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The Iron Road

July 11, 2016 | Raya | Comments (0)


                                     (image courtesy of

In 1835 construction began on Canada's first railway from Saint Jean, Quebec to La Prairie, Quebec and was called the Champlain and St. Lawrence railroad. Soon, numerous other rail lines were built: the St. Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad connecting Portland, Maine to Montreal; The Great Western Railway, which ran from Niagara Falls to Windsor and was completed in 1854; and the Grand Trunk Railway which operated in Ontario and Quebec and in some of the Eastern US states. The Grand Trunk Railway of Canada linked Toronto and Montreal in 1853 and then merged with the St. Lawrence and Atlantic Railroad line which linked Portland to Montreal, added the Sarnia to Toronto and Montreal line in 1860 and then built lines to Michigan and Chicago. By 1870 it was the longest railway in the world. Canada's first transcontinental railway linking British Columbia with Eastern Canada, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR), was completed in 1885 and was considered an engineering marvel for that time.

Before rail travel it could take months to cross large countries like Canada or the United States. People rarely travelled beyond their towns or communities. This lack of quick transportation had broad ramifications: quick access to food during lean times could mean the difference between life and death; there were few opportunities to meet potential spouses if distances were too great; sending and receiving mail would take days or weeks; newspapers contained old information; the sharing of new ideas and technology was limited.

In 1825 the engine, later called Locomotion, took 450 people 25 miles from Darlington to Stockton at 15 miles per hour. This was the first outing of the world’s first public passenger steam train. - See more at:
In 1825 the engine, later called Locomotion, took 450 people 25 miles from Darlington to Stockton at 15 miles per hour. This was the first outing of the world’s first public passenger steam train. - See more at:

And then came the railroads. Suddenly, people could work farther from home; vacation travel now became possible; modern ideas were exchanged through national conferences; armies as well as munitions and food could be easily transported to battlefields. Railways quickly became vital to economic growth by lowering the cost of goods and making the movement of perishable products like milk, vegetables and meat in refrigerated cars possible. The spread of railroads created a huge number of jobs and helped foster industrialization and urbanization. Almost overnight local producers were presented with larger markets and competition for their goods.

The story of the railroads is a rich one that continues to fascinate. To read more about the history of the iron road and its impact on Canada and the rest of the world, take a look at the following books and DVDs:

Transcontinental Railroad  Train Great Western Railway of Canada Railroaded

Canadian Pacific  The train doesn't stop here anymore  Luxury trains of the world  Fifty railroads that changed the course of history

Identity Theft : Learn How to Protect Yourself and Your Financial Well-Being

July 1, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

Recently, financial consultant, Louise Sabourin, discussed concepts and solutions to combat identity theft and identity fraud that could affect your financial well-being at the Toronto Reference Library.

If you were unable to attend, the following titles may be of interest.  They are all available at the Toronto Public Library

You for Sale Identity Theft and Fraud Identity Theft Alert
You : For Sale Identity Theft and Fraud Identity Theft Alert

For additional information, search the Toronto Public Library catalogue with the recommended subject Identity theft.

Business Beach Reads

June 11, 2016 | Raya | Comments (0)

(image courtesy of

Summer is finally here, and as we pack our things for the cottage and the beach, why not bring along a business book? Now, if you think that finding a great business book to read while away on vacation is too difficult, think again! The business book genre offers unique opportunities in summer reading. The following is a list of easy and entertaining reads that will hold your interest all vacation long.

Flash boysFlash Boys is about a small group of Wall Street guys who figure out that the US stock market has been rigged for the benefit of insiders and that, post-financial crisis, the markets have become not more free but less, and more controlled by the big Wall Street banks. Working at different firms, they come to this realization separately; but after they discover one another, the Flash Boys band together and set out to reform the financial markets. This they do by creating an exchange in which high-frequency trading -- the source of the most intractable problems -- will have no advantage whatsoever. The characters in Flash Boys are fabulous, each completely different from what you think of when you think "Wall Street guy." Several have walked away from jobs in the financial sector that paid them millions of dollars a year. From their new vantage point they investigate the big banks, the world's stock exchanges and high-frequency trading firms as they have never been investigated, and expose the many strange new ways that Wall Street generates profits.The light that Lewis shines into the darkest corners of the financial world may not be good for your blood pressure, because if you have any contact with the market, even a retirement account, this story is happening to you. But in the end, Flash Boys is an uplifting read. Here are people who have somehow preserved a moral sense in an environment where you don't get paid for that; they have perceived an institutionalized injustice and are willing to go to war to fix it.



Doing moreAfter the last set of business scandals and financial busts, many powerful interests and many influential people are asking questions about doing more with less, from governments to multinational corporations; they are seeking this realignment in hopes of regaining their balance. Doing More with Less is an actionable call to arms, with global insights that are of immediate application to professionals in any industry into new ways to better align money, people and rules. Author Bruce Piaceski convincingly lays out the case for a return to frugality, providing relevant examples from his 30 years of experience as a management consultant and change agent. Piaceski deftly explains how this approach to competition is relevant, and provides readers with the framework to look at what's next without tottering toward failure.



 AchievingStarting a business is hard, but keeping an established company going can be equally challenging. In the long run, every business will need to adapt to changing market conditions, technologies, and competitive environments. Achieving Longevity explains how to manage those changes through entrepreneurial thinking.

As Jim Dewald shows, the most successful companies thrive by establishing decision-making processes that constantly engage new opportunities, enabling the firm to quickly adapt to disruptive technologies and business models. They allow for tinkering and experimentation and strive to both exploit their competitive advantage today and explore new ideas that will give them an edge tomorrow.

Achieving Longevity provides a framework for introducing the tools and culture necessary to foster entrepreneurial thinking, as well as advice on how to overcome common obstacles to corporate entrepreneurship. Drawing on Dewald's own experience as an entrepreneur, a successful corporate executive, and a professor of strategy, the book offers numerous examples of how to combine the strengths of an established firm with the innovative, outside the box thinking of a start-up venture.


PlayThe founders of a respected Silicon Valley advisory firm study legendary category-creating companies and reveal a groundbreaking discipline called category design.

Winning today isn’t about beating the competition at the old game. It’s about inventing a whole new game — defining a new market category, developing it, and dominating it over time. You can’t build a legendary company without building a legendary category. If you think that having the best product is all it takes to win, you’re going to lose.

In this farsighted, pioneering guide, the founders of Silicon Valley advisory firm Play Bigger rely on data analysis and interviews to understand the inner workings of “category kings”— companies such as Amazon, Salesforce, Uber, and IKEA — that give us new ways of living, thinking or doing business, often solving problems we didn’t know we had.

In Play Bigger, the authors assemble their findings to introduce the new discipline of category design. By applying category design, companies can create new demand where none existed, conditioning customers’ brains so they change their expectations and buying habits. While this discipline defines the tech industry, it applies to every kind of industry and even to personal careers.


HouseOn March 5, 2008, at 10:15 AM, a hedge fund manager in Florida wrote a post on his investing advice web site that included a startling statement about Bear Stearns & Co., the nation’s fifth-largest investment bank: “In my book, they are insolvent.”

This seemed a bold and risky statement. Bear Stearns was about to announce profits of $115 million for the first quarter of 2008, had $17.3 billion in cash on hand, and, as the company incessantly boasted, had been a colossally profitable enterprise in the 85 years since its founding.

Ten days later, Bear Stearns no longer existed, and the calamitous financial meltdown of 2008 had begun.

How this happened –- and why –- is the subject of William D. Cohan’s superb and shocking narrative that chronicles the fall of Bear Stearns and the end of the Second Gilded Age on Wall Street. Bear Stearns serves as the Rosetta Stone to explain how a combination of risky bets, corporate political infighting, lax government regulations and truly bad decision-making wrought havoc on the world financial system.

Cohan’s minute-by-minute account of those ten days in March makes for breathless reading, as the bankers at Bear Stearns struggled to contain the cascading series of events that would doom the firm, and as Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, New York Federal Reserve Bank President Tim Geithner, and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke began to realize the dire consequences for the world economy should the company go bankrupt.

MisfitA book that argues that lessons in creativity, innovation, salesmanship, and entrepreneurship can come from surprising places: pirates, bootleggers, counterfeiters, hustlers, and others living and working on the margins of business and society.

Who are the greatest innovators in the world? You're probably thinking Steve Jobs, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford. The usual suspects. This book isn't about them. It's about people you've never heard of. It's about people who are just as innovative, entrepreneurial, and visionary as the Jobses, Edisons, and Fords of the world. They’re in the crowded streets of Shenzhen, the prisons of Somalia, the flooded coastal towns of Thailand. They are pirates, computer hackers, pranksters and former gang leaders. Across the globe, diverse innovators operating in the black, grey and informal economies are developing solutions to a myriad of challenges. Far from being "deviant entrepreneurs" that pose threats to our social and economic stability, these innovators display remarkable ingenuity, pioneering original methods and practices that we can learn from and apply to move formal markets. This book investigates the stories of underground innovation that make up the Misfit Economy. It examines the teeming genius of the underground. It asks: Who are these unknown visionaries? How do they work? How do they organize themselves? How do they catalyze innovation? And ultimately, how can you take these lessons into your own world?


Smartest The definitive volume on Enron's amazing rise and scandalous fall, from an award-winning team of Fortune investigative reporters. There were dozens of books about Watergate, but only All the President's Men gave readers the full story, with all the drama and nuance and exclusive reporting. And 30 years later, if you're going to read only one book on Watergate, that's still the one. Today, Enron is the biggest business story of our time, and Fortune senior writers Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind are the new Woodward and Bernstein. Remarkably, it was just two years ago that Enron was thought to epitomize a great New Economy company, with its skyrocketing profits and share price. But that was before Fortune published an article by McLean that asked a seemingly innocent question: How exactly does Enron make money? From that point on, Enron's house of cards began to crumble. Now, McLean and Elkind have investigated much deeper, to offer the definitive book about the Enron scandal and the fascinating people behind it. Meticulously researched and character driven, Smartest Guys in the Room takes the reader deep into Enron's past and behind the closed doors of private meetings. Drawing on a wide range of unique sources, the book follows Enron's rise from obscurity to the top of the business world to its disastrous demise. It reveals as never before major characters such as Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling, and Andy Fastow, as well as lesser known players like Cliff Baxter and Rebecca Mark. Smartest Guys in the Room is a story of greed, arrogance and deceit -- a microcosm of all that is wrong with American business today. Above all, it's a fascinating human drama that will prove to be the authoritative account of the Enron scandal.


WhoIn 1990, IBM had its most profitable year ever. By 1993, the computer industry had changed so rapidly the company was on its way to losing $16 billion and IBM was on a watch list for extinction -- victimized by its own lumbering size, an insular corporate culture, and the PC era IBM had itself helped invent.

Then Lou Gerstner was brought in to run IBM. Almost everyone watching the rapid demise of this American icon presumed Gerstner had joined IBM to preside over its continued dissolution into a confederation of autonomous business units. This strategy, well underway when he arrived, would have effectively eliminated the corporation that had invented many of the industry's most important technologies.

Instead, Gerstner took hold of the company and demanded the managers work together to re-establish IBM's mission as a customer-focused provider of computing solutions. Moving ahead of his critics, Gerstner made the hold decision to keep the company together, slash prices on his core product to keep the company competitive, and almost defiantly announced, "The last thing IBM needs right now is a vision."

Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? tells the story of IBM's competitive and cultural transformation. In his own words, Gerstner offers a blow-by-blow account of his arrival at the company and his campaign to rebuild the leadership team and give the workforce a renewed sense of purpose. In the process, Gerstner defined a strategy for the computing giant and remade the ossified culture bred by the company's own success.

The first-hand story of an extraordinary turnaround, a unique case study in managing a crisis, and a thoughtful reflection on the computer industry and the principles of leadership, Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? sums up Gerstner's historic business achievement. Taking readers deep into the world of IBM's CEO, Gerstner recounts the high-level meetings and explains the pressure-filled, no-turning-back decisions that had to be made. He also offers his hard-won conclusions about the essence of what makes a great company run.














Do You Want to Buy a Cottage?

June 2, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

Sunset Dock

(Photo Credit:  Muskokagirl)

Most people view vacation homes as places of relaxation from urban life, especially during hot, humid summers.  They are places where family members and friends get together and spend quality time with each other. If you are planning on purchasing a vacation home, a News Canada article, Cottage Ownership: Know What You're Buying, outlines factors to consider before making a purchase.  

Here are a few questions to ask:  

Limited Road Access

  • Can the cottage be reached only by crossing a neighbour's property?
  • Are there easements registered on title that allow neighbouring residents or members of the general public to travel across the land?
  • Is access to the cottage via a municipal road seasonal only?
  • Does the municipality provide garbage collection, snow removal or emergency services in the winter?

Shoreline Rules

  • For a vacation home located on the water, is there a shoreline road allowance along the water's edge that is owned by the local municipality?
  • Has the municipality transferred the rights to this allowance to the individual property owners or are members of the public entitled to walk, or in some cases, drive along it?
  • Are there any rules about construction at the edge of, or extending into, the water?
  • Are there any rules that can prevent you from building a dock or boathouse?
  • Have existing structures, such as docks or boathouses, been "grandfathered" while new ones are prohibited?

It is advised that you consult a real estate lawyer before you buy a vacation property in order to protect yourself from "unexpected problems". For instance, a lawyer can determine whether a vacation home is subject to easements, and can tell you whether the access road is public or private. Moreover, a lawyer can conduct searches to determine whether there is an allowance and who owns it. In summary, a real estate lawyer who is familiar with rural properties can help you "know what you're buying".

For additional information regarding cottage ownership or recreational properties, check out the following titles at Toronto Public Library:

Complete Guide to Buying and Owning a Recreational Property in Canada The Cottage Rules Cottage Ownership Guide
Complete Guide to
Buying and Owning
Recreational Property
in Canada
The Cottage Rules Cottage Ownership Guide

Protect Yourself from Financial Fraud

May 2, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

Credit Cards                                          (Photo Credit:

If using credit cards or debit cards to buy items or pay bills, it is important to be aware of the risks related to electronic forms of payment. In the past, credit or debit card information was copied and counterfeit cards were produced. Today, new electronic chips have reduced counterfeit card transactions because fraudsters cannot yet "mount encrypted microchips on fake cards", according to Lorraine Young's article Protect Your Pocketbook

Presently, there are different types of financial fraud. Fraudsters use stolen information to make purchases online or over the telephone. A picture of a credit card provides a name, card number, expiry date and security number; "enough to make electronic payment for goods or services that can be delivered to any address."

David Schurman, COO at FirstOntario Credit Union, advises "Don't let your credit card out of your sight. If a waiter or gas attendant asks for your card go with them and tell them that they don't need it unless you're there." Payment methods can be set up to happen beside the consumer. The card doesn't need to leave your hand.

Credit cards are not the only method of financial fraud. Online, letter based and telephone scams are rising. In 2014, mass market frauds (contacts that seem personal but are sent to several people at the same time) generated over 40,000 complaints to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre. Approximately 15,000 victims lost more than $70 million.

Here are some tips from Young's article on how to protect yourself from financial fraud:

  • Protect your personal and financial information.
  • Do not give any details regarding your electronic financial resources to anyone without verification.
  • Clear your mail regularly and shred paper that contains personal information.
  • Protect your PIN at all times.
  • Review your account statements. Small unfamiliar transactions may be indications of bigger problems.
  • Do not use public Wi-Fi for banking or financial transactions. Public Wi-Fi is not as private as home-based secure networks.
  • Do not assume links or phone numbers in messages requesting information are legitimate. Check them against your account record or look them up to validate them.
  • Contact the bank or vendor directly before sharing any information.
  • If you shop or bank online, make sure the site is secure; i.e. symbolized by the "s" in the "https://" of the address, or by a closed padlock or similar icon.  See your browser for details.
  • Keep your security software up-to-date.

For more information regarding fraud types, how to protect yourself and/or how to report an incident, visit the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (formerly known as PhoneBusters).  

Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre 
The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC) is the central agency in Canada that collects information and criminal intelligence on such matters as mass marketing fraud (i.e. telemarketing), advance fee fraud (i.e. many West African letters), internet fraud and identification theft complaints.   

To learn more, go to one of the Toronto Public Library's programs that discusses scams:

In addition, check out the following, recent titles on the topic at the Toronto Public Library:

Swiped Virtual Unreality Spam Nation
Swiped Virtual Unreality Spam Nation

Grow Your Business Using Social Media

April 15, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

Social Media                      (Photo Credit: Ibrahim.ID)                                 

By Elle

My dad and his business partner owned a small import/retail business in the city’s core. They imported and sold Chinese artifacts, furniture, paintings, fabric and traditional Chinese dresses (Cheongsams). Their client base grew from a few people in the community and tourists who were passing by, to clients who would make a regular trek from the U.S. How did they grow their roster of clients? There was no Internet, no tv or radio ads (too expensive!), no flyers sent far and wide. The answer: word-of-mouth.

Now word-of-mouth is done electronically through social media. Sure, we can create a website profiling our products/services; but, with a website, you are talking to your customers (one way) whereas with social media, you are talking with your customers and they in turn are talking to each other about you and your business. Plus, with social media you can see how your customers are feeling instantly and address any concerns right away.

Use social media as a way to promote and brand your company and connect with new clients.

I recently came across a report by Michael Stelzner, Founder, Social Media Examiner, whose group surveyed 3,700 marketers with the goal of understanding how they're using social media to grow and promote their businesses. The largest group that took the survey works for small businesses of 2-10 employees (37%), followed by the self-employed (23%). Seventeen percent of people taking the survey work for businesses with 100 or more employees. Most participants (52%) were based in the United States, followed by United Kingdom (9%), Canada (6%) and Australia (5%). Most survey participants (69%) were between the ages of 30 and 59. The median age was 40 to 49. Females edged out males, representing 58% of all participants.

Guess what were the findings?

Facebook & LinkedIn are the two most important social networks for marketers, with 93% of marketers using Facebook.

For Twitter, YouTube & LinkedIn, 62% plan on increasing their use of these tools.

A significant 64% of marketers were using social media for six hours or more and 41% for 11 or more hours weekly. For people just beginning with social media (less than 12 months of experience), 49% spent five or fewer hours per week. However, of the folks who have been doing this for two years or longer, at least 68% spend six hours or more per week on social media activities.

The top two benefits of social media marketing are increasing exposure and increasing traffic. A significant 90% of all marketers indicated that their social media efforts generated more exposure for their businesses. Increased traffic was the second major benefit, with 77% reporting positive results. Most marketers are using social media to develop loyal fans (69%) and gain marketplace intelligence (68%).  

Other identified benefits to using social media:

  • Built new business partnerships by investing an average of six hours per week in social media marketing: 62% of businesses reported.
  • Generated new leads: 66% of businesses reported.
  • Reduced marketing expenses: 52% of businesses reported.
  • Improved search rankings: 62% of businesses saw an improvement in search engine rankings.
  • Increased traffic: 81% of businesses reported increased traffic.
  • Provided marketplace insight:  63% of businesses reported.

Time invested made a difference. Of those spending at least six hours a week, 72% found benefit, with B2C (Business to Consumers) marketers (73%) much more likely to develop a loyal fan base through social media than B2B (Business to Business) marketers (63%).

B2B marketers were more likely (64%) to use social media to gain thought leadership than B2C marketers (50%).

Commonly used social media platforms:

Facebook (93%), Twitter (79%), LinkedIn (71%), Google+(56%), YouTube (55%), Pinterest (45%) and Instagram (36%) were the top seven platforms used by marketers, with Facebook leading the pack by a long shot.

The overwhelming majority of marketers used Facebook ads (84%), followed by Google ads (41%) and LinkedIn ads (18%) with B2C marketers using Facebook ads more (89%) than B2B marketers (75%).

A large percentage (71%) used visual assets in their social media marketing. Close behind was blogging (70%). Podcasting was only used by 10% of marketers so this represents an opportunity. B2B marketers are much more likely to use blogging (77%) when compared to B2C marketers (64%). Podcasting was also more common among B2B (12%) than B2C (9%). The self-employed were more likely to use blogging (79%)

And did you know that Canada has the highest social media network penetration in the world, with 82% of Canadians using a social network? (We Are Social: Social, Digital & Mobile Worldwide in 2014)

(Source:  Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association)

This begs another question: is it possible to measure ROI (return on investment) for social media activities? Only 42% agreed they are able to measure their social activities. The ROI issue has plagued marketers for years. In 2014, 37% indicated they could measure ROI and in 2013, it was 26%.

So what’s the next step? Check out these select sources on social media and small businesses.

Social Media Advantage Online Marketing for Small Businesses Social Media Analytics
Social Media Advantage Online Marketing
for Small Businesses
Social Media Analytics
Build in Social Social Media MBA Media Guide to ROI Zero to 100,000

Built in Social
eBook Available

Social Media MBA
Guide to ROI 
eBook Available

Zero to 100,000
eBook Available
eBook available

LyndaWatch video tutorials on Facebook advertising fundamentals or social media marketing with Twitter or Facebook, on, Toronto Public Library’s exciting new electronic resource, free with your library card. gives you access to more than 3,500 video tutorial courses led by experts on web design, software development, photography, business skills, home and small office, project management, 3D + animation, graphic design audio, music, video editing and more. It requires the creation of a personal account which will allow you to track your progress through your tutorials. Available anywhere you have Internet access, you are just required to sign in with your valid TPL card.

All the best with growing your business!


Helaine Olen, Author of "The Index Card", in Conversation with Ellen Roseman

March 30, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

The Index Card

Helaine Olen, award-winning financial author of Pound Foolish: Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry, discussed her new book The Index Card: Why Personal Finance Doesn't Have to be Complicated with Ellen Roseman, the Toronto Star's personal finance writer, on April 6, 2016 at the Toronto Reference Library. 

Helaine Olen became a personal finance expert in a few months, according to Roseman's Star article Personal Finance Rules on an Index Card.  In fact, Olen relied on a copy of Personal Finance for Dummies.  "My takeaway was how easy most of this stuff is, even though the financial industry tries to tell us how complicated it is."

In her new book, Olen explains what lies behind the eight rules -- including "pay your credit card balance in full every month, max out your retirement saving plans and avoid actively managed mutual funds."                                                         

Other titles mentioned in Roseman's article that may be of interest: 

Personal Finance for Canadians for Dummies      Pound Foolish      Cold Hard Truth on Men, Women & Money
Personal Finance for
for Dummies
Pound Foolish Cold Hard Truth on Men,
Women & Money

Check the Toronto Public Library catalogue for additional titles on the topic of Personal Finance.  


Starting a Business?

February 11, 2016 | Thanusa | Comments (0)

A new year, a new you!

Was starting a business this year one of your goals?

Join the eight-week business program this spring at North York Central Library or Oakwood Village Branch and reap the benefits of getting expert assistance with your business plan, access to a business advisor, and networking with other like-minded entrepreneurs.

Upon completion of the program, you will be awarded with a Business Seminar Series Certificate from Toronto Business Development Centre and be eligible to apply for a small business loan ranging from $5,000 to $30,000.

Have more questions? Visit the Business Inc. page, or attend an orientation session at either of these locations to learn more before applying:


Orientation Dates: 

Oakwood Village Branch- Monday, March 7 at 6:30pm

North York Central Library- Tuesday, March 8, at 6:30pm


Check out these new titles to help you get started:

Starting a business dummies   Fail fast or win big   Your Guide to Starting and Self Financing    Content Inc.



Market Research with Library Resources

February 1, 2016 | Christina | Comments (0)

Market Research with Library Resources 

Toronto Public Library provides information in a variety of formats. These include downloads and ebooks, DVDs, articles and online research. Additional help is available by consulting a librarian in the branch, calling Answerline (416-393-7131), or by using our email or online chat service, Ask a Librarian. You can also Book a Librarian (a 30-to-60 minute personal appointment with a librarian).

Getting Started 

The Business, Science and Technology Department of the Toronto Reference Library (3rd floor) has many resources related to market research. For additional information please ask at the Information Desk.

Searching the Library Catalogue Using Suggested Subjects or Keywords


Associations – Canada – directories

Business enterprises – Canada - statistics

Canada – economic conditions – statistics

Consumers – research

Consumer behaviour - research

Economic indicators – Canada

Industries - Ontario - Toronto region - directories

Internet marketing

Marketing research

Marketing research – Canada

Marketing research - methodology

Marketing – Canada - periodicals

Market surveys – Canada

Market surveys – Canada – statistics

New products – management

Questionnaires - methodology

Small business - Canada - finance - statistics


Market surveys                              

Market research

Marketing management   

Marketing plans

Marketing strategy


Checking the Shelves

Relevant call numbers:









RMA  Annual Statement Studies

Company Information 

Contact Toronto

Ontario Business-to-Business Sales & Marketing Directory. 4 vols. 

Regional Directory.  Ontario [Dun & Bradstreet]

Scott’s Directories:  Ontario Business. 4 vols.

Using Online Sources

Toronto Public Library provides access to a wide range of online resources, such as downloads and eBooks, as well as articles and online research. Most of these resources can be accessed outside the library from the Library's website with a valid Toronto library card.

Find Your Way…Downloads & eBooks

Click on Downloads & eBooks from the FIND YOUR WAY section of the Library's homepage. Click on eBooks & Digital Content: Start Here to find Getting Started with Library eBooks. From the Downloads & eBooks page, select OverDrive eBooks and eAudiobooks. Our largest eBook collection, OverDrive includes current non-fiction, videos and audiobooks. Click on Business & Careers under eBook Nonfiction to browse all titles in this category.   

Find Your Way…Articles & Online Research

Click on Articles & Online Research from the FIND YOUR WAY section of the library’s homepage, select Databases & Research Tools by Topic and then Business & Careers. (Or, just enter the title of the database in the main search box of the homepage, or browse using the A – Z List of All Databases).

Suggested Databases:

Marketline (available at TRL and NYCL branches only)

Scott’s Business Directories Online

Safari Tech & Business Books Online

Find Your Way…Small Business                                         

Click on Small Business from the FIND YOUR WAY section of the library’s homepage to find Spaces to Meet and Work, Expert Staff Assistance, Specialized Business Resources, and business-related Programs and Seminars.

Recommended Websites 

Click on Books, Video, Research and More from the library’s homepage, select Recommended Websites, and then Business, Finance and Economics. To find websites on doing market research click on Small Business and Entrepreneurship/Research Tools.           


Demographic Information

Census Profile, 2011 Census

NHS Profile [National Household Survey], 2011 Census

Report on the Demographic Situation in Canada, 2008 to 2012  

Business/Industry Performance/Company Information

Canadian Companies Capabilities

Financial Performance Data

Key Small Business Statistics

SEDAR Issuer Profiles

SME Research and Statistics

Toronto Industry Profiles

Additional Sources


Various associations and organizations produce newsletters and websites. They may contain very specific and specialized information and are useful sources of information regarding news, developments, new products and suppliers in an industry. For example, in Canada the Restaurants Canada and the Retail Council of Canada have websites with statistics on their industries and major trends.


Trade Publications and Directories 

Trade publications often contain information on competitors and new products. They may also have information about industry developments, issues, forecasts and market surveys. Trade, professional or business associations (e.g. local Chamber of Commerce) can be another good source for market information. These associations may have market research available pertaining to their industry. These reports can sometimes be purchased. In some cases, this material will be sold only to members.

Vertical Files – Industry Files 

Located behind the Business, Science and Technology Department Information Desk, they include recent printouts and clippings from various sources for Canadian industries. Press releases, pamphlets and other sources of information about industries may also be included.

See Also

Business Directories : City of Toronto and Area
Researching a Canadian Company
Researching a Canadian Industry
Starting a Small Business in Canada

Need Help Doing Your Tax Return?

January 16, 2016 | Thanusa | Comments (0)

Tax season is soon approaching!


Do you or do you know someone who needs help doing taxes?

North York Central Library (and other branches) is once again offering FREE community income tax service provided by Chartered Professional Accountants. Qualified accountants will help individuals to fill out their 2015 Income Tax Returns.

Do you qualify for the service?

The service is available to single persons with incomes under $30,000 or families with an income of under $40,000.

Note: Interest income must be under $1,000. The accountants will not handle self-employment income or rental income. 

Below lists the documents to bring with you:

  • a copy of your completed 2014 Income Tax Return along with "Notice of Assessment" sent to you by the government
  • all T4, T5, T3, etc.
  • Property Tax Bill for 2015
  • rent receipts
  • TTC Metropasses
  • Students - post-secondary must have tuition forms T2202 

Registrations are taken on the day you arrive on the following dates, times, and locations:


March 5, 12, 19

Held in the concourse level of North York Central Library

10:00 am to 4:30 pm (last session at 3:45pm)


Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays

March 15, 22

April 5, 11, 15, 19, 25, 29

Held in room 2/3 at North York Central Library

6:00 pm to 8:30 pm (last session at 7:45pm)



March 30, April 27

Held in room 1 at North York Central Library

6:00 pm to 8:30 pm (last session at 7:45pm)


If you need more information, please call North York Central Library at 416-395-5613.


Welcome! We are specialized librarians in our business department and we write about current issues for small business owners and those interested in personal finance matters. For more information and resources see our Small Business & Personal Finance page.