What is Data Governance and Why is it Important for Canada?

  • By Marieme Chouki
    • May 25, 2023
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Data governance

Wondering why data governance is a hot topic in Canada? Data is the petroleum of the next industrial revolution, based on information technology in a digital economy whose economic entities are growing and whose profits are increasing through the acquisition of new data [1].

In the context of preparing the country for the digitization and the economic, political, and social movement of data, it is increasingly important for Canada to develop a comprehensive national data strategy that takes into account both the economic and non-economic dimensions of Big Data exploitation.

The first block motivates the debate by highlighting why data must be treated politically and economically: this is data governance. According to Gartner [2], “data governance is the establishment of decision rights and an accountability framework to ensure appropriate behavior in the evaluation, creation, use, and control of data and analytics.”

As with technological developments in multiple sectors, Canada has a comparative advantage in artificial intelligence. Canada’s Digital Charter identifies standardization as a tool to support innovation and ensure Canadian businesses remain globally competitive [3]. However, more confidential data than its 38 million people must be governed by its companies and researchers.

data governance

The pandemic was an opportunity for Canadian companies to invest in new technologies and increase the automation of its tasks to limit the interaction and spread of Covid-19 [4]. In this context, Susan Ariel Aaronson, an expert on digital protectionism in Canada and a researcher in the Global Economy Program, believes that the country must encourage the flow of data that feeds AI while protecting citizens and professionals from the misuse or unethical use of algorithms. [5].

Companies that process data, such as those that run internet search engines, social media, or digital shopping, have the most valuable shares in the financial markets. These companies are increasingly focused on big data and analytics research and development that can help develop a unified user view and provide actionable insights to key stakeholders as they move down the digital maturity curve.

However, before these companies can use their data to achieve their goals, they need to enrich their data with metadata that provides relevant instructions to improve management and governance, ensure compliance with evolving regulations, reduce the risk of privacy violations, and avoid the obstacles and uncertainties that arise from an incremental, wait-and-see approach that evolves in the context of fragmented litigation among fragmented litigation among well-funded private parties, whose interests reflect only a small subset of the diverse ecosystem that is emerging and evolving around data [6].

With support for investment from the Canadian government, the sector is poised to develop data security systems that enable successful “data governance” benchmarks that maintain or enhance Canada’s national identity.

Companies that are innovating data governance security systems are likely to be eligible for several funding programs including government grants, and SR&ED. Want to learn about funding opportunities for your project? Schedule a free consultation with one of our experts today!



Marieme Chouki
Marieme Chouki

R&D Consultant

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