Ontario Launches Digital and Data Innovation Fellowship Program

Published on November 25, 2021

TORONTO — The Ontario government is unlocking the expertise of the private sector to accelerate Ontario’s digital future with the Digital and Data Innovation Fellowship Program.

The government is now accepting applications to bring some of Ontario’s best digital and data talent into government to help build Ontario’s digital future. Fellows, nominated by their organizations, will be private-sector digital and data professionals — senior backend developers, product managers, user experience designers, service designers and data specialists — operating within Ontario to help solve the government’s most pressing design, data and technology challenges. They will begin their provincial ministry placements in February 2022 for approximately six months.

“We’re building a strong foundation for a digital Ontario and working with the private sector to make that happen,” said Kaleed Rasheed, Associate Minister of Digital Government. “Leveraging the expertise of the private sector will help us deliver simpler, faster and better services to the people of Ontario.”

Placements will each include one to two fellows to join a multidisciplinary team embedded within a ministry. Six to 10 fellows will be onboarded across four ministries. Fellows can expect to work on the following projects:

  1. The Courts Digital Transformation Initiative at the Ministry of the Attorney General, which will deliver digital access to courts.
  2. The Service Modernization Project at the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry will create new digital services for permits, licenses and authorizations.
  3. The Digital Identity Program at the Ontario Digital Service that will enable easier, more secure access to online services.
  4. The Compliance Modernization Project at Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs will further enhance the Ministry’s inspection and compliance programs, making them more client-focused and digital/data-driven.

The deadline for applications is December 10, 2021. Information on the application process for organizations is available at Ontario.ca/digitalfellows

“The Digital and Data Innovation Fellowship Program is an example of how we’re making digital transformation a priority,” said Peter Bethlenfalvy, Minister of Finance. “We’re building a digital economy for the social and economic benefit of the people of Ontario.”


Quick Facts

  • In April 2021, the province published Ontario’s first Digital and Data Strategy to help protect, support, connect and equip people and businesses to succeed in a digital world. The strategy included a commitment to create this Digital and Data Innovation Fellowship Program.
  • Ontario’s Digital and Data Innovation Fellowship is modeled after the United States’ Presidential Innovation Fellowship and the NYC [x] Innovation Fellowship in New York City, the UK’s No. 10 Fellowship Programme, Australia’s Data Fellowship, and The Code for Canada Partnership.
  • Organizations are invited to apply by nominating their digital and data talent for a fellowship with a ministry delivery team.

Additional Resources