The creation of wealth to meet the well-being of the growing population generates intense human activity, which in turn creates increased pressure and significant changes on natural resources, the environment, and the climate. There are therefore enormous challenges concerning, among other things, territorial spaces, natural resources, as well as adaptation to climate variability.
However, at the same time these challenges offer immense opportunities for socio-economic development. But this new economy
requires precise and up-to-date information on the various physical and socio-economic components of the planet. For several years, this crucial need has motivated the launch of numerous earth observation satellites by space agencies, in particular the Canadian Space Agency (CSA); but also by private companies (UrtheCast, Planet, etc.). The significant progress made has already resulted in the collection of phenomenal amounts of data, and the trend will continue to accelerate. Unfortunately, there is a deep divide between the huge amounts of data collected and their actual use in practice. Only a tiny part of the data is used. This major deficit stems from the availability and capacity of qualified human resources to use data optimally to create wealth, and meet the multiple expectations of society. In the case of Canada, the field of earth observation is essential because of the vastness of the territory and the multidimensional challenges associated with it. However, is the country really prepared to take full advantage of the new world of images and spatial information?
The DOTS project aims to strengthen student training with added value closely based on the needs of the practical environment. It will strengthen the professional skills of more than 180 students, and offer 80 practical work placements. In doing so, the project will greatly improve the employability of students, and will significantly contribute to the emergence of a strong sector in the creation of data-based services.