SHARING CANADA'S TELECOMMUNICATIONS EXPERTISE
WITH DEVELOPING OR NEWLY INDUSTRIALIZED COUNTRIES
The importance of telecommunications in the economic,
social and political development of a country is now recognized throughout the world. The
benefits derived from improved telecommunications not only contribute to strengthen the
economy of a nation but also to reduce isolation and improve the effectiveness of social
The Canadian telecommunications industry has provided
Canadians with one of the most advanced networks in the world. Almost all households
have telephone service and public surveys consistently reveal that the public is very
satisfied with the quality of service.
The Maitland Commission in its 1984 report, The
Missing Link, identified the existence of a wide gap between the telecommunications
facilities of developed and newly industrialized countries.
The report went on to say: The lack of sufficient
trained staff is a major cause of the shortcomings of telecommunications with emerging
Most major manufacturers provide training in the techniques and
maintenance particular to the equipment they supply. But a serious gap persists between
developing countries needs and available training opportunities.
The report recommended that: Industrialized countries
organize seminars to improve the qualifications of experts from developing and newly
industrialized countries in the field of telecommunications.
The Need for Executive Management Training
Numerous studies have shown that the single most important
factor that distinguishes the best company from the others, in any industry, is not the
availability of capital or its technology or even the degree of mechanization but rather
the quality of its management.
The telecommunications sector is undergoing unprecedented
changes. Privatization, deregulation, competition and the global economic
imperatives exacerbate the importance of quality management for the success of an
organization. Technology has become a commodity and management know-how
has replaced land and capital as a strategic resource in successful corporations.
This transformation to quality management must start at the
top of an organization if there is hope of succeeding in creating a learning
organization that can cope with a world evermore complex, dynamic and
Creation of the Institute
It is with the above in mind and in keeping with the
Canadian tradition of international cooperation that the telecommunications industry of
Canada decided in 1986, in collaboration with the Federal Government, to respond and
implement the Maitland recommendation. Human resource development being key to sustainable
development in any sector, it was decided to focus on executive management training, which
contributes to the durability of the assistance given.
The TELECOMMUNICATIONS EXECUTIVE MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE OF
CANADA (TEMIC) was thus created as a non-profit organization with the mandate to assist
telecommunication organizations from developing and newly industrialized countries in
expanding their capability to build their future. Based in Montreal (Canada), the
Institute holds training seminars in Canada
and abroad, in order to allow participants to acquire, from member-organizations,
first hand knowledge on the latest management techniques and technologies available in
The Institute's founding members are the GOVERNMENT OF CANADA, BELL CANADA INTERNATIONAL, NORTHERN TELECOM (NORTEL), TELECOM CANADA
and TELESAT CANADA.
The Institute is supported by a large cross section of the Canadian telecommunications
industry. Governmental support is mainly provided through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), Industry Canada and the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.
The Institutes Programs
Subject-matter experts from member-organizations are loaned
to the Institute to present different training modules. This approach has the
advantage of offering various views on a particular subject, and from time to time, of
hearing conflicting opinions from competing companies.
The basic techniques of training include traditional
classroom settings, a case study, demonstrations and field or site visits. The
transfer of knowledge and skills occurs mainly through a participatory approach. The
breadth of knowledge, the interaction between participants and the ability to interact
with managers from both the public and private sectors were praised by participants within
a third party independent evaluation. In general, TEMIC Fellows have found the
seminars helpful in increasing their knowledge of telecommunications. Almost all
stated that they were able to apply the knowledge acquired.
Participation in TEMIC programs is by invitation from the
At present, over 1,950 executives and senior managers from
142 developing or newly industrialized countries have attended the seminars offered by
TEMIC since its inception. Please refer to the Fellows page for more
details on the number of fellows per country.
The selection of participants is based on prerequisites,
which have been established for each program in conformity with Canadas foreign
policy or according to the current interest of member-organizations for a particular
At the request of the Canadian Government, an independent
firm conducted an assessment study of TEMIC and its operations. The conclusions of
the firm indicated that, in the opinion of its member-organizations and program
participants, the Institute successfully managed to fulfill its dual role of transferring
practical knowledge and developing an increased awareness of Canadas potential.
What clearly emerged from this study is that
telecommunications institutes, like TEMIC, are able to play a positive role in bringing
assistance to developing and newly industrialized countries in improving their
telecommunications management and, by this very fact, collaborate in forging the
TEMIC has decided to invest in the productivity of people
and is willing to work with the ITU/BDT in setting up plans and goals and developing
programs aimed at increasing the number of telecommunications executives trained in