As Alberta continues to expand its digital technology vendor community, including its support ecosystem for new and scale-up players, its worth understanding the broader economic landscape in related sectors. Here’s two recent reports on the Alberta technology ecosystem, and its current competitive strengths, weaknesses and opportunities:

  • The Report and Recommendations by the Innovation Working Capital Group for the Alberta Government’s Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Tourism (as it then was) provides one of the better overviews of Alberta’s technology and investment community, and its competitive strengths and weaknesses in the sector. It’s Executive Summary notes: Alberta should be at the forefront, tapping into this wealth-generating and fast-growing sector. Calgary and Edmonton are viewed as important up-and-coming ecosystems to watch. The province has many attributes of a vibrant technology ecosystem: quality of life, low cost of living, world-class post-secondary institutions, energized and committed entrepreneurs, major success stories and an attractive business climate. Today, though, Alberta is missing key ingredients that would enable it to be at the forefront and is at risk of falling further behind. It then sets forth 18 recommendations under three key areas of “Vision, Communication and Branding”, “Capital” and “Talent”, that should be supported by the Alberta government to help to continue to expand the sector.
  • CBRE Research issued its “2020 Scoring Canadian Tech Talent”, that ranks Canadian cities on competitive advantages and appeal to tech workers and employers. Across eight domains under the three categories of “Talent Availability”, “Quality of Labour” and “Cost Competitiveness” and set out in a scorecard analysis, Calgary ranks #6 and Edmonton ranks #13 of the 20 cities ranked. And for the cities where FASKEN has an office, Toronto ranked #1, Ottawa #2, Vancouver #3 and Montreal #5.

(CBRE report)