Western Economic Diversification Canada
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The evidence gathered in the evaluation suggests the following recommendation:

Recommendation #1: The department should develop a template for the design and delivery of economic diversification programs that is built on past lessons learned and best practices but is flexible in accommodating the unique needs of each issue, region and program. 

Although CEDI/AII are one-time initiatives, there will continue to be community adjustment issues mandating federal intervention.  In this sense, programs like CEDI – one-time and time sensitive initiatives – are ongoing.  A template could:

  • ensure projects are assessed for their long-term sustainability;
  • target promotional activities and specific client groups;
  • speed up design and approval processes, particularly under high volume conditions;
  • ensure incorporation of appropriate monitoring practices based on the capacity of the clients;  and
  • assist collaboration and coordination activities both within regions and with other funding programs. 

A template would also benefit inexperienced staff:  a couple of key informants stated that staff in these short term programs are often inexperienced and there is high turnover because the jobs are offered as terms and therefore unattractive to the experienced staff that are needed to deliver such fast paced programs.