Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions

Article excerpt

Development economique Canada pour les regions du Quebec

Michel Lapointe, Director

Observatory and Economic Analysis

Canada Economic Development

Innovation has become a key concern for all stakeholders in economic development in Western countries. In recent years, there has been a proliferation of measures focussing both on new economic targets (particularly the support environment, relationships between research institutions and business, and corporate capacity-building) and on new practices and ways of doing things.

Not so long ago, innovation policy meant little more than support for research and development, based on a linear notion of innovation. The concept has developed rapidly and now extends beyond the sphere of technology per se to address economic players such as non-tech SMEs, which had scarcely been targeted by public initiatives. The emergence of the knowledge-based economy and the attendant increased importance of advanced skills have also led experts and practitioners alike to associate innovation with the learning capabilities of businesses, organisations and regions, not just with a set of outcomes in terms of new products or processes. At the same time, the delivery of public policy is shifting toward much more decentralised approaches, based increasingly on specialised intermediaries in direct contact with businesses and their networks.

This flurry of change over the past few years has not passed Canada Economic Development by. The Agency has been reconsidering innovation and related public initiatives in the context of regional economic development, and is continuing its process of reflection. Canada Economic Development develops and disseminates current knowledge of emerging trends in innovation as they apply to regional economic development; its Observatory has conducted watch, research and knowledge transfer activities related to the stimulation of creative milieux, relationships between scientific institutions and SMEs, innovation financing, new regional support measures for innovation by SMEs, and the relationship between globalisation and innovative/ growth SMEs.

This special issue of the Canadian Journal of Regional Science spotlighting learning and innovation and their implications for regional policy ties in very closely with the new concerns about innovation and regional development, which Canada Economic Development shares. The Agency is therefore pleased to support this publication, through its Observatory. This collection of articles by prominent writers is certain to stimulate discussion among experts and practitioners in regional economic development and innovation, and will lead to a better understanding of the new dynamics and the implications for public policy.

Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions

Development economique Canada pour les regions du Quebec

Michel Lapointe, Directeur

Observatoire et analyse economique

Development economique Canada

L'innovation est maintenant au coeur des preoccupations de development de l'ensemble des intervenants en development economique des pays occidentaux. …