Ottawa, September 28, 2022—Smart city initiatives have multiplied across Canada and their success ultimately depends on attracting and retaining qualified talent with the right technical and human skills to navigate these complex projects.

A new three-report series wraps up ICTC’s multi-year project on smart cities. Collectively, the reports explore developments, trends, and best practices to guide smart city projects. Notably, the reports detail the roles and technical and human skills needed by these projects, as well as the sought-after academic backgrounds and education programs that can lead to smart city occupations.

The reports are based on surveys totalling over 2,400 respondents, multiple roundtables from cities across Canada, and conversations with 47 subject matter experts, educators, and municipalities. The findings address key issues on both the demand and supply side. The reports are therefore divided into three reports: Talent Supply, Talent Demand, and Technical.

Talent Supply:

Bringing a “Smart City” to Life: Understanding Talent Development, Attraction, and Retention

This report looks at the key building blocks of a smart city—first-time entrants to the workforce, migration, the ability of smart cities to attract skilled workers from within and outside Canada, and other factors affecting labour supply, such as career transitions, re-entries to the workforce, and freelance and gig workers. It identifies smart cities-related occupations and pathways to smart city occupations; discusses workforce diversity in smart cities occupations, the rise of remote work, municipal development best practices.

Talent Demand:

Moving Toward an Inclusive Smart Economy for Canada: The Human Talent Engine that Powers Smarter Cities


Identifies changing labour demand related to municipal projects in energy and environment, mobility, infrastructure, health and wellbeing, government, and the regulatory system; includes a discussion of municipal motivations and challenges related to smart city project implementation; key discussions of environmental and equity-motivated smart city projects, project return on investment, measuring project success, privacy regulation; details in-demand smart city roles and technical and human/soft skills that workers require.

Technical Supplement:

Labour Market Forecasts for Canada’s Inclusive Smart Economy

This report details the quantitative analysis of economic and labour market data, and short- and long-term forecasts for the demand and supply of labour for key occupations and skills in Canadian smart cities.

“The promise of smart cities hinges on its ability to attract and retain top talent. This new three-report series provides an in-depth analysis of the talent supply and demand, as well as the skills necessary to enable a greener, more innovative, and equitable labour market.” —Namir Anani, ICTC President and CEO

The Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC) is a not-for-profit, national centre of expertise for strengthening Canada’s digital advantage in a global economy. Through trusted research, practical policy advice, and creative capacity-building programs, ICTC fosters globally competitive Canadian industries enabled by innovative and diverse digital talent. In partnership with an expansive network of industry leaders, academic partners, and policy makers from across Canada, ICTC has empowered a robust and inclusive digital economy for over 30 years.

To arrange an interview on this study or other media inquiries, please contact Paul Stastny at @email or 403.351.0138 Ext. 823.

This study was funded by in part by the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Initiatives program.

A copy of the Talent Supply report can be accessed here.

A copy of the Talent Demand report can be accessed here.

A copy of the Technical Supplement can be accessed here.

A French language press release of this report is here.