IDEaS Economic Impact

Over and above solving Canada’s toughest defence and security challenges, the IDEaS program supports the Canadian innovation community in parallel to bolstering defence capabilities. As such, exploring and tracking the economic and fiscal impact of the program on Canadian innovators was an intrinsic part of the work we’ve undertaken this past year.

Since its launch, the IDEaS program has invested over $185.4 million into 450 projects across our 5 funding elements: Competitive Projects, Innovation Networks, Contests, Sandboxes and Test Drives. In itself, the average investment per project is approximately $312,000.

The impact of this investment has been nothing short of extraordinary. In fact, the funding from IDEaS helped maintain or create an estimated 526 jobs annually, and contributed more than $219 million to the cumulative Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the Canadian economy.

Over the past year the program shifted its gears, showcasing just how adaptable and resourceful its structure could be should crisis arise. Despite the hardships created by the pandemic, the IDEaS program was able to quickly release challenges and fund DND/CAF-specific projects related to COVID-19 and adapt to the new reality. While our country was at a standstill, the IDEaS team worked tirelessly to ensure Canadian innovators were given a chance to work when many could not. In addition to the program’s regular operations, nearly $2.5 million was invested into three promising COVID-19 technologies produced by Canadians for Canadians.

Supporting state-of-the-art solutions in the fight against COVID-19 and future pandemic responses is an ongoing initiative. In IDEaS, we strive to support the innovation community and the Canadian economy, much like the CAF strives to protect and serve our country.

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