The Ocean Supercluster – Navigating Innovation Together

Andrea Shakespeare, Kevin Landry and Matthew Jacobs

The Canadian government has placed itself in the “global innovation race”. In response to the demands for innovation, the Canadian government has established the Innovation Superclusters Initiative which is investing up to $950 million by 2022 to accelerate the growth and development business-led innovation superclusters. This influx of capital means opportunity for increased research, development, joint ventures and Technology Leadership Projects. Entrants and project hopefuls should be mindful of eligibility requirements.

What is a cluster?

Clusters are a concentrated area of large and small companies, post-secondary and other research institutions.

What is a supercluster?

Superclusters build on the advantages of a cluster. Comparatively, these innovation hotbeds have stronger connections, a long-term competitive advantage, global brand recognition and an outsized positive impact on job creation and economic growth.

What are Canada’s superclusters?

There are five superclusters in Canada:

  1. Digital Technology Supercluster
  2. Protein Industries Supercluster
  3. Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster
  4. AI-Powered Supply Chains Supercluster (SCALE.AI)
  5. Ocean Supercluster

Ocean Supercluster investment

The Canadian government announced a commitment to invest $153 million towards the Ocean Supercluster, which will be matched dollar for dollar by the private sector, bringing the total investment to over $300 million,  in the Atlantic Canada–based Ocean Supercluster, a group of businesses, post-secondary institutions and non-profits working together to accelerate innovation and sustainable economic growth from Canada’s oceans. This investment is in the form of grants, non-repayable contributions.

What is the Ocean Supercluster?

Vision: Grow the ocean economy into one of the most significant, sustainable and valuable segments of Canada’s economy.

Mission statement: Build an innovation-driven ecosystem in which companies across different ocean value chains are well-connected to suppliers of enabling technologies. This will be achieved by developing a shared innovation roadmap, and a program of cluster building activities to improve connections, build new digital capabilities, recruit and develop talent and solve shared challenges.

The objectives: In order to achieve its vision and mission, the Ocean Supercluster will:

  • Strengthen links between ocean-based value chains and providers of enabling technologies
  • Develop, deploy and export innovative technology platforms applicable to multiple ocean industries
  • Fill capability gaps in the innovation ecosystem through the attraction, recruitment, training and retention of diverse, highly qualified personnel
  • Extend the global reach, attraction, network and market opportunities for Ocean Supercluster partners
  • Address global challenges related to sustainability, reducing carbon foot-print and improving energy efficiency

Regional concentration: Atlantic Canada

Think innovation

At Stewart McKelvey, we have been closely involved with the Innovation Superclusters Initiative and understand the opportunities this will provide to our clients. Stewart McKelvey has over 30 years of leadership as Atlantic Canada’s first and largest regional law firm. The Ocean Supercluster is primarily concentrated in Atlantic Canada; waters, in which Stewart McKelvey has navigational expertise. With our forward thinking approach, we can navigate the rough Superclusters waters with our clients. Together, we can bring innovation to application.


This update is intended for general information only. If you have questions about the above, please contact Andrea Shakespeare, Kevin Landry or Matthew Jacobs.

 

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