Policies for Better Lives : Speakers

Chris Barrington-Leigh

Associate Professor, McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy and the Bieler School of Environment

Chris Barrington-Leigh is the academic convenor of the 2021 Better Lives conference. He is an Associate Professor at McGill University, jointly appointed at the Institute for Health and Social Policy and the School of Environment. His recent research is focused on (1) empirical and quantitative assessments of human well-being, measured through subjective reports, and their implications for policy; (2) the structure of urban road networks, globally, as quasi-permanent influences on diverse urban outcomes; and (3) energy transition in China. He was originally trained in upper atmospheric and space plasma physics at M.I.T., Stanford, and Berkeley, before studying Economics at the University of British Columbia. Chris was a Global Scholar of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (2009-2014) and is a current member of the Global Young Academy.


Stefano Bartolini

Professor of Happiness Economics and Political Economy at the University of Siena

Stefano Bartolini is Professor of Economics of Happiness and of Political Economy at the University of Siena. He authored several articles published on prestigious academic reviews and popular science essays, including the Manifesto for Happiness - published in 5 languages. He collaborated with the Oecd, the World Bank and the International Panel on Social Progress. His research starts from the observation that the current economic and social order seems unsustainable from at least three points of view: the degradation of the natural environment, of interpersonal relationships and of human well-being. The crucial questions motivating his activity are: why does this happen? And most importantly: is it possible to reconcile a better quality of our environment, relationships and well-being with economic prosperity?

Mary Bartram

Policy Director, Mental Health Commission of Canada & Adjunct Professor, Carleton University

Dr. Mary Bartram has led mental health and substance use policy development and implementation with federal and territorial governments, Indigenous organizations and NGOs. Mary is Policy Director with the Mental Health Commission of Canada and teaches courses in public policy at Carleton University, including a graduate seminar on mental health and substance use policy. She completed her PhD at the School of Public Policy and Administration at Carleton University in 2017 and postdoctoral research at McGill University and the University of Ottawa. Her research has focused on a range of issues such as equity in access to psychotherapy, harm reduction in postsecondary settings, and recovery in the mental health and substance use sectors. Mary is a Registered Social Worker and holds an MSc in Family Therapy from Purdue University. SHORT BIO: Dr. Mary Bartram has led mental health and substance use policy development and implementation with federal and territorial governments, Indigenous organizations and NGOs. She is the Policy Director with the Mental Health Commission of Canada and teaches courses in public policy at Carleton University.

Derek Cook

Director, Canadian Poverty Institute, Ambrose University

Derek Cook serves as the Director of the Canadian Poverty Institute at Ambrose University in Calgary. In this role, he recently served on the Ministerial Advisory Committee on Poverty, providing input to the development of the Canadian Poverty Reduction Strategy. Previously, Derek worked for The City of Calgary where he led the Mayor’s task force on poverty reduction. He has extensive experience in social research and policy development, particularly in the areas of poverty and inequality, from his work in municipal government and various non-profit organizations across Canada. Derek holds a B.A. in Political Science from McGill University, an M.Sc. in Rural Planning and Development and a Certificate in Knowledge Mobilization from the University of Guelph, and is a Registered Social Worker (RSW) with the Alberta College of Social Workers.

Don Drummond

Canadian Economist, Matthews Fellow and Visiting Scholar, School of Policy Studies, Queens University

Don Drummond is the Stauffer-Dunning Fellow and Adjunct Professor at the School of Policy Studies at Queen’s University. In 2011-12, he served as Chair for the Commission on the Reform of Ontario’s Public Services. Its final report, released in February 2012, contained nearly four hundred recommendations to provide Ontarians with excellent and affordable public services. Mr. Drummond previously held a series of progressively more senior positions in the areas of economic analysis and forecasting, fiscal policy and tax policy during almost 23 years with Finance Canada. His last three positions were respectively Assistant Deputy Minister of Fiscal Policy and Economic Analysis, Senior Assistant Deputy Minister of Tax Policy & Legislation and most recently, Associate Deputy Minister. In the latter position he was responsible for economic analysis, fiscal policy, tax policy, social policy and federal-provincial relations and coordinated the planning of the annual federal budgets. He subsequently was Senior Vice President and Chief Economist for the TD Bank (2000-2010), where he took the lead with TD Economics’ work in analyzing and forecasting economic performance in Canada and abroad. For Canada, this work was conducted at the city, provincial, industrial and national levels. TD Economics also analyzes the key policies which influence economic performance, including monetary and fiscal policies. He is a graduate of the University of Victoria and holds an M.A. (Economics) from Queen’s University. He has honorary doctorates from Queen’s and the University of Victoria and is a member of the Order of Ontario. Mr. Drummond is currently Chair, Canadian Centre for the Study of Living Standards; Fellow-in-Residence, C.D. Howe Institute and; member of the Expert Advisory Group to the Canadian Institute for Climate Choices.

Houssam Elokda

Operations Manager & Senior Planner, Happy City

Houssam is a community designer, transit planner and systems builder at Happy City, an urban design and research firm focused on making cities happier, healthier and more inclusive. His evidence-based approach helps city builders develop urban plans, policies and systems that boost human wellbeing. Houssam has led complex masterplanning and policy projects in diverse settings that range from rural Nova Scotia to metropoles such as Dubai, Cairo and Vancouver. He also led our groundbreaking collaboration with neuroscientists to examine the psycho-social effects of public space design in West Palm Beach. Houssam plays leadership roles in various urbanist organizations. He is a co-founder and board chairman at Transport for Cairo, a mobility firm that pioneers data collection methods to improve informal transportation networks in emerging cities. He also sits on the board of organizations that work in real estate development and transit advocacy.

Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell

Scientist of Institute for Economic Analysis and Director of GSE Master Program in the Economics of Public Policy, University of Barcelona

Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell holds a PhD on quantitative analysis of subjective well-being (2003) from the University of Amsterdam and another one on environmental issues (2003) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, Nueva York). Currently she is a tenured scientist at the Institute of Economic Analysis (IAE-CSIC), Deputy Director for Academic Programs of the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics (GSE), and research affiliated at IZA and MOVE. She is also director of the World Wellbeing Panel and Director of the Economics of Public Policy Master program at the Barcelona GSE. Her main research interests are on the analysis of subjective well-being through subjective questions and its applications to key economic outcomes, such as, health, inequality, and other public economics relevant issues.

Sarah Flèche

Assistant Professor at Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Research Associate at the Well-Being Observatory (CEPREMAP) and LSE Centre for Economic Performance

Sarah Fleche is an applied economist and CNRS research fellow at the Sorbonne Economic Centre (University Paris 1), in France. Her research lies in the fields of labor, education and behavioral economics and has led to new insights into the role of schools on wellbeing development, mental health and determinants of wellbeing over the life course. Sarah is also an associate researcher at the LSE Centre for Economic Performance and the French Wellbeing Observatory (CEPREMAP). In 2008, together with Andrew Clark, Richard Layard, Nattavudh Powdthavee and George Ward, she wrote a book on The Origins of Happiness. Prior to joining Paris 1 University, she has been an assistant professor at the Aix Marseille School of Economics, a post-doctoral researcher at the LSE and received her PhD from Paris School of Economics.

The Honourable Mona Fortier

Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance

Elected in 2017, the Honourable Mona Fortier is the first female Member of Parliament for Ottawa—Vanier. Minister Fortier has always believed that she can best serve her community by getting involved and taking action. Her expertise covers the areas of health care, education, job creation, and francophone affairs. Prior to being elected, Minister Fortier worked as the Chief Director of Communications and Market Development at Collège La Cité and managed her own strategic communications consulting firm. She has also served on several non-profit Boards of Directors, including the Montfort Hospital, the Ontario Provincial Advisory Committee on Francophone Affairs, and the Shaw Centre. In addition, she has received numerous awards for her community involvement, including the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012. Minister Fortier is focused on making life more affordable for Canadians, protecting the environment, and helping businesses prosper. She is a strong advocate for linguistic duality and always searches for the right balance between prosperity and social justice. As a mother of three, a University of Ottawa graduate, community leader, and entrepreneur, Minister Fortier knows that it is important to come together with an ambitious plan to build stronger and better communities while growing the middle class.

Paul Frijters

Professor of Wellbeing Economics, London School of Economics

Paul Frijters is a Professor of Wellbeing Economics at the London School of Economics: from 2016-nov 2019 at the Center for Economic Performance, thereafter at the Department of Social Policy. Professor Fritjers specializes in applied micro-econometrics, including labor, happiness, and health economics, though he has also worked on pure theoretical topics in macro and micro fields. His main area of interest is in analyzing how socio-economic variables affect the human life experience and the "unanswerable" economic mysteries in life. Professor Frijters is a prominent research economist and has published over 150 papers in fields including unemployment policy, discrimination and economic development.

Carol Graham

Leo Pasvolsky Senior Fellow, Brookings Institution

Carol Graham is Leo Pasvolsky Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, a College Park Professor at the University of Maryland, and a Senior Scientist at Gallup. She served on a National Academy of Sciences panel on well-being metrics for policy in 2012-13, a Pioneer Award from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2017, and a Lifetime Distinguished Scholar award from the International Society of Quality of Life Studies in 2018. She has also served as Special Advisor to the Vice President of the Inter-American Development Bank, and as a Visiting Fellow in the Office of the Chief Economist of the World Bank. Her most recent books are: Happiness for All? Unequal Lives and Hopes in the Land of the Dream (Princeton, 2012); The Pursuit of Happiness: Toward an Economy of Well-Being (Brookings, 2011), and Happiness around the World: the Paradox of Happy Peasants and Miserable Millionaires (Oxford University Press, 2010). https://www.brookings.edu/research/americas-crisis-of-despair-a-federal-...

Danny Graham

Chief Engagement Officer, Engage Nova Scotia

Over a thirty-year period, Danny Graham has held senior positions in business, law, government and politics. For 10 years he was the Chief Negotiator on Aboriginal Rights for the Province of Nova Scotia. He is credited with starting the Nova Scotia Restorative Justice Program and has worked to advance justice reforms with the United Nations and various countries spanning four continents. He has been recognized by organizations throughout Atlantic Canada for his community and public leadership. He is currently the Chief Engagement Officer for Engage Nova Scotia – an independent non-profit that is currently leading the Nova Scotia Quality of Life Initiative, in collaboration with an extensive network of partners from the public, private, academic and community sectors. In 2019 almost 13,000 Nova Scotians responded to a 230-question survey administered by Engage and the Canadian Index of Wellbeing. Partners, that include Local Leadership Teams and all three levels of government, are considering the findings of the survey to catalyse new action, inform policy development and shape the narrative about how to build a successful society.

Margo Greenwood

Academic Leader, National Collaborating Centre for Indigenous Health

Dr. Margo Greenwood, Academic Leader of the National Collaborating Centre for Indigenous Health, is an Indigenous scholar of Cree ancestry with years of experience focused on the health and well-being of Indigenous children, families and communities. She is also Vice-President of Indigenous Health for the Northern Health Authority in British Columbia and Professor in both the First Nations Studies and Education programs at the University of Northern British Columbia. While her academic work crosses disciplines and sectors, she is particularly recognized for her work in early childhood care and education of Indigenous children and for public health. Margo has undertaken work with UNICEF, the United Nations, the Canadian Council on Social Determinants of Health, Public Health Network of Canada, and the Canadian Institute of Health Research, specifically, the Institute of Population and Public Health. Margo received the Queen's Jubilee medal in 2002 in recognition of her tireless work to promote awareness and policy action on the rights and well-being of Indigenous and non-Indigenous children, youth and families. In 2010, she was named ‘Academic of the Year’ by the Confederation of University Faculty Associations of British Columbia, and in the following year, she was honoured with the National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Education.

Siobhan Harty

Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet, Priorities and Planning, Privy Council Office


Siobhan Harty is Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet, Priorities and Planning, Privy Council Office, since October 2020. In this role, she is responsible for supporting meetings of the Cabinet, the government’s overall policy agenda through the Speech from the Throne, and the development of policy advice for new governments. Prior to this, she was Assistant Secretary, Government Operations, Treasury Board Secretariat of Canada (2018-2020), where she briefed Treasury Board ministers on a range of ministerial proposals, such as defence procurement, Information Technology, national revenue, real property and contracting. She has also served as Assistant Secretary to the Cabinet, Parliamentary Affairs, Privy Council Office (2016-2018), where she provided support to the Government House Leader on the introduction of legislation and served as secretary to a cabinet committee. Siobhan has also held senior executive-level positions at Employment and Social Development Canada (Director General, Social Policy) and Public Safety Canada (Senior Director, Emergency Management Planning). Prior to joining the federal public service in 2002, Siobhan was a tenure-track professor of International Politics at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth and a Killam Postdoctoral Fellow at Dalhousie University. She holds a PhD in Political Science, McGill University, an MPhil in Latin American Studies, Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar, and a BA (Hons) in Political Science, Concordia University.

Alex Haslam

Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology and Australian Laureate Fellow, University of Queensland

Alex is Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology and Australian Laureate Fellow at the University of Queensland. His research focuses on the study of group and identity processes in organizational, social, and clinical contexts. He has received a range of awards from scientific bodies in Australia, the US, UK and Europe for contributions to Social, Organizational, Political and Health Psychology. Together with colleagues, Alex has written and edited 15 books and published over 280 peer-reviewed articles on these topics. His most recent books are The New Psychology of Health: Unlocking the Social Cure (with Catherine Haslam, Jolanda Jetten, Tegan Cruwys and Genvieve Dingle, Routledge, 2018), The New Psychology of Leadership: Identity, Influence and Power (2nd Ed. with Stephen Reicher & Michael Platow, Psychology Press, 2020), and The New Psychology of Sport: The Social Identity Approach (with Katrien Fransen & Filip Boen, Sage, 2020).

John Helliwell

Professor Emeritus of Economics, UBC & CIFAR

John F. Helliwell is Professor Emeritus in the Vancouver School of Economics at the University of British Columbia, and Distinguished Fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research. From 2006 to 2017 he directed (with George Akerlof) CIFAR’s progam in Social Interaction, Identity and Well-Being. His books include Globalization and Well-Being (UBC Press 2002), Well-Being for Public Policy (OUP, with Diener, Lucas and Schimmack, 2009), International Differences in Well-Being (OUP, edited with Diener and Kahneman, 2010), nine editions, 2012-2021, of the World Happiness Report, and (with Jon Hall) Happiness on a Healthier Planet, in Myers & Frumkin, eds. Planetary Health: Protecting Nature to Protect Ourselves (Island Press, 2020) He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and Officer of the Order of Canada.

Lisa Helps

Mayor of Victoria

Mayor Lisa Helps has served as Mayor of Victoria since 2014, before that she was a city Councillor from 2011-2014. She is relentlessly future leaning and works hard to ensure that Victoria is prosperous, resilient, welcoming and ready for challenges and opportunities ahead. Mayor Helps prioritizes collaboration, diversity and building understanding. She brings together a diverse range of community leaders to work together to advance ambitious programs such as future-focused economic development, climate action, affordable housing, and reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.


Nancy Hey

Executive Director

What Works Centre for Well-Being, UK

Nancy Hey is a global leader in the field of wellbeing. Prior to setting up the Centre, she worked in the UK Civil Service in nine departments as a policy professional and coach, delivering cross UK Government policies including on constitutional reform. She is currently specialist advisor on wellbeing to the UK House of Lords Life After Covid Inquiry into wellbeing impacts of the acceleration of digital of the pandemic, a member of the UAE Global Councils on Sustainable Development Goals and on a wide range of advisory groups including on Public Health England’s Every Mind Matters Expert Advisory Group, Carnegie UK Trust’s Embedding Wellbeing in Northern Ireland, Well Schools, UUK’s Mental Health in Higher Education, Stockholm City Region, Pro Bono Economics, Loneliness & Social Isolation Research Network and Early Intervention Foundation Knowledge Mobilisation. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Fellow of Institute of Coaching, McLean Hospital, a Harvard Medical School Affiliate and a Fellow of the Zinc Academy.

Susan Holdsworth

Project Manager for RECOVER: Urban Wellbeing

Susan Holdsworth is the project manager for RECOVER: Urban Wellbeing. Sue has also worked as a strategic, policy, and land use planner for three local governments, as well as the WinterCity Manager for Edmonton’s broad and holistic WinterCity Strategy. To all her work, she brings a learning mindset and a systems thinking lens.


James Hughes

President and CEO, Mission Brewery

James Hughes President and CEO, Mission Brewery and previous Executive Lead, Government and Partner Relations at the J.W. McConnell Foundation. Previously, Hughes served as President of the Graham Boeckh Foundation. Prior to this, Mr. Hughes was New Brunswick’s Deputy Minister of the Department of Social Development. The Department of Social Development is responsible for a wide range of programs and services in the province including child protection, early childhood development, income assistance, disability support and senior care. Mr. Hughes played a central role in the development of the province’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) through a widely acclaimed citizen engagement process (2008-2009). Before joining the New Brunswick civil service, Mr. Hughes served as the Director General of the Old Brewery Mission (OBM), Quebec’s largest centre serving homeless men and women. He is a graduate of Queen’s University (B. Commerce), University of Cambridge (B.A. Law) and McGill University (B.C.L).

Prof Lord Richard Layard

Member of the House of Lords, Professor and Founder-Director of LSE’s Centre for Economic Performance and Co-director of the Centre’s program on Community Wellbeing

Richard Layard is emeritus Professor of Economics at the London School of Economics, where he founded and directed the Centre for Economic Performance – one of Europe’s leading research centres. He is now Co-Director of the Centre’s Community Wellbeing Programme and a member of the UK House of Lords where he focuses on education, employment, mental health, and of course, wellbeing policy. Until 2000, he worked mainly on unemployment and inequality and co-authored the influential book Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market. Since 2000, he has been studying happiness. In 2005 he wrote the best-selling book Happiness: Lessons from a New Science, translated into 20 languages. He has had huge influence on making psychological therapy more widely available in Britain’s National Health Service, and in 2014 co-authored Thrive on how we can secure a better deal for mental health. In 2018 he co-authored The Origins of Happiness – an analysis of what determines our happiness, based on a range of longitudinal datasets. Richard’s latest book Can we be happier? The evidence and ethics for better lives explores how teachers, managers, health professionals, couples, community leaders, economists, scientists, politicians, and we as individuals can create a happier world. He is also co-founder of Action for Happiness, an international movement to promote a happier way of living.

Marc Lee

Senior Economist, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Marc Lee is a Senior Economist with the British Columbia office of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. Marc joined the CCPA in 1998, and is one of Canada's leading progressive commentators on economic and social policy issues. Marc led the CCPA's Climate Justice Project (CJP), which published a wide range of research on fair and effective approaches to climate action through integrating principles of social justice. Marc continues to write about climate and energy policy, as well as strategies for affordable housing. Over his career, Marc has tracked federal and provincial budgets and economic trends, and published on a wide range of topics from poverty and inequality to globalization and international trade to public services and regulation. Marc was "classically trained," with an MA in Economics from Simon Fraser University and a BA in Economics from the University of Western Ontario.

Bernie Miller

Deputy Minister, Office of Strategy Management, Government of Nova Scotia

As Deputy Minister of the Office of Strategy Management (OSM), Bernie Miller is committed to advancing the priorities of the people of Nova Scotia and to creating an environment that allows business to grow our economy. Bernie Miller was appointed as Deputy Minister of the inaugural Office of Strategy Management in October of 2017. Mr. Miller was also appointed Deputy Minister of the Department of Business in December 2017 and served in that capacity until March 2021. Before these appointments, Mr. Miller served as Deputy Minister, Office of Planning and Priorities and Senior Executive Advisor, Executive Council Office, for the Province from 2014 to 2017. Before being called to public service work, Mr. Miller was a leader in the private sector for 26 years. The last seven of which he was Managing Partner and CEO of McInnes Cooper – one of the 20 largest law firms in Canada. In his work with the community, Bernie is Managing Trustee of Killam Trusts, a private trust for advanced study and research. He is an Institute-certified Director with the Institute of Corporate Directors from the Rotman School of Management and previously served on the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council Board of Governors. Mr. Miller also worked with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, served on the Advisory Board of the 4Front Atlantic Conferences, and as a Trustee of the QEII Health Sciences Center Foundation. He remains a member of the Canadian Bar Association and the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society.

Val Morrison

Scientific Advisor, National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy, INSPQ

Val is a scientific advisor at the National Collaborating Centre for Healthy Public Policy. Her work over the past 15 years has focused mainly on health inequalities in the following areas: intersectionality; policy approaches to reducing health inequalities; and wicked problems. Recently, she has contributed to projects on public policy competencies for public health and is currently working on wellbeing budgeting as a promising policy direction for healthy public policy.


Andrew Oswald

Professor of Economics and Behavioural Science, Warwick University.

Andrew Oswald is a Professor of Economics and Behavioural Science at the University of Warwick. His research is principally in applied economics and quantitative social science. It currently includes work on the COVID-19 crisis and health economics. In more normal times Andrew Oswald also works on the empirical study of job satisfaction, human happiness, mental health, unemployment, labour productivity, and the influence of diet on psychological well-being. He serves on the board of editors of Science. Previously at Oxford and the London School of Economics, with spells as Lecturer, Princeton University (1983-4); De Walt Ankeny Professor of Economics, Dartmouth College (1989-91); Jacob Wertheim Fellow, Harvard University (2005); Visiting Fellow, Cornell University (2008); Research Director, IZA Bonn (2011-12); Visiting Fellow, University of Zurich (2016); Visiting Fellow, Yale University (2016). He is an ISI Highly-Cited Researcher.

Lord Gus O’Donnell

Member of the House of Lords, Former Cabinet Secretary, Head of Civil Service, Permanent Secretary of the UK Treasury and Press Secretary, UK Government.

Gus O'Donnell is Chairman of Frontier Economics, Strategic Advisor to TD Bank, Executive Director and Strategic Advisor to Brookfield Asset Management, Chair of PwC’s Public Interest Body (PIB), President of the Council of the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), Chair of the Board of Trustees for Pro Bono Economics, Visiting Professor at LSE and UCL, a member of the Economist Trust, and Chair of the Behavioural Insights Team Advisory Board at the Cabinet Office. Gus was Cabinet Secretary and Head of the British Civil Service from 2005-2011. In 2010, he oversaw the introduction of the first coalition government since the Second World War. Previously, he was Permanent Secretary of the Treasury from 2002-2005 and served on the IMF and World Bank Boards. Gus studied Economics at Warwick University and Nuffield College, Oxford, then lectured at Glasgow University. Knighted in 2005, Gus was appointed to the House of Lords in 2012, sitting as a crossbencher (i.e. not affiliated to any political party). Gus is an Honorary Fellow of the British Academy and Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Shelley Phipps

Professor of Economics, Dalhousie University

Shelley Phipps is the Maxwell Professor of Economics at Dalhousie University. Her research focuses on the health and well-being of Canadian children, the economic vulnerability of Canadian families with children, and international comparison of public policies to reduce poverty and inequality experienced by children.



Anke Plagnol

Associate Professor and Programme Director in Behavioural Economics, City, University of London

Anke Plagnol is a Senior Lecturer (the British equivalent of an Associate Professor) in Behavioural Economics at City, University of London, where she is also the Programme Director for the MSc Behavioural Economics. She was previously a postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge in the Department of Sociology where she conducted research on subjective well-being and gender equality. At Cambridge, Dr Plagnol had an Early Career Fellowship from the Leverhulme Trust and the Isaac Newton Trust, Cambridge, and was also a Research Fellow at Darwin College. Although an economist by training, her research is interdisciplinary, drawing on theories and methods from economics, psychology and sociology. Dr Plagnol is interested in the choices that individuals make and how these affect their subjective well-being (SWB), for instance how couples’ division of paid and unpaid work – including the “mental load” – is associated with individual SWB. Her research has been recognised by several awards, including a Best Dissertation Award by the International Society for Quality of Life Studies (2007), and the SOEP-Prize in 2007 (second prize) for the best publication of a junior researcher using the German Socio-Economic Panel.

Nattavudh (Nick) Powdthavee

Professor of Behavioural Science, Warwick Business School, IZA Research Fellow

Nattavudh (Nick) Powdthavee is a Professor of Behavioural Science at Warwick Business School. He has held positions at the London School of Economics, University of Melbourne, Nanyang Technological University, and University of York. Nick specialises in well-being (or happiness) economics and behavioural economics, and has published over 50 articles in these two broad areas. He is the author of the popular science book called "The Happiness Equation: The Surprising Economics of our Most Valuable Asset" and a coauthor of “The Origins of Happiness: The Science of Wellbeing over the Life-course”.

Nora Spinks

Chief Executive Officer, Vanier Institute of the Family

As Chief Executive Officer at the Vanier Institute, Nora works with individuals and organizations that study, serve and support families to mobilize knowledge and enhance our understanding of families in Canada. Nora has dedicated her career to creating innovative policies and programs focusing on health and well-being, caregiving, workplace flexibility and work–life harmony, having served as an advisor and consultant to leaders in business, law, labour, government and community. An internationally recognized international as a leader in families and work, Nora is a recipient of many awards celebrating her contribution to workplaces and communities across Canada. Nora is an active member on the National Seniors Council and the Expert Panel on Early Learning and Child Care Data and Research, and serves on the Ministerial Advisory group on families for Veterans Affairs Canada.

Keren Tang

Participatory City Development Manager, J W McConnell Foundation

Keren is the Participatory City Development Manager with the McConnell Foundation, working with local and national partners to envision, test, and build the social infrastructures for our times and generations to come. She merges her background in public health, community development, human-centred design, and the social determinants of health, and is a firm believer in the power of peer-to-peer, neighbour-to-neighbour networks. Previously, she was the Project Manager for Recover, the social innovation initiative at the City of Edmonton to improve urban wellness in the downtown core. She is passionate about working with ethnocultural communities in civic engagement and health promotion. She currently serves on the board of the Edmonton Community Foundation and ASSIST Community Services (for newcomers). She is a Top 40 Under 40 alumnus in Edmonton and is running for City Council again this fall. Beyond her community involvement, Keren is an avid skier and loves spending time with her family in the mountains.

Gaynor Watson-Creed

Assistant Dean, Serving and Engaging Society, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University Society for Dalhousie University's Faculty of Medicine, and Chair of the Board of Engage Nova Scotia

Dr. Gaynor Watson-Creed is the Assistant Dean of Serving and Engaging Society for Dalhousie University's Faculty of Medicine, and Chair of the Board of Engage Nova Scotia. She is a public health specialist physician with 16 years experience, having served as the former Medical Officer of Health for the Halifax area and Deputy Chief Medical Officer of Health for Nova Scotia. She served as a member of the One Nova Scotia Coalition economic strategy table in Nova Scotia and is currently a member of the federal Task Force on Women in the Economy. Dr. Watson-Creed has an MD from Dalhousie University, an MSc from the University of Guelph, and a BSc from the University of Prince Edward Island. She also sits as chair or member of several national population health councils and boards, and is a passionate advocate for high-quality public health services in Canada.

Kari Wolanski

Finance Canada

Kari Wolanski is the director responsible for development and implementation of Canada's draft Quality of Life Framework, released by Finance Canada in Budget 2021. She has over twenty years of social policy-related experience in government, non-governmental organisations and private sector consulting; primarily related to poverty and the income security architecture. She has worked at the Privy Council Office on the broad suite of policy measures introduced since 2015 to strengthen the middle class, and prior to that at Employment and Social Development Canada on Employment Insurance and income security policy. She also worked in New Zealand and Australia for five years, where she played an integral role in designing and implementing a long-term investment approach to improving outcomes for vulnerable populations. Prior to joining government she did front line work for five years supporting women leaving family violence by providing crisis counselling and outreach support to access social, legal, and medical services.

Lisa Wolff

Director, Policy and Research / Directrice des politiques et de l’éducation, UNICEF Canada

Lisa Wolff is Director, Policy and Research at UNICEF Canada, with a mission to advance the rights of Canada’s children to develop to their fullest potential, consistent with international human rights standards. Collaborating with government, institutions, civil society, researchers and private sector partners, Lisa works across issues and sectors to advocate for and with children and youth. Lisa received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal from the Governor-General of Canada in 2012.


Armine Yalnizyan

Economist and Atkinson Fellow on the Future of Workers

Armine Yalnizyan is the Atkinson Foundation’s Fellow on the Future of Workers. She served as Senior Economic Policy Advisor for the Deputy Minister at Employment and Social Development Canada from 2018 to 2019, and currently serves on Ministers Freeland and Fortier’s Task Group on Women In The Economy. She helped lead the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives' Inequality Project from 2008 to 2017, and provided weekly business commentaries on CBC radio and CBC TV from 2011 to 2018. She is past President of the Canadian Association for Business Economics.


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