Quantum Days 2023 poll examines salary compensation issues

At the recent Quantum Days 2023 panel that explored the inner workings of The Expert Panel on Quantum Technologies, a series of poll questions were sent to the audience following its completion that revolved around everything from what sectors are most likely to be early adopters to how Canada stacks up when it comes to salary compensation.

In terms of early adopters, respondents indicated that the top four would be Scientific Research, Defence/Space, Chemistry and Materials Science, and Telecommunications.

The compensation question, which asked for a true/false answer, read: “In Canada, but outside of academia, compensation for jobs requiring quantum expertise is keeping pace with other nations.” Upwards of 56 per cent of respondents said that statement was false, with the remainder saying it was true.

Expert Panel member Dr. Jacqueline Bartlett, an associate professor from Memorial University, described the response as an “early wake-up call. Over half of the people do not think that we are keeping up with the compensation that other countries are offering. I think that is an important indicator of things to come if we don’t change that.”

Mauritz Kop, a visiting scholar at Stanford Law School, who is also a member of the panel, warned that “you want to avoid a brain drain at all costs, so staying competitive is really important.”

And Prof. Raymond Laflamme, a leading Canadian theoretical physicist who currently teaches at the University of Waterloo and is chair of the panel, warned that “Canada is not the only country with a national strategy.

“In the last six or seven years it has become to lot harder, even in academia, to recruit people. For start-ups and the industry as a whole, it will be the same thing. As Jacqueline said, this is a red flag and it is something that we need to think about carefully and plan for the future to ensure that the ‘false’ answers don’t grow.”

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Paul Barker
Paul Barker
Paul Barker is the founder of PBC Communications, an independent writing firm that specializes in freelance journalism. He has extensive experience as a reporter, feature writer and editor and has been covering technology-related issues for more than 30 years.

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