I find it somewhat prophetic, and possibly hopeful, that a heightened appreciation
and desire to honour and include Indigenous ways of knowing is coming at a time of environmental crisis. The lived experience and accumulated wisdom of people who have lived here on the land for millennia will undoubtedly balance and temper the intellectual insights and technological ingenuity of the newcomers who currently wield power and need to learn how to share it for the greater good.
The Canada Foundation for Innovation and l’Association canadienne-française pour l’avancement des sciences hosted an on-line discussion to discuss the implications of a national survey of young people’s attitudes toward science. The ensuing discussion revealed the dominance of social media in determining those attitudes, which can range from eager enthusiasm to disinterest and mistrust. Participants also frame a series of Calls to Action for organizations to develop working relationships with Canadian youth around scientific matters.
Canada is now a full member of the Eureka network, an international R&D consortium that includes more than 40 countries on five continents. Over the past decade some 300 Canadians have participated in Eureka projects, which have been worth more than $500 million.
More Canadian companies are remaining in Canada to grow “unicorns” (firms with a $1-billion or more valuation) rather than selling early to foreign entities, according to data in Startup Genome’s 2022 Global Startup Ecosystem Report. Meanwhile, in Atlantic Canada the number of startups slowed for the second year in a row, according to a separate report by Nova Scotia-based Entrevestor.
Canada’s Department of Fisheries and Oceans has begun funding projects that bring Indigenous knowledge into the development of the country’s “blue” economy, which is based on a sustainable use of marine resources. Their work is part of a larger initiative to help First Nations become more self-sufficient in gathering and using information about such resources.
Researchers are touting B.C.’s pilot initiative to decriminalize hard drug possession as a model to be applied across the country. They suggest studies to determine the efficacy of this approach to managing the harmful effect of addiction.
South Korea’s Medipost acquires OmniaBio for contract development and manufacturing; Ottawa introduces legislation to bolster trust in the digital economy; a new oil sands alliance combines Canada’s three major oil producers, KPMG Canada and MaRS Discovery District launch a climate impact accelerator program, and more.
Waterloo-based business accelerator Communitech has announced the roster of Team True North, which consists of Canadian firms that are poised to grow to at least $1 billion in revenue by 2030. The methodology for identifying these enterprises is similar to the highly successful Own the Podium initiative, which dramatically increased Canada’s Olympic medal count.
The new Canada Innovation and Investment Agency faces daunting challenges and will need political autonomy, be free to take risks in picking companies and sectors for funding, and have strong private sector support to succeed in increasing business R&D investment and innovation, say innovation and policy experts.
Indigenous people in Canada have much higher rates of heart disease than the national average, yet they are underrepresented in cardiovascular research initiatives. A new health research network intends to correct this problem by integrating Indigenous community members into investigative work.