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Skills Next

Canadians’ needs for skills training and education are changing quickly.

Through Skills Next, the Public Policy Forum, the Diversity Institute, and the Future Skills Centre are publishing 11 short review papers on the state of the skills and education ecosystem in Canada. These papers will present the current knowledge on important issues and identify under-researched opportunities for policymakers to explore.

Three people with jet-packs flying above the clouds holding a SkillsNext banner

Skills Next will help the Future Skills Centre and research, policy, and practice leaders better understand skills issues that require a renewed focus. Topics include the return on investment for industry spending on workforce development, tech-enabled retraining models, barriers to inclusion for specific populations, and a global survey of policy innovations in other jurisdictions. Reports will be released in two tranches in January 2020.

The first tranche includes the following papers:

  • Understanding the Future of Skills: Trends and Impacts on Jobs and Workers by Micheal Crawford Urban, Research Manager – Future Skills, Diversity Institute, Ryerson University; Sunil Johal, Director of Business Growth Services, City of Toronto
  • Solving the Skills Puzzle: The Missing Piece is Good Information by Emna Braham, Senior Economist, Labour Market Information Council; Steven Tobin, Executive Director, Labour Market Information Council
  • Thinking Twice About Technology and the Future of Work by Jim Stanford, Economist and Director, Centre for the future of Work, Australia Institute
  • Upskilling and Digital Skills: Definitions and Pathways by Denise Shortt, Vice-President, Industry Development and Diversity & Inclusion, Information Technology association of Canada; Brian Robson, Director of Business Development and Training Programs, Diversity Institute, Ryerson University
  • University Graduate Skills Gap By Sandra Lapointe, Associate Professor of Philosophy, McMaster University; Jonathan Turner, PhD, Career Educator, University of Toronto Career Centre.

The second tranche includes the following papers:

  • Indigenous Skills and Employment Training by Max Skudra, Director, Research & Government Relations, Canadian Council for aboriginal Business; Andy Avgerinos, Research Coordinator, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business; Sarah Lynn Auger, Doctoral Candidate in Educational Policy Studies, University of Alberta
  • ROI of Industry Leadership in the Future of Skills and Training by Wendy Cukier, Founder and Academic Director, Diversity Institute, Ryerson University; Co-author to be confirmed
  • Competency Frameworks and Essential Skills by David Gyarmati, President and CEO, SRDC; Janet Lane, Director of the Human Capital Centre, Canada West Foundation; Scott Murray, President, DataAngel policy Research
  • Barriers to Employment: The Impact of Race and Gender by Suzanne Gagnon, Director, Institute for Leadership Development, University of Manitoba; Eddy Ng, James and Elizabeth Freeman Professor of Management, Bucknell University
  • Skills Gaps, Underemployment and Equity of Labour-Market Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities in Canada by Emile Tompa, Centre for Research on Work Disability Policy and Senior Scientist, Institute for Work & Health; Dan Samosh, Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources, University of Toronto; Normand Boucher, Researcher, Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration and Adjunct Professor, School of Social Work and Criminology, Université Laval
  • Technology enabled Training and Upskilling by Mark Patterson, Executive Director, Magnet, Ryerson University; Stephen Harrington, Canadian Director Workforce Strategies & future of Work, Deloitte; Jeremy Auger, Chief Strategy Officer, D2L

More to come.

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The Future Skills Centre is a forward-thinking centre for research and collaboration dedicated to preparing Canadians for employment success and meeting the emerging talent needs of employers. As a pan-Canadian community, we bring together experts and organizations across sectors to rigorously identify, assess, and share innovative approaches to develop the skills and work environments to drive prosperity and inclusion.