chapter  2
18 Pages

Regional development in Canada

Eras and evolution
BySarah-Patricia Breen, Sean Markey, Bill Reimer

Understanding the past context of regionalism in Canada provides an important basis for interpreting and improving current and future policies and practices. The purpose of this chapter is to present a framework of four eras that reflect significant historical differences in regional development policy in post-colonial Canada: nation-building, intervention, restructuring, and negotiation. Each of these eras is a reflection of a complex interplay of political ideologies, development theories, policy goals, external forces, and regional conditions, all set within evolving but significantly different national political economic contexts. We then examine the ways in which these eras are reflected in the policies of the four case study provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, Québec, and Newfoundland and Labrador. The analysis is organized using four themes that help to differentiate and understand provincial policy directions: their institutional legacies, vision, sub-provincial organization, and post-WWII shortcomings. This research identifies some of the provincial-level features that should be considered when attempting the transfer, adaptation, and application of lessons from one province to another.