The Association of University Research Parks (AURP) Canada has announced the results of its national economic impact study.
The study, conducted by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) in 2013, confirms the 26 research and technology parks in Canada account for over 65,000 jobs and arecontributing $4.3 billion in GDP on an annual basis. It is estimated these numbers will increase to nearly 100,000 jobs and just over $6.4 billion in GDP annually within the next five years.
The study was launched in both Ottawa and China with representatives of AURP Canada in both locations as part of the first steps in its foreign direct investmentstrategy that will begin in the coming weeks following an extensive strategic planning exercise.
As detailed in the study, PwC suggests, “Research and technology parks are a significant part of the research and innovation infrastructure in Canada. They play animportant role in facilitating linkages across the innovation ecosystem by bridging the gap between incubation and commercialization and bringing together industry,government and academia. In doing so, they help accelerate the commercialization process and facilitate the growth and development of more and bigger companies inCanada’s knowledge economy, thereby fueling collaboration, innovation and Canada’s long-term prosperity.”
“The study has validated the role research and technology parks play in the innovation ecosystem in Canada,” says AURP Canada President Carol Stewart. “Beyond the numbers, the parks are helping start-up companies and born-global export-ready companies get to market – and in today’s economy, our companies need this now more than ever before.”
Over 72 percent of companies believe that locating in a research and technology park improves their ability to attract and retain highly skilled labour. It is important to note 75 percent of parks in Canada have an accelerator or incubator that provides augmented services to start-up ventures such as mentoring, support networks, tools, and linkages to academic institutions, space and collaborations.
"Our Government is committed to fostering innovation, commercialization and economic growth through partnerships among government, industry and academia," said the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology). "Economic Action Plan 2013 provides $60 million in support for incubator and accelerator organizations to help entrepreneurs commercialize research in Canada to create jobs, growth and prosperity."
More information will be unveiled in the coming weeks pertaining to the next steps for the association and how its park members can accelerate the national knowledgeeconomy. Adoption of global best practices and identification of foreign direct investment opportunities and export growth potential are among the deliverables towatch from the association.
The Association of University Research Parks (AURP) Canada is a national association that represents 26 research and technology parks across Canada. Founded in June 2007 as a chapter of AURP international, AURP Canada is a not-for-profit organization with a mandate to act as the united voice of Canadian university research parks.
For further information, contact:
Ms. Laura O'Blenis, Project Manager
Phone: (506) 206-2149
BB: (506) 471-9438
Ms. Carol Stewart, President
Manager, David Johnston Research + Technology Park (Waterloo, ON)
Phone: (519) 888-4567 ext. 36339
BB: (519) 498-1664