Operating context and key risks
Technological innovation is continuously altering the communications landscape. These changes have significant implications for the operating contexts of all government departments and agencies, but they have a direct impact on the CRTC’s core responsibility.
In 2017, the Government issued an Order in Council requesting that the Commission make a report no later than 1 June 2018 on future audio-video programming distribution models. In response to this request, the CRTC is diverting resources from across the organization to ensuring that Canadians are consulted effectively and that a constructive report is delivered on time. The Governor in Council also requested that the CRTC reconsider certain aspects of its 2017 decisions renewing the licenses of Canada’s large television groups.
Further to this report, the CRTC will need to manage uncertainty around possible changes of key legislation, including the Broadcasting Act and the Telecommunications Act, which the Government has announced it will review. In the meantime, the CRTC will continue to adapt to change through policy innovation, knowledge partnerships and continued dialogue with Canadian citizens, consumers and creators.
Ongoing disruption in the communications sector:
The proliferation of new broadcasting platforms, particularly online streaming services, has given rise to the issue of “discoverability,” as Canadian content risks being overlooked in favour of higher-profile international programming. As a result, the voices of Canada’s different linguistic, cultural, and regional populations may no longer be able reach audiences in Canada or abroad.
Access to world-class communications services in rural and remote areas:
The low population density and inaccessibility of Canada’s rural and remote areas means that many do not have access to the affordable, high-quality telecommunications services that are available to communities in more densely populated areas. This risk is meaningful since modern telecommunications services are fundamental to Canada’s future economic prosperity, global competitiveness, social development, and democratic life.
Increasing complexity of the security environment for communications:
New technologies are constantly affecting how Canadians navigate the communications environment. These technologies can pose a threat to Canadians’ privacy and protection within the communications system and are constantly posing new challenges to the CRTC’s compliance and enforcement efforts, particularly given that its operating context is global. In response to these challenges, the CRTC empowers Canadians with information about the services they use, and helps protect them by promoting and enforcing its rules and regulations, often in partnership with key international organizations.
Challenges to tribunal efficiency:
The CRTC expects to deliver its decisions in a procedurally fair and timely manner. In some cases, where proceedings are particularly complex or precedent-setting, or garner a large number of interventions, the CRTC’s service objectives for efficiency may not be met because more significant analysis is required, which prolongs the period between the close of record and the decision in the proceeding. The CRTC must also respond to occasional unanticipated requests that place additional demands on its existing resources. CRTC proceedings do not seek to be efficient at the expense of fairness, transparency or accessibility.
|Risks||Risk response strategy||Link to the CRTC’s Core Responsibilities||Link to mandate letter commitments or to government-wide and departmental priorities|
|The CRTC may not be able to ensure that “Canadian content is created” due to ongoing disruption in the communications sector.||
||Regulate and Supervise the Communications System||A vibrant Canadian culture and heritage|
|The CRTC may not be able to ensure that “Canadians are connected to world-class communications services” due to shifting global market conditions and the inherent challenges of Canada’s geography.||
||Regulate and Supervise the Communications System||Strong economic growth; and A fair and secure marketplace.|
|The CRTC may not be able to ensure that “Canadians are protected within the communications system” due to the increasing complexity of its security landscape.||
||Regulate and Supervise the Communications System||A safe and secure Canada|
|Due to the complexity of some of its proceedings the CRTC may not always be able to meet its standards for tribunal efficiency.||
||Regulate and Supervise the Communications System||Well-managed and efficient government operations|
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