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Canada and the Digital Economy: Youth, Talent, and Innovation

Join the CIC National Capital Branch for

Politics @ the Pub: Canada and the Digital Economy: Youth, Talent, and Innovation

Monday, September 19th
18:00 – 20:30 

On June 14, 2016, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) launched a consultation process in support of Canada’s Innovation Agenda. Key intersecting pillars of the Government of Canada’s new Innovation Agenda are the Digital Economy and Talent Development. Canada’s ability to compete in a digital world is paramount as society undergoes a fundamental economic shift driven by the digital transformation of industries. The impact of the digital economy is inclusive across all sectors and largely dependent on a firm’s ability to access, adopt and implement digital technologies as they evolve. Consequently, the digital economy will be a primary source of future economic growth. In the intensively competitive global marketplace, Canada’s ability to develop, attract, retain, and scale up digital startups and commercialize innovations will depend on the existence of supporting economic policies designed to promote digital innovation.

The digital economy more than other sectors is driven by highly trained human capital. Canadian youth are fortunate to be born into a technologically advanced society and will continue to contribute to the development of Canada’s economy in that context. A definitive element driving Canada’s ability to compete globally through its digital economy will be its ability to attract, develop and retain the right talent. This is an issue that stands out for today’s youth, despite record rates of enrolment in Canada’s post-secondary and technical institutions. There is a clear need for youth to be engaged on Canada’s economic future based on their critical role in the evolution of our digital society. This unique [email protected] panel has been tailored to enable youth participation and discussion on the digital economy and the role of talent development in enabling digital innovation.

Join us for a craft beer and frank conversation at our new Byward Market location, The Red Lion Pub, for an informal policy discussion informed by our panel of innovators.

Bring your creative hats, and be part of the future direction of Canada’s Innovation Policy.

Event Format

Opening remarks and introductions by CIC National Capital Branch President

Outline of Innovation Agenda by ISED (details coming shortly)

Moderator introduction of panelists

Panel Discussion:

How do we work together to equip youth with the right skills for the future of the digital economy? (15 minutes)

Open Microphone and public input on question (15 minutes)

Panel Discussion:

What are innovative ways to develop stronger digital skills among young Canadians? (15 minutes)

Open Microphone and public input on question (15 minutes)

Closing Remarks (5 minutes)

Social and Networking


  • Rafal Rohozinski (Panelist) – Rafal’s career coincided with the global expansion of the internet, a process that he helped accelerate in the 1990s, as he worked with the United Nations across Asia, the former Soviet Union, Middle East, and Africa. For much of his professional life, Rafal’s only permanent address contain an “@” sign. Read more about Rafal on Our People
  • Sasha Shakov (Panelist) – Dasha is a young entrepreneur and co-founder of Parcelly, an Ottawa region startup providing unique gifting solution for long distance friends, family members, and loved ones. A third year BCom Marketing student, she is an innovative entrepreneur who is sure to inspire and impress everyone she meets for years to come.
  • Margaret Huber (Opening Remarks) – Margaret is President of the Canadian International Council’s National Capital Branch and a former Canadian Ambassador in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
  • Ehsan Torkaman (Moderator) – Ehsan is the Director of Politics @ the Pub and a member of the CIC National Capital Branch.


Event Information

Monday, September 19, 2016
18:00 – 20:30

LOCATION: The Red Lion Pub, 47 Clarence Street, Ottawa, ON K1N 9K1

Tickets are $5.00 for CIC members and $10.00 for non-members and include a craft pint of beer or a glass of wine.

To celebrate the start of the new season, all students pay only $5.00 (includes a pint of beer or a glass of wine)!

Tickets sold at the door and available on a first come first serve basis.

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