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Panel 4: Building Opportunities for Collaboration Between Government and Academia to Inform Public Policy

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Canadian academic research in all disciplines is among the best in the world but Canada is not extracting full social and economic value from this research. Reductions in the policy capacity within government create opportunities to engage academic researchers in structured policy dialogues on policy areas of strategic importance to Canada. Supporting collaborations on policy research will create an innovative policy environment that will have an impact across government and on Canada’s research and graduate student community. Structured policy dialogues on topics important to Canadians will provide an important means to maximize the return on government investments in university research and will build capacity and partnerships to better enable knowledge mobilization and enhance the public benefit of publicly funded research.

This panel will feature experts from the university research and federal policy environments. Panelists will make the case and explore possibilities for growing partnerships between federal policy makers and the broader policy community. The moderator will then seek feedback from the audience in a design session format to inform the development of a process that will maximize the impact of Canada’s academic research community on Canada’s federal public policy process.

Moderator Details

Vice-President Research and Innovation
York University

Dr. Robert Haché is Vice-President Research and Innovation at York University. Prior to that, he served as the associate vice-president research at the University of Calgary, where he was instrumental in moving the university’s strategic research priorities forward. He has also held academic appointments in the Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy in the Faculty of Medicine, and in the Department of Biological Sciences in the Faculty of Science at the University of Calgary. A renowned molecular and cellular biologist and biochemist with a substantial record of publications, Dr. Haché has made invaluable contributions to the understanding of how steroid hormone signaling takes place in cells and how cells respond to DNA damaging agents. Dr. Haché holds a BSc (biochemistry) from McGill University and a PhD (biochemistry) from Queen’s University. He has received research grants and awards from the Canadian Institute for Health Research (CIHR), National Cancer Institute of Canada (NCIC), National Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and other organizations.

Panelist Details

Dr. Rainer Engelhardt
Chief Science Officer
Public Health Agency of Canada

Dr. Rainer Engelhardt is Chief Science Officer of the Public Health Agency of Canada. Dr. Engelhardt has a career background in science and technology, initially in academic research and teaching, then progressing to commercial and public sector management. Prior to his becoming Chief Science Officer, he held the position of Assistant Deputy Minister for Infectious Diseases in the Public Health Agency, which he joined following a successful twenty years in the private sector. He was chief executive officer of several innovative companies in the health sector, including the infectious disease domain, served as a director on the boards of numerous technology companies, and chaired BIOTECanada, Canada’s national biotechnology trade association. Prior to that, he was a founding officer and a senior executive with the U.S.-based Marine Spill Response Corporation, establishing this billion dollar enterprise. Dr Engelhardt had joined the private sector from an executive position with the Government of Canada, where his responsibilities included environmental science and regulatory affairs, management of large national and international science and technology programs, and establishment of collaboration partnerships between resource industries and government. His career started as a university professor, with responsibilities for biomedical research, teaching and academic administration, in Massachusetts (SMU) and in Canada (UOttawa). He has a publications record as author and editor of over 150 scientific and technical publications, including three books in commercial applications of science and technology, and several patents.

Anthony Giles
Director General
Strategic Policy, Analysis and Workplace Information, Labour Program of Employment and Social Development Canada

Anthony Giles is Director General, Strategic Policy, Analysis and Workplace Information in the Labour Program of Employment and Social Development Canada, a position that he has held since 2007. From 2004 to 2007, he was Director General, International and Intergovernmental Affairs in the Labour Program.

Prior to joining the federal government, he worked as Director of Research at the Secretariat of the Commission for Labour Cooperation in Washington, D.C. (2001-04), and as a professor in the Département des relations industrielles, Université Laval (1992-2001) and in the Faculty of Administration, University of New Brunswick (1983-1992). During his academic career, Dr. Giles conducted research on a wide variety of subjects, including comparative and international industrial relations, public policy, collective agreements, industrial relations theory, globalization, the management of work in multinational firms, and work reorganization.

Dr. Giles holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Relations (Warwick University, UK), an M.A. in Public Administration (Carleton University), and a Bachelor of Administration (Concordia University).

Neil Gall
Executive Director
MEOPAR NCE

Appointed the first Executive Director of MEOPAR in June 2013, Neil brings extensive local, national and international experience in the ocean technology industry. Neil has held several leading roles in government, research and academic environments over the past decade, including Executive Director of Bridges, an initiative administered through the Marine Institute of Memorial University. A proven leader, he is adept in the management of complex multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional organizations.

Neil has considerable international business development and marketing experience and has taught numerous undergraduate business courses in communications and marketing. He received his MBA from McGill University, Bachelor of Commerce (Co-op) degree from Memorial University, and he completed le programme court de 2e cycle en gestion de projet at UQAM. Prior to joining MEOPAR, Neil played a key role in the development and implementation of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador’s ocean technology development strategy, “Oceans of Opportunity.”

Christine Tausig Ford
Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer
Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada

Christine Tausig Ford has three decades of experience in higher education and association management. She is Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, the national organization representing Canada’s 97 universities and university degree-level colleges.

Ms. Tausig Ford oversees the operations of the Ottawa-based organization. She provides high-level strategic advice to the President, Board of Directors and membership on all aspects of the association’s work, especially with respect to governance, membership issues, public affairs, research, international relations and leadership development.

Ms. Tausig is a former journalist, and was editor of AUCC’s magazine University Affairs. She holds an honours bachelor of journalism from Carleton University and a bachelor of arts in English from the University of Toronto’s Trinity College. She is a member of the Governing Board of the OECD’s Institutional Management of Higher Education Program in Paris and of the Board of Directors of the Science Media Centre of Canada. In 2012, Ms. Tausig Ford received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for her service to higher education in Canada.