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Gross domestic expenditures on research and development, 1997 to 2006 historical, 2007, 2008 intentions

  1. Total research and development (R&D) spending is anticipated to remain near $29 billion (current dollars) in 2008, where it has been since 2006. (Table 1-1).
  2. Since 2006 there has been a downward trend in the reporting of constant dollar gross domestic expenditures. In 2007 there is an anticipated 2.4% decline in spending to $24.8 billion (constant dollars). (Table 1-1).
  3. The share of R&D expenditures have remained relatively consistent over time among the six sectors of: federal government, provincial governments, provincial research organizations, business enterprises, higher education, and private non-profit organizations.
  4. The business enterprise sector continues to hold over half the share of total R&D performance at $16.3 billion (current dollars), followed by higher education at one-third or $9.8 billion (Table 1-2). Combined, these two sectors should continue to perform 90% of total R&D in 2008, as they have since 2003.
  5. Federal government R&D performance is anticipated to remain at $2.5 billion (current dollars).
  6. The private non-profit sector continues to be a small R&D performer while increasing its share of R&D funding from 2.2% in 1999 to an expected 2.9% in 2008 (Table 1-2).
  7. The business enterprise sector is also the largest funding sector of R&D anticipating to spend $14.4 billion (current dollars) in 2008. Comparatively for the second largest funding sector, the federal government, funding levels are expected to be close to the previous year at $5.3 billion (current dollars) (Table 1-2).
  8. Funding of R&D by foreign organizations has levelled off in recent years at 9.0% of total funding down from 17.4% in 2000 (Table 1-2).
  9. Provincial R&D spending data are available for 2006. R&D expenditures by province can be easily misinterpreted. The expenditures data are associated with the region of location of the R&D activities, however, caution should be used in assuming that all R&D expenditures actually occur in this location. For example, supplies and equipment may be purchased from other locations, and cross-provincial border labour mobility can occur particularly in the National Capital Region (NCR).
  10. In 2006, 70% of R&D expenditures took place in Ontario (44%) and Quebec (26%) (excludes NCR) (Table 2). Each of these two provinces surpass the national average ratio of 1.98 for gross domestic expenditure on research and development (GERD) to gross domestic product (GDP) (Table 2). The GERD/GDP ratio for Quebec at 2.70 and 2.27 for Ontario places these provinces at or above the 2.26 average for all Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) member countries in 2006 (OECD: Main Science and Technology Indicators, Vol 2008/1, p. 18).
  11. Ontario has maintained the lead with the highest provincial expenditure on R&D of $12.7 billion in current dollars (excludes NCR). One-half of total foreign funding occurs in Ontario and one-quarter of total Canada R&D funding comes from Ontario's business enterprise sector (Table 4-2).
  12. There are four leading R&D performing provinces - Quebec, Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia - where the business enterprise sector is the most important R&D performer. The remaining six provinces, with the lowest R&D expenditures, have the higher education sector as the most important R&D performer (Table 4-1).