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Provost and Vice President Academic

Canada's Big Data Consortium Announces New White Paper, "Closing Canada's Big Data Talent Gap"

Download the White Paper | SummaryAcknowledgements | Project Contact 

Canadian employers across all regions, sectors, and industries are finding it increasingly difficult to recruit, retain, and train big data and analytics professionals, according to a new white paper published by Canada’s Big Data Consortium, Closing Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap

Through a first-of-its-kind national, multi-sector study, the Consortium found that Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap is estimated between 10,500 and 19,000 professionals with deep data and analytical skills, such as those required for roles like Chief Data Officer, Data Scientist, and Data Solutions Architect.  The gap for professionals with solid data and analytical literacy to make better decisions is estimated at a further 150,000, such as those required for roles like Business Manager and Business Analyst. 

Even when the overall gap is narrowed, a shortage of talent with the right skills will persist unless existing academic and training curriculum are expanded to better meet employers’ needs. The Consortium believes that the talent gap is constraining Canada’s ability to innovate, compete, and grow the economy, and advises that industry, government, and academia must collaborate and start taking action now. 

Working with senior information technology and information management leaders in Canada, the Consortium has developed six strategies, presented in this paper, to help close the country’s big data and analytics talent gap.

Download the White Paper

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Pursuant to Section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (“FIPPA”), the information on this form is collected under the authority of the Ryerson University Act and is needed to identify interest in Canada’s Big Data Consortium and other related or consistent purposes. All personal information that is collected is used, stored, and destroyed in accordance with Ryerson University’s Information Protection and Access Policy. If you have questions about the collection, use and disclosure of this information by Ryerson University please contact the Office of the Provost, 350 Victoria Street, M5B 2K3, 416-979-5066,


As the Consortium continues to move forward in tackling Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap, it invites interested participants to join in its efforts to help ensure that Canada continues to innovate and grow economically.

For more information, please contact:

Closing Canada's Big Data Talent Gap white paper

White Paper Summary


We would like to thank the following organizations for their leadership and in-kind contributions to Canada’s Big Data Consortium, Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap Study, and to this paper, “Closing Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap”:

Canada’s Big Data Talent Gap Study Contributors

Industry and
Industry Associations

Canadian Electricity Association

Cineplex Odeon Corporation

CIO Association of Canada


Information Technology Association of Canada

SAS Institute Inc.

TMX Group Inc.

Workplace Safety and Insurance Board



Government of Canada

Government of Ontario



Concordia University

Dalhousie University

Ryerson University

Simon Fraser University
Contact: Dr. Fred Popowich
Professor and Associate Director Research and Industrial Relations, School of Computing Science
Director, SFU Professional Master’s Program in Big Data

Project Contact

For more information regarding Canada’s Big Data Consortium and the Big Data Talent Gap Study, please contact project co-leads:

Gerri Sinclair and Ayse Bener
Office of the Provost and Vice-President Academic
Ryerson University