Study of Innovative and Promising Practices Within the Immigrant Settlement Sector

The settlement sector, across much of Canada, delivers programs on a fee-for-service basis financed by government.  This arrangement has resulted in chronic underinvestment by the sector in intellectual activities such as program research, analysis and evaluation. Service provider agencies generally lack the fiscal room to conduct detailed analyses of their actions, much less to compare those actions to those of other agencies across the country.  The result is that excellent local initiatives suffer from ‘locked-in syndrome,’ and the sector as a whole lacks an effective strategy for sharing information efficiently and for learning from each other. Both this study and an earlier companion piece maintain that there exists a shared interest by governments and by settlement organizations in strengthening the sector through investments in its capacity to analyze and innovate.  The present study develops a methodology for achieving this goal and for creating a sector-led innovation strategy.

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