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We need to make Canada a true innovation nation

By David Crane      

There are, to be sure, bright spots in Canada—in the innovation ecosystems of Toronto-Waterloo, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa, and Québec City, and in the growth of venture capital funding, as well as in the attraction of foreign stars in science for Canada Research Chairs. But much of the activity in the innovation ecosystems is the result of activity by Google, Microsoft, and other Big Tech players and not through the development and scaling up of Canadian companies.

Policies are can be wasteful, unfocused and politically opportunistic—such as the latest cut in the small business tax rate, costing more than $3-billion over five years, which was a sop to offset the political damage from Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s mishandling of small business tax reform, writes David Crane. The Hill Times photograph by Sam Garcia

TORONTO—It is the latest wake-up call for Canadians, another effort to shake our complacency about our economic future and the misguided belief that we can count on our natural resources to shield us from the need to compete in the global knowledge economy. This is the new report of the Council of Canadian Academies and its expert panel on the state of science and technology and industrial research and development in Canada. Every MP should read it and perhaps a few will.

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