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What is TLCE?

Think like a Canadian economist.     Find our videos at IRPP's website     


We are a group of Canadian economists, working at institutions across Canada. We represent a fairly broad spectrum of views and opinions. Our purpose here is to offer a sense of how many economists approach economic problems and economic policy. Our focus is on those issues most important to Canadians.
Here we offer a series of short videos. The videos are also presented (in a much more user-friendly format) at the Institute for Research on Public Policy's website (here). Below, we've grouped the videos into three sections. The first - Concepts and Canadian Policy - offers some background necessary to understand Canadian policy, how our economy operates, and some related research. A second series - Canadian research - tells you what the experts know about specific issues in the Canadian economy, based on recent Canadian research. A third series - Current Debates - offers a discussion of current policy debates we hear across Canada, at federal, provincial, and local levels, from the viewpoint of an economist.
We are building our video library, and trying to improve on accessibility. The videos are posted on YouTube, with captions available. If you require alternative formats, please contact and we will do our best. Below, we offer links to the videos and a copy of the script, some cases with further references for those who want to know more.

Episode 1: Introduction (Script) - Introduction to our TLCE series.

Concepts and Canadian Policy

Episode 2: Internal Trade Barriers (Script and References) - Learn about trade across provinces and what slows us down.
Episode 3: Federal Personal Income Tax (Script) - Understand how your tax is calculated, deductions, and credits.
Episode 7: Health Care Finance (Script and References) - Canada's universal health care system - how do we pay for it, and why?
Episode 9: CPP and QPP (Script and References) - Canadians rely on our public pensions, what should you expect from CPP and QPP?
Episode 10: OAS/GIS (Script and References) - Canadians rely on our public pensions, what should you expect from OAS and GIS?
Episode 11: Job Gains and Losses (Script and References) - Each month Statistics Canada releases jobs numbers based on Canada's Labour Force Survey. Understand what they do, and don't, tell us.

Canadian Research

Episode 6: The Value of Education (Script) - What is a university degree worth? Should you go to college instead? What to study?
Episode 13: The Gender Wage Gap (English), L'Ecart salarial hommes-femmes (français) (Script and references) Learn about the gender wage gap among recent post-secondary graduates in Canada.

Current Debates

Episode 4: Boutique Tax Credits (Script and References) - Fall 2015. This video focuses on what we call the boutique tax credits that have become part of our federal income tax system.
Episode 5: Child Benefits (Script and References) - Fall 2015. This video describes components of Canada's complex child benefits system and frames some recent proposal in the 2015 federal election.
Episode 8: Infrastructure Spending (Script and References) - Fall 2015. What would an economist ask? What does it take for infrastructure spending to be worth it?
Episode 12: The Long Form Census (Script and References) - November 2015. Why is the distinction between a voluntary survey and mandatory census so important?

Production of the TLCE video series is currently led by Dr. Tammy Schirle at Wilfrid Laurier University, with support from LCERPA and IRPP.

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