Socio-Economic Impacts of Broadband & ICT Investments in Northern Ontario
This was a multi-faceted study on the socio-economic impacts of FedNorís broadband and ICT investments in Timmins, Ontario and the surrounding Cochrane District. A number of FedNor projects were included in the study, including ICT investments relevant to health care, education, and business. The objective of the research was to determine the effectiveness of FedNor investments, and to provide a basis for strategic decision making in the future. The research involved four stages: a set of in-depth interviews, stakeholder surveys, follow-up interviews, and an economic Input-Output simulation. Phoenix was responsible for the in-depth interviews and surveys, while Strategic Networks Group directed the overall study and undertook the follow-up interviews and economic impacts analyses. FedNor is the federal economic development agency for Northern Ontario.
A set of 15 in-depth interviews and five surveys were undertaken with key stakeholders. The in-depth interviews were used to help design the surveys and data collection processes to ensure that the right questions were asked to the right people, and that the data collection was as effective and efficient as possible. The five groups of stakeholders surveyed were NORrad-P.A.C.S. users (i.e. physicians, radiologists and diagnostic imaging technicians in the North-east Ontario region), Northern College faculty and students, TeleTech employees, and NEOnet stakeholders. Different questionnaires were used for each group. All surveys were self-administered with drop-box, fax, or email collection. Sample sizes ranged from 17-273, and response rates from 21-53%.