New Brunswick's Secret to Economic Growth? Social Labs

No workers? Demographics askew? New Brunswick’s social lab has answers

Why It Matters

Labs for designing, developing, trying, and re-trying new interventions are growing across Canada. Only five years ago, there were three — now there are more than 60. Their proliferation means that they are gaining the social licence, and that their approaches are gaining traction.

The future of New Brunswick relies on people who have never heard of the small eastern Canadian province. Here, immigration is the name of game when it comes to economic growth, specifically for finding workers to support the growth of new and established businesses.

The province has a population of 747,101 that has been declining annually, exacerbated by the fact that New Brunswick has a rapidly aging population.

Since 2013, the province has lost more than 11,000 workers, meaning novel approaches are needed to attract and retain new Canadians to the province.

The social lab process has been the most recent approach to address the challenges that go along with large-scale immigration.

It mixes rapid iteration, experimentation, and consultation to find meaningful solutions to large-scale problems.

New Brunswick

Want to continue reading? Try a Future of Good membership with a 14-day free trial.