Our vision: by 2030, Canada will have one of the most robust national AI ecosystems in the world, founded upon scientific excellence, high-quality training and deep talent pools, public-private collaboration and our strong values of advancing AI technologies to bring positive social, economic and environmental benefits for people and the planet.
Here are some facts and figures that demonstrate our success so far.
Canada’s Position in AI:
4th on the Global AI Index (behind the US, China, UK; ahead of Israel, Singapore, and all other G7 nations)1, measuring AI investment, innovation and implementation.
5th on Stanford’s Global AI Vibrancy Tool (still ahead of all G7 nations except US & UK)2, measuring outputs in R&D and economic impact.
Tech Jobs and Talent:
Canada is 2nd in the world in AI hiring according to Stanford’s Global AI Vibrancy Tool.2
Across the US & Canada, two Canadian markets Vancouver (44%) and Toronto (37%), had the most high-tech job growth in 2020 and 2021 combined, with Calgary, Waterloo and Ottawa flagged as the top 3 tech markets to watch.3
Canada has the third largest pool of top-tier AI researchers in the world, and boasts 10% of the world’s most elite (top 0.5%) researchers, second only to the US.4
Canada boasts more than 1,200 AI startup companies,5 this number more than doubled since 2018.
Canadian AI startups generated $1.5B in venture capital funding in 2021.6
5 Canadian companies made the 2022 CBInsights 7 list of the top 100 most promising AI startups around the world; third only to the US (73) and the UK (8), and ahead of other tech powerhouses (China: 4; Germany: 2; Israel: 4).
Canada has generated 21 “unicorns” (companies that reach a $1B valuation without being listed on the stock market) since 2010, with 19 currently operating; all of which are tech companies deploying AI.8
CIFAR, Amii, Mila and the Vector Institute had formal partnerships with 277 distinct companies in 2021-22, with the majority (60%) being small and medium-sized Canadian firms; the remainder were with large Canadian (20%) or multinational firms (20%).
Canada CIFAR AI Chairs have been awarded more than 500 patents by the US Patent Office for their lifetime of work.
According to the World Intellectual Property Organization, 743 patent applications in machine learning were made by Canadian inventors in 2022.9
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) issued 377 machine learning patents in 2022;10 and AI applications to CIPO have grown exponentially since 2017.2
Foreign Participation in the Ecosystem:
Between March 2017 and April 2022, there were more than 80 AI and tech-related announcements about investments in Canada.
Only a small number (15%) of Canada CIFAR AI Chairs spend more than half their time out of academia working in private sector AI labs.
CIFAR is a registered charitable organization supported by the governments of Canada, Alberta and Quebec, as well as foundations, individuals, corporations and Canadian and international partner organizations.