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Higher-Education Institutions and Regional Development

In order to be competitive in the globalising knowledge economy, the OECD countries need to invest in their innovation systems at the national and regional levels. As countries are turning their production towards value-added segments and knowledge-intensive products and services, there is greater dependency on access to new technologies, knowledge and skills. And, with the parallel processes of globalisation and localisation, the local availability of knowledge and skills is becoming increasingly important. OECD countries are thus putting considerable emphasis on meeting regional development goals, by nurturing the unique assets and circumstances of each region, particularly in developing knowledge-based industries. As key sources of knowledge and innovation, higher education institutions (HEIs) can be central to this process.

Complete executive summary

Atlantic Canada: 17-23 September 2006
Review Team:
Steve Garlick (University of the Sunshine Coast)
Gordon Davies (the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems)
Mario Polèse (INRS urbanisation, culture et société)
Fumi Kitagawa (National Institute for Policy research, NIER)

Atlantic Canada comprises the three Maritime Provinces, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick along with Newfoundland and Labrador. The size, demography, geography and diversity of Atlantic Canada, its juxtaposition with the rest of Canada and North America, and the presence of multiple actors and spheres of government make it a complex geography for regional development purposes.

In order to reduce the brain drain, to deliver the enterprising human capital needs of the region’s economic base and to assist with a number of productivity and social equity benefits the OECD Peer Review Team recommends conjoint action and mobilising the universities and community colleges for the region.

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