By Adiba Hasan

Minister of Immigration, Sean Fraser, recently introduced category-based selection within its Express Entry program for permanent residence. This new approach aims to “issue invitations to apply to prospective permanent residents with specific skills, training or language ability“. The objective is to meet labour needs in vital sectors such as healthcare, STEM, trades, transportation, agriculture, and agri-food. Additionally, the selection process intends to foster the growth of the francophone community by prioritizing immigrants who are proficient in French.

Canada aims to admit 465,000 permanent residents in 2023. The most recent data that is available on our Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard shows that IRCC has already achieved 30% of the PR number target for the year.

January – March Actual: 145,215

Invitation to Apply (ITAs)

In the past few months, IRCC attracted headlines for issuing a record-setting number of invitations to apply (ITAs) via Express Entry for permanent residence. The latest round of ITAs were sent on May 24th. The breakdown of monthly ITA draws from the Express Entry pool since the start of 2023 are below:

Month (2023)ITA Number
March 21,000

While IRCC made headlines for issuing a significant number of ITAs in January and March, numbers for the rest of the year remain unclear.

Permanent Residence numbers in 2023

The ICC’s Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard tracks citizenship and permanent resident numbers since 2018. In 2023 so far, Canada admitted 145,215 permanent residents, with January accounting for the highest number of admissions at 50,885. Subsequent months have seen a moderate decrease in the number of admissions.







In March, the majority of permanent residents admitted came through the Economic-Federal category, amounting to 17,000 admissions. Economic-PNP dropped from 13,145 in February to 9,525 in March. The Family category also saw a drop, where permanent residents number dropped from 11,055 in February to 9,890 in March. The Other and Refugees categories displayed a steady increase in admitting permanent residents admitted through these streams.

Permanent Residence Target in 2023465,000
PR Admissions: January50,885
PR Admissions: February49,550
PR Admissions: March44,780

Permanent Resident Admissions by Province: March Data

Provincially, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, and Saskatchewan experienced growth in the number of permanent resident admissions, while Nova Scotia experienced a decline.

Snapshot: Quebec

Quebec, with its unique immigration system, plays a significant role in Canada’s immigration landscape. The newly announced category-based selection for Express Entry emphasizes attracting immigrants with French proficiency. This approach aligns with Quebec’s objective of safeguarding the declining population of French speakers in the region.

In 2023, Quebec plans to welcome a total of 52,500 permanent residents, with 16,040 individuals already admitted thus far. Notably, the Economic stream accounts for 65% of the overall target, and out of the 16,040 admissions, 9,790 permanent residents have been admitted through this stream.

As we explore the data, it is evident that substantial progress has been made towards the goal of admitting 465,000 permanent residents by the end of 2023. The recent announcement of category-based selection within the Express Entry program with a focus on attracting French-speaking immigrants reflects the government’s efforts to address labour shortages and bolster the francophone community.

However, some are questioning whether prioritizing French-speaking immigrants through the new selection process aligns with the evolving linguistic landscape of Canada. Data from Statistics Canada indicate that “English-French bilingualism has increased by more than 11 percentage points“.

Share your thoughts and perspective with us! Do you think the new category-based approach for Express Entry sufficiently addresses Canada’s diverse labour needs? What are the potential consequences of such an approach? How can we ensure that a category-based selection process remains fair and equitable?

Take a look at our immigration dashboard for updated numbers of PRs and citizens and add your voice to the conversation (our social media links are below).

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

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By Adiba Hasan

In an era of global mobility, the concept of citizenship has stood as a cornerstone of belonging and identity. In February 2023, the Institute for Canadian Citizenship released new StatCan data revealing a steep decline in the number of recent immigrants choosing to become citizens. We found that only 45.7% of eligible permanent residents naturalized within 10 years — a 40% decline for this cohort since 2001.

But how does Canada compare to other countries? As part of our ongoing efforts to explore what might be behind the decline, this article seeks to benchmark Canadian naturalization patterns with available data and information from other peer nations.

Peer country comparisons

Data on immigration is critical for understanding the dynamics of naturalization, as is an understanding of the rules governing citizenship eligibility. Immigration data availability and eligibility criteria differ across jurisdictions. The following table provides a breakdown of key details related to citizenship across five peer countries, including Canada.

Country Residency Time Required Prior to CitizenshipLegal Status Prior to CitizenshipDual Nationality AllowedStatistics Office Immigration Office
Australia4 YearsPermanent ResidentYesAustralian Bureau of StatisticsDepartment of Home Affairs;
Department of Immigration and Border Protection
Canada3 of 5 YearsPermanent ResidentYesStatistics CanadaImmigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
France5 YearsPermanent ResidenceYesMinistry of Interior – Ministerial Statistical Office of ImmigrationThe Ministry of Foreign Affairs
United Kingdom5 YearsIndefinite leave to remain/settlementYesOffice of National StatisticsHome Office
United States5 Years Lawful Permanent Resident/ Greencard HolderYesOffice of Immigration StatisticsDepartment of Homeland Security; U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
This table shows a comparison of naturalization requirements and relevant government departments in Australia, Canada, France, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

While there are certain distinctions, the table reveals a number of similarities across jurisdictions, which makes them interesting from a comparative perspective. Here are some key highlights:

  1. Overall, residency requirements for citizenship are similar across the five countries; Canada and Australia have slightly shorter residency requirements by comparison.
  2. Permanent residency is a common prerequisite for citizenship across all countries.
  3. All of the peer countries allow dual nationality.
  4. Each country has designated statistical and immigration offices responsible for gathering and managing immigration-related data. The United States is the only country that does not have a dedicated Statistics office but rather the main government departments have branches that are responsible for immigration-related data.

Benchmarking challenges – data consistency and availability

During this analysis, we discovered that data on citizenship uptake is released at different intervals and through different statistics offices, depending on the country. In particular, it was not possible to find consistent cohort-based naturalization trends across the different countries (eg. comparative naturalization rates for permanent residents who arrived less than ten years ago). Accordingly, we had to take a longer view in order to compare naturalization rates, looking at overall naturalization rates for all immigrants.

Trends in the naturalization rate (OECD data)

Very few recent studies have looked at comparative naturalization rates. One organization in particular, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) consolidates and tracks naturalization data from all of its member countries, with the most recent data coming from 2017. These naturalization rates reflect the proportion (%) of immigrants who acquired citizenship within their respective “host country”. The following table shows comparative rates between 2006-7 and 2017.

CountryNaturalization (%) 2006-07Naturalization (%) 2017
United Kingdom68.158.1
United States of America6262.3
OECD Total66.862.8
EU Total67.858.6
The table provides a comparative analysis of naturalization rates in selected OECD countries, highlighting the changes over a decade from 2006-2007 to 2017.

In 2006-2007 Australia had a naturalization rate of 81.7%, while France and the United Kingdom had naturalization rates of 64.9% and 68.1%, respectively. The United States had a lower naturalization rate among the selected countries with only 62% of immigrants becoming citizens.

By 2017, Australia managed to maintain a relatively consistent naturalization rate (81.4%), and the rate in the United States also remained relatively stable, albeit lower compared to its peers (62.3%).

Naturalization is decreasing across OECD member countries and the EU

The 2017 data for the rest of the peer countries, including the overall rates for the OECD and the EU, show a notable decline in naturalization rates. France had a decrease of 5.3 percentage points with a rate of 59.6%, and the rate for the United Kingdom fell 10 percentage points to 58.1%. Naturalization across all OECD members decreased 4 percentage points from 66.8% in 2006-2007 to 62.8% in 2017, and across the EU it declined almost 10 percentage points from 67.8% to 58%. Generally speaking, the data show that naturalization rates have declined across the peer countries as a whole.

Naturalization in Canada was stable, but is now trending downward

OECD data show that Canada has maintained a stable and relatively high overall naturalization rate over the examined period. However, more recent data from Statistics Canada show a different story; Canada’s overall naturalization rate has declined significantly in recent years.

All Immigrants81.
Adult Immigrants81.683.784.585.786.386.281.7
Adult Immigrants arrived 5-9 years ago68.675.475.173.067.560.445.7
Source: Statistics Canada, “Trends in the Citizenship Rate Among New Immigrants to Canada” by Feng Hou and Garnett Picot; 2021 citizenship rates were specifically provided to the ICC by Statistics Canada

According to the 2021 census, only 80.7% of eligible permanent residents overall have chosen to become citizens. This high-level trend in Canada’s overall naturalization rate is all the more troubling given that the rate among recent immigrants has sunk to 45.7%.

Annual figures: Citizenship acquisition (OECD data)

When it comes to the number of people acquiring citizenship (rather than the proportion of all immigrants), the United States consistently recorded the highest number of citizenship acquisitions between 2010 and 2020, with a peak of 843,593 in 2019.

Canadian citizenship acquisition numbers fluctuated throughout the period, with a peak of 259,274 in 2014. The United Kingdom also experienced fluctuations in its numbers, reaching a peak of 208,021 in 2013. (NOTE: You can track up-to-date monthly data on new Canadian citizens and permanent residents by visiting our Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard. Click here).

Australia and France had lower overall numbers compared to Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Australia experienced fluctuations throughout the period, while France saw a relatively stable number of acquisitions of nationality.

Key takeaway: Naturalization rates are in decline in many places

Despite fluctuations in the number of people becoming citizens, this analysis reveals that overall naturalization rates are in decline in many places beyond Canada.

The Canadian government has launched some initiatives to promote the value and benefits of Canadian citizenship such as streamlining the citizenship application process and simplifying the language and knowledge requirements for citizenship applicants. However, to the best of our knowledge, there is no clear government strategy aimed at pushing against declining naturalization rates in Canada.

Other countries are acting.

The United States, for example, has established the Interagency Strategy for Promoting Naturalization, an initiative that aims to address low naturalization rates by bringing together various government agencies to enhance outreach and education efforts to provide assistance to people who are eligible to become citizens.

Moving forward, it will be crucial for countries like Canada, the United Kingdom, France, and Australia to continue exploring innovative strategies to reverse the decline in naturalization rates and encourage eligible individuals to embrace citizenship.

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

More than 1.7 million permanent residents and 1.1 million new citizens have been admitted to Canada since 2018. Last year, Canada admitted 431,645 permanent residents, making it the largest number of people admitted in a year in Canadian history.

Canada’s Immigration Levels Plan aims to admit an even more ambitious number of 465,000 permanent residents in 2023. Based on the most recently available data, the Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard shows that IRCC has already hit 20% of the PR number target for 2023.

January+February Actual: 100,435

For those following the news on immigration in Canada, there have been a lot of record-setting headlines related to permanent resident admissions. For example, IRCC issued a record-breaking 11,000 express entry invitations in January 2023, only to break this record again in March 2023, inviting 21,000 candidates to apply for PR. Here is a short report on what Permanent Resident admissions in 2023 is starting out like.

Permanent Residence 2018-2023

Based on the Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard, the PR levels were mostly impacted during the Covid-19 pandemic and seem to be getting back on the average increase by 2022. We are yet to see what the percentage increase or decrease looks like at the end of 2023.













Permanent Residence in 2023

January 2023 set a record number where 50,885 PRs were admitted in Canada, followed by 49,550 PRs in February. Most PRs admitted were through the Economic-PNP (28,450) and Economic-Federal (32,560) while the Family stream (line in pink) also saw a significant uptick, admitting 23,755 PRs.

Permanent Residence Target in 2023465,000
PR Admissions: January50,885
PR Admissions: February49,550

Permanent Residence by Province: 12-month comparison

In 2023, Ontario (40,860) and British Columbia (17,500) were the top 2 immigration destinations, while Alberta (11,785) and Quebec (11,085) headed with each other.

Regionally, Newfoundland in Atlantic Canada admitted 1,590 PRs, Quebec and Ontario trended steady inflows of PRs (see Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard), following the Prairies, Alberta experienced an increase in admitting 11,785 PRs (50% increase from last year), and in the north, Yukon PR numbers jumped from admitting an average of 30 PRs monthly to having 105 PRs in January and 170 PRs in February (160% increase from January and February of 2022).

While IRCC is meeting the immigration targets, the success rate could experience a dip due to the PSAC strike, where more than 155,000 government employees are participating, and immigration services are expected to face extensive delays. IRCC has not indicated how the strike will affect PR processing time and we are yet to see how the PR levels will unfold in the coming months.

Do you think this halt in immigration services will create a similar backlog that Canada faced due to the pandemic? What changes need to be implemented to create an immigration system where immigrant applicants aren’t adversely affected every time there is a shock or a stop in the process? How might this be affecting prospective immigrants’ views of Canada?

Take a look at our immigration dashboard for updated numbers of PRs and citizens and add your voice to the conversation (our social media links are below).

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

Interested in following us? Please sign up here for more updates from Ideas & Insights at ICC.
Be sure to keep a lookout for our next monthly ICC Immigration Dashboard analysis

Globally, Canada is a known immigration destination. Domestically, significant political and public attention is given to Canada’s target immigration levels, but also the challenges newcomers face after their arrival. In general, little attention tends to be given to the number of immigrants choosing to become Canadian citizens. The ICC recently published 2021 data from Statistics Canada revealing citizenship rates among recent adult immigrants have decreased drastically over time. The data from 2021 show that only 45.7% of permanent residents became citizens within 10 years – a 40% decline in the naturalization rate for this cohort since 2001.

45.7% PR’S became citizens within 10 years
40% DECLINE IN naturalization since 2001

This decline raises questions about the value of Canadian citizenship. Why are so many PR holders deciding not become citizens after they are eligible?

A recent federal government proposal could potentially change the way that citizenship ceremonies are administered, factors that the ICC’s co-founder, The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson argues will contribute to an overall decrease in the desirability of Canadian citizenship. The decline of the naturalization rate is worrisome for Canada due to our dependence on immigration for population growth but also cultural dynamism. It further raises questions about how Canada is perceived amongst recent newcomers.

Given the significant decline in the proportion of newcomers becoming citizens, the ICC will be exploring the reasons behind the decline in naturalization rates. Until then, this analysis is based on the Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard that explores citizenship and permanent residence levels over the past few years.

Citizenship Comparison: 2018 – 2022

The trend lines in our Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard depict a steady increase in immigration levels, except for the significant drop in 2020 caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. As IRCC revamped and powered through significant backlogs, 2022 experienced the highest citizenship numbers with an uptick in March where Canada received 41,678 new citizens.

Overall in 2022, the citizenship numbers started off weak but ended on a strong note as Canada welcomed 369,153 new Canadian citizens (see top 15 source countries below), a significant rise since 2021 when only 136,732 Canadian citizens were granted. It’s important to note that while the annual figures below show a generally positive trend in the number of new citizens each year, the overall proportion of permanent residents becoming citizens is in decline.











Citizenship versus Permanent Residence in 2022

As IRCC reported, 2022 ended on a high note with a record number of permanent residents as seen in the graph below. However, the number of permanent residents becoming citizens has not received much attention. This chart shows the increased levels of permanent residents in 2022, but citizenship numbers are lower in comparison. While June, July, and September saw a high admission of permanent residents, citizenship numbers were lower than in the other months.

Citizenship by Source Country (2018-2022)

The Citizenship and Immigration Dashboard, which is built on a 2018 baseline, shows trends in the number of new Canadian citizens by source country. The chart below shows the Top 15 source countries, where the lowest source country (Bangladesh) had more than 5,000 new Canadian citizens admitted. India and the Philippines have ranked as the top countries of origin for the past 5 years, while the United States, Pakistan, Iran, and China have closely leveled with one another over the years.

As the ICC continues its exploration of the decline in naturalization rates, do you have a perspective on why fewer permanent residents are choosing to become Canadian citizens? Take a look at our immigration dashboard for updated numbers of PRs and citizens (January 2023 saw the highest number of PRs admitted), and add your voice to the conversation (our social media links are below)!

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

Be sure to keep a lookout for our next monthly ICC Immigration Dashboard analysis

Interested in following us? Please sign up here for more updates and follow us to get upcoming content from Ideas & Insights at ICC

According to Statistics Canada, over 7 million women living in Canada were born outside of the country, and in 2022, IRCC welcomed 242,884 female permanent residents, 52% of the total new permanent residents.

In our very own Canoo domain, women also make up 52% of the Canoo member base and in celebration of International Women’s Day, this Canoo Insights Report looks at the usage of Canoo by Canoo women members.

Main takeaways from this report:

Recap: What is a Canoo Insights Report?

Canoo Insights Report is a quarterly series started by Ideas & Insights at the Institute for Canadian Citizenship that sheds light on our Canoo Access Pass program. Through these quarterly reports, we hope to:

  1. Give readers a sense of the Canoo program
  2. Reveal the impact of Canoo on its diverse members
  3. Provide a glimpse into the moving parts of the Canoo program that make it the biggest welcome network in Canada

Here are some highlights about Canoo:

$45+ million

in value delivered


newcomers have participated

65K +

newcomers currently active on Canoo

Canoo Members since 2018: 222,280

Women Members since 2018: 94,950

222,280 people have become Canoo members since Canoo transitioned from a paper pass into a mobile app in 2018. Since then, Canoo has served 94,950 women.

There are 65,690 currently active Canoo members participating in the program within their 12 months of access (a 25% increase from the previous Canoo Insight Report), and 33,226 of the currently active Canoo members are women.

Gender Distribution of Active Canoo Members

Visits by Canoo Women members

When a Canoo member visits a place or participates in an activity through the app, we refer to it as a “check-in“. Since May 2022, Canoo members have made 78,460 check-ins at places across the country. Women have made up slightly more than 50% of the check-ins.

Check-ins by Canoo women members since May 2022: 40,440

Canoo Women Member Check-ins by Status
  • A majority of women member check-ins have been made by citizens. Canoo was originally available only to new citizens and in May 2022, permanent residents became eligible to join Canoo.

Time of Day Check-in by Canoo Women Members
  • Majority of Canoo women members (55%) check-in in the evening, while 44% check-in in the afternoon. The morning is not popular among our Canoo members and only 59 women checked in the morning.

Dollar Value Delivered by Canoo

Canoo delivers significant value to members by offering heavily discounted or free access to events, places, and lots of activities across Canada. According to a recent survey of 5,000 Canoo members (of which 54% were women), approximately 45% of members express that affordability is the most significant barrier they face when accessing activities.

$ 2,643,452

overall value saved by all Canoo members since May 2022

$ 1,373,045

overall value saved by Canoo Women members since May 2022

Dollars Saved by Women per Province

Top 5 Places Visited by Canoo Women Members

Through Canoo, women members have access to a variety of places across Canada. In every province and territory, women members can choose to visit museums, parks, events, and more. Here are some of the most popular places visited by Canoo women members in Canada.


Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 4,290 times to the top 5 places in Alberta.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 84,071

British Columbia

Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 1,732 times to the top 5 places in British Columbia.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 41,547


Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 845 times to the top 5 places in Manitoba.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 9,940

Nova Scotia

Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 599 times to the top 5 places in Nova Scotia.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 5,944


Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 14,066 times to the top 5 places in Ontario.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places in ON:

$ 362,414


Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 2,053 times to the top 5 places in Quebec.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 43,374


Since May 2022, Canoo women members checked in 107 times to the top 5 places in Saskatchewan.

Value saved from visits to the top 5 places:

$ 855

Did you find this report Interesting? If you want to read more, check out some of the earlier issues of Canoo Insights Report that highlight Canoo partners and members:

As Canoo is evolving and becoming better every day, we hope that these quarterly reports help readers to understand what Canoo is, who are the people that Canoo serves, and get to know some of the partners and services that ultimately bring Canoo to life for newcomers.

Interested in following us? Please sign up here for more updates happening at the ICC and follow us to get upcoming content from Ideas & Insights at ICC.

The latest immigration data (December 2022) has been released by IRCC and the complete 2022 data updates can be found on our immigration dashboard. Data are released by IRCC on a two-month lag. The visualizations below are based on a 2018 baseline.

The number of new citizens in December 2022 was down by 37% (-13,172) compared to November 2022.

Permanent resident admissions in December 2022 were down by 10.20% (-2,585) compared to November 2022.

Key Insights – Source Countries

Source Countries (December 2022)

  • India represented the largest source country of new citizens (3,886) and permanent residents:(4,555).
  • China did not make the list of top 5 source countries for new citizens (735), but was the third largest source country for new permanent residents (1,595).

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

Interested in following us? Please sign up here for more updates happening at the ICC and follow us to get upcoming content from Ideas & Insights at ICC.


Toronto, ON

The percentage of permanent residents obtaining Canadian citizenship has plummeted since 2001, according to new Statistics Canada data obtained by the Institute for Canadian Citizenship.

Despite Canada’s efforts to attract growing numbers of newcomers, the proportion of immigrants who seize the opportunity to become Canadian is in freefall.  Data collected during the 2021 Census reveal that just 45.7% of permanent residents became citizens within 10 years, down from 60% in 2016 and 75.1% in 2001. This represents a 40% decline in citizenship uptake over 20 years.

These numbers were shared by Statistics Canada with the Institute for Canadian Citizenship as part of ongoing research into declining citizenship rates.

“To go from 75% of newcomers obtaining citizenship to only 45% is simply shocking,” said Daniel Bernhard, CEO of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship.

“To go from 75% of newcomers obtaining citizenship to only 45% is simply shocking”

Daniel Bernhard, CEO of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship

“It goes against everything we tend to think about Canada being a welcoming country. It raises all sorts of questions that will have no easy answers, but it is certainly a wakeup call. Canada’s future depends on newcomers becoming Canadian and contributing their energy and talents to our shared success. We should be extremely alarmed that newcomers are falling out of love with Canadian citizenship, which has, for decades, been highly desirable.”

“The declining citizenship rate has the potential to harm Canada’s long-term economic, social and democratic resilience.  Immigrants are not just workers, but future voters and civic leaders. What’s certain is that the future of Canadian democracy depends on this issue being addressed. The ICC is working hard to identify the causes behind this apparent crash in the market value of being Canadian and we encourage all committed Canadians to join us.” said George Carothers, Senior Director, Ideas and Insights at the ICC.

“We should want those who are contributing to Canada to stay here and become citizens,” he concluded.

“We should want those who are contributing to Canada to stay here and become citizens”

George Carothers, Senior Director, Ideas and Insights of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship

Thanks to its Canoo Access Pass, the ICC is in touch with almost half a million recent immigrants. The ICC will be working with them over the coming months to better understand the root causes of this shocking decline.

Read more: Trends in the Citizenship Rate Among New Immigrants to Canada 1991 to 2016 (Statistics Canada, 2019)


The Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) works to unlock Canada for newcomers, facilitating and encouraging the journey towards full and active Canadian citizenship. The ICC is an independent charity, co-founded in 2006 by the Rt. Hon. Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston Saul.

Media Contact

Alex Nanoff

A new survey by the Institute for Canadian Citizenship is shedding light on a worrying sense of isolation amongst newcomers in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. It also highlights a strong desire amongst newcomers to get involved in more social and recreational activities in Canada.

Almost 5,000 Canoo members responded to the Newcomer Activities and Interests Survey, designed by the Ideas and Insights team at the ICC, which aimed to explore the kinds of social and recreational activities new permanent residents and new Canadian citizens enjoy participating in. The survey also explored the impact of Covid-19 on newcomers, as well as their experience with various barriers to accessing social and recreational activities.

Among the various findings of the survey, major insights include:

66.8% of respondents strongly agree (27.9%) or somewhat agree (38.9%) that the impact of Covid-19 on their social and recreational activities has left them feeling more isolated.

87.3% of respondents strongly agree (59.7%) or somewhat agree (27.6%) that participating in activities that make them feel comfortable and welcome increases their sense of belonging and connection to Canada.

83.5% of respondents strongly agree (50.7%) or somewhat agree (32.8%) that participating in activities with diverse groups of people increases their sense of belonging and connection to Canada.

95.57% of respondents indicated that they would like to increase their participation or attendance in social and recreational activities.

About the Survey:

The Newcomer Activities and Interests Survey was shared with the ICC’s Canoo member network and was open between 24th January to 31st January 2023. By completing the survey, respondents could opt-in to being entered into a draw for a $500 gift card. 4,929 Canoo members responded to the survey out of which 4,127 completed it in full. Partial survey completions were removed prior to the analysis.

To see the survey results in full, click here.

Immigration is vital to Canada’s economy, but also to its cultural dynamism. 90 percent of labour force growth is attributed to immigration, as is 75 percent of population growth. Canada has welcomed a record high of 431,645 new permanent residents in 2022, 16% higher than in 2021. But the federal government has indicated that it will increase immigration levels even further, admitting 1.45 million new immigrants between 2023-2025.

The ICC launched a dashboard in collaboration with Andrew Griffith, tracking the number of new citizens and permanent residents admitted to Canada. After facing public backlash on application backlogs, IRCC has managed to surface through and meet its target for the year. Here is the overall breakdown of permanent resident numbers in 2022:

As seen from the dashboard, the number of permanent residents admitted between December 2021 – November 2022 is 22.7 percent higher than the previous year. The dashboard below shows how the admission varies from month to month in each immigration stream:

Reviewing the dashboard on permanent resident admission categories in 2022, the dashboard shows how admission numbers vary considerably over time. For example, the Economic-Federal category (line in green) represented most admissions processed in early 2022, but monthly figures for this category decreased significantly throughout the year. The number of permanent residents admitted through the Economic-Federal category fell from almost 19,000 permanent residents in January 2022 to roughly 8,400 in November 2022.

For new citizens, the dashboard shows similar variations in monthly processing. The drastic fall in the number of new Canadian citizens at the beginning of the pandemic and the unpredictable variation of the trendline since that point reveal IRCC’s struggles in processing citizenship applications while navigating through a massive application backlog. Although the first Covid-19 case announcement was on 25 January 2020, the trends show that the number of new citizens remained relatively steady, with 25,002 new citizens approved in January and 27,094 in February. The trendline dipped in March 2020 as IRCC shut most of its services at the onset of the pandemic. Canada admitted 9,786 new citizens in March 2020 before seeing a collapse in April 2020, when they accepted only 22 citizens.

In 2020, Canada admitted only 110,901 new citizens, a 56 percent drop from 2019 when Canada welcomed 250,513 new citizens. In September 2020, IRCC announced a gradual resumption of in-person services and there was a sudden uptick in the trend, admitting 13,936 new Canadians. The trendline of the following months reveals the outcome of the challenges IRCC was facing as the citizenship approval rates continued to vary substantially. IRCC was in the centre of a lot of negative limelight for leaving almost 85,000 potential new Canadians in limbo and experts continue to question and want more transparency on the department’s processes.

Despite all the negative media coverage about IRCC’s lack of resources and ability to manage the backlog, the number of new citizens eventually recovered. Between December 2021- November 2022, Canada gained 368,911 new citizens, a 214.5 percent increase from the 262,803 Canadian citizens approved in the previous year.

While the record number of permanent resident admissions and the significant number of new citizens in the last year is certainly noteworthy, the data raises important questions about the government’s goal of admitting 1.45 million immigrants by 2025. Given the variation in processing from one month to the next, will IRCC be able to reach this goal?  Considering the fact that 1.09 million applications are still in the backlog, does IRCC have the capacity, whether through technology or through human labour, to get through the accumulated applications while also taking on a larger volume in the future? Is the goal to bring processing times back to pre-pandemic levels, which were already quite slow, or is it to revamp the entire system with the use of AI, changing eligibility requirements to create a more streamlined process of admitting newcomers in Canada?  

The Institute for Canadian Citizenship works to unlock Canada for newcomers through programs like Canoo and through original research initiatives and collaborations, such as the immigration dashboard. Each month, the ICC will be monitoring trends in new citizenship and permanent resident admissions and sharing our analysis with the public. Are you following the national conversation on immigration? Let us know what you think about the 2023-2025 Immigration plan or share your thoughts about the immigration dashboard.

You can learn more about the ICC here. Join the conversation and be part of building a more inclusive Canada.

Interested in following us? Please sign up here for more updates happening at the ICC and follow us to get upcoming content from Ideas & Insights at ICC.

2022 Was a Year of Expansion and Innovation for the Institute for Canadian Citizenship (ICC).

ICC Welcomed Thousands of New Citizens Through Enhanced Citizenship Ceremonies

The ICC worked with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to host 61 enhanced citizenship ceremonies, in-person and online, welcoming 4,739 newcomers into our Canadian family.


Newcomers welcomed through enhanced ceremonies in 2022


Enhanced Citizenship Ceremonies

Canoo Went to New Heights

Additionally, Canoo, our one-of-a-kind app that gives newcomers free VIP access to +1,400 of Canada’s best cultural and outdoor experiences, saw remarkable growth and has the highest number of activated accounts since launching in 2019.

Canoo makes it possible for newcomers to experience our rich culture and build memories with their families. In 2022, there were more than 61,000 Canoo check-ins by adults and just under 50,000 by children. During this holiday season alone, there were more than 10,000 check-ins to various winter events, activities and venues.


check-ins during the holiday season


adult check-ins


children check-ins

ICC Research Uncovered Interesting Findings

This year, in collaboration with Andrew Griffith, the ICC also launched the Citizenship and Immigration dashboard, which tracks permanent resident admissions and new citizens using #IRCC data.

This dashboard makes available important stats and information, including how many permanent residents are admitted each month, the number of new citizens, how many people are inquiring about Canadian citizenship and more.

The ICC also works with partners and program participants to drive research and develop cutting edge insights on inclusion and citizenship.

In 2022, the ICC worked with Canada Research Chair Dr. Rupa Banerjee to produce the report ‘Time to Change Focus? A Review of Immigrant Labour Market Barriers, Outcomes and the Role of Employers in Canada‘.

This report reviews the current state of research on immigrant labour market barriers and outcomes in Canada, highlighting the need for future research that explores the impact of employers on immigrant labour market outcomes.

The LaFontaine-Baldwin Lecture Welcomed Canada’s Governor General

On October 6th, 2021, together with the University of Calgary, the ICC hosted the 19th Annual LaFontaine-Baldwin Lecture, delivered by Canada’s Governor General, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon. It was beautiful to see guests in person and nearly 400 Canoo members were in attendance!

Her Excellency addressed the importance of teaching Canada’s true history – the good and the bad – both as acts of reconciliation and citizenship for all Canadians, including newcomers. This was followed by a moderated conversation with ICC co-chair John Ralston Saul on the lecture theme: Reconciliation and Evolution of Canada.

Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon will deliver the 19th LaFontaine-Baldwin Lecture at the Jack Singer Concert Hall in Calgary on October 6, 2022.

Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon delivered the 19th LaFontaine-Baldwin Lecture.

The ICC and 1000+ attendees learned that we, as Canadian citizens, must know, advocate and amplify the stories of indigenous peoples, as they have been silenced for too long.

How are newcomers to Canada valuable in advancing reconciliation? We think newcomers are more supportive and eager to learn Canadian history. Newcomers who have faced biases and understand the legacies of colonialism worldwide push for an equal and inclusive country, advancing human rights for all.

In 2023, we will continue to work towards making Canada the most welcoming country in the world. We look forward to sharing more research, positive results, and Canoo success stories in the months to come.

The Canoo Impact

Canoo was initially offered to new Canadian citizens, who make up the majority of members. With the relaunch of Canoo in May 2022, Canoo is now offered to permanent residents for the first time, and more than 15,000 permanent residents have become members since.

$1.9+ million

in value delivered in 2022


canoo member check-ins

> 40%

of members bring children on their visits

Meet Canoo Members

Toni Agbaje-Ojo, at the ICC, interviewed Canoo members on their experience using Canoo and covered a range of topics, from understanding what their transition to Canada was like to how Canoo helped them find a sense of belonging in Canada.

Highlighted below are two Canoo members who explain their journey in Canada and use Canoo to create memories and feel connected to Canada.