Source: Ottawa Business Journal

We need your help.

In partnership with i-Canada, we have launched a landmark study to advance Ottawa’s position as Canada’s model for business innovation. I truly think this study will prove our town “Owns the Podium” when it comes to business innovation in Canada.

We often hear from cities who are quick to claim that they are ‘punching above their weight’, however we feel Ottawa, home to more than 1700 technology companies, is a truly a notch above the rest.  Staying ahead of the crowd is why we are undertaking the study: it is the first study of its kind to apply science and methodology to municipal innovation.

Leading this project is Barry Gander, Co-Founder of i-Canada, and Dr. Sorin Cohn, President of BD Cohnsulting Inc. Dr. Cohn has over 35 years of international business and technology experience, having studied the topic of innovation at length.

He recently told me, “The term innovation has become a buzzword. Business innovation is actually the transformation of ideas and knowledge into higher value. It enables companies (and cities) to achieve a better competitive position where it matters: in the market and in society at large.”

The team points to a myriad of key factors which make the case for Ottawa’s leadership role, including:

– High growth, technology-intensive sectors like Life Sciences, Clean Tech, IT and Software are typically strong at R&D.

– Ottawa accounts for 90% of Canada’s industrial telecommunications R&D.

– Ottawa hosts more top ICT companies than any city in Canada, outside of Toronto.

– Ottawa has two brand new commercialization centres (CENGN and MDCC) helping Canadian businesses bring their cutting edge products to the global market faster.

– Ottawa’s technology companies have raised more money in IPO’s over the last five years than the major Canadian cities combined.

– The Financial Times just named Ottawa the “Most business friendly” mid-sized city in all of the Americas.

– The global marketplace gets more competitive with every passing year. All cities are trying to develop better talent and ecosystems, and to attract the best residents and businesses. To achieve this in Ottawa, we need your help and ideas. Visit our website at to take participate in the study. It’s the first step on the journey to making Ottawa the most innovative city in Canada, and an example to the world.

by Bruce Lazenby,

President and CEO, Invest Ottawa