The Innovation Sandboxes Project

Sandboxes are a valuable tool used by jurisdictions across the world to meet evolving priorities and address new and emerging concerns. Pollution Probe and QUEST’s Innovation Sandboxes project aims to collaboratively create frameworks that will allow for innovation in all levels of provincial and territorial energy systems across Canada. These foundational frameworks can then be used by policymakers, regulators, and other stakeholders to change existing policies and regulations or create more effective policies, regulations, and programs to accelerate the transition to a low-emissions future.

Frequently Asked Questions

Innovation Sandboxes include a range of initiatives and strategies to promote innovation through collaboration and experimentation within controlled settings in a real-world environment. The experimentation process reveals new insights about existing challenges and barriers to progress – which can be procedural, policy-based, process-based, or regulatory – as well as potential solutions which can be analyzed for feasibility and cost-benefit ratio.

It is not always clear what the barriers are to progress and innovation, or how to overcome them. Using Innovation Sandboxes is a low-risk way to identify how much (or how little) existing policy, regulatory and decision-making frameworks are holding back innovation and how best to change that. As jurisdictions across Canada have been hard-hit by COVID-19, it has become more clear than ever before how important it is that they have resources, governance structures, and policy support to build community resilience and make sure they have strong and sustainable energy systems moving forward.

Find details about the project – including timelines, an explanation of what stage we’re at right now, and a signup form that will allow us to send updates directly to you – at the official project website HERE!
News and Updates

Report Release

Forward Thinking: An Innovation Sandbox Design Framework for New Brunswick and Nova Scotia

6 October 2022

With both federal net-zero commitments and provincial policies, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia have clear and ambitious emissions reduction targets in their energy sector. Yet the current pace at which change is occurring in their energy systems is far from sufficient. Following in-depth workshops with experts from both jurisdictions, these reports provide background information on barriers to innovation and how Innovation Sandboxes can be used to overcome them, along with concrete proposals for Innovation Sandboxes in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

Project Reports