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Securing prosperity through Canada’s human infrastructure: The state of adult learning and workplace training in Canada

Over the past few decades, Canada’s labour requirements have changed drastically—from a need for physical labourers to a need for knowledge workers—as a result of changes in economic and social conditions that have included advances in information and communication technologies, globalization of economic activity and shifting demographics. Consequently, employers and firms are increasingly seeking skilled workers with a more sophisticated array of capabilities. Of recent concern, the current global recession has led to the deterioration of labour-market conditions in Canada and worldwide, profoundly affecting— through increased vulnerability to unemployment—the economic and social well-being of families and communities across Canada. Canada’s economic strength, as in other countries, depends on its ability to develop a skilled and flexible workforce, capable of adapting to continuous change. While Canada’s formal education is of a high standard, it alone cannot provide the conditions needed to secure the development of Canada’s talent—its human infrastructure—which is a necessary element of our country’s future prosperity.