Women in Politics, the Economy and Society in Europe and Quebec – Today and Tomorrow

Monday, March 8, 2021 12:00to13:30

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, the Jean Monnet Centre Montreal and the McGill School of Continuing Studies invite you to a conversation on "Women in Politics, the Economy and Society in Europe and Quebec – Today and Tomorrow”.

This bilingual panel discussion will compare the state of gender equality and the representation of women in France, Germany and Canada (with a particular focus on Quebec). Highlighting key facts, figures and global policy initiatives, panelists will reflect on the progress, challenges and their own experiences in advancing the status and impact of women through diplomacy and foreign/global policy.

Our Panelists:
  • Sophie Lagoutte, Consul General of France, Montreal
  • Elisa Valentin, Delegate General of Quebec in Munich, Germany
  • Dr. Kathrin Misera-Lang, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany, Montreal

Co-moderated by

  • Maria Popova, PhD, Associate Professor, Jean Monnet Chair, Department of Political Science, McGill University and Scientific Director, Jean Monnet Centre, Montreal
  • Carola Weil, PhD, Dean of Continuing Studies, McGill University



Sophie Lagoutte

A French diplomat, Sophie Lagoutte has been French Consul general in Montreal since August 2019. She holds a Master in Public Affairs from the Paris Institute for political studies Sciences Po and entered the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2008. She starts as a desk officer at the Directorate for European Union in Paris, in charge of Justice and Homme affairs. In 2011, she joins the Permanent Representation of France to the European Union in Brussels, where she is appointed negotiator for climate and environment, then for internal market, and coordinator of the team in charge or EU’s internal policies (social affairs, agriculture, competitiveness, industry, education, culture, environment, transport, energy…). From 2015 to 2017, she is the head of the press department and political officer at the French Embassy in Israël. Before joining the French Consulate in Montreal, she serves from 2017 to 2019 as Deputy head of cabinet for the Minister of European affairs, and political adviser on European affairs for the Minister of Foreign affairs.


Elisa Valentin

Elisa Valentin took office as Delegate General of Québec in Munich on June 1st, 2020. She was previously Director of Europe and European Institutions of the Ministry of International Relations and La Francophonie since 2016.

Proficient in six languages and with a significant professional background focused on international and economic aspects, she has been developing her career within the Ministry from the end of 2006, where she worked as Director for Asia-Pacific, Director for Latin America and Antilles as well as the head of Haiti and Germany / Switzerland / Austria desks, among other positions.

Before joining the Government of Québec, she worked as an economic analyst at the Department of Human Resources Development Canada in Ottawa and, later, in the field of financial communication and sustainable development at Publicis Consultants in Paris.

Elisa Valentin holds a Bachelor's degree in International Relations and International Law (specialization in international economic relations -Gorizia, Italy, 1998) and a Master's degree in International Relations (specialization in international development -Laval University, Quebec, 2006). In 2019, she participated as the representative of Québec in the Europe module of the 26th "Lehrgang für Verwaltungsführung", a formation of the Chancellery of the State of Bavaria.


Dr. Kathrin Misera-Lang

Dr. Kathrin Misera-Lang is Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany in Montreal since 2017, sharing this position with her husband Dr. Markus Lang. She has been posted to Singapore and Turkey beforehand, and has worked at the Department for Culture and Communication as well as at the Political Department at the Federal Foreign Office, Berlin.


Dr. Maria Popova

Dr. Maria Popova is Jean Monnet Chair, Associate Professor of Political Science, and Co-Director of the Jean Monnet Centre Montreal. Prof Popova teaches and writes about the rule of law, political corruption, populist parties, and the legal repression of political dissent under authoritarianism in Eastern Europe and the post-Soviet region.

Dr. Carola Weil

Since 2018, Dr. Carola Weil has served as Dean of the School of Continuing Studies, McGill University’s interdisciplinary faculty dedicated to adult professional education, experiential and community-based learning. Specialized in organizational development, human security and conflict transformation, and humanitarianism, Dr. Weil’s career has straddled public policy, non-profit and philanthropic sectors in addition to higher education. She has held teaching, research and administrative appointments at leading universities in the United States, including at the Center for International Development and Conflict Management University of Maryland, supported grantmaking in conflict zones in sub-Saharan Africa, Asia and Latin America, and co-founded and directed an international non-profit network, Women In International Security (WIIS). Carola Weil has authored or co-authored studies on humanitarian intervention, critical information needs of communities, humanitarianism as well as on topics related to gender and inclusion.

A dual citizen of Germany and the US, she holds a PhD and Master’s in Political Science (International Relations/Security), a MPM in Public Management from the University of Maryland, and a Bachelor’s Degree in History from Bryn Mawr College. She is multi-lingual and has lived, worked or travelled on most continents.

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