Montréal, June 4, 2013 – The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal presented two briefs as part of consultations for the proposed development of a framework law on Quebec universities and for the creation of a National Council of Universities, after consulting the chairs for these two projects.
“In the current economic and demographic context, Quebec and Montréal’s attractiveness and competitiveness depend more than ever on a world-class university network,” says Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. “The framework law on Quebec universities and the proposed National Council of Universities must strengthen the performance of this network, the unique character and autonomy of each of the universities and their agility in adapting to the social and business environment.”
“Quebec universities are fundamentally distinct, which is a major asset,” Michel Leblanc says. “They are different sizes, target different clienteles, specialize in different fields of research and have different vocations. They are in the best position to make strategic decisions about budgets, research, resource management and recruiting. So it is essential that universities remain autonomous and rely on their agility to adapt their educational offering as our economy evolves.”
“Of course, reporting mechanisms, founded on principles of sound governance and accountability, should be strengthened,” Mr. Leblanc says. “However, any decision that seeks uniformity among universities and overgovernance puts our university network, and, in turn, our collective prosperity, at risk. We need to strike a balance between control and agility.”
“In the same spirit, the proposed National Council of Universities should act as a resource for supporting constructive debate and be responsible for compiling valuable data and indicators on higher education,” Michel Leblanc says. “It should be independent and neutral and provide intelligence on international best practices to ensure our universities are world class.”
The Board of Trade’s brief on the development of a framework law on universities can be consulted here and the brief on the proposed National Council of Universities, here.
About the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is made up of some 7,000 members. Its mission is to represent the interests of the business community of Greater Montréal and to provide individuals, merchants, and local businesses of all sizes with a variety of specialized services to help them achieve their full potential in terms of innovation, productivity, and competitiveness. The Board of Trade is Quebec's leading private economic development organization.
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