Western Economic Diversification Canada
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Section II : Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Strategic Outcome: A growing and diversified western Canadian economy

Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) works to diversify and grow the western Canadian economy, helping to build businesses that are innovative and competitive globally, while diversifying the base of the western Canadian economy beyond primary resource industries.

WD’s strategic outcome is advanced through the following programs:

  • Business Development and Innovation: Western Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are engaged in international business, competitive and innovative;
  • Community Economic Growth: Western Canadian communities have strong businesses, the capacity for socio-economic development and the necessary public infrastructure to support economic growth;
  • Policy, Advocacy and Coordination: Policies and programs that strengthen the western Canadian economy; and
  • Internal Services: Effective and efficient support for advancing the department's strategic outcome.

Program: Business Development and Innovation

Program Description

Business Development and Innovation supports western Canadian businesses, industry, and research organizations to enhance business innovation, productivity, and global engagement.   Value added production is strengthened through the introduction of new products, technologies, or innovations to existing processes, as well as through efforts to pursue global markets and increase investment in Western Canada.  Additionally, this program supports some members of the Western Canada Business Service Network and related partners to provide business services and access to capital in Western Canada in support of increased entrepreneurism.  Transfer payments in support of this program are made under the authority of the Women's Enterprise Initiative and the Western Diversification Program.  Funding support of the Canada Business Network is comprised of operations and maintenance funding.

 

Business Development and Innovation : Financial Resources ($ thousands)
Total Budgetary
Expenditures
(Main Estimates)
2013–14
Planned Spending 2013–14 Planned Spending  2014–15 Planned Spending 2015–16
93,228 93,228 89,307 89,313

 

Business Development and Innovation : Human Resources (FTE)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
110 97 97

 

Program
Expected Results
Performance Indicators Targets
Western Canadian SMEs are engaged in international business Value and type of international business activity facilitated by WD $0 (Refer to comments below)
Western Canadian SMEs are competitive Number of SMEs that increase gross margins 0 (Refer to comments below)
Western Canadian SMEs are innovative Number of patents filed 7

The targets for the above performance indicators are being introduced by WD for the first time in 2013–14.  Historically, projects require greater than one year to realize expected results.  As a consequence, although the department will be investing in Business Development and Innovation activities during the fiscal year 2013–14, the targets for those projects are set at zero anticipating that it will take some time for these activities to realize results at the program level.  Nevertheless, WD will continue to report results against performance indicators from the previous Performance Measurement Framework in its 2013–14 Departmental Performance Report, such as the number of companies participating in export and market development initiatives, the number of spin-off companies formed and an increase in sales as a result of business productivity activities.

Planning Highlights   Addressing Climate Change and Air Quality Maintaining Water Quality and Air Quality

In accordance with the department’s investment strategy, WD plans to undertake the following business development and innovation activities in 2013–14:

  • Support market-driven technology commercialization to address funding gaps that exist in later stages of the commercialization process, including undertaking new approaches to assist innovative western Canadian SMEs in commercializing new technology products, processes and services;
  • Strengthen SME engagement in international markets and global value chains, including attracting foreign investment into Western Canada;
  • Support targeted initiatives to improve business productivity and growth and enhance access to skilled labour in Western Canada;
  • Provide operating funding for the Western Canada Business Service Network to assist western SMEs; and
  • Invest in knowledge infrastructure and applied research and development, innovation linkages, as well as initiatives that enhance highly qualified personnel.

Program: Community Economic Growth

Program Description

Community Economic Growth involves economic development initiatives that support communities to advance their economies, adjust to changing and challenging economic circumstances, and recover from depressed economic circumstances.  This is achieved through both direct funding of projects, as well as operating support of the Community Futures (CF) organizations.  Additionally, this program assists communities to assess community strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and potential for new economic activity, and to develop and implement community plans.  Transfer payments in support of this program are made under the authority of the Western Diversification Program and the Community Futures Program.

Financial Resources ($ thousands)
Total Budgetary
Expenditures
(Main Estimates)
2013–14
Planned Spending
2013–14
Planned Spending
2014–15
Planned Spending
2015–16
57,605 57,605 34,419 34,421

 

Human Resources (FTE)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
37 32 32

 

Program
Expected Results
Performance Indicators Targets
Western Canadian communities have strong businesses SME sales growth (CF organizations’ loan clients only) 8.0%
Western Canadian communities have the capacity for socio-economic development Number of communities benefitting from Community Economic Growth projects 1,344
Western Canadian communities have and the necessary public infrastructure to support economic growth Number of communities benefitting from federal public infrastructure investments 600

 

The Community Futures Program will contribute to realizing the first two Community Economic Growth program result, listed above.  The target associated with the first indicator – SME sales growth – is based on a trend analysis of data obtained through Statistics Canada illustrating how CF organizations have historically performed.

The target for the second indicator - the number of communities benefitting from Community Economic Growth projects - is based on a forecast of the number of community-based projects led by CF organizations and Francophone Economic Development Organizations (FEDOs), which will be completed during 2013–14 and the communities they will impact.  In addition, this target incorporates Community Development projects led by organizations other than FEDOs.

The target for the third Community Economic Growth performance indicator – number of communities benefiting from federal public infrastructure investments – is based on anticipated results to be achieved through Infrastructure Programming.  Starting in 2012–13, WD delivered the Community Infrastructure Improvement Fund (CIIF) to support the rehabilitation and improvement of existing community infrastructure facilities; the department will continue delivery of this program in 2013–14.  When each of these projects is successfully completed, the number of communities benefitting from the public infrastructure investment will be captured.

Planning Highlights

  • Strengthen the impact and accountability of CFs to promote economic growth activities in their communities;
  • Invest in community economic growth projects that generate concrete economic results;
  • Deliver national programs across the West on behalf of the Government of Canada;
  • Work with clients to maximize the impact and results of investments under CIIF; and
  • Renew funding for the Economic Development Initiative to continue funding projects that support business and economic development that encourages sustainable growth in Western Canada’s Francophone communities.

Program: Policy, Advocacy and Coordination

Program Description

Policy, Advocacy, and Coordination arises from the Western Economic Diversification Act and empowers the Minister to advance the interests of Western Canada through policies and programs and by establishing cooperative relationships with key stakeholders.  Policy, Advocacy and Coordination efforts enable WD to: provide a strong voice for Western Canada, which results in effective strategies, policies, and programs that address economic development needs; lead federal and intergovernmental collaboration to pursue key opportunities for long term growth and diversification in areas of federal or shared federal provincial jurisdiction; and, enable economic analysis activities to be carried out, which ultimately assist with informing policy and program decisions.  Transfer payments in support of this program are made under the authority of the Western Diversification Program.

 

Financial Resources ($ thousands)
Total Budgetary
Expenditures
(Main Estimates)
2013–14
Planned Spending
2013–14
Planned Spending
2014–15
Planned Spending
2015–16
7,113 8,613 8,741 8,742

 

Human Resources (FTE)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
52 52 52

 

Program
Expected Results
Performance Indicators Targets
Policies that strengthen the western Canadian economy Percentage of key informants with the opinion that WD activities resulted in policies that support the economic development of Western Canada 90%[10]
Programs that strengthen the western Canadian economy Percentage of key informants with the opinion that WD activities resulted in programs that support the economic development of Western Canada 90%[11]

 

One of the ways in which WD measures success associated with its Policy, Advocacy and Coordination efforts is through surveys of stakeholders, which are conducted at the end of the five-year program evaluation cycle as well as at mid-term of this cycle.  Since this program was last evaluated for the five-year period ending 2010–11, a mid-term stakeholder survey will be conducted during 2013–14.  Stakeholders will be asked their opinion regarding how well the department is doing with respect to influencing policies and programs that strengthen the western Canadian economy.  The target of 90 percent of stakeholders who agree or strongly agree that WD is performing well in these two areas is based upon the baseline established by the 2010–11 evaluation.  As these two indicators are being retained in the department’s new Performance Measurement Framework that is being implemented in 2013–14, WD’s past performance against these indicators is relevant.

Planning Highlights

  • Promote western interests to key decision-makers in the development of national policies and strategies;
  • Build relationships with key stakeholders in western provinces and other federal organizations by proactively engaging potential partners, sharing information and collaborating on initiatives of interest to Western Canada;
  • Work collaboratively with key stakeholders in pursuit of long-term economic growth and diversification of Western Canada’s defence-related industries; and
  • Support policy analysis to enhance understanding of western Canadian economic issues, challenges, opportunities and priorities in order to identify areas for departmental action.

Program: Internal Services Shrinking the Environmental Footpring of the Government

Program Description

The Internal Services program supports all strategic outcomes and is common across government.  Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization.  These groups are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; Acquisition Services; and Travel and Other Administrative Services.  Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not to those provided specifically to a program.

 

Financial Resources ($ thousands)
Total Budgetary
Expenditures
(Main Estimates)
2013–14
Planned Spending
2013–14
Planned Spending
2014–15
Planned Spending
2015–16
20,755 20,755 17,737 17,746

 

Human Resources (FTE)
2013–14 2014–15 2015–16
171 144 144

Planning Highlights

  • Implement labour force reductions and business re-engineering processes;
  • Centralize the provision of accounting and procurement services in the department;
  • Implement technological improvements to modernize the way in which WD delivers programs to Canadians;
  • Implement strategic partnership and formalize processes with Shared Services Canada; and
  • Reduce travel and travel spending as the department employs greater use of technology to conduct its business.

WD is a participant in the Federal Sustainable Development Strategy (FSDS) and contributes to the Greening Government Operations targets through the internal services program activity.  The department contributes to the following target areas of Theme IV of the FSDS:

  • Surplus Electronic and Electrical Equipment;
  • Printing Unit Reduction;
  • Paper Consumption;
  • Green Meetings; and
  • Green Procurement.
Shrinking the Environmental Footpring of the Government

For additional details on WD’s Greening Government Operations activities, please see section 3.3 – List of Supplementary Information Tables.