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Management Response and Action Plan – Evaluation of ISED’s Involvement in the ITU, 2014-15 to 2018-19

From: Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The findings and recommendations of the Evaluation of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) were provided to the Engineering, Planning and Standards Branch and the Telecommunications and Internet Policy Branch of the Strategy and Innovation Policy Sector at Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED).  Management has been consulted and agrees with the findings included in this report and will take action to address all applicable recommendations by June 2021.

Recommendation Planned Action on the Recommendation Responsible Official (Position) Target Completion Date

ISED should maintain effective representation at the ITU, including increased emphasis on succession planning via increased training and development opportunities, enabling ISED officials to maintain influential roles at the ITU.

Management Response: Agreed

In advance of the start of each fiscal year, the Program undertakes a strategic approach in developing its ITU Work Plan / Strategy.  As part of this annual process, there is a comprehensive assessment of all ITU meetings, their alignment with Canadian priorities, and the type of participation required, including succession planning 

Planned Action: The Program will continue to develop its annual ITU Work Plan / Strategy, with a view to maintaining effective representation at the ITU and permitting Canada to achieve its desired outcomes.  Program managers will explore options to increase training and development opportunities to augment current succession planning, including: suggesting junior staff participate virtually in international meetings if travel is not feasible (noting the 6-hour time difference between Geneva & Ottawa); continue encouraging junior staff present their work (e.g., technical studies, etc.) at domestic preparatory meetings; and fielding questions from stakeholders and colleagues. 

Director General, Telecommunication Policy Branch and Director General, Engineering, Planning & Standards Branch

March 31, 2021

ISED should strengthen ongoing domestic engagement, including prior to ITU meetings, by allowing greater flexibility in the conference planning process, increasing outreach among potential stakeholders, and enabling timelier information sharing and delegation planning.

Management Response: Agreed

Domestic engagement is key in ISED's preparatory process. As noted in the evaluation report, ISED consults with stakeholders to better understand their needs and priorities, sometimes with competing needs and priorities that must be balanced.  When appropriately considered, these needs and priorities are incorporated into Canadian positions and advanced at the ITU.

Planned Action: Program managers will evaluate current preparatory processes with a view to strengthening them.  This will involve examining how to increase flexibility in our conference planning process (e.g., accepting written stakeholder positions as input to Canadian Preparatory Committee meetings), enable timelier information sharing (e.g., establishing and adhering to service delivery standards for the dissemination of post-meeting reports), and plan delegations as early as possible.  Program managers will also examine ways and means to increase potential stakeholders` involvement in the preparatory processes.  Specifically, a plan will be established to identify and reach out to potential Canadian stakeholders (e.g., domestic companies / organizations) that could benefit from and contribute to ISED's ITU preparatory processes.   

Director General, Telecommunication & Internet Policy Branch and Director General, Engineering, Planning & Standards Branch

March 31, 2021

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