Tag Archives: David Watters

Canadian Science Policy Centre: a 2024 Canadian federal budget event and a call for 2024 conference proposals *(deadline extension)*

2024 Canadian federal budget event

Canada’s 2024 federal budget will be presented on April 16, 2024, according to this March 4, 2024 Government of Canada media advisory. About two weeks later the Canadian Science Policy Centre (CSPC) will host their annual budget symposium (Decoding Budget 2024 for Science and Innovation). Here’s more from the March 28, 2024 CSPC announcement (received via email),

The CSPC Budget Symposium will be held on Wednesday May 1, 2024 starting at 12pm. The Symposium will feature a detailed budget analysis presented by David Watters and Omer Kaya from Global Advantage Consulting Group followed by panel discussions with leaders from across the country, representing academic, business, and non-profit sectors.

Details

Date: May 1 [2024]
Time: 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm EDT
Event Category: Virtual Session
Registration Page: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Zu0_hqZaRZuADWwT7y5rIw

Venue

Zoom

Organizer

Canadian Science Policy Centre
Email info@sciencepolicy.ca

Mark your calendar to be part of insightful discussions around the Federal Budget 2024!

Register Now

Kaya and Watters were both scheduled to speak at last year’s (2023) federal budget symposium and both have been guest speakers in years previous to 2023. Presumably more speakers and specific topics will be identified as the May 1, 2024 budget symposium draws nearer.

2024 Canadian Science Policy Conference (CSPC): call for proposals

I gather the conference organizers (the Canadian Science Policy Centre) are short of ‘panel proposals’ but have enough ‘short talk proposals’ as the the March 28, 2024 CSPC announcement (received via email) highlights the panels only,

Call for Panel Proposals, Three Weeks
Left to the Deadline: April 19, 2024 *(extended to April 26, 2024)*

The call for proposals is open with only 3 weeks left until the submission deadline of Friday, April 19, 2024. We invite you to submit proposals that revolve around any of the conference’s six tracks. The theme and topics can be viewed by clicking here, and the submission criteria and panel formats on our website at the link below.

CSPC 2024 Panel Proposal Submission

I have a few details about the 2024 conference, from the CSPC 2024 webpage,

16th Canadian Science Policy Conference

November 20th-22nd, 2024, at the Westin Ottawa hotel

CSPC 2024 Theme:

Empowering Society: The Transformative Value of Science, Knowledge, and Innovation

The 16th Canadian Science Policy Conference (CSPC 2024), will be held in person on November 20th – 22nd, 2024. The conference expects 1000+ participants, more than 300 speakers, in 60 panel sessions. CSPC 2024 will also include a spectacular Gala dinner featuring its award ceremony which has become a signature annual event to celebrate Canadian science and innovation policy achievements.

We invite you to submit proposals in a variety of presentation formats that revolve around any of the conference topics. …

Track One: Science, Knowledge, and Policy

*The national STI ecosystem: Strategy for the next ten years; building on strengths and opportunities; addressing weaknesses
*Managing the evolving/changing research landscape: AI, Open Science
*Evidence for policy
*Science policy futures

Track Two: Science, Knowledge, and Society


*Systemic racism, otherism

*Science, Knowledge, and Truth and Reconciliation
*Ethics of emerging technologies

*Citizen Scientist

Track Three: Innovation Policy and Economic Development

*Emerging economic opportunities
*Emerging and disruptive technologies

*Scale up and commercialization

Track Four: Science, International Affairs and Security


*Science diplomacy, research security and geopolitics
*Scientists on the move

Track Five: Science and the Next Generation


*Enabling the next generation of researchers with non-research skills
*Trainees’ well-being
*Grassroots science policy networks, opportunities and lessons learned

Track Six: Grand Challenges – Adaptation, Resilience, Canada’s Role

*Climate change
*The North
*Food, agriculture, water

For details about proposal submissions for either a short talk or a panel, go to the 2024 CSPC proposal webpage. If you’re curious about previous conferences, you can find the proceedings for the 2023 CSPC here.

*Deadline for 2024 CSPC conference proposals extended to April 26, 2024.*

Decoding the (Canadian) Federal Budget 2023 for Science and Innovation; a Tuesday, April 11, 2023 symposium, 1 – 5 pm ET

The Canadian federal budget was unveiled on Tuesday, March 28, 2023 and the Canadian Science Policy Centre (CSPC) is holding another five hour extravaganza (symposium) on it. Presumably this will be online as no location has been announced. (BTW, I have a few comments about the 2023 budget, which should be posted in the near future.)

Here are more details about the 2023 CSPC budget symposium, from a March 30, 2023 CSPC announcement (received via email),

The federal government released the 2023-24 budget on Tuesday, March 28th. CSPC is once again hosting a Symposium for a comprehensive analysis of the Federal Budget, and the reactions of various sectors.

The CSPC Budget Symposium will be held on Tuesday, April 11th [2023] and will feature numerous speakers from different sectors across the country. A detailed budget analysis will be presented by Dave Watters and Omer Kaya from Global Advantage Consulting Group, followed by panel discussions of various speakers. 

Confirmed Speakers include:

  • Aminah Robinson Fayek – Vice-President of Research and Innovation, University of Alberta           
  • David Watters – President, Global Advantage Consulting Group
  • Jeanette Jackson – CEO, Foresight Canada
  • Karimah Es Sabar – CEO, Quark Venture
  • Malcolm Campbell – Vice-President of Research, University of Guelph
  • Matthew Foss – Vice-President of Research and Public Policy, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB)
  • Namir Anani – President/ CEO, Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC)
  • Omer Kaya – CEO, Global Advantage Consulting Group
  • Padmapriya Muralidharan – Chair, Canadian Association of Postdoctoral Scholars [CAPS-ACSP]
  • Steven Liss – Vice-President of Research, Toronto Metropolitan University [TMU]
  • Wes Jickling – Chief Executive, Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA)

Mark your calendar and don’t miss this session and all insightful discussions of the Federal Budget 2023!

Register Here

For the curious, the CSPC held an April 21, 2022 symposium: Decoding Budget 2022 for Science and Innovation (for details see my April 19, 2022 posting; scroll down to the 2022 budget symposium subhead).

David Watters who was supposed to be their ‘keynote’ speaker last year is listed as a 2023 co-keynote presenter and Omer Kaya who filled in as the ‘keynote’ for the 2022 symposium is back as a featured 2023 co-keynote presenter. There are two other returnees to the symposium, Karimah Es Sabar and Malcolm Campbell.

Online symposium (April 27 – 28, 2021) on Canada’s first federal budget in two years

The Canadian federal budget is due to be announced/revealed on April 19, 2021—the first budget we’ve seen since 2019.

The Canadian Science Policy Centre (CSPC)is hosting an April 27 -28, 2021 symposium online and the main focus will be on science and funding. Before moving onto the symposium details, I think a quick refresher is in order.

No oversight, WE Charity scandal

While the Liberal government has done much which is laudable by supporting people and businesses through this worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, there have been at least two notable missteps with regard to fiscal responsibility. This March 24, 2020 article in The Abbotsford News outlines the problem,

Conservative Finance critic Pierre Poilievre says there’s no deal yet between the Liberal government and Opposition over a proposed emergency aid bill to spend billions of dollars to fight the COVID-19 pandemic and cushion some of its damage to the economy.

The opposition parties had said they would back the $82 billion in direct spending and deferred taxes Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to put up to prepare the country for mass illness and help Canadians cope with lost jobs and wages.

Yet a draft of the bill circulated Monday suggested it was going to give cabinet, not MPs, extraordinary power over taxes and spending, so ministers could act without Parliament’s approval for months.

The Conservatives will support every one of the aid measures contained in bill with no debate, Poilievre said. The only issue is whether the government needs to be given never before seen powers to tax and spend. [emphasis mine]

When there’s a minority government like the one Trudeau leads, the chance to bring the government down on a spending bill is what gives the opposition its power.

The government did not receive that approval in Parliament—but they tried. That was in March 2020; a few weeks later, there’s this (from the WE Charity scandal entry on Wikipedia),, Note: Links have been removed

On April 5, 2020 amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and his then-Finance Minister Bill Morneau, held a telephone conversation discussing measures to financially assist the country’s student population.[14] The Finance Department was tasked with devising a series of measures to address these issues. This would begin a chain of events involving numerous governmental agencies.

Through a no-bid selection process [emphasis mine], WE Charity was chosen to administer the CSSG [Canada Student Service Grant], which would have created grants for students who volunteered during the COVID-19 pandemic.[15][13] The contract agreement was signed with WE Charity Foundation,[16] a corporation affiliated with WE Charity, on June 23, 2020. It was agreed that WE Charity, which had already begun incurring eligible expenses for the project on May 5 at their own risk,[17][18] would be paid $43.53 million[19] to administer the program; $30 million of which was paid to WE Charity Foundation on June 30, 2020.[18] This was later fully refunded.[17] A senior bureaucrat would note that “ESDC thinks that ‘WE’ might be able to be the volunteer matching third party … The mission of WE is congruent with national service and they have a massive following on social media.”[20]

Concurrent to these events, and prior to the announcement of the CSSG on June 25, 2020, WE Charity was simultaneously corresponding with the same government agencies ultimately responsible for choosing the administrator of the program.[8] WE Charity would submit numerous proposals in April, beginning on April 9, 2020, on the topic of youth volunteer award programs.[9] These were able to be reformed into what became the CSSG.[8]

On June 25, 2020 Justin Trudeau announced a series of relief measures for students. Among them was the Canada Student Service Grant program; whereby students would be eligible to receive $1000 for every 100 hours of volunteer activities, up to $5,000.[21]

The structure of the program, and the selection of WE Charity as its administrator, immediately triggered condemnation amongst the Official Opposition,[22] as well as numerous other groups, such as the Public Service Alliance of Canada,[7] Democracy Watch,[23] and Volunteer Canada[24] who argued that WE Charity:

  • Was not the only possible administrator as had been claimed
  • Had been the beneficiary of cronyism
  • Had experienced significant disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic and required a bailout
  • Had illegally lobbied the government
  • Was unable to operate in French-speaking regions of Canada
  • Was potentially in violation of labour laws
  • Had created hundreds of volunteer positions with WE Charity itself as part of the program, doing work generally conducted by paid employees, representing a conflict of interests. …

In a July 13, 2020 article about the scandal on BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) online, it’s noted that Trudeau was about to undergo his third ethics inquiry since first becoming Prime Minister in 2015. His first ethics inquiry took place in 2017, the second in 2019, and again in 2020.

None of this has anything to do with science funding (as far as I know) but it does set the stage for questions about how science funding is determined and who will be getting it. There are already systems in place for science funding through various agencies but the federal budget often sets special priorities such as the 2017 Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy with its attendant $125M. As well,Prime Minister Justin Trudeau likes to use science as a means of enhancing his appeal. See my March 16, 2018 posting for a sample of this, scroll down to the “Sunny ways: a discussion between Justin Trudeau and Bill Nye” subhead.

Federal Budget 2021 Symposium

From the CSPC’s Federal Budget 2021 Symposium event page, Note: Minor changes have been made due to my formatting skills, or lack thereof,

Keynote talk by David Watters entitled: “Canada’s Performance in R&D and Innovation Ecosystem in the Context of Health and Economic Impact of COVID-19 and Investments in the Budget“ [sic]

Tentative Event Schedule

Tuesday April 27
12:00 – 4:30 pm EDT

12:00 – 1:00 Session I: Keynote Address: The Impact of Budget 2021 on the Performance of Canada’s National R&D/Innovation Ecosystem 

David Watters, President & CEO, Global Advantage Consulting

1:15 – 1:45 Session II: Critical Analysis 

Robert Asselin, Senior Vice President, Policy, Business Council of Canada
Irene Sterian, Founder, President & CEO, REMAP (Refined Manufacturing Acceleration Process); Director, Technology & Innovation, Celestica
David Wolfe, Professor of Political Science, UTM [University of Toronto Mississauga], Innovation Policy Lab, Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy

2:00 – 3:00 Session III: Superclusters 

Bill Greuel, CEO, Protein Industries Canada
Kendra MacDonald, CEO, Canada’s Ocean Supercluster
Angela Mondou, President & CEO, TECHNATION
Jayson Myers, CEO, Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen)

3:30 – 4:30 Session IV: Business & Industry 3:30 – 4:30

Namir Anani, President & CEO, Information and Communications Technology Council [ICTC]
Karl Blackburn, President & CEO, Conseil du patronat du Québec
Tabatha Bull, President & CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business [CCAB]
Karen Churchill, President & CEO, Ag-West Bio Inc.
Karimah Es Sabar, CEO & Partner of Quark Venture LP; Chair, Health/Biosciences Economic Strategy Table

Wednesday April 28
2:00 – 4:30 pm EDT

2:00 – 3:00 Session V: Universities and Colleges

Steven Liss, Vice-President, Research and Innovation & Professor of Chemistry and Biology, Faculty of Science, Ryerson University
Madison Rilling, Project Manager, Optonique, Québec’s Optics & Photonics Cluster; Youth Council Member, Office of the Chief Science Advisor of Canada

3:30 – 4:30 Session VI: Non-Governmental Organizations 

Genesa M. Greening, President & CEO, BC Women’s Health Foundation
Maya Roy, CEO, YWCA Canada
Gisèle Yasmeen, Executive Director, Food Secure Canada
Jayson Myers, CEO, Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen)

Register Here

Enjoy!

PS: I expect the guests at the Canadian Science Policy Centre’s (CSPC) April 27 – 28, 2021 Federal Budget Symposium to offer at least some commentary that boils down to ‘we love getting more money’ or ‘we’re not getting enough money’ or a bit of both.

I also expect the usual moaning over our failure to support industrial research and/or home grown companies E.g., Element AI (Canadian artificial intelligence company formerly headquartered in Montréal) was sold to a US company in November 2020 (see the Wikipedia entry). The US company doesn’t seem to have kept any of the employees but it seems to have acquired the intellectual property.

Deadline for 2019 Canadian Science Policy Conference panel submissions: April 15, 2019

I received (via email) an April 2019 ‘newsletter’ from the Canadian Science Policy Centre (CSPC) with news about the November 13 – 15, 2019 (10th annual) Canadian Science Policy Conference (CSPC) to be held in what seems to be the conference’s permanent home, Ottawa, Ontario.

Let’s start with the call for panel submissions,

ONLY 10 DAYS LEFT: Deadline for CSPC 2019 Panel Proposals is April 15, 2019!
What questions and topics would you like to see addressed at CSPC 2019? Propose a panel, and be part of the biggest science and innovation policy conference in Canada.

The new deadline to submit a panel proposal is April 15, 2019.

Proposals from organizations and individuals across all sectors and disciplines are welcome. Please carefully review the proposal ranking criteria before you make your submission to increase your chances of success.
Submit a proposal

The overall conference theme seems to be ‘2009 – 2019 A Decade of Profound Impact’. I wonder how they’ve measured impact. So far, I haven’t seen the evidence for this claim but perhaps they’re still compiling it. They do however list five subthemes with some interesting topics (from the CSPC 2019 Themes webpage),

Canadian Science Policy Centre is pleased to announce the themes of this year conference. Since 2018, we have decided to have fix general themes in order to have a big tenet for all interesting discussions at the intersection of science, innovation policy and society. Each theme includes several topics. These topics are selected through consultations with experts, delegates feedback. While the proposals do not have to be within any specific bullet point, these topics are encouraged.
 
Science and Policy
What constitutes evidence and whose evidence counts
Traditional knowledge and policy making
Case studies of science informing policy
Open science and its impact on policy for science
Policy making and new scientific and technological advances: e.g. CRISPR, Synthetic Biology, AI [artificial intelligence]
Changing configurations of science funding mechanisms – opportunities and challenges
Federal provincial coordination in policy making for science and innovation
New frontiers of science: Interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary and convergence science
 
Science and Society
Science in the age of populism
A national agenda for science
Convergence science and tackling grand challenges
Disruptive technology and societal impacts
Democratization of science; participatory science, challenges and opportunities
Communicating science; interdisciplinary and the use of new technologies
Science and inclusivity
Diaspora scientists
 
Science, Innovation and Economic Development
Innovation and Canadian private sector: perspectives and challenges
Super clusters; review a year into the process
Canada’s inclusive Innovation Agenda
Changing landscape of Canadian R&D: government, industry and post-secondary Institutions
Economic strategy tables
Harnessing science and technology to economic growth and job creation
The impact of the social sciences and humanities on innovation 
 
Science, International Affairs and Security
Science diplomacy and new world order
Science in the age of de-globalization
Cyber Security; a serious global challenge
Sustainable Development Goals 2030
International community and climate change
 
Science and the Next Generation
Modernization of scientists training
New generation of science advocates
What is science professional career path?
Skills, training, and work integrated learning

Here’s the CSPC 2019 Panel Submission Form. Good luck!

There were a few other CSPC-related items in this ‘newsletter’,

CSPC Half-Day Symposium on the 2019 Federal Budget
at the Chestnut Conference Centre, Toronto [Ontario]


The CSPC is excited to present “Decoding the 2019 Federal Budget for Canadian R&D and Innovation,” co-sponsored by the University of Toronto and Ryerson University at the Chestnut Conference Centre, 89 Chestnut Street, Toronto.

There will be a continental breakfast at 8:00am and the symposium will begin at 8:30am with a comprehensive analysis of the 2019 budget by David Watters, CEO of Global Advantage and a veteran of the Canadian Public Service. This will be followed by two responding panels.

We hope you will join us for what promises to be a thoughtful and stimulating examination of the federal budget. For detailed information and symposium agenda, please visit the event page here.

Please RSVP to info@sciencepolicy.ca.

New Editorials added!
CSPC’s Featured Editorials on the 2019 Federal Budget

More CSPC’s featured editorials on the 2019 Federal Budget have been added.  These cover numerous topics including innovation and business tax, mental health, space, biosciences and big sciences, drug accessibility, school food programs, and many more. They present perspectives from industry, academia, and the non-profit sector. Explore the huge range of opinions here.
Browse all featured editorials

There you have it.