Innovation and Business Strategy: Why Canada Falls Short
Innovation is the manifestation of human potential and creativity. It allows societies to solve problems, and seize new opportunities, and achieve higher standards of living. Innovation is what makes businesses thrive. Canadian businesses, however, seem to lag in innovation behind the United States and other comparable countries. To find out why this is, Industry Canada asked the Council of Canadian Academies to assess the innovation performance of Canadian business.
The Expert Panel on Business Innovation approached innovation as an economic process, rather than a science and engineering activity. The panel provided a long-term perspective on the fundamental factors that connect business strategy, innovation activity and productivity growth. The panel came to two main conclusions: first, that the persistently lagging growth of labour productivity in Canada is primarily due to the weak innovation performance of the business sector; and second, that the weak innovation performance of Canadian business is due to the fact that relatively few Canadian companies adopt innovation-based business strategies.
- How should the innovation performance of Canadian firms be assessed?
- How innovative are Canadian firms, and what do we know about their innovation performance at a national, regional and sector level?
- Why is business demand for innovation inputs (for example, research and development, machinery and equipment, and skilled workers) weaker in Canada than in many other OECD countries?
- What are the contributing factors, and what is the relative importance of these contributing factors?
Expert Panel membership
The Expert Panel on Business Innovation convened in late 2007 and was chaired Robert Brown, President and Chief Executive Officer of CAE Inc. For a complete list of panel members visit the Expert Panel on Business Innovation page.
Report and supplementary materials
- Innovation and Business Strategy: Why Canada Falls Short (full report)
- Report in Focus (abridged version)
- Media Advisory
- News Release
- Media Backgrounder
Dialogues on Innovation
From August to December 2009 the Council presented the report’s findings across the country in a series of events known as the Dialogues on Innovation.
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Samantha Rae Ayoub, Communications and Publishing Director, at 613-567-5000 ext. 256 or email@example.com
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Links of interest:
- Review of Federal Support to Research and Development
- Industry Canada
- Needed urgently: more creativity from the business class, Jeffery Simpson, The Globe and Mail, May 28, 2009
- Canada's innovation gap, Konrad Yakabuski, The Globe and Mail, August 23, 2009
- International Productivity Monitor, Number 18, Spring 2009