A failure to innovate results in poor grades on Canada's report card



    OTTAWA, June 13 /CNW Telbec/ - Canada's socio-economic performance is
mediocre compared to other developed countries, according to the Conference
Board's 11th annual snapshot of Canada's outcomes in six domains-Economy,
Innovation, Environment, Education and Skills, Health and Society.
    "Running through this story is the common thread of a failure to
innovate. Innovation is centrally important to Canada's competitiveness and
sustainable prosperity, but our performance is woefully inadequate," said Anne
Golden, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Conference Board. "This
poor performance on innovation is also a key contributor to Canada's failure
to keep up with the top countries in the Health and Society domains and to our
14th place ranking in the Environment domain.
    "This record will not be good enough to meet the fundamental goal of a
high and sustainable quality of life for all Canadians."
    Canada earns a "D" on Innovation, ranking 14th among the 17 Organisation
for Economic Co-operation and Development countries being benchmarked.
Canada's record is poor on developing and exploiting new products, processes
and services, and on upgrading constantly the quality of what it already
produces.
    Canada's ranking on the Environment domain-another "D"-is dragged down by
its performance on climate change and waste generation.
    Canada's best grade, an "A," comes in the Education and Skills domain.
With comparatively modest spending, Canada delivers high-quality education to
people between ages 5 and 25. However, Canada does not produce enough
graduates in the disciplines that underpin innovation; nor does it do well in
basic skills and literacy for its adult population.
    In the categories of economic performance, social indicators and health
outcomes, Canada is a "B" performer. "These rankings confirm the argument that
the Conference Board has made repeatedly in its annual benchmarking," said
Golden. "Canada is not living up to its brand in health and social outcomes
and is trailing the top performers in the global economy."
    This is the first edition of How Canada Performs: A Report Card on
Canada. It continues the Conference Board's decade-long tradition of
benchmarking Canada's performance against the best countries in the world.
This report card improves upon past evaluations by ranking outcomes, looking
at the underlying causes and identifying the policies that can improve our
performance.
    The report is publicly available at www.e-library.ca . View the media
backgrounder at www.conferenceboard.ca/press .
    Anne Golden will present How Canada Performs: A Report Card on Canada
during a web cast on Wednesday, June 13 at 1:30 p.m. Register at
http://www.newswire.ca/en/webcast/viewEvent.cgi?eventID=1893980




For further information:

For further information: Brent Dowdall, Media Relations, (613) 526-3090
ext. 448, corpcomm@conferenceboard.ca


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