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Agenda and Speakers

Canadian Immigration Summit 2019: Expanding Our HorizonsMay 8–9, 2019 Ottawa

CPD Hours


The Summit has been accredited by ICCRC for 9.5 CPD hours.

> Show Me: Full Agenda | Speakers Only

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

7:30 AM Registration and Continental Breakfast

Sponsored by:
8:15 AM Opening Remarks from the Chair
Expanding Our Horizons

To open the event, The Conference Board of Canada will welcome delegates, thank its sponsors, and provide an overview of the Summit's theme: Expanding Our Horizons. Horizons scanning is the systematic examination of potential threats, opportunities and likely developments that could impact a given policy area. Throughout the 5th annual Canadian Immigration Summit, speakers are invited to look into their crystal balls to examine how Canada can adapt to key domestic and international drivers of economic, social, and technological change that are likely to influence our immigration system over the next decade.

Sponsored by:

Fragomen Canada

El-Assal <br />  
Senior Research Associate II and Senior Network Manager, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
8:30 AM Welcoming Remarks by Minister Hussen

The Honourable Ahmed Hussen is invited to open the Canadian Immigration Summit for the third year in a row. The minister is welcome to share the latest on federal efforts to strengthen the immigration system and engage with Summit attendees in a question and answer session.

Hussen <br />  
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
9:00 AM Plenary Session 1
The World of Immigration in 2025

Global migration patterns are affected by the likes of economic opportunity, conflict, climate, security, and policy. If one country becomes more insular for example, another may, by default, become a more attractive destination for global talent. Canadian and international speakers are invited to imagine what global economic and social conditions will look like over the medium-term and how these conditions might influence the immigration decisions that their respective countries will need to make. For instance, how will the rise of the middle class in key talent sources such as China and India impact the global supply of immigrants? How might their countries need to respond to rising refugee and asylum flows? In addition, they will explore how international partners can better coordinate their efforts to mitigate immigration's challenges while enhancing its benefits globally.

Crawford <br />  
Fragomen (Canada) Co.
Morgan <br />  
Deputy Minister
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
Smith <br />  
High Commissioner
Australian High Commission Canada
Sparwasser <br />  
Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany
10:15 AM Networking Break
10:45 AM Plenary 2
Confronting Populism

Public support is the foundation of any successful immigration system. While polling suggests Canadians remain highly supportive of immigration, issues such as rising asylum claims, temporary foreign workers, poor economic conditions in certain communities, and identity politics threaten to undermine such support and social cohesion. Speakers will assess what it will take for Canada to preserve public confidence in its immigration system. And, in light of events in other western democracies, what can Canada learn from abroad to avoid the rise of anti-immigrant sentiment at home?

Omidvar <br />  
Senator for Ontario
Senate of Canada
Bricker <br />  
Chief Executive Officer
Ipsos Public Affairs
Cardinal Brown <br />  
Director of Immigration and Cross-Border Policy
Bipartisan Policy Center
12:00 PM Networking Luncheon
1:30 PM Concurrent Sessions Set A
(Please select one session)
1:30 PM Concurrent Session A1
International Students: How Should Canada Respond to the Boom at Home and Abroad?

There are an estimated 5 million international students globally and 500,000 in Canada. The OECD estimates there will be 8 million international students by 2025, which creates opportunities and challenges for Canada. Speakers will evaluate expected developments in the international student landscape over the next decade as they explore how Canada can foster improvements. For example, how can Canada proactively respond to geopolitical risks and increasing global competition? What international student source countries are untapped in Canada? How can Canada boost its intake of francophones? How can it ensure its immigration policies keep up with its growing international student population? And, how can Canada deliver more effective settlement and integration supports?

El-Assal <br />  
Senior Research Associate II and Senior Network Manager, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
Carnat <br />  
Director, Client Relations and Business Development
IDP Education
Mushtaq <br />  
General Manager, International Student Connect
COSTI Immigrant Services
Payne <br />  
Director, Member Relations
Canadian Bureau for International Education
1:30 PM Concurrent Session A2
Municipal Matters

Municipalities are arguably the most important level of government in Canada's immigration system today. However, in the absence of a formal constitutional role in the immigration system, municipalities seek creative ways to meet the needs of immigrants. Speakers from Canada and abroad are invited to highlight the efforts they are making to facilitate welcoming communities.

Reddy-Kalala <br />  
Immigration Strategy Officer
City of Moncton
Mathews-Thusoo <br />  
Program Lead, Resilience & Infrastructure Calgary
City of Calgary
Ladouceur-Girard <br />  
Director, Bureau d'intégration des nouveaux arrivants à Montréal
Ville de Montréal
Wayland <br />  
Senior Project Manager, Immigration Partnership
City of Hamilton
1:30 PM Concurrent Session A3
Imagining Regionalization in 2025

Ontario, British Columbia, and Quebec welcomed 88 per cent of Canada's immigrants in 1995, but in recent years this figure has fallen to about 65-70 per cent. Nonetheless, big and small provinces continue to face various immigrant attraction and retention issues. Speakers are invited to share their vision on how governments, business, service providers, post-secondary institutions and other critical stakeholders can support regionalization in big and small provinces.

Rose Taylor <br />  
Research Associate II, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
DeFehr <br />  
Chief Executive Officer
Palliser Furniture Upholstery Ltd.
Ramos <br />  
Professor, Sociology and Associate Dean of Research, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Dalhousie University
2:45 PM Networking Break
3:15 PM Plenary Session 3
Preparing for Tomorrow's Labour Market

Technological change, population aging, and global economic conditions are among the key issues that will affect the Canadian labour market and how the country selects immigrants in the years to come. Speakers are invited to discuss how Canada can adapt to the changing nature of work today so that immigrants can continue to support the economy tomorrow. Key issues of exploration include how Canada can calibrate selection criteria to its evolving skills, sectoral, and occupational needs, and how it can assess and recognize the talents of immigrants more holistically.

Antunes <br />  
Chief Economist
The Conference Board of Canada
Ekhtiari <br />  
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Audacious Futures
Madhany <br />  
Managing Director, Deputy Executive Director
World Education Services
de Vlieger <br />  
Director General of Strategic Policy and Planning
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
4:30 PM Networking Reception
6:00 PM Day One Adjourns

Thursday, May 09, 2019

7:30 AM Continental Breakfast

Breakfast Sponsored by:


8:45 AM Opening Remarks from the Chair

The Conference Board of Canada will recap the key observations made on day one and highlight what delegates can expect on day two.

El-Assal <br />  
Senior Research Associate II and Senior Network Manager, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
9:00 AM Plenary Session 4
Technological Innovation & Canadian Immigration

Technology has already profoundly impacted Canada's immigration system but the country is only scratching the surface of how it can use technology to support its immigrant selection and settlement efforts. Technological advancement is welcome, as it can significantly improve the client experience and aid key policy objectives (e.g., making data-driven selection decisions). But, it also raises a plethora of regulatory, public opinion, and ethical questions. Speakers will share their thoughts on how we can augment technology's role in improving Canada's immigration system while mitigating the downside risks.

MacKenzie <br />  
Chief Executive Officer
Immigrant Employment Council of British Columbia
Mammadova <br />  
Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Molnar <br />  
Lawyer and Research Associate, International Human Rights Program
University of Toronto
10:15 AM Networking Break
10:45 AM Plenary Session 5
Women at Work

Immigrant women have a lower labour market participation rate than their Canadian-born counterparts in large part due to the unique barriers they face. These barriers may encompass employer discrimination, less access to settlement services due to their caregiving responsibilities, and a lack of attachment to the labour market upon arrival to Canada which may hinder their ability to build the social networks which are often critical to land a good job. Speakers will share good practices and suggestions on how Canada can make progress in overcoming these barriers. For example, how can employers become more inclusive and diverse?

Black <br />  
President and Chief Executive Officer
The Conference Board of Canada
Green <br />  
Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion
Ryerson University
Jeffery <br />  
The Pamela Jeffery Group in Alliance with KPMG LLP
Prince St-Amand <br />  
Director General, Settlement and Integration Policy
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
12:00 PM Networking Luncheon
1:30 PM Concurrent Sessions Set B
(please select one session)
1:30 PM Concurrent Session B1
From Pre-Arrival to Employment

Canada has seen a surge in promising practices in recent years aimed at boosting the labour market outcomes of newcomers. These include pre-arrival services, job fairs, immigrant employment councils, local immigration partnerships, connector programs, microloans, among many others. Speakers are invited to showcase what their organizations are doing on this front, including the results, and how their experiences can help inform ongoing efforts to improve the labour market success of newcomers.

Rose Taylor <br />  
Research Associate II, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
Calderon <br />  
National Director, Client Success
Windmill Microlending
Sadler <br />  
Senior Vice-President, Services and Program Development
ACCES Employment
Xie <br />  
Program Director
1:30 PM Concurrent Session B2
AIP Lessons for the Rest of Canada

Launched in 2017, the Atlantic Immigration Pilot is an innovative initiative that provides the Atlantic region with an additional major tool to boost its population and economy. The AIP is innovative because it requires provincial governments, employers, and immigrant-serving organizations to work hand-in-hand to achieve their collective immigration objectives. An employer, for instance, must partner with an immigrant-serving organization to design a settlement plan for the immigrant they wish to hire. Government, business, and settlement sector speakers will share their perspectives on the AIP's strengths and areas of improvement. They will also provide insights on key AIP lessons that can guide the immigration efforts of smaller communities across Canada.

Watts <br />  
Chief Executive Officer
Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS)
Tarr <br />  
Atlantic Immigration Pilot Project Officer
Saint John Newcomers Centre
Somerville <br />  
Chief Executive Officer
Atlantic Chamber of Commerce Inc.
1:30 PM Concurrent Session B3
Modernizing FQR

The Pan-Canadian Framework for the Assessment and Recognition of Foreign Qualifications turns 10 in 2019. Much progress has been made over the past decade to address a challenge which has grown since the 1960s, but skilled immigrants continue to face significant qualification recognition barriers, with the Conference Board estimating the annual losses to immigrants at roughly $12.7 billion in wages per year. Speakers will examine what employers, regulatory bodies, policymakers, and other key players can do better over the coming decade to tackle this longstanding challenge.

Johnson <br />  
Project Manager
Keith Johnson Consulting
Chamula <br />  
Senior Credentialling Officer
Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators
Tousignant <br />  
Director, Foreign Credential Recognition Program
Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
2:45 PM Refreshment Break
3:00 PM Plenary Session 6
Canada Leads the Way

What will it take for Canada to have the world's best immigration system in 2030? Speakers are invited to outline their characteristics for success and what Canada needs to do to ensure that immigration continues to support the country's economic and social goals. They will also look at fringe issues that could undermine Canada's immigration objectives. Key issues for consideration include how Canada can ensure that its infrastructure, health care, education, and other social welfare services keep pace with its growing population; how it can maintain social cohesion; and how it can adapt to evolving public safety challenges.

Hyder <br />  
President and Chief Executive Officer
Business Council of Canada
Hiebert <br />  
Professor of Geography
The University of British Columbia
Studin <br />  
The Institute for 21st Century Questions
4:15 PM Closing Remarks from the Chair
El-Assal <br />  
Senior Research Associate II and Senior Network Manager, Immigration
The Conference Board of Canada
4:30 PM Summit Adjourns


We’d like to thank our generous sponsors for contributing to this event.





Pearson PTE


Strategic Partner



banque-national IDP Education

NewCdns SuVp

Preferred Airline Partner



Marketing Partner


Hire Immigrants

The details of this event are subject to change. Please revisit this page periodically for updated information.