Digital Economy Talent Supply

Indigenous Peoples of Canada

Published by ICTC, June 2017

Indigenous people living in Canada comprise a core, but underrepresented, part of the digital economy. In 2016, more than 10,300 (1.2%) Indigenous peoples were employed in ICT jobs in Canada’s digital economy. The unemployment rate for Indigenous ICT professionals in 2016 was approximately 2.8%, a figure that is slightly higher than the overall ICT unemployment rate of 2.6%, but markedly lower than the unemployment rate for Indigenous peoples in the overall economy (12.3%). Showing positive growth since the 2008 global recession, the proportion of Indigenous peoples employed in the digital economy has increased steadily each year.

Indigenous ICT professionals are a diverse and educated group:

  • 47% of Indigenous ICT professionals identify as First Nations, 47% are Métis, 2% are Inuit, 2% are from another Indigenous background, and 0.45% identify as more than one of these groups.
  • Indigenous ICT professionals are younger than the non-Indigenous ICT workforce: 8.2% of the Indigenous ICT workforce is between 15 to 24 years of age and 29.3% is between 25 to 34 years of age.
  • Women represent about 27% of the Indigenous ICT workforce.
  • About one-third of the Indigenous ICT workforce has a university degree, and 36.9% possess a college or CEGEP diploma.

The report explores a variety of research and policy recommendations designed to promote Indigenous ICT talent participation in Canada.

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Researched and written by Alexandra Cutean (Senior Director, Research & Policy) with generous support from the ICTC Research & Policy team.

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