Canada's Policy Transformations


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The Symposium

Panelists traced the past, present, and future of Canadian policymaking, focusing in on the country's most critical challenges: the renewal of the federation, managing diversity, Canada's relations with Indigenous peoples, the environment, inter-generational equity, global economic integration, and Canada's role in the world.

This symposium asked: what are the great political and policy transformations that will occur over the next 50 years? Canada’s last big anniversary—its centennial—coincided with a period of “big picture” policymaking that fundamentally reshaped the country.


Watch the Panels

Panel presentations from this event are now available.


The Agenda

Day One

Friday, November 17, 2017


Panel 1

The Economy: from Canadianization of the economy to global competition and innovation

Michelle Alexopoulos, University of Toronto
Mark Manger, University of Toronto
Kevin Milligan, University of British Columbia
Moderator: Joseph Heath, University of Toronto

Watch on demand now


Panel 2

Diversity and Rights: the evolution of pluralism


Antje Ellermann, University of British Columbia
    Emmett Macfarlane, University of Waterloo
    Marva Wisdom, Environics Institute
Moderator: Sule Tomkinson, Université Laval

Watch on demand now


Panel 3

Indigenous Peoples: from the 1969 White Paper to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and beyond


Christa Scholtz, McGill University
    Sheryl Lightfoot,  University of British Columbia
    Carol Anne Hilton, Simon Fraser University
Moderator: Brendan Boyd, University of Calgary

Watch on demand now


Panel 4

Intergenerational Equity and Social Policy


John Myles, University of Toronto
    Joseph Heath, University of Toronto
    Daniel Béland, University of Saskatchewan
Moderator: Linda White, University of Toronto

Watch on demand now



Day Two

SATURDAY, November 18, 2017
9:00 AM - 3:45 PM


Panel 5

The Environment and Natural Resources: from the Silent Spring to climate change

Jennifer Winter, University of Calgary
    Deborah McGregor, York University
Matti Siemiatycki, University of Toronto
Moderator: Leslie Seidle, Institute for Research on Public Policy

Watch on demand now


Panel 6

The Federation: is Canadian federalism fit to meet the challenges of the future?


Jean Leclair, Université de Montréal
    Jeremy Webber, University of Victoria
  Kathryn Harrison, University of British Columbia
Moderator: Carolyn Tuohy, University of Toronto

Watch on demand now


Panel 7

50 years of election promises, public policy and democracy in Canada

Stuart Soroka, University of Michigan
    Francois Pétry, Université Laval
    Lisa-Maureen Birch, Université Laval
Moderator: Michael Donnelly, University of Toronto

Watch on demand now


Panel 8

Canada and the World: from peace-keeping to counter-terrorism and nation-building; from multilateralism to global disorder

Stéfanie von Hlatky, Queen’s University
    Aisha Ahmad, University of Toronto
    Stéphane Paquin, École nationale d'administration publique (ENAP)
Moderator: Chaviva Hosek, University of Toronto

Watch on demand now


When and Where

This event took place on

Friday, November 17, 2017
9:00 AM - 4:15 PM

SATURDAY, November 18, 2017
9:00 AM - 3:45 PM

The Faculty Club
University of Toronto

41 Willcocks Street
Toronto, ON, M5S 1C7


This symposium was jointly hosted by...

The School of Public Policy and Governance, the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy, the University of Laval’s Centre d’analyse des politiques publiques, the Institute for Research on Public Policy, and Massey College.