Research Summary - The E‑Vulnerability Index

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

Official title: The E-Vulnerability Index

Author of report: Firouz Fallahi and Stéphane Gascon

Why this study

Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) is committed to service excellence for Canadians through modern service delivery. As part of this, we have greatly improved online/digital services over the past years. Yet, some people may face barriers to online services. We call them e-vulnerable. They could struggle to get services if other delivery channels adapted to their needs did not exist. To help serve all Canadians, we should know:

What we did

The E‑vulnerability Index (EVI) seeks to measure the extent of e‑vulnerability in the country. This tool sums up in a single score 3 key dimensions of what e-vulnerability is. These 3 dimensions reflect the extent to which individuals have:

To develop the EVI, researchers from ESDC relied on best practices from other countries around the world. Researchers used Statistics Canada’s data from the:

and calculated the EVI score for each Canadian aged 16 and over.

The EVI scores range from 0 to 100, where 0 means no vulnerability and 100 means extreme vulnerability. In other words, the higher the score is the greater the e-vulnerability is. We combined the individual EVI scores and analysed that for:

It is also possible to examine how the degree of e-vulnerability varies across urban and rural areas, provinces and other standard geographic areas such as Census sub-divisions. Finally, we calculated the EVI score for persons living within 50 km driving distance of each Service Canada points of service. We created different geographic maps to show the findings.

This helps to explain the results in support of meaningful and relevant policy analyses.

What we found

This research shows that:

What it means

The findings of this research will strengthen service delivery and digital policies through:

Overall, the findings show that a uniform strategy will not work in digital service delivery.

Contact us

Strategic and Service Policy Branch, Service Policy and Strategy Directorate, Service Research Division


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