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TECH BUYER Oct 2019 - IDC Perspective - Doc # CA43804919

Scaling Up: Canadian Superclusters Update, 2019

By: Mark SchruttStrategic Advisor, Public Sector & Innovation Research, Jason BremnerResearch Vice President, Industry and Business Solutions

Abstract

This IDC Perspective provides an update on Canada's Innovation Superclusters Initiative. It has been a year and a half since the federal government announced the five superclusters that would receive funding of C$1 billion to create the supercluster program. The five superclusters have been very busy since that time. Most have management and a board of directors in place that represent the private sector and academia, along with one nonvoting government seat per cluster. Agreements between the government and privately run nonprofit superclusters were structured with transparency and reporting responsibility built in, while also protecting the intellectual property investments of the supercluster members. Membership programs were designed with staffing (relatively small — the Protein Industries Supercluster has <10 employees) and locations considered. Each supercluster introduced a structure for submissions for funding with criteria being mostly focused around collaboration, workforce enhancement, and economic impact. The first funding awards started this past summer, and at the time of this document, each supercluster had announced its first projects.

"While there are similarities and overlap among the superclusters, two stand out as 'natural fits' for Canadian innovation — the Protein Industries Supercluster and the Ocean Supercluster," says Mark Schrutt, strategic advisor, Innovation and Public Sector Research, IDC Canada.


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