Keynote Session: Reframing perceptions of government-science relations

Thursday, November 21, 2013 - 6:30pm to 8:00pm

This panel will address such questions as "Do governments hold certain misconceptions concerning the science community and its ability to contribute to public policy and the achievement of public goals? Does the science community hold certain misconceptions concerning the interests of government and the political community in science? Would government-science relationships be improved if these misconceptions were more clearly identified and addressed?"
This panel seeks to explore the challenges presented by these issues and offer solutions conducive to a more harmonious and productive science-government relationship. The panel features reputable scientists from academia, senior officials from government, and a member of the private sector.


Vice-President (Research) and Professor in Human Communication Disorders
Dalhousie University

Martha Crago is the Vice-President (Research) and Professor in Human Communication Disorders at Dalhousie University. Her previous university administrative positions include Vice-Rector (International and Governmental Relations) at the Université de Montreal, the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies and Associate Provost (Academic Programs) at McGill University.
She has served as President of the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies and as a member of the University Advisory Group at Industry Canada.

Dr. Crago is founder and Chair of the Board for the Halifax Marine Research Institute. She is also presently the Canadian academic member of the federal government's Joint Canada-Brazil Committee and of the boards of the Network of Centres of Excellence in Marine Environment Observation Prediction and Response (MEOPAR) as well as the Nova Scotia Carbon Capture and Storage and Ocean Network Canada. In addition she has been on the Advisory Councils of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans of Canada and the National Research Council-Institute of Marine Biosciences. At Dalhousie University, she chairs a variety of other research institutes governing councils and committees such as the Brain Repair Center Coordinating Committee, the Life Sciences Research Institute Governing Council and the Ocean Tracking Network Council.

Martha Crago is an active member of the Vice Presidents (Research) of the U15 group of Canada's research intense universities, and of the Vice Presidents (Research) Group of the Atlantic Association of Universities. Previously she was a member of the American Association of Universities graduate studies group, the Universitas 21's Research Directors and Graduate Studies Group and the Board of the US Council of Graduate Schools. She was the founder of the Canadian Consortium of Ocean Research Universities and one of the founders of the International Forum for Public Universities, a consortium of 21 non-English language world-class universities.

Dr. Crago has been an active researcher in language acquisition. Her work has been published extensively in scientific journals and books and she is the Editor-in-Chief of Applied Psycholinguistics published by Cambridge University Press. She was Vice President of the International Association for the Study of Child Language from 2007-2010. Dr. Crago was named Chevalier de l’ordre des palmes academiques by the government of France in 2009 and Femme de Merite de Montreal in 2000. She is also the recipient of a prize from McGill University for her contributions to research.

Deputy Minister
Industry Canada

John Knubley was appointed Deputy Minister of Industry Canada on September 17, 2012.

Previously, he was Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada; Deputy Minister, Intergovernmental Affairs, Privy Council Office; Associate Deputy Minister, Transport, Infrastructure and Communities; Associate Deputy Minister, Natural Resources Canada; and Vice-President, Nova Scotia, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency. Earlier in his career, he worked at Industry Canada, Human Resources Development Canada and the Economic Council of Canada.

John is married and has three children. He has degrees in politics and economics from Yale, Oxford, Harvard and Nice universities.

President and CEO
Genome Canada

Pierre Meulien was appointed President and CEO of Genome Canada on October 18, 2010. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Meulien served as Chief Scientific Officer for Genome British Columbia from 2007 to 2010 where he promoted the organization's ongoing scientific strategy, focusing on the science of genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics within the larger realm of biotechnology and life sciences. Facilitating the translation of genome based technologies into end user communities across many life science sectors was also a key responsibility.

From 2002 to 2007, Dr. Meulien served as the founding CEO of the Dublin Molecular Medicine Centre (now Molecular Medicine Ireland) which linked the three medical schools and six teaching hospitals in Dublin to build a critical mass in molecular medicine and translational research. The Centre managed the Euro 45 Million "Program for Human Genomics" financed by the Irish government and was responsible for coordinating the successful application for the first Wellcome Trust funded Clinical Research Centre to be set up in Ireland.

For over 20 years, Dr. Meulien has managed expert research teams with a number of organizations, including Aventis Pasteur in Toronto (Senior Vice President of R&D), and in Lyon, France (Director of Research). He also spent seven years with the French biotechnology company Transgene in Strasbourg, France as a research scientist and part of the management team.

Dr. Meulien's academic credentials include a PhD from the University of Edinburgh and a post-doctoral appointment at the Institut Pasteur in Paris.