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This newsletter is published by The Centre for Innovation Studies in
partnership with Calgary Technologies Inc.
It's purpose is to communicate news and information of interest to individuals involved
with innovation in Alberta active in industry, government or university.
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Visit our web site at http://www.thecis.ca/
to join the Innovation Club and while
you're there check out our 2003
Schedule of events.
THECIS would like to extend a sincere thank you for all
of those that came out to the summer BBQ! The weather was fine and the discussions were
great! We look forward to another successful BBQ next year.
of the West 2003
The Canada West Foundation released its State of the West 2003 report late last month.
State of the West initially started in April 2001 to encourage and contribute an in depth
understanding to the diversity in Canada's western regional economies across the four
western provinces. This years report, authored by Canada West Foundations Senior
Policy Analyst Robert Roach, covers a multitude of topics including population growth,
immigration, interprovincial migration, population demographics, visible minorities and
Aboriginal peoples. The report is intended to provide tools for looking ahead and is
designed to illustrate interprovincial diversity. Funding for the report came from Western
Why are Americans
More Productive Than Canadians?
In the last half of the 1990's, Canada's productivity growth rate
lagged behind that of the United States. Since then much attention has been focused on
improving Canada's performance with the advancement of numerous policies in this regard.
In this paper, Andrew Sharpe from the Centre for the Study of Living Standards attempts to
refocus the issue from policy solution to understanding why Americans have been and
continue to be, on average, more productive than Canadians. Sharpe reviews possible
explanations for the productivity gap and concludes that it reflects five factors; Canada
has lower capital intensity of economic activity; Canada lags in adopting best practice
techniques from other countries resulting in an innovation gap; Canada has an
underdeveloped high tech sector which results in lower productivity gains when compared to
the US; Canada has less human capital than the US in terms of high level university
graduates in science and engineering; and Canada has smaller plant sizes resulting in
limited economies of size and scope.
State Regional Commissions: Regional Approaches for Local Economic Development
The National Association of Development Organizations (NADO), a research foundation out of
Washington, DC, released this report in April 2003. The report explains how Local
Development Districts (LDD's) are an important tool for identifying, assessing and
implementing economic action among diverse regions. Information collected via LDD's are
used to aid in making collaborative federal/state/local decisions as they relate to
infrastructure, job skills, local leadership, and civic capacity. The report builds on a
model case study of the Appalachian Regional Commission and also outlines unique
challenges and concerns.
Opportunities: Ontario's urban prosperity gap
The Institute for Competitiveness and Prosperity released a working paper showing that
urban Ontarions lag their US counterparts by $5,779, whicl rural dwellers are $937, or 3%
ahead. Reasons for this gap are discussed including lowere aspirations, an inability to
talke advantage of immigrants skills, and a number of factors that draw resources out of
Capital Analysis for BC: Identifying Sources and Evaluating Levels
This publication was released in March of this year. The objectives of the report are to
indicate and evaluate the state and strength of seed capital in British Columbia's
technology sector for 200/-2002. The analysis focuses on seed capital, angel investors and
friends and family in four different industries (imaging technology, pharmaceuticals, high
efficiency vehicle technology and telecommunications). The report is intended to serve as
a background paper to guide future discussions on early technology startups. Funding for
the report is from Industry Canada.
Seeking Sustainable Livelihoods:
Constructing a Role for Community Economic Development in Technology-Cluster Growth
This is an e-publication by Edward T. Jackson, and Rahil Khan from the Centre for the
Study of Training, Investment and Economic Restructuring. The paper was published by the
Caledon Institute of Social Policy. The report focuses on the technology sector of the
Ottawa-Gatineau region and is concerned with sustainable development within high
technology clusters particularly since the burst of the "tech bubble". The paper
explores the potential for using community economic development (CED) as a means of
maximizing sustainable livelihoods for workers both inside and outside the sector. The
paper also points out important roles that CED can play in cluster growth including,
bridging the digital divide, helping knowledge workers cope with volatility, mobilizing
resources for asset-based community development, creating multi-sector leadership
structures and promoting community-owned science and technology enterprises. The authors
are open to feedback on the publication.
and Technology Advice: A Framework to Build On
This is the fifth federal report on the government's progress in adopting its framework
for science and technology advice. The report reviews the activities of the federal
science and technology community during 2002 and describes major developments that
influenced it during the year. The report is organized into four chapters and an appendix
and is intended to ensure that government policy and management decisions are based on
sound science and technology advice.
Innovative Hot Spots in Europe: policies to promote
trans-border clusters of creative activity
A policy workshop was held in Luxembourg in early May of this year to investigate new
trends in national and regional "clusters" policies. How these policies are
linked to innovation and how they take into account the European dimension were of
particular interest. There are now several presentations and two important background
papers available for download. The first is a background
paper on cluster policies by Claire Nauwelaers (MERIT) and the second is a background
paper on methods for cluster analysis by Lionel Nesta (SPRU), Pari Patel (SPRU) and
Anthony Arundel (MERIT). Both papers were prepared for the European Commission's European
Trend Chart on Innovation.
The Impact of Research Grants on
the Productivity and Quality of Scientific Research
This paper by Benoit Godin is hosted on the Canadian Science and Innovation
Consortium (CSIIC) web site. The paper was written to assess the contribution of the
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council's (NSERC) funding on university research
and comes as part of a study conducted for NSERC during 2002. The analysis examines how
funded researchers are situated in the Canadian system of scientific production,
particularly in the universities. Godin aims to answer three major questions, "what
is the role of NSERC in Canadian scientific production? What impact does NSERC have on the
productivity of researchers? What impact does NSERC have on the quality of their
This release from Statistics Canada is based on the first major
study in a new research paper series called "The Canadian Economy in Transition"
that focuses on industrial transitions in Canadian industry. This publication is concerned
with companies in ICT and science-based industries, and innovative sectors associated with
the growth of the New Economy from 1981 to 1997. The goal of the report is to evaluate
whether ICT and science-based industries exhibit different input structures and
performance characteristics than more traditional goods and services industries. The
report examines two groups of high tech industries. The first draws from the OECD ICT
sector classification and the second group is a collection of science based industries
that make relatively large investments in R&D and skilled workers.
THECIS Innovation Club
Calgary, September 23, 2003
7:00 AM to 9:00 AM
The next THECIS Innovation Club Breakfast will be held this fall. We invite all of you
to join us for hot coffee and breakfast and participate in another exciting discussion. (The
event will take place at the Village Park Inn, 1804 Crowchild Trail NW (at 16th Avenue
North), Calgary. The cost is $32 for members, $48 for non members, $16 for students). Have
a great summer everyone and we will see you in September!
THECIS Innovation Club Workshop
Calgary, October 21, 2003
9:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Please join us at the next THECIS Innovation Club Workshop. This will be a half day
workshop on the topic of "Measuring Innovation". We look forward to a
stimulating discussion. (The event will take place at the Village Park Inn, 1804
Crowchild Trail NW (at 16th Avenue North), Calgary. Workshops are $59 for members, $69 for
non-members, $30 for students).
Calgary, Alberta July 2 to 3, 2003
Edmonton, Alberta July 9 to 10, 2003
This conference tour is presented by Strategies2Innovate and
features Larry van den Berghe, an expert knowledge and consulting service provider. The
conference is aimed at increasing the success rate of new products and services while
reducing costs, stimulating visionary techniques to align product and technology with
corporate goals and much more.
Portland, Oregon, July 20 to 24, 2003
The Portland International Conference on Management and Engineering of Technology (PICMET)
invites industry experts, government leaders, business executives and all of those
interested in science, technology and engineering management. The theme of the conference
is "Technology Management for Reshaping the World."
Calgary, Alberta, September 2003 (Date TBA)
The Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada (PTAC) will hold a conference this fall on
"Reducing GHG and Water Emissions while Increasing Profitability
in the Petroleum Industry." There will be several opportunities to learn from
industry experts and government leaders in this area. There will roundtable discussions on
barriers and needs for future oil and gas industry performance, a trade show focused on
suppliers and users of new technologies and much more.
Industrial Districts and Firms: The Challenge of Globalization
September 12 to 13, 2003, Modena, Italy
This conference is in honour of Professor Sebastiano Brusco and will focus on the
international competitiveness of firms. The conference will address the changing nature of
the world economy and will examine clusters, internal networks, productive patterns and
changing specialization. Other areas of interest include how are firms changing within
clusters, what factors determine the competitive advantage of industrial districts, and
how can international competitiveness be enhanced?
Knowledge-based Economy and Regional Economic Development: An International Perspective
t. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, October 3 to 5, 2003
This is an international conference on the implications of all aspects of the
knowledge-economy for regional economic development. The call for papers has been issued, click here for more
information on sub themes and acceptable paper topics.
Innovation and Learning in Globalised World,
Experiences of Developing Countries
Eindhoven, The Netherlands, October 10, 2003
This is a conference announcement and call for papers from the EADI Working Group on
Science and Technology for Development and Eindhoven Centre for Innovation Studies. Junior
researchers are encouraged to submit and attend. The purpose of the conference is to
analyze the differing experiences of developing countries with respect to technology
creation and absorption and to identify the role of institutions and policies which
facilitate this process.
2003 IMAC Conference
Ottawa, Ontario, October 22 to 24, 2003
The Innovation Management Association of Canada (IMAC) is hosting its 2003 conference in
Ottawa this year. The conference promises to provide members with a forum to share ideas
and wisdom through a network of contacts among peers. Some of the goals for the conference
are to identify and promote effective techniques and best practices for the management of
technological innovation; promote the methods and tools for implementing the innovation
process; and to strengthen our leader's understanding of business issues around the
management of technological innovation.
EAEPE 2003: The
Information Society - Understanding Its Institutions Interdisciplinary
Maastricht, The Netherlands, November 7 to 10, 2003
This conference aims to analyze the institutions of the information society and welcomes
scholars from all social sciences with an interest in understanding the economic
significance, broadly conceived, of the information society. Keynote speakers include Joel
Mokyr, Northwestern University, USA, and Loet Leydesdorff, University of Amsterdam, the
Do We Know About Innovation
Brighton, UK, November 13 to 15, 2003
This conference is in honour of Keith Pavitt and will focus on four major themes, the
industrial dynamics of innovation and competition; Scientific and technology policy:
theories, measurement and practice; Management of innovation within and between
organizations; and Internationalization of innovation and production.
The winners and nominees for the 12th annual emerald awards from the Alberta Foundation
for Environmental Excellence were announced Wednesday June 11, 2003 at the Jack Singer
Hall in Calgary, Alberta. The sheer number of awards distributed illustrates Alberta's
commitment to promoting environmental sustainable development and advancing environmental
excellence. The Alberta Foundation for Environmental Excellence brings together several
organizations and individuals committed to protecting the Alberta environment. The list of
finalists can be found here.
There is a new angel investment organization in Calgary, Alberta called the Calgary Angel
Network (CAN). CAN is a not for profit organization committed to linking quality
Calgary-based investments with qualified early-stage angel investors. CAN is run by an
investor led volunteer board of directors and is one of several C-Prosperity initiatives.
Start up funding for CAN is from Calgary Economic Development.
Funding Helps Secure Canada's Access to US Observatories
$50 Million over five years from the NRC has helped to secure Canada's access to some of
the world's best observatories. The NRC announced an increase in funding for astronomy and
astrophysics research programs earlier this month. This funding will allow the NRC to
finalize collaborative agreements with the National Science Foundation (NSF) in the US and
will help to establish a role for Canadians in the design, construction, and use of many
of the world's most important observatories.
CTI Wins Calgary
Community Achievement Award
Calgary Technologies Inc. (CTI) graciously accepted the Calgary Community Achievement
Award Presented to them May 28, 2003 by the City of Calgary. The award was to acknowledge
CTI as a key contributor and co-recipient of of the World's Top Intelligent Community by
the World Teleport Association in 2002. CTI was recognized for its many contributions to
global leadership in the technology sector and for its many contributions to community and
global development. Congratulations CTI!
Course Offered at the U of C - "Computer Viruses and Malware"
The department of Computer Science at the University of Calgary is offering an innovative
new course to teach students to think about potential targets of computer viruses in order
to anticipate what will need to be protected and create more secure software. Dr. John
Aycock, professor for the course explains that the course is a proactive measure against
viruses and other cyber crime. Computer viruses, worms and Trojan horses are known to
wreak havoc to the tune of billions of dollars world-wide on an annual basis. This course
is aimed at potentially developing solutions to such viruses in addition to exploring the
many legal, ethical and security concerns that plague this issue.
Set to be Next NCE With "The Communities of Tomorrow" Partnership
The federal government announced a five year $30 Million commitment last month for the
creation of a national centre of excellence for work on sustainable communities.
"The Communities of Tomorrow" partnership has been implemented to develop,
demonstrate and commercialize technologies and management practices for sustainable
communities. It brings together the talent, expertise and infrastructure of the National
Research Council, the University of Regina and the City of Regina to create a "living
laboratory". The research centre will be a place to test and assess the applicability
of existing, new, and emerging technologies and applications to sustainable community
U of C CCIT Lab Opens Doors to
The Calgary Centre for Innovative Technology (CCIT) at the University of Calgary opened
its doors to the public this month to view the new virtual reality iCentre lab that allows
scientists to virtually experience things like the bottom of the ocean floor, oil and gas
reservoirs and other inaccessible places. The lab will also have implications for oil and
gas engineers and geophysicists to help create simulations and improve productivity. The
iCentre lab will also hold may opportunities for medical scientists in helping to view the
inner workings of the body including knee joints and the heart. There are four large
screens in the lab that project computer-generated 3-D images from which scientists and
other researchers can view complex simulations.
SSHRC Appointment Highlights Alberta's Strengths in Research and Creativity
Late last month Industry Minister Allan Rock and Minister responsible for the Social
Sciences and Humanities Research Council appointed Mr. Sean Taft Caulfield to the Council.
Mr. Caulfield currently holds a Tier II Canada Research Chair and is an Associate
Professor at the University of Alberta. He is the recipient of many awards and grants and
is an internationally renowned visual artist. Dr. Marc Renaud, President of SSHRC is
confident that Mr. Caulfield will help to broaden the collective background of the SSHRC
council bringing new expertise and creativity.
Systems Research Network
The presentations from the fifth annual ISRN conference are now available for viewing and
download. The ISRN is a SSHRC funded major collaborative initiative investigating the role
of different regional industries or clusters on innovation and economic development.
Presentations focus on different cluster studies across Canada and include Ottawa's
telecommunications and photonics cluster, the New Brunswick ICT cluster, Ontario's
automotive parts industry, multimedia in Montreal and Vancouver, the biotechnology
clusters in London, Ontario and Vancouver, Calgary's wireless cluster, and a few other
presentations on defining a cluster and policy implications.
Call For Papers: Third Global
Conference on Business & Economics
This conference isn't until January 2004 in New York city, but the deadline for abstracts
is July 30, 2003. Competitive papers (or abstracts) are invited in all areas of (or
related to) business, including: Management Information Systems; Global Business;
Marketing Theory and Applications; Accounting; Economics; Finance & Investment;
General Management; General Business Research; Business & Economics Education;
Production/Operations Management; Organizational Behavior & Theory; Strategic
Management Policy; Labor Relations & Human Resource Management; Business Law; Public
Responsibility and Ethics; Technology & Innovation; Public Administration and Small
Business Entrepreneurship. Accepted papers will be published in conference proceedings and
selected papers may have the opportunity to publish in the Journal of Business and
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