Alberta aims innovation at economic development
New Innovation Council will focus Alberta’s world-class research and innovation abilities to enhance economic growth.
With approximately $800 million annually invested in research and innovation by the Alberta government, the Alberta Innovation Council will provide leadership and evolve innovation in the province. The council will act as a “system architect”, providing vital oversight and advice to align priorities, advance strategic initiatives and clarify roles and responsibilities while providing advice to government on ways it can enhance research and innovation in the province.
“We’ve brought together some of the world’s best talent in research, innovation and entrepreneurship from right here in Alberta. The members have impressive knowledge and experience that will help our innovators turn ideas into solutions and our province into a launching pad for opportunity.”
The initial Alberta Innovation Council will be chaired by the Premier and will be made up of 13 members representing a broad range of experience in research, innovation and technology commercialization. Members come from industry, Campus Alberta and the innovation system.
The Alberta Innovation Council will work with with the Alberta Research and Innovation Authority (ARIA) and the Alberta Economic Development Authority (AEDA), which will each designate an advisor to the council. The council will leverage ARIA’s international perspective on innovation, use AEDA’s focus on the broader economic development process and seek the input of other innovation stakeholders to provide government with recommendations to enhance economic development and prosperity through innovation.
In addition to AEDA and ARIA, the council will also work with the Alberta government ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, Energy, Environment and Sustainable Resource Development, Health, International and Intergovernmental Relations, Innovation and Advanced Education, and Treasury Board and Finance. Links will be built among these organizations’ areas of critical knowledge, such as workforce development, economic indicators and innovation trends, and government’s strategic priorities to grow innovation.
Social innovation will also be part of the council’s work. Government is developing plans to support the rollout of the Social Innovation Endowment, which will have a critical role in supporting the healthy, skilled, educated and entrepreneurial Albertans needed to grow innovation in the province. Specific details and initiatives will be announced in the coming weeks.
“Council members are thrilled to play this role in making innovation an integral part of of our economy and society. By bringing together entrepreneurs, industry, academia and government, we look forward to helping evolve a strong and effective innovation ecosystem that makes a more competitive and productive Alberta in the global marketplace.”
The Innovation Council was developed from recommendations in the Expert Panel report on innovation and through consultation with innovation stakeholders, including the Innovation Forum held April 30. For more information on the Council please see the Terms of Reference for the Council, and the list of members.
Under the Building Alberta Plan, our government is investing in families and communities, living within our means, and opening new markets for Alberta's resources to ensure we're able to fund the services Albertans told us matter most to them. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for.