Western Economic Diversification Canada Programs


Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) contributes to community economic development in urban centres and rural areas through initiatives that capitalize on opportunities for growth and development, and enables communities to adjust to challenges that hinder competitiveness and quality of life. A significant proportion of WD's community economic development funding stems from its role as the western delivery agent for national programs offered by the federal government such as infrastructure programs.

WD's grants and contributions also support projects delivered directly by WD, either alone or in partnership with other organizations. These are delivered through a variety of funding supports which can change over time:

  • The Western Diversification Program (WDP): the main program through which WD makes strategic investments that enhance and strengthen the economy of Western Canada. Funding is available to not-for-profit organizations (inc. universities and other post-secondary institutions, research institutes, industry associations, Indigenous organizations) for projects that support innovation, business development  and/or community economic growth.
  • Western Innovation (WINN) Initiative: an initiative that offers repayable contributions for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with operations in Western Canada to move new and innovative technologies from the later stages of research and development to the marketplace.
  • Western Canada Business Service Network (WCBSN): WCBSN consists of several integrated organizations (inc. Community Futures) that receive funding from WD to provide a range of services and resources to help create and build small businesses across the West.

Special Requirements

Contributions will be made to projects that support the development and diversification of the western Canadian economy, and activities where economic and/or employment benefits accrue primarily within Western Canada.

Last updated: September 5, 2018