Workshop/Symposium 2: Science Diplomacy

Wednesday, November 20, 2013 - 8:00am to 3:30pm

* lunch is included in cost

This symposium is a first of its kind in Canada, and intends to initiate a dialogue on science diplomacy and raise awareness about its importance.
Canada has huge potential to become a global player in the area of science and technology. By mobilizing its resources in the area of science diplomacy, Canada can strengthen its position internationally and benefit both economically and politically.

With one of the most diverse scientific communities in the world, Canada has a huge potential to tap into this resource in order to:
•Increase its ties in science and technology with the international community
•Use its diaspora scientist communities as Canada’s science and innovation ambassadors
•Strengthen Canada’s global position as a powerhouse of science and technology

Canada will also benefit by learning from good practices in innovation through the expansion of science and technological interactions with other countries. This will also increase our footprint in international trade and entrepreneurial activities in science and technology.
The panels on the symposium include:
• Science Diplomacy; A Re-Emerging Concept
• Canadian Context of Science Diplomacy, What is the Stake for Canada?
• Scientific Research and International Affairs
• Diaspora Scientists and Grassroots Efforts in Science Diplomacy
• Bridging the ST/International Diplomacy Gap

Introduction: The notion of Science Diplomacy 8:45 – 9:00
Vaughan Turekian

Adventures of Science Diplomacy 9:00 - 9:45
Peter Singer

Coffee Break 9:45 - 10:00

Scientific Collaboration, taste of diplomacy 10:00 11:45

Halla Thorsteinsdottir: North South South Collaboration
Yvon Martel; China Canada Collaboration in Agriculture
Rabiz Foda; Canada US India Collaboration

Lunch 11:45 - 12:45

Grassroots, Diaspora Scientists 12:45 - 1:45
Raju Goteti, Indian Canadian Scientists
Rees Kassen, Academy of Young Scientists
Mehrdad Hariri

Vision for Science Diplomacy 1:45 – 2:45
Vaughan Turekian, Paul Dufour


Director, Adjunct Professor
Small Globe Inc., University of Toronto.

Dr. Halla Thorsteinsdóttir is the Director of Small Globe Inc., a non-profit organisation and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Toronto. She has actively researched health innovation and international relations in Canada and in low and middle income countries including Brazil, Cuba, China, India, and South Africa. Halla’s research has been published in high-impact journals such as Nature Biotechnology, Nature Genetics, Science, Research Policy and The Lancet, and been covered by media including the Economist and the Financial Times. Halla completed her doctoral studies at SPRU – Science and Technology Policy Research, University of Sussex, United Kingdom, and obtained a master’s degree in Development Economics from the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs at Carleton University, Canada. She has received several awards including the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Maud Menten Principal Investigator Prize and has advised organisations such as Industry Canada, the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, the United Nations Development Programme, and South Africa’s Technology Innovation Agency on innovation strategies and international relations.


Rabiz Foda is a Fellow of Engineers Canada. Currently with Hydro One in Toronto, Canada, Rabiz has extensive international experience in energy infrastructure development, design, engineering and project management, with hydro, thermal and nuclear power generation, transmission and distribution electricity utilities. He has held senior positions as Director of Transmission Electricity of Western Region SA, Tata Electric Companies, India, Atomic Energy of Canada, etc.
He has extensive volunteer and Board level experience; presently Chair, Engineering and Human Environment Chapter, IEEE Toronto Section, member - Experience Requirements Committee, Professional Engineers Ontario; Senior Editor and Executive Manager, PiTech - PAN IIT Technology Review Magazine; Maytree Foundation Leadership Circle, Toronto, member - Executive Committee PAN IIT USA Board; TRIEC - Circle of Champions; Director IIT Bombay Alumni Association. Previous engagements include President of Indian Institutes of Technology Alumni Inc. Canada, member - Executive Committee, "India Forum" at the Embassy of India, Director - "Panorama India" Toronto; guest lecturer - St. Bonaventure University, NY, USA for executive MBA programs. His biography has been profiled in several "Marquis Who’s Who" publications.
Rabiz is a recipient of numerous awards and recognitions including Volunteer Service Award by Government of Ontario, Fellow of Engineers Canada, award by the Town of Markham, The Mentoring Partnership, Toronto, and Distinguished Alumni Award from IIT Bombay, India,
Rabiz pursued Canada-India Science & Technology initiatives and steered Memorandum of Understanding (MOUs) between several universities in Canada, USA and Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT). Rabiz was chair / co-chair of international conferences and presented, published papers.
Rabiz holds a Graduate Diploma in Management Studies from University of Bombay and Bachelor of Technology Degree in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India. In his spare time, he is an artist painting with water-colors.

Grand Challenges Canada
President and CEO
Canadian Science Policy Centre
Faculty Services Officer and Associate Director
Research Advancement, Canadian Circumpolar Institute
Chief International Officer

Dr. Vaughan Turekian is the Chief International Officer for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). In this role, he leads, develops and coordinates the broad range of AAAS’s international activities. He is also the Director of AAAS’s Center for Science Diplomacy and Editor-in-Chief of Science & Diplomacy, a quarterly publication from the Center. Both the Center and the publication aim to bring together stakeholders from the scientific and foreign policy communities to identify ways to better apply science cooperation to building relationships between and among nations.

Dr. Turekian served as Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs, where he was a lead advisor on international science, technology, environment and health issues, including, clean energy, sustainable development, climate change, scientific outreach and avian influenza. He is the two-time recipient of the Department’s Superior Honor Award for his work on climate change and avian influenza.

Prior to his time at the State Department, Dr. Turekian worked at the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). In 2001, he was the Study Director for the White House-requested NAS report on climate change science. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a Nonresident Fellow in Foreign Policy at the Brookings Institution and has published a numerous articles on the linkages between science and international policy. Dr. Turekian received his master’s and doctorate in atmospheric geochemistry from the University of Virginia. He is a graduate of Yale University with degrees in geology and geophysics and international studies.

Visiting Executive, Policy and Strategy
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC)
Senior Program Specialist, Science and Innovation

David O’Brien develops large-scale research programs that catalyze research groups to tackle development challenges – on both a national and international level.

Before joining IDRC in 2006, O’Brien held senior management, advisory, and research positions at the University of Saskatchewan, New York University, University of Sussex, and Rights and Democracy. He has taught and published on the role of human and social capital in economic and social change, and on international cooperation, and research and innovation. He has worked in Central America, Eastern Europe and Africa.

O’Brien holds a PhD in social science from Wageningen University (Netherlands) and master’s degree in development studies from University of Sussex (United Kingdom).

Global Young Academy

Dr. Rees Kassen is professor and University Research Chair in Experimental Evolution at the University of Ottawa. He is also co-chair of the Global Young Academy (, an international organization of early-career researchers acting as the voice of young scientists around the world and past chair of the Partnership Group for Science and Engineering (PAGSE;, an association of 26 professional and scientific organizations acting on behalf of over 50,000 members from academia, industry and government in Canada. Dr Kassen completed his PhD at McGill University and then went on to an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellowship and Elizabeth Wordsworth Research Fellowship at St Hugh’s College, Oxford. He is known internationally for his integrative approach to the study of biodiversity and pioneering work using microbes to study evolutionary and ecological processes in the laboratory. He was awarded an NSERC Steacie Fellowship in 2010 and was a World Economic Forum/IAP Young Scientist in 2010 and 2011.


Paul Dufour is Principal of PaulicyWorks, a science and technology policy consulting firm based in Gatineau, Quebec. He is one of Canada’s leading experts in S&T policy and international development. He is a Fellow and Adjunct Professor with the Institute for Science, Society and Policy at the University of Ottawa, member of the External Advisory Board to the Battelle Center for Science and Technology Policy at the John Glenn School of Public Affairs, and is on the steering committee for the Canadian Science Policy Conference.
Having spent 30 years in the public sector as a science adviser with several agencies and departments, Mr Dufour served as interim executive director of the the Office of the National Science Adviser to the Government of Canada. He was with the International Development Research Centre as special programme assistant of the project on Research on Knowledge Systems. Other professional activities included senior adviser at Natural Resources Canada, Ministerial Assistant to Canada’s Secretary of State for Science, Research and Development, senior analyst with the Science and Technology Strategy Directorate at Industry Canada and international S&T relations’ adviser with the Secretariat to the Prime Minister's Advisory Council on Science and Technology. Mr Dufour was for several years, research advisor for the Science Council of Canada, where he produced several reports on Canada’s international and domestic technology prospective.
Born in Montreal, Mr. Dufour was educated at McGill, the Université de Montreal and Concordia University in the history of science and science policy, and has had practical S&T policy experience for over three decades. He lectures regularly on science policy, has authored numerous articles on international S&T relations and Canadian innovation policy including the Canada chapter for UNESCO’s World Science Report in November 2010. He was series co-editor of the Cartermill Guides to World Science (Canada, Japan, Germany, Southern Europe and the United Kingdom) and North American editor for the revue Outlook on Science Policy. He provides seminars to interns for the Council of Canadian Academies, writes regularly on innovation policy, and has been an assessor on several Canadian government programs, including Grand Challenges Canada and Genome Canada.