Area: Labour Economics
Region: Province of Quebec
Year: 2019-2020
Client : MEES

The place of artificial intelligence in the professions: issues for college education

Artificial intelligence (AI) is seen by most Canadian experts as the greatest force of change in the labour market in the coming years. Its effects will surpass those of an aging population and the green turn of Canadian businesses. In order to prepare for the AI-related transformation of the labour market, the Ministère de l'Éducation et de l'Enseignement supérieur (MEES) wanted to document the effect of AI on occupations. The objectives of this study were to define artificial intelligence and its key concepts, to draw a portrait of AI in Canada and Quebec, to determine the current and future labour needs in AI, and to detect the college-level occupations (existing or for which a demand could be expected) that can be put to good use in companies that are working in AI or that plan to adopt AI in the future.

The realization of this study was entrusted to Groupe DDM. The mandate was divided into the following phases:

  • Literature review
  • Interviews with strategic AI actors in Quebec
  • Interviews with potential AI users within different economic sectors in Quebec
  • Online survey
  • Findings and avenues for reflection

In the end, about ten avenues and reflections and findings were identified. They show that Quebec is lagging behind in the adoption of artificial intelligence in its industries and in its shift towards automation, and that the demand for college-level professions in AI is not present, since skills in mathematics at the graduate level are required in this field.

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