Projects

Assessing the Aurora Business Leadership Program

RDI is providing an arm’s-length assessment of the success of the Aurora Project, which recruits newcomer entrepreneurs in Westman and assists them through the process of developing and launching their businesses. Over the course of this two-year project, annual reports will add value to the Aurora Project’s learning modules and assess client perceptions of the overall impact of the program on their business and their identity. A final report in 2021 will provide key findings on the project’s success, as well as its economic, financial, and social impacts. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) provided support for this project via the Aurora Project.
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Look North Indigenous Economy Report

With 67% of Manitoba’s land area and 6% of its population, northern Manitoba has been a long-term net contributor to the economic prosperity of all Manitoba, as the source of some of the province’s richest natural resources and tourism icons. In northern Manitoba, 73% of the population self-identifies as Indigenous and 52% of the population lives on a First Nation. And yet, little is known about how and how much Indigenous people are contributing to the economy of the North and to all of Manitoba. This report quantifies spending amounts by Indigenous people in northern Manitoba in order to calculate their contributions to the provincial economy and the economy of the North, and it calculates the GDP of northern Manitoba for the first time.
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Indigenous Contributions to the Manitoba Economy

$9.3 billion. That’s the amount that Indigenous people in Manitoba spend each year—through Indigenous businesses, governments, household spending, and spending on infrastructure. The bulk of that spending is by the over 700 Indigenous businesses in the province. How does all this spending impact the economy? The economic impact of Indigenous people in Manitoba can be measured in four ways: they create and maintain over 35,700 jobs, contribute $2.3 billion to Manitoba’s GDP, provide $1.1 billion in wages and salaries to workers, and contribute $231 million in taxes to the federal and provincial governments. The Indigenous contribution to Manitoba’s GDP is more than either manufacturing, accommodations and food services, or mining and oil and gas extraction.
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Watch a short video of the report launch

Motivation of SMEs in hiring newcomers

Continuing with its past investigations into rural immigration, RDI has undertaken a research project focused on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) on the Prairies that hire newcomers. The project seeks to understand the motivations of business owners in hiring those newcomers and the benefits and costs of hiring them from the business owners’ point of view.

To achieve these goals, the project team has already met with members of the Prairie provinces’ umbrella settlement organizations (MANSO, SAISIA, and AAISA) to strategize on recruiting SMEs by getting leads from local Settlement Service Provider Organizations (SPOs).
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International Comparative Rural Policies Studies (ICRPS)

The ICRPS program aims to create a high-level, international, inter-disciplinary, and research-based learning environment for future leaders in rural policy development, research, teaching, and practice. The program provides a post-graduate program in comparative rural policy studies at post-secondary educational institutions in North America and the European Union. ICRPS hosts an intensive two-week summer program attended by graduate students, faculty, and policy analysts.
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