Creso quoted in the Hill Times on the SR&ED program

Screen Shot 2017-09-23 at 11.23.08 AMCreso was quoted in the story With key tax credit under microscope, biotech firms say it should stay, be improved. The article discusses the SR&ED program from the perspective of biotech companies. Excerpt:

Creso Sá, a professor with the University of Toronto’s Centre for the Study of Canadian and International Higher Education, isn’t a fan of SR&ED, noting its size, complexity, and lack of measurable impact. He said comparable economies generally have a mix of direct and indirect support… [Read full article]

What is driving the internationalization of Canadian higher education?


Creso wrote for University World News on his talk at the World Education Services and Boston College Center for International Higher Education Summer Seminar “International Education in a New Political Climate”, held on 22-23 June 2017 at Boston College.


Many believe that this is Canada’s moment – an opportunity to increase the inflow of international talent into Canadian higher education. Politics and economics have been part of this narrative.

Politically, the rise of neo-nationalist populism tied to xenophobic sentiment in the United States and the United Kingdom have cast Canada in a bright light. Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government has vocally espoused Canada’s openness to the world, very publicly welcoming refugees since last year while the United States, the United Kingdom and parts of Europe recoiled from the influx of immigrants. Full article

Safe spaces could endanger funding for Canadian universities

Screenshot from 2017-04-20 12-36-19Creso wrote an op-ed for Times Higher Education on Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer’s proposal to withold federal research funding from universities that do not support free speech on campus.

Canada’s opposition Conservative Party elected a new leader at the end of May. Andrew Scheer, a young career politician, has been consistently described as a friendlier version of Stephen Harper, the former prime minister whose fractious relationship with scientists, particularly over the environment, has been well documented.

But for all the moderation ascribed to him – understandable in the context of a party whose ranks include a couple of embarrassingly obvious Donald Trump impersonators – one of his policy positions is “no free speech on campus means no federal grants”. Read full text.

Emma Sabzalieva awarded a Vanier Scholarship

Emma Sabzalieva was awarded a Vanier Scholarship for the remainder of her PhD studies. Her project is titled How does higher education respond to major institutional change? The fall of the Soviet Union and universities in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

A holder of a United Kingdom’s Leverhulme Trust scholarship for the first two years of her program, Emma has recently defended her thesis proposal and will soon be conducting her fieldwork in Central Asia.

Congratulations Emma!


Entrepreneurship Learning Panel at Congress 2017

screen-shot-2017-05-27-at-1-20-11-pm.pngCreso Sá organized a panel on The Ecology of Entrepreneurship Learning in Higher Education, to be held at Congress 2017.

Day/time: Tuesday, 14:30 – 15:45

Place: Eric Pallin Hall (EPH) 142, Ryerson University

The Symposium will comprehend four interactive sessions:

1. How do entrepreneurship programs promote themselves?

Roger Millian, Marc Gurrisi | University of Toronto

In this session, participants will consider the attributes and value propositions entrepreneurship programs articulate to students through their promotional materials.

2. Why do students join entrepreneurship programs and what do they seek to achieve?

Donna Heslin | University of Toronto-Mississauga

This session will present findings of a survey of students participating in entrepreneurship programs in colleges and universities. The survey investigates the reasons why students join entrepreneurship programs, as well as the outcomes they intend to achieve

3. The role of experiential learning in entrepreneurship programs

Christopher Holt | University of Toronto

This session will engage participants in a discussion about the role of experiential learning in the curriculum of entrepreneurship degree programs, based on a review of current practice in Ontario universities and colleges. Participants will contemplate how different models of experiential learning have been embedded in the curriculum.

4. Assessing entrepreneurship learning outcomes

Linda Vranic, Alon Eisenstein & Emina Veletanlic | Impact Centre, University of Toronto

This session will engage participants in a discussion on structured assessments of learning outcomes from participation in non-curricular entrepreneurship activities. The discussion will center on the design and implementation of assessment tools and how to ensure that we are preparing students for the opportunities that lie ahead, both nationally and globally.

Superclusters: Rhetoric and Reality

Creso wrote on the recently announced superclusters initiative in the CIHE Blog:

cihe-colors-logo-01Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains announced the federal government’s “superclusters” initiative yesterday. This had been in the works for a while. We already knew that the idea was to support a handful of projects across the country involving industry and universities in technology sectors deemed to hold high innovation potential, which Canada could excel on. We also knew that the government had earmarked $950 million for this initiative, hoping to create jobs, launch new firms, and help them scale. Read full text.

Chris Holt presents at the CCSBE conference

Chris Holccsbe logot presented the paper the “Institutionalization of Entrepreneurship Education in Ontario”, co-authored with Creso Sá, at the 2017 conference of the Canadian Council of Small Business and Entrepreneurship. The conference took place at Laval University, Quebec City.

The paper argues that Experiential Learning Theory provides a useful foundation to understand how different modalities of entrepreneurship education support students’ learning. It proposes a framework encompassing curricular and co-curricular learning opportunities currently available in Ontario colleges and universities.

Litmus test for science funding

Screenshot from 2017-04-20 12-36-19Creso published an op-ed in the Times Higher Education on the release of the Naylor Report and what it means to science policy in Canada.

When it won the Canadian general election in late 2015, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s incoming Liberal government took on an unabashedly pro-science stance that set it apart from the previous Conservative administration under Stephen Harper. See full text

Science, technology and innovation: A new narrative is needed

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 10.33.23 PMCreso published an op-ed in the Globe and Mail on the need for new thinking to inform science policy in Canada.

The idea that science is inextricably linked to technological progress is now taken for granted.

Historical evidence is voluminous and examples abound all around us, from satellites that keep our GPS devices working to medical treatments that cure diseases that have victimized millions in the past. This idea has unfortunately been drastically simplified to fit a global narrative of innovation that has shaped science policy in Canada and internationally. See Full Article

The politics of the great brain race

HENew paper by Creso and Emma Sabzalieva examines the policy and politics around international student recruitment in higher education in four Anglophone countries.

As the number of globally mobile students has expanded, governments are assumed to be consistently and intentionally competing for talent, in what has been called a “great brain race”. While the notion of competition has become dominant, there is little evidence on long-term policy dynamics in this field, not only across jurisdictions but also over time. This paper addresses this  through a longitudinal analysis of the politics and public policies impacting international students in four major recruiting countries—Australia, Canada, England and the USA.

Through this comparative analysis of the period 2000 to 2016, the study demonstrate that international student numbers across the jurisdictions have grown steadily but that this appears to be decoupled from political and policy changes.

Creating a world-class university in Central Asia

captureA new paper by Emma Sabzalieva looks at the policies of the Kazakhstani government towards a recently founded institution, Nazarbayev University. The government seeks to position Kazakhstan as a credible global knowledge economy, but also use the university as a means of fulfilling domestic nation-building objectives. The paper discusses what it means to be a world-class university in this Central Asian country. Access the full paper here.

How can open data inform public policy?

captureCreso and Julieta Grieco published “Open Data for Science, Policy, and the Public Good”, which examines the unlikely case of Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research’s transition toward an open data model. The paper tackles this case through a political and cultural lens pertaining to Brazil’s history of science-policy dialogue and public accessibility of open data. The case shows the benefits and challenges of developing such open data systems, and highlights the various forms of accessibility involved in making data available to the public.

Emma Sabzalieva presents at CHER 2016

screen-shot-2016-10-15-at-5-57-27-pmLast month, Emma Sabzalieva presented the paper The politics of the international brain race, co-authored with Creso Sá, at the annual conference of the Consortium of Higher Education Researchers (CHER) at the University of Cambridge.

The paper draws on findings from the project Public Policy and the Attraction of International Postsecondary Students, supported by the Ontario Human Capital and Innovation Research Fund.

The conference took place at Queen’s College, from 5-7 September, 2016.