Inclusive Innovation by the Numbers
Meet the Data
By tracking how Canada and its international peers perform on more than 30 inclusive innovation variables, we aim to provide the data and identify gaps to help policymakers develop targeted policies and programs that provide better access to the benefits of innovation as they relate to our three pillars: opportunities, activities, and outcomes.
A well-educated and highly skilled population is necessary for the development and diffusion of innovations. Education and skills also shape how risks and benefits from innovation are distributed.
The opportunity to innovate successfully depends in part on the availability of financial resources. Innovators and entrepreneurs in Canada frequently report a scarcity of funding, which may be a barrier to innovation and growth.
Research is a key component of innovation. Whether Canadian firms have the opportunity to innovate depends, in part, on the size and quality of the researcher population and the number and quality of new ideas. Those, in turn, depend on the amount of funding available for research and researchers.
Development metrics measure the extent to which Canadian firms are investing in or actively producing innovations. These indicators include business spending on research and development; patent filing; and self-reported product, process, and service innovation by firms.
Technology plays a critical role in the innovation economy, acting as an enabler of innovation by facilitating collaboration and creativity within and across organizations; improving production, sales, and marketing; and enhancing business efficiency and productivity.
Entrepreneurship is an important part of innovation. New firms often launch new products, services, or processes that complement or challenge incumbent firms. Even when new firms are not successful, the competitive pressure can encourage innovation more broadly.
The primary way that individuals participate in the innovation economy is through employment. By studying labour force statistics and trends in the economy and key sectors we gain a clearer picture of who is included and excluded in the innovation economy as workers.
Ideally, innovation contributes to improvements in productivity and economic growth, which in turn generate new wealth and opportunities for people to live well and enhance their participation in future innovation activities. These metrics measure productivity and growth.
A wage is the compensation we receive in exchange for work. Examining differences in wages across regions and demographic characteristics adds further granularity to our understanding of who benefits and who is left behind in Canada’s innovation economy.
Income Distribution and Mobility
Aggregate productivity and economic growth tell us nothing about how the gains from innovation are distributed. Who benefits and who is left behind in an innovation economy? These metrics examine income distribution, poverty, and intergenerational mobility in a global perspective.
Wealth refers to assets accumulated over time minus any debts. While the contribution of innovation to wealth inequality is not clear, differences in wealth do affect future opportunities, including participation in education, employment, and the innovation economy at large.