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Leading Canadian Think Tank Closes Its Doors

November 12, 2009

For immediate release

Leading Canadian Think Tank Closes Its Doors

Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN) will cease to exist after 15 years of quality independent public policy research

(Ottawa 10/27/09) Canada is losing one of its leading independent public policy think tanks due to a lack of long-term funding commitment from governments and other resources. It is with sadness that I must announce that after 15 years of quality public policy research, Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN) is no longer financially viable and will cease operations, announced Dr. Sharon Manson Singer, President of CPRN.

CPRN has been recognized nationally and internationally as a champion of citizen engagement and non-partisan socio-economic public policy research and analysis and has produced a wealth of quality evidence-based publications on a wide variety of issues. This is a sad day for Canada, says Dr. Manson Singer. Independent research is an essential component of good public policy-making. Canada cannot afford to lose this capacity which has been declining in recent years.

CPRN has worked extensively in the areas of social innovation, citizenship, diversity and Canadian values, productivity and skills, health and the environment, and may be most widely known for championing deliberative dialogues and consultations with a range of Canadians from coast to coast to coast on issues that affect them deeply. CPRN was commissioned to undertake the consultations with Canadians that informed the Romanow report (Building on Values: The Future of Health Care in Canada), and was selected to produce a series of youth consultations on behalf of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador that helped to inform their Youth Retention and Attraction Strategy.

CPRN is past recipient of the Kroeger Award in Public Discourse for excellence in contributing to the quality of public debate in Canada. Over the years CPRN has produced several hundred quality publications on public policy and offered these reports and research documents to governments, policy-makers, academics and other interested stakeholders, free-of-charge on their website, where they have recorded more than 10 million downloads. Most popular CPRN publications include extensive writings on aboriginal education, adult workers and literacy, financial literacy, vulnerable workers, social innovation and social housing policy. Recent publication series on Youth Engagement in Civic and Democratic Life, and Pathways for Youth to the Labour Market have also garnered much acclaim.

We are proud of the significant achievements of CPRN over the last decade and a half, says Courtney Pratt, Chair of the Board of Directors for CPRN, and we would like to sincerely thank the staff, the members and supporters of CPRN for working together to help make a better Canada.

CPRN was founded in 1994 by Judith Maxwell, who was formerly the Chair of the Economic Council of Canada. From its inception, CPRN had a significant long-term financial commitment from the federal government, along with project funding from other levels of government. In 2006, however, the federal governments funding commitment was discontinued. Despite this setback, CPRN continued to operate, undertaking dozens of important policy initiatives funded by numerous stakeholders. Unfortunately, says Manson Singer, in these tough economic times, without a steady and long-term financial commitment, an independent, non-partisan organization like CPRN is no longer viable.

CPRN will officially close its doors on December 23, 2009. In the final weeks of operation, CPRN will be dedicated to completing existing obligations to its funders, members, supporters and employees. CPRN currently employs more than 22 full and part-time staff, and has 16 Research Associates and Fellows located across the country.

For media interviews, please contact:
Kathleen OGrady
Canadian Policy Research Networks (CPRN)
mobile. 514.886.2526


For more information contact:
Kathleen O'Grady
Director of Communications
Canadian Policy Research Networks
Phone: 514-886-2526

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