most basic level, telecommunications infrastructure saves time, energy, labour, and capital by condensing the time and space required for production, consumption, market activities, government operations, and educational and health services. With around $39 billion in gross value added, the Canadian telecommunications industry accounted for approximately 2 per cent of national GDP in 2020. The industry directly employed over 115,000 workers that year.

Impact paper  |  25-min read
June 2, 2022
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Pin points of light connected by lines
Connecting the Dots: How Recent Trade Agreements Are Regulating the Digital Economy

Connecting the dots between trade agreement commitments and domestic policy is vital in regulating the digital economy in Canada. As Canada moves forward with projects like its Digital Charter, it must reckon with the fact that Canadians’ digital lives are deeply interconnected with foreign actors, entities, and states.

Issue briefing  |  13-min read
May 31, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Man in hiking gear on a snowy mountain
A Complicated Recovery: Travel Markets Outlook

Tourism in Canada may have reached a turning point. Two years of pandemic malaise have battered the industry, but the fever might finally be lifting. Canada’s doors are opening to visitors from far and wide. Attitudes toward the pandemic are changing. And businesses are hiring in anticipation of better times ahead.

Online experience  |  8-min read
May 27, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Woman laying down in medical imaging device being scanned
Medical Imaging Equipment in Canada 2022: Trends, Challenges, and Opportunities

Canada lags behind other developed nations in health system investment in healthcare capital, strategies to stabilize capital investment, innovative capital financing tools, and capital planning and allocation. For the last two decades, methods to track the status of MI equipment have focused largely on the age and density of machinery per population catchment area.

Issue briefing  |  16-min read
May 25, 2022
Focus Area—Health

Man in the snow with headphones and showing a thumbs up
Fly-In Fly-Out Labour and Airport Infrastructure in Canada’s North: A Case Study on the Rankin Inlet and Mayo Airports

Important discussions and awareness are taking place around the economic impacts of FIFO labour in Canada’s Northern regions. Northern governments are concerned about jobs and wages being lost to residents from other regions of the country. There are also concerns around the leakage of dollars earned by FIFO workers into Southern regions—money that might otherwise be spent in the North and drive additional economic activity within that region.

Case study  |  17-min read
May 17, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Two men in masks working together
Benefit, Burden, or Both? The Economic Impact of Interjurisdictional Workers in Canada’s North

Many interjurisdictional workers (IJWs) are employed throughout Canada’s North. Often flying in to work in Northern communities, these workers are used to fill open positions across several industries due to the lack of required skillsets in local labour markets. Many of these workers are employed in the construction and the mining and quarrying and oil and gas sectors, though they also fill positions across other industries, such as public administration and accommodation and food services.

Issue briefing  |  21-min read
May 11, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Woman in lab looking at microscope
Surveying Automation Trends in Canada Major Forces 2022

Major forces are the trends that shape our world. They push our societies, businesses, and governments to recalibrate their decisions and pursue the opportunities they provide. For example, major forces such as climate change force businesses to become more sustainable, and an aging workforce requires governments to find creative solutions to social safety net challenges.

Issue briefing  |  22-min read
May 3, 2022
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Woman on a couch thinking with a laptop
Is Your Organization Ready for Hybrid Work?

A hybrid workplace model is defined as a flexible workplace arrangement that includes both in-office and remote work. Here are some factors that organizations should consider prior to implementing a hybrid work environment.

Summary for executives  |  2-min read
May 2, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

Man biking down road with large backpack
Delivery Notice: Sustainable Urban Freight Solutions for the Last Mile

E-commerce growth is being fuelled by retail innovation and shifting consumer behaviour. Consumers and businesses are increasingly comfortable with digital purchasing and attracted to the convenience and choice provided by digital shopping environments. Retailers are improving the quality of the online storefront experience and increasing the efficiency of logistics operations.

Issue briefing  |  14-min read
April 28, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Woman typing on laptop
C-Suite Challenge: Canadian Leadership Perceptions on Hybrid Work

After two years of working remotely, many workers are reluctant to return to the office full-time, with most demanding at least some flexibility in where and when they work. As public health measures begin to lift, many employers are beginning to design and implement their return-to-the-office policies, with many choosing or considering a hybrid work model.

Issue briefing  |  9-min read
April 13, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

Man staring up
Bridging the Gap Between Identity and Social and Emotional Skills

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
April 13, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Farm fields with ocean and mountains
Making Rural Immigration Work: Settlement Services in Small and Rural Communities

In Canada, immigrants disproportionately settle in urban areas. The three largest cities—Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver—are home to 35 per cent of Canada’s population but receive more than half of all arriving immigrants. Although settlement services improve retention of immigrant residents, many small and rural communities lack local settlement services. Canada needs a strategy to establish and fund settlement services in small and rural communities.

Impact paper  |  46-min read
March 31, 2022
Focus Area—Immigration

Woman looking down
Women-Led Ventures

Entrepreneurship has long been seen as a catalyst of economic growth and national prosperity. But in Canada, new business ventures are still much more likely to be led by men than by women. In speaking with entrepreneurs who recently closed Series A financing, we're exploring the differences and similarities in the management and fundraising approaches of men and women Canadian technology entrepreneurs.

Online experience  |  8-min read
March 30, 2022
Focus Area—Inclusion

Two people staring at a paper
Lessons From the Nordic Innovation Study Tour

Innovation is important at the firm level, as organizations that innovate successfully enhance their competitiveness and position themselves for growth. Canada exhibits relatively weak innovation performance, while Nordic countries are recognized as global innovation leaders. Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Norway all outperform Canada on The Conference Board of Canada’s Innovation Report Card, which examines various indicators of innovation capacity, activity, and results. This has been the case for several years.

Impact paper  |  30-min read
March 28, 2022
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Woman and child sitting with a basket of berries
Cool Ideas: Hyperlocal Food Systems to Address Northern Food Insecurity

This series aims to raise awareness about emerging opportunities in a thoughtful and creative manner, while weighing the costs and benefits of new systems against their risks and challenges. Promising new technologies could address long-standing, pivotal objectives that Northerners have identified as priorities; they can also be disruptive and carry unintended consequences.

Impact paper  |  32-min read
March 28, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Two people staring at a paper
Could Inflation’s Surge Lead to Stagflation?

Inflation has surged in Canada after remaining largely dormant since the end of the 2008–09 global recession. In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic struck, causing demand in the Canadian economy to collapse and holding the increase in consumer prices. However, a combination of factors, including the reopening of the economy, base effects, supply chain disruptions, soaring oil prices, and widespread shortages of semiconductors and other key products, has caused consumer prices to expand at a 4.0 to 5.0 per cent pace since the spring of 2021—well above the Bank of Canada’s upper target range.

Issue briefing  |  16-min read
March 25, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Two people talking and smiling
C-Suite Challenge: Priorities for Leadership

As the population ages, retirement rates are increasing. At the same time, not enough young people or immigrants are entering the workforce to make up for the labour losses. Over the past two years, the COVID-19 pandemic reduced Canada’s immigration levels, further tightening the Canadian labour market. And COVID-related lockdowns and layoffs (e.g., in retail, hospitality) resulted in widespread resignations, with workers leaving for industries that were less impacted by public health restrictions and offered benefits such as remote work, less exposure to the virus, and increased stability.

Data briefing  |  7-min read
March 25, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

Two workers in an open mine
Surging Demand for Minerals Key to Long-term Growth: Territorial Outlook

After a two-year roller coaster, the territorial economies are trending upward, driven by a bright outlook for many minerals extracted in Canada’s North. The tourism sector will also enjoy a much-needed boost in the short term following the loosening of travel restrictions in Canada and around the globe. And over the next two decades, travel activity in all three territories is poised to grow, as investments in infrastructure and a growing Canadian population drive a greater number of visits to the North.

Online experience  |  3-min read
March 24, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

Strong Engagement, Strong Outcomes: An Engagement Indicators Playbook

Meaningful, open, and transparent community engagement is a core aspect of Canada’s federal impact assessment process. Decisions about major natural resource or infrastructure projects can affect the daily lives of people in local communities. Meaningful community engagement allows those who are most affected by a project to participate in the decisions that directly impact them.

Impact paper  |  11-min read
March 24, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Man looking over glasses at computer screens
Strengthening Canada’s Digital Defences

The cyber threat landscape continues to evolve, with Canadian organizations getting attacked every single day. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, many organizations have accelerated their digital transformation. However, the perimeters of Canada’s organizations have changed drastically, thereby increasing their risk profiles. For this reason, cybersecurity must not become an afterthought.

Impact paper  |  34-min read
March 23, 2022
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Facing the Sequence of Challenges: Provincial Outlook to 2045

The pandemic is refusing to go away quietly, leaving an indelible mark on short- and long-term prospects for the provincial economies. The rebound in output and employment to their pre-pandemic highs is nearly complete, but the COVID virus’s nasty habit of morphing into new variants is keeping Canada from getting to the next stage—reclaiming lost economic potential.

Online experience  |  8-min read
March 23, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

The Only Constant: Changing Nature of Work and Skills

For several years, education and skills leaders and employers have been thinking and talking about the future of work. The COVID-19 pandemic turned the volume way up on those conversations. It has not been an easy time for employers: seven in 10 small businesses have taken on debt due to COVID-19, and four in 10 businesses say they do not anticipate normal profits again before early 2022.

Impact paper  |  17-min read
March 14, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Fly-In, Fly-Out Labour in Canada’s North: Benefits, Challenges, and Social Impacts

The economy in the North is growing—and with it, the need for skilled labour. There are clear benefits to using fly-in, fly-out workers, but the practice also brings a number of important social challenges. The economic boom in Canada’s North is tied to the development of world-class mines and large oil and gas reserves as well as its thriving tourism industry, among other sectors.

Impact paper  |  47-min read
March 11, 2022
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Essential Skills for Learning and Working: Perspectives From Education and Employment Leaders Across Canada

How can workers be sure they have the skills they will need to succeed? How we learn and demonstrate skills through qualifications is also changing. For example, while there is much uncertainty around the future of microcredentials, these new, short-term offerings are becoming increasingly common.

Impact paper  |  16-min read
March 10, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Social and Digital Infrastructure: Laying the Groundwork for an Inclusive Recovery

Gaps in Canada’s infrastructure leave many without the social and digital supports they need to succeed. The COVID-19 pandemic magnified these gaps. Too many Canadians, without basic services including child care and broadband Internet connection, are unable to access employment and education. In partnership with the Future Skills Centre (FSC), The Conference Board of Canada brought together leaders in education, skills, and training to discuss how to best support the diverse needs of Canadians across regions.

Impact paper  |  18-min read
March 8, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Man wearing headphones participating in an online class
Beyond the Classroom: The Future of Post-Secondary Education Has Arrived

Although the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted many plans for the post-secondary space, it accelerated positive changes: streamlined virtual learning options made learning more inclusive to older students and those living in remote communities, experiential learning opportunities were expanded outside of major cities, and enrollment across post-secondary education (PSE) programs increased. For many education stakeholders, these pandemic developments are key elements of how to re-envision existing PSIs to ensure a brighter future for Canada.

Impact paper  |  21-min read
March 3, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Woman putting sticky notes on board
Economic Cost of Skills Vacancies

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
March 2, 2022
Focus Area—Canadian Economics
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Race Against Time: Call for a National Response to the Dementia Crisis

The number of Canadians living with dementia is increasing rapidly. These people—and the people who care for them—present Canada with a unique public health challenge. Immediate action is required to prepare for the surge in demand for access to care and support services.

Summary for executives  |  2-min read
March 1, 2022
Focus Area—Health

An Engaging Solution: Bridging Communities and Major Projects in Impact Assessments

Engagement is one of those words that’s taken for granted. But for impact assessment associated with major economic development projects, community engagement describes a continuous practice. Strong community engagement recognizes that those affected by major projects should be involved in the decisions that affect them and in the development of the engagement process itself.

Issue briefing  |  12-min read
February 28, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Recovery for All: Finding Equities in Education and Employment

The pandemic has intensified existing challenges. For example, the nearly two-thirds of rural households with no access to high-speed Internet have had much greater difficulty accessing school, work, and services than those living in urban areas with near-universal Internet access.

Impact paper  |  23-min read
February 17, 2022
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Woman typing on laptop
The Bargaining Environment in 2022: Labour Relations Outlook

After more than a year of unprecedented challenges, Canada's economy is starting to recover. Employment has returned to pre-pandemic levels and wages are improving. But how will fiscal uncertainty, labour shortages, and growing unionization affect labour relations in 2022?

Online experience  |  8-min read
February 15, 2022
Focus Area—Human Resources

Wellbeing by Design: Lessons from the Pandemic on Canadian Communities and the Built Environment

Changing our built environment has tremendous potential to help Canadians live healthier lives. Throughout the pandemic of 2020–2022 we are learning lessons that can advance the thought process. But reflection is key to this advancement. Through a series of interviews and assessment, this report gathers new insights that inform: how the design of the built environment can contribute to community wellbeing and the research and editing of the Community Wellbeing Framework, version 2.

Impact paper  |  22-min read
February 8, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Tomorrow Can’t Wait: The Value of Breakthrough Cancer Treatments for Canadians

Cancer is the leading cause of death in Canada. Promising breakthrough cancer treatments are starting to make a difference – but only when patients can access them. There are many existing gaps in patient access that have led to lost economic value, and for Canadians facing cancer, lost tomorrows. To improve timely access to breakthrough cancer treatments regulatory changes need to be made today – because tomorrow can’t wait.

Issue briefing  |  8-min read
February 4, 2022
Focus Area—Health

 

Truck driving down the road
Fuelling 2050: the Road Forward

In the past 10 years, many pathways have been developed to show how Canada can transition to net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. Evaluating the best inputs and forecasts from this library of options through a lens of achievability rather than an aspirational one is a challenge. Aspiration is important, but with 29 years left to 2050, Canada’s energy system requires a “most likely outcome” for policy and practical guidance.

Impact paper  |  46-min read
January 13, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Man looking at computer on construction site
Beyond Exclusions: Sustainable Finance for Nuclear Energy

To reach net zero by 2050, Canada must accelerate the financing and deployment of innovative zero-emissions technologies. Increasingly, sustainable finance considerations underpin the allocation of capital to these technologies. Canada, like several other advanced economies, considers nuclear energy a necessary part of its net-zero transition.

Impact paper  |  20-min read
January 12, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Patient Capital: Financing Small Modular Nuclear Reactors to Commercialization

Nuclear energy is key to Canada’s net-zero climate objectives. It is driving interest in innovative small modular nuclear reactor (SMR) technologies. To build a net-zero energy system by 2050, the International Energy Agency projects that an average of 15 GWe (Gigawatt electrical) of new nuclear energy capacity needs to be developed each year until 2040. Without investment in new nuclear power plants, reaching global climate objectives will be more difficult and more expensive.

Impact paper  |  18-min read
January 25, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Paving a Path for Value-Based Dementia Care in Canada

Alzheimer’s disease is a growing concern in Canada. Scientific progress is shedding more light on its pathology and opening doors to new treatments. When will patients start to see the benefits? Disease-modifying therapies will change how we view, diagnose, and manage Alzheimer’s disease (AD). These innovations have the potential to bring lasting change by either slowing down or stopping the progression of AD. They offer hope—shifting the perspective that AD is an incurable and fatal disease.

Impact paper  |  8-min read
January 24, 2022
Focus Area—Health

Woman typing on laptop
Bagging Capital: Attracting Private Investments in Canada’s Plastic Recycling Industry

From enabling food security and trade, to mitigating climate change and delivering health care, plastics are the materials of convenience, efficiency, and modernity. But Canada’s linear plastics economy is unsustainable. We can do better. Canada needs a circular plastics economy. This regenerative economy harnesses natural resources sustainably and eliminates waste by design.

Impact paper  |  29-min read
January 11, 2022
Focus Area—Sustainability

Values, Knowledge, and Vision: How Inuit Skills Can Strengthen Northern Economies

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
December 20, 2021
Focus Area— Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Beautiful ocean view with trees
Backing Nature: Mobilizing Private Investment for Nature-based Climate Solutions

Nature-based climate solutions (NBCS) can help Canada achieve its net-zero goals. Our wealth of natural assets means we could be a leader in this area, but we need to quickly expand the number of sustainable nature-based projects. How do we do that? New research shows that the conservation, restoration, and sustainable use of land has the potential to deliver up to one-third of Canada’s global GHG reduction targets by 2030.

Issue briefing  |  14-min read
December 14, 2021
Focus Area—Sustainability

Boat in water
Made in Nunavut: Building Inuit Skills for Northern Offshore Fisheries and Beyond

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
December 14, 2021
Focus Area— Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Typing on laptop
Remote, Office, or Hybrid? Employee Preferences for Post-Pandemic Work Arrangements

In early 2020, COVID-19 protocols imposed by governments and public health authorities required many organizations to shift all employees who were able to work from home to do so. While the transition to remote work was sudden for many, the adoption of remote work arrangements by knowledge workers (particularly those working in the technology sector) has been accelerating for years.

Impact paper  |  50-min read
December 13, 2021
Focus Area—Human Resources

Man in dark
Measuring Digital Trade

The digital economy is growing. Thanks to technological advancements in international trade, businesses and consumers have increasingly turned online for purchases, and the demand for digital services—has gone up. There is widespread agreement that digital trade’s contribution to the Canadian economy is increasing, and that international trade is growing. But classifying and measuring the opportunities and challenges of digital trade is difficult.

Online experience  |  8-min read
December 10, 2021
Focus Area—Canadian Economics

 

a person typing on phone
Views From the Front Line: Taking the Pulse of Canada’s Healthcare Professionals

In the fourth wave of the pandemic, here is what Canadian clinicians want you to know about how it has affected their work practices and personal well-being. COVID-19 has had a huge impact on those at the front lines of healthcare. Reports of physicians, nurses, and other essential healthcare workers experiencing fatigue, burnout, and mental health crises are becoming more frequent, as are stories of professionals thinking of leaving or who have already quit.

Summary for executives  |  4-min read
December 7, 2021
Focus Area—Health

woman studying
How Ontario Universities Benefit Regional Economies

The purpose of this study is to quantify the collective economic impacts of Ontario universities in the various regions of the province. Universities create economic and social value for their host communities through a multitude of channels. First, universities support economic activity via spending related to their activities.

Impact paper  |  30-min read
December 9, 2021
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

a person typing on phone
Technology, Talent, and the Future Workplace: Canadian CIO Outlook 2021

Technology proved vital in helping businesses adapt to the COVID-19 crisis. Information technology (IT) infrastructure and collaboration tools were essential to help employees work together and engage with customers in the new virtual paradigm. Organizations need to determine how the bold actions taken to survive the pandemic fit into future operational strategies, rather than adopting a business-as-usual attitude.

Issue briefing  |  13-min read
December 7, 2021
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

a nurse working
Cyber and Privacy Review 2021: How the Pandemic Changed Our Tech Use

The COVID-19 pandemic brought about rapid changes to the workplace. Leadership needed to be agile in responding to remote work and new security challenges, both on and offline. With many more people working remotely during the pandemic, organizations suddenly faced cybersecurity challenges and privacy concerns associated with a decentralized workforce and rapid technology adoption.

Impact paper  |  17-min read
December 7, 2021
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Assessing the Risk: The Occupational Stress Injury Resiliency Tool

How do first responders in Canada experience occupational stress? Together, The Conference Board of Canada and the Public Services Health and Safety Association (PSHSA) created a tool to assess first responders’ occupational stress injury risks. This tool’s development stemmed from PSHSA’s ongoing work to support employees and employers in preventing mental injury

Issue briefing  |  12-min read
December 7, 2021
Focus Area—Health

boy fixing equipment
Saskatchewan’s Forest Sector: Future Skills for an Indigenous-Led Revitalization

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
November 30, 2021
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

woman in grocery store
Pandemic’s Lingering Effects Could Hamper Growth: U.S. Outlook to 2045

The U.S. economy has recovered from the devastating effects of the pandemic much faster than anticipated, and we expect to see that sometime in the second half of 2021 the gap between potential and actual growth closed.

Online experience  |  8-min read
November 18, 2021
Focus Area— Canadian Economics

Man headshot from behind
Seeking Support: The Future of Health Benefits

In today’s labour market, organizations need to offer more than just competitive salaries to recruit, attract, and retain employees. Beyond salary, benefits are the second-most important factor when employees consider different job offers. That is, health benefits have more weight than they used to and most employees believe it is a worker’s right.

Issue briefing  |  16-min read
November 16, 2021
Focus Area—Human resources , Health

 

Two men working in a mine
Skills Development in Northern Mining Regions

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
November 4, 2021
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Immigrant worker
Essential Work: The Current and Future Role of (Im)migrant Talent

To what extent are immigrants and temporary residents over-represented in essential occupations and sectors? How can government and employers ensure immigrant skills match essential jobs? Combining Statistics Canada data with The Conference Board of Canada’s economic modelling, we studied immigrant and temporary residents’ contributions to essential work—and the vulnerabilities they face—in four subsectors and associated occupations.

Summary for executives  |  4-min read
October 29, 2021
Focus Area—Immigration

nurses
Valued Workers, Valuable Work: The Current and Future Role of (Im)migrant Talent

Essential work is critical to Canada’s economy and the provision of basic goods and services. Canada relies on immigrants and temporary residents in many essential sectors and occupations. And the pandemic has put the spotlight once again on their contributions—and the vulnerabilities they face—in sectors like healthcare and agriculture.

Impact paper  |  24-min read
October 29, 2021
Focus Area—Immigration

Workplaces for the Future: A Playbook for Municipal Leaders on Exploring Remote, Hybrid, and On-Site models

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented employers with a unique opportunity to reinvent the workplace. For most organizations, the future workplace will likely involve a blend of remote and on-site work. This impact paper examines the benefits and challenges of fully on-site, fully remote, and hybrid workplace models for the Regional Municipality of York.

Impact paper  |  32-min read
October 25, 2021
Focus Area—Human resources

Waitres looking at a tablet
Supply Trains: Security and Resilience in Canada’s Propane Market

Canada’s propane supply chain is in good health. Production is up, exports are growing, and investment remains strong. But the supply chain is changing. Not only are new market dynamics poised to create impacts, but disruptions like blockades, strikes, and the increasing use of rail also loom large.

Issue briefing|  15-min read
October 7, 2021
Focus Area—Sustainability

A Better Yardstick: A Capability-Centred Innovation Framework for Measuring Innovation

The importance of innovation is well-understood. Aside from its direct benefits of improved productivity, economic growth, and job creation, innovation allows governments to spend more resources on support for policy priorities, such as education, health, and infrastructure. Another key outcome is the increased income resulting from successful innovation, which leads to a better standard of living.

Impact paper  |  30-min read
September 28, 2021
Focus Area—Innovation & Technology

Waitres looking at a tablet
Searching for Strengths: Gaps and Opportunities for Social and Emotional Skills Development in the Tourism and Hospitality Sector

The tourism and hospitality (T&H) 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
September 21, 2021
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Finding Value: Identifying and Assessing Social and Emotional Skills in the Tourism and Hospitality Industry

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
September 21, 2021
Focus Area—Education & Skills
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Skills Development in the North: An Ecosystem Shaped by Distinct Challenges

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
September 9, 2021
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities
Partner—Future Skills Centre

Green Homes: Sustainable Finance for Residential Retrofits

Single-attached and detached homes are responsible for approximately 7 per cent of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs). Reducing this requires new financing tools that make it easier to invest in building improvements. That’s a challenge. Sustainable financial innovation is needed both to mitigate consumer barriers and to connect individual projects to green capital markets.

Issue briefing  |  15-min read
August 18, 2021
Focus Area—Sustainability

The Borders of Labour: A Profile of the Interjurisdictional Workforce in the Northwest Territories, Yukon, and Nunavut

There is a well-established practice in Canada’s three territories to use interjurisdictional employees to meet regional labour and skills shortages. This need stems mainly from resource development and infrastructure projects. However, there are interjurisdictional employees working in other sectors as well. And while there is a larger proportion of interjurisdictional workers coming into the territories, each territory also supplies labour to other provinces/territories.

Primer  |  30-min read
September 3, 2021
Focus Area—Indigenous & Northern Communities

Banking on a Dual Transition: Sustainable Finance for Petrochemical Plastic Producers

Ninety-nine per cent of plastics are produced from fossil fuels. As Canada and other advanced economies reach for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, the emissions trajectory of petrochemical plastic producers needs a drastic change of course. With rising plastic pollution globally, this must be complemented by a transition to a circular economy. This dual transition will underpin the future of petrochemical plastic producers. These two elements of transition are complementary, yet distinct. The sustainability of plastics in our material world underscores this point.

Impact paper  |  30-min read
August 17, 2021
Focus Area—Sustainability

Building on COVID-Period Immigration Levels: The Economic Case

Immigration creates population and economic growth and is key to Canada’s future prosperity. Immigrants provide skilled labour and replace Canada’s retiring workers. They help companies innovate and access new markets, and they start or invest in businesses that generate employment for other Canadians. Immigrants also contribute to economic growth as consumers by increasing the demand for goods and services.

Impact paper | 20-min read
July 28, 2021
Focus Area—Immigration

Innovation Report Card 2021

Innovation is important, but Canada continues to exhibit relatively weak innovation performance. Volatile resource prices, changing demographics, and increasing economic protectionism are exposing Canada’s business innovation weakness and generating pressure to become more innovative in the coming years.

Online experience  |  11-min read
June 28, 2021
Focus Area— Innovation & Technology

The Next Normal

The pandemic has super-spread disruption, transforming like never before the way we work. In March 2020, many organizations had to send large numbers of their employees home. What was long considered improbable—a remote workforce—became an immediate reality. Now, with the vaccine rollout well under way, organizations are beginning to consider what the workplace of the not-so-distant future will look like.

Data briefing  |  15-min read
June 25, 2021
Focus Area— Human Resources

Keep Moving: Sustainable Mobility After the Pandemic

Sustainable mobility is facing some very real challenges from COVID-19. Transit ridership has collapsed. Rising single-occupancy vehicle travel and suburban flight pose genuine threats to the progress many Canadian cities have made. Deep uncertainty remains about the persistence of these behaviours and their implications for urban mobility.

Issue briefing  |  15-min read
June 2, 2021
Focus Area—Sustainability