About RAnLab

How it Started

Established by Dr. Alvin Simms and Jamie Ward (in collaboration with Dr. David Freshwater and the Harris Centre’s director, Dr. Rob Greenwood), the Regional Analytics Laboratory (RAnLab) emerged about 10 years ago. The group recognized that the province was in need of demographic and labour market information that focused on the specific, regional nature of the province. Although the province was coming out of an unprecedented economic boom at the time, Newfoundland and Labrador was also facing a declining and aging population and increasing urbanization. It was critical for people in the province to be presented with a clear and accurate  picture of the province’s future demographic reality in order to start moving towards solutions, and that's exactly what RAnLab does.

What We Do

RAnLab focuses on the use of regional economic and spatial analytics to quantitatively assess the capacity and sustainability of industries, labour markets, and the population of places for the purpose of informing evidence based policies for regional development.

RAnLab has worked with partners of all levels to develop a series of operational geo-spatial supply chain and regional analytics models that can assess the localized impacts of any present or projected future changes in demography, commodity prices, technology, labour markets, and housing demands, as well as industries and services including transportation and health care delivery. This includes modelling the effects of the introduction, reorganization, or removal of industries or services from a region.


Who We Are

Contact us through one of our emails listed below or email ranlab@mun.ca and we'll make sure your email gets to the right person. For more information, please visit our website: www.ranlab.ca

Dr. Alvin Simms
Harris Centre Senior Research Associate

Jamie Ward
Manager, RAnLab

Leslie Feltham
Engagement Coordinator


How We Can Help You

Data to Decisions is a series which aims to provide a practical guide for people looking to incorporate more data into their everyday decision-making.

Data to Decisions explores the following areas: 

  • Data by Geographical Areas
  • Data Quality
  • Data Collection
  • Making Sense of the Census
  • Data Sources

To access these Data to Decisions learning materials, please visit www.ranlab.ca/data-to-decisions 


RAnLab supports real-world decision making by combining observed localized data and contextual knowledge with advanced data analytics.

RAnLab's work is guided by partner engagement – we'll collaborate with you to decide how we can best help you with the challenges you're working hard to solve.  

All partnerships are flexible. The projects we complete and the support we provide is fully customizable to your needs. This includes custom tailored processes, analysis, and outputs. 

To learn more, please visit www.ranlab.ca/local-data-expertise

Connected to Memorial University and Local Communities

The Regional Analytics Laboratory is an initiative of the the Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development at Memorial University. 

The Harris Centre has two primary goals:

  1. To assist in the responsible development of the economy and society of Newfoundland and Labrador.
  2. To stimulate informed discussion of important provincial issues.

RAnLab regularly collaborates with other members of the Harris Centre team to support projects through data analysis and capacity-building. The Harris Centre's frequent consultations with industry experts and policy makers, funded research projects, and engagement with local communities positions RAnLab with the important contextual information required for good quantitative analysis.