B.C. Today: Future of B.C.'s office of the innovation commissioner uncertain

February 6, 2020
Colin Wong

Jock Finlayson, the Business Council of B.C.’s executive vice-president and chief policy officer, said Winter had been an asset to the business community.

“It's good to have an innovation commissioner,” he told B.C. Today, saying the post “provided another pathway for advice to be provided to the minister and cabinet more generally.”

B.C. relies heavily on federal funding to support its innovation programs — something Finlayson says Winter knew and could leverage through his “good understanding of the federal picture” and “deep roots” in both the B.C. business community and academia.

Finalyson believes the current government should be doing more to encourage innovation.

“I would say a strong policy agenda around economic development, innovation and productivity has been lacking from this government,” he said, noting its focus on environmental concerns and climate change action as well as reconciliation with Indigenous peoples and tackling poverty.

“I'm not critical of any of that, but I'm just saying what has been missing up until now I think is the fourth pillar,” he told B.C. Today. “Those are the first three pillars, but the fourth pillar would be an economic development agenda for the province — and that would include a strong focus on innovation and productivity.”

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