President Obama’s trip to Europe is an opportunity to build on the vision he outlined in his West Point speech last week, and to set out a plan to renew the transatlantic relationship. This backbone of an alliance of liberal democracies across the globe, and the foundation of the post-war order, faces fresh challenges today. Over the past few years, though, this alliance has suffered from neglect which is troubling, as the inexorable triumph of liberal democracy is not inevitable – it requires constant work and vigilance.
Canada has been a strong performer in post-secondary education and skills development for many years. On key measures we are at or near the top of international rankings and highly skilled Canadians contribute to economic prosperity, social innovation, and political and community well-being. But there are signs that Canada’s performance may be deteriorating and, despite a commitment to equality, opportunities and achievement in skills and higher education have been poorly distributed across regions and groups.