Social policy researchers, consultants and program officers (NOC 4164)

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Nature of work

Social policy researchers, consultants and program officers conduct research, develop policy and implement or administer programs in areas such as consumer affairs, employment, home economics, immigration, law enforcement, corrections, human rights, housing, labour, family services, foreign aid and international development. They are employed by government departments and agencies, industry, hospitals, educational institutions, consulting establishments, professional associations, research institutes, non-government organizations and international organizations or they may be self-employed.

Main duties

  • The following is a summary of main duties for some occupations in this unit group:
  • - Social policy researchers develop social programs, social legislation, or proposals based on demographic, social and economic analysis and the evaluation of pilot projects.
  • - Home economists conduct research, advise consumers on the selection and proper use of food products, textiles and other consumer goods and teach household management skills. They may also provide consultative services in the areas of development and promotion of new food products, retail buying, social program administration and small business endeavours.
  • - Housing policy analysts identify and assess economic, demographic, and social developments and report on their implications for housing policy.
  • - Continued…
  • - International aid and development project officers plan, organize and administer foreign aid and international development policies and programs.
  • - Social survey researchers develop questionnaires, co-ordinate and conduct surveys, analyse data, and compile and interpret statistics on social issues and policy areas.
  • - Social services planners conduct research, develop social programs, assess, co-ordinate and develop awareness of existing social services, and ensure that duplication of services is avoided. They may also work with land use planners to determine the impact of major land use plans for transportation, housing and recreational facilities projects.

Employment requirements

  • * A bachelor's degree or college diploma in a social science or related discipline, or in business administration is usually required.
  • * A master's degree in a social science or related discipline or in business administration may be required.
  • * Home economists require a bachelor's degree in home economics, home economics education, human ecology, nutrition and food sciences or family and consumer studies.
  • * Registration is available, but voluntary, for home economists but the use of the designation "Professional Home Economist" is regulated in New Brunswick, Ontario, Manitoba and Alberta, and "Registered Professional Home Economist" in British Columbia.
  • * Certified immigration consultants must be registered members of the Canadian Society of Immigration Consultants.

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