Frequently asked questions

  1. What is a consultation?
  2. Why does Statistics Canada consult with Canadians?
  3. Is participation in a consultation voluntary or mandatory?
  4. Can anyone take part in a consultation?
  5. How are consultation participants chosen?
  6. Are the results of consultations available to the public?

1. What is a consultation?

A consultation is a process that permits and promotes the two-way flow of information between members of the Canadian public, including clients of government services, and the government.

Consultation activities can be national or regional in scale, involving individuals, clients or stakeholder organizations, conducted for the purposes of developing or amending policies, programs, products, services, initiatives and regulations.

2. Why does Statistics Canada consult with Canadians?

Statistics Canada regularly engages in client consultations to gauge client satisfaction, test the usability of its website features and seek input from key stakeholders and clients on program development and new initiatives.

3. Is participation in a consultation voluntary or mandatory?

Participation is voluntary. However, Statistics Canada strongly encourages Canadians to take part in its consultations as it provides them with the opportunity to offer constructive feedback.

4. Can anyone take part in a consultation?

Participants wanting to take part in a consultation can inform Statistics Canada of their wish. Their names will be added to a list of potential participants for upcoming consultations. It should be noted that Statistics Canada carefully selects the participants for each consultation to obtain a wide and varied sample of participants.

Anyone not participating in a consultation but wishing to take part in one or to provide Statistics Canada with feedback, comments and suggestions can do so by sending an email to consultations@statcan.gc.ca or submitting the electronic form Participate in consultations.

5. How are consultation participants chosen?

Consultation participants are chosen from among Statistics Canada's clients, data users and key stakeholders as well as the general public, according to their profiles and the requirements of the consultation.

  1. Consultations on program development and new initiatives: Statistics Canada's survey programs occasionally undergo modifications, and to ensure their continued relevance, the Agency consults with participants chosen from among its key stakeholders and clients as well as from among interested members of the public to obtain their feedback and insight.
  2. Client satisfaction consultations: Clients and data users of Statistics Canada's products, services and website are contacted and invited to provide feedback on their level of satisfaction with services and products, according to the area of interest being assessed (health, employment, research and development, etc.).
  3. Web usability testing: Participants are chosen from various sources, including website users having previously answered Statistics Canada's Website Evaluation Survey.
  4. Question of the month: All website users can participate.

6. Are the results of consultations available to the public?

Consultation findings are available to anyone who may wish to access them. Results are aggregated and published on the Agency's website, in the Consulting Canadians module. Consultation results for the Question of the month are available in real time. Other consultation results are usually not immediately available following the consultation process, as the gathered information must be compiled and analyzed prior to publication.

Consultation results are also posted on the Consulting With Canadians government website, a portal that provides links to the consultation results of all federal departments.

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