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From left to right: Benoit Dostie (HEC Montréal, CIRANO and QICSS), Carole Vincent (QICSS), Nathalie de Marcellis-Warin (Polytechnique Montréal and CIRANO), Jean-Yves Duclos (Minister of Families, Children and Social Development)
As part of the 87th Congress of the Association Francophone pour le Savoir (ACFAS), the conference, organized by the Center for Interuniversity Research and Analysis of Organizations (CIRANO) and the Quebec inter-University Centre for Social Statistics (QICSS), "Data Access: A Pillar for Informed Public Policy", was held on May 27 in Gatineau.
Nathalie de Marcellis-Warin, Full Professor at Polytechnique Montréal and CEO of CIRANO, Benoit Dostie, Professor at HEC Montréal, CIRANO Fellow and Academic Director of the QICSS, and Carole Vincent, Economist, Coordinator of Strategic Planning at the QICSS, were responsible for this conference.
This conference shed new light on the importance of access to quality data to inform public policy decision-making. It brought together experts from the academic and research communities within public administrations, but also key players in public policy decision-making, to offer critical and strategic reflection on these important issues.
Mylène Deschenes, Director of Ethical and Legal Affairs at the Fonds de recherche du Québec, made the opening presentation of the symposium on the theme "For a better access to data".
Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, highlighted the role of data and the importance of university research in producing better public policy during the keynote address.
Pierre Therrien (Director, Economic Research, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada), a member of CIRANO's Board of Directors, intervened in the "The importance of data access" block, with Ron Gravel (Statistics Canada) and Ghyslaine Neill (Institut de la statistique du Québec).
Carole Vincent chaired the session on "Data as a source of public policy improvement" during which Catherine Haeck, Professor at Université du Québec à Montréal and CIRANO Fellow, presented the data and analyses that could be done on the relationship between class size and cognitive skills of kindergarten children and highlighted the importance of accessing high quality micro-data. Dans ce même bloc, Guy Lacroix, Full Professor at HEC Montréal and CIRANO Fellow, explained that social science research will increasingly rely on administrative data, which poses challenges in terms of adequate training in statistical methods, database matching, computing power, etc. Roxane Borgès Da Silva, Associate Professor at Université de Montréal and CIRANO Fellow, presented the health indicators available on the CIRANO website. Abel Brodeur (University of Ottawa) explained the importance of accessing high quality micro-data.
Nathalie de Marcellis-Warin moderated the panel "Facilitating access to data: how and for what purposes?" with Benoit Dostie, Yves Gingras (Director General of Evaluation, Employment and Social Development Canada) and Jimmy Baulne (Institut de la statistique du Québec).