The ambitious shared outcomes of the National Housing Strategy require innovative solutions at many levels and on an unprecedented scale. New methods of measuring and communicating housing affordability challenges, special housing needs and housing supply gaps are essential. Reliable indicators can help prioritize solving housing problems, share them with decision-makers and assess the results achieved.
This Solutions Lab seeks to create innovative methods for collecting, analysing and presenting housing data at municipal and neighbourhood levels. Those innovations apply to many housing solutions, providing better data and the tools for applying it on a local scale. The goal is to supply decision-makers with deep and accessible housing data, indicators and guidance to support evidence-based community decision-making.
3 Key Goals
Mobilize the expertise, services and influence of the Community Data Program and the Canadian Community Economic Development Network.
Develop methods of measuring and communicating housing affordability challenges, special needs and housing supply gaps relevant to local housing practitioners.
Inspire innovation for methods of data collection, analysis and presentation.
Project scope and expected outcomes
The Community Data Program (CDP) and its host, the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet), operate across Canada. They can mobilize expertise, services and influence among more than 500 member organizations nationally in urban, rural and remote communities. This Lab will leverage those member networks to increase the attention paid to housing-related evidence. It also will link that data to community economic development and poverty reduction efforts.
A series of online workshops
The Lab will organize online workshops composed of local practitioners, animators and data specialists with excellent communication skills. It will occur over 5 phases:
- The Definition Phase confirms which communities will host a succession of online solutions workshops. A larger networking group that includes participants in ongoing Solutions Labs will be invited to follow activities and contribute.
- The Discovery Phase will survey all CDP and CCEDNet members, plus interested Solutions Labs projects. They will be asked about the housing issues they encounter most frequently. A list of challenges that need priority attention in workshops will be created based on the results.
- The Design Phase involves holding a series of online workshops to produce creative concepts and sample information products. These will build on current good practices for collecting and analyzing data, and for communicating results to potential users.
- The Prototype and Test Phase will test results from the previous stage with a new audience. This will help to refine and improve results.
- The Roadmap Phase and Assessment Phase will define a roll-out of the proposed new data sets, indicators, communication tools and stories over time. Assessment activities will include a second online survey of the project network. A roundtable with CMHC and Stats Canada experts will also take place. This will consider how lessons learned can be applied to the Housing Supply Challenge and future Solutions Labs.
Sharing findings, designs and the roadmap
A central part of the Lab is sharing its findings, designs and roadmap. They will be shared through the CDP and CCEDNet websites and provided directly to housing-related agencies. Replicable, open-source designs for new data sets, indicators and visuals for housing agencies and community organizations will also be shared. The goal is to make these available to community-level decision-makers, social planning councils and housing providers.
Project Team: Canadian CED Network
Location: Victoriaville, QC
Project Collaborators / Partners:
- Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet)
- Community Data Program (CDP)
- Lansdowne Consulting Inc. (Solutions Lab Consultant)
- Priority Decision Data Inc.
- CDEC de Québec
- City of Kingston
- City of Toronto
- Region of Halton
- Social Planning Council of Winnipeg
- Simcoe County
- City of Calgary
- Social Planning and Research Council of British Columbia (SPARC BC)
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