NextGen CIO Program

Woman with her shadow wearing a cape.

Overview and Curriculum

The days of a Chief Information Officer (CIO) being just a technology and systems expert are over. Today’s CIO is expected to be an influential strategic leader which requires both an organizational and individual commitment.

Government departments and agencies want their CIOs to be ready for C-suite responsibilities. Whether moving from a CS or EX category into the ranks of a CIO, or an existing CIO moving into a larger and more complex organization, the NextGen CIO Program is a mark of accomplishment and indication of readiness to offer strategic thinking and problem-solving skills required of a modern CIO.   The program, developed in close cooperation with current and former CIOs in government and industry to help emerging CIOs build skills and experiences in preparation for enhanced leadership responsibilities in a dynamic and complex work environment, caters to the learning needs of:

  • CIOs in small- to mid-sized government departments and agencies
  • Deputy CIOs
  • Emerging leaders with business acumen and CIO potential
  • Aspiring CIOs in the private sector

The learning program provides an environment in which participants learn from and engage with seasoned experts from academia, government and industry.  In addition to four full-day leadership courses and the professional practice day, the program includes a simulation exercise allowing participants to present and defend a business case proposal. This is in addition to a series of half-day action learning sessions where small groups discuss practical work challenges. All courses include:

  • The CIO at the Executive Table
  • CIO as Team Builder and Coach
  • Performance Management of the CIO
  • Change Management for the CIO
  • Client Service for the CIO
  • Success and Failure - the CIO Experience
  • Making a Business Case in the CIO world

Curriculum Overview 

*Schedule is subject to change.

Schedule 2021

Lumina Leader 

Instructions will be received May 15, 2021.

Instructions sent May 15, 2021
Deadline to complete by noon on May 21, 2021

Program Launch

Half-day kickoff session in May 2021.

May 31, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Leadership Course 1
May 2021

An exploration of the role of the CIO, the demands placed on the position and the requirements of the individual.

Day 1 – June 8, 2021, 9:00-11:30

Day 2 – June 9, 2021, 9:00-11:30

Day 3 – June 10, 2021, 9:00-11:30

Leadership Course 2
June 2021

Senior management oral briefings course to further develop the “Create Vision and Strategy” leadership competencies.

Day 1 – June 21, 2021 9:00-12:00

Day 2 – June 22, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Leadership Course 3
September 2021

Leadership course to develop the “Mobilize People” competency and "Emotional Intelligence".

Day 1 (MP) – September 21, 2021, 13:00-16:00

Day 2 (EI) – September 22, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Leadership Course 4
October 2021

Success and failure course – "What a CIO needs to do?" course to explore IT challenges.

Day 1 – October 5, 2021, 9:00-11:30

Day 2 – October 6, 2021, 9:00-11:30

Day 3 – October 7, 2021, 9:00-11:30

November 2021

Participants present and defend an idea using a business case proposal before a mock executive committee.

Day 1 – November 8, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Day 2 – November 9, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Day 3 – November 10, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Day 4 – November 12, 2021, 9:00-12:00

Action Learning Circles

Small groups discuss practical work challenges in four half-day sessions moderated by a professional coach.

June, September, October, November 2021


Developmental Assignments

On-the-job learning activities.

Throughout the program

Professional Practice & Graduation Day

Participants interact with government leaders and CIOs from the private and public sectors. Sponsors / supervisors are invited to attend.

November 16, 2021, 9:00-12:00




Learning Themes

The NextGen CIO Program is focused on enhancing leadership skills in four primary areas:

  • Leveraging influence at the executive table
  • Leading a team and managing talent
  • Building and sustaining client relationships
  • Leading change and innovation

Mixed with these core skills are the overarching themes of:

  • Driving continuous innovation
  • Understanding business integration
  • Developing strategic thinking

Within the four learning themes participants will be exposed to material and topics in a variety of areas, including:

  • Communication
  • Sourcing and Delivery Methods
  • Industry Trends and Best Practices
  • Performance Management
  • Financial Management
  • Leveraging Systems
  • Risk Analysis and Management
  • Partnership
  • Opportunity Assessment

Certificate Program

Upon completion of the program, participants will be granted a University of Ottawa Certificate of Professional Development, which will serve to recognize newly acquired skills, potential and accomplishment.

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