TORONTO, CA (July 05, 2019) – SAS, the leader in analytics, is collaborating with the Institute on Governance (IOG), the Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa, the Sprott School of Business at Carleton University, and the Université du Québec en Outaouais (UQO), to create a research group focused on better understanding the application of analytics tools in public sector organizations.

Through this collaboration, the Government Analytics Research Institute (GARI) / Institut de recherche en analytique gouvernementale will conduct applied research into the application and governance of analytics in public sector organizations at all levels of government. As the government of Canada prepares AI standards for government agencies through programs like the Directive on Automated Decision-Making this institute will further enable the necessary testing and experimentation required for real AI and analytics applications.

“Governments around the world are moving towards the adoption of tools such as artificial intelligence. While these tools can enable program results, they also introduce complex governance issues. The IOG is pleased to work with SAS and our colleagues in the three local universities to provide ground-breaking research that will help public managers tackle these issues” said Toby Fyfe, President of the IOG.

“SAS is committed to solving real world problems with AI and analytics, said Cameron Dow, President of SAS Canada. “We are heavily invested in taking AI from being a buzzword to a deployable, scalable tool. This new research institute is a great example of this pragmatic approach to AI; offering public managers a safe place to test, problem solve and mitigate risks.”

According to Gregory Richards a GARI founding member, Adjunct Professor, current Director of the EMBA program at the University of Ottawa, and an associate at the IOG, “GARI will provide opportunities for public managers to test out potential analytic applications in a laboratory environment enabling rapid experimentation without compromising ongoing departmental operations.” 

Professor Alex Ramirez at Carleton University adds, “We have many brilliant students learning about these tools and techniques, they are also looking for real projects to complement what they’re learning in the classroom so GARI will provide opportunities for students to do so while contributing to the public sector.”

Professor Stéphane Gagnon at UQO suggests that “This collaboration is a real win-win for public managers. There is so much information available about Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning that sometimes it’s difficult for managers to know where to start. GARI will provide objective, credible research, and hands-on opportunities for managers to truly understand emerging topics in this domain.”