The Multi-stakeholder Forum on Open Government provides input and advice on the Government of Canada’s open government commitments, identifies new areas of focus, and builds the open government community across Canada.
The Multi-Stakeholder Forum is composed of twelve members, eight from civil society and four from the Government of Canada – having a forum like this is considered a best practice as part of Canada’s membership in the Open Government Partnership (OGP).
Canada’s Multi-Stakeholder Forum launched on January 24, 2018. Members have developed terms of reference to guide and govern the forum.
Members and biographies
Civil Society Members:
Jury Konga, Executive Director and Board Chair, GO Open Data Association (GOOD)
Civil Society Co-Chair
Jury Konga has over 40 years’ experience in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors in diverse areas including GIS services, land information management, public policy development, IT consulting, intelligent community assessment and Open Government and Open Data strategic and tactical plan development and implementation. He is an innovator and long-time advocate and international speaker on Open Government, Open Data, e-Government, m-Government, transformative/disruptive innovation and Smart Cities/Intelligent Communities. His involvement in civil society and non-profits includes being the current Executive Director and Board Chair for the GO Open Data Association (GOOD), current member of the Open Data Charter Implementation working group, previous Senior Associate for Open North, Canada Ambassador for Open Knowledge Foundation, appointed “Access by Design” Ambassador by Dr. Anne Cavoukian, Inaugural Chair for Gov 2.0 Committee with the Municipal Information Systems Association (MISA) Ontario and a Past President of BeSpatial (formerly URISA Ontario).
Eugene Chen, Chair, Canadian Open Data Society (CODS)
An award-winning creator of interactive data visualizations, Eugene enjoys combining his software background with data, storytelling and art to create actionable and visually compelling insights. His work has been viewed millions of times, and has been shared on media outlets like the CBC, New York Times, CTV, and NPR. Much of his work is driven by open and complex data.
As the Chair of CODS, he spends much of his time collaborating with open data leaders across Canada to achieve ambitious and impactful goals. Eugene is also working on an open data startup using IP acquired from his previous role as the CTO of a consulting data analytics firm, and is wrapping up his Masters thesis in Computing Science with a personal focus on making algorithms explainable and accessible.
Beyond his previous roles at CODS, Eugene enjoys teaching and has run workshops or spoken at various post-secondary institutions and international conferences on open data and data visualization. He is also the co-organizer of BetaCity YEG, Edmonton's civic tech meetup, and tries to make time for chasing after auroras around the city.
Javier has an extensive international career background leading major projects in Technology, Digital Policy, Online Communications, and Politics in Europe and North America. He is passionate about the development of a more democratic, inclusive, and transparent society, with a focus on new communication and civic engagement technologies.
Javier obtained his Ph.D. in Political Communication from the European University Institute (EUI). The Ph.D. dissertation explored and analyzed the interactions’ networks of users under Twitter hashtags of European relevance. The Ph.D. dissertation was awarded Best Thesis in Political Communication from the Spanish Association of Political Communication (ACOP) (2018-2019).
Javier has been a Senior Researcher at the Digital Democracies Institute at the Simon Fraser University (SFU), focusing on disinformation, digital policies, and digital government. And previously he has been Visiting Scholar at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University.
Emma Irwin, Independent Advocate
Emma Irwin has worked with and for open communities for over twenty years, including Open Education, Open Science, Open Access, Open Data with a central focus on Open Source engineering and strategy which is her professional area of expertise. She has supported social good projects including Wikimedia, Sahana, Mifos, Ushahidi, Mozilla on their quests to thoughtfully engage and empower volunteer contributors while also teaching corporations, NGOs, researchers, scientists, engineers and even children how to successfully lend their skills as a mechanism for social change and personal growth. Her work on diversity and inclusion in Open Source strategy and metrics for safety in digital spaces is an area of expertise for which she is regularly consulted - most recently by the United Nations, and with collaborative efforts like the CHAOSS project. As part of Microsoft’s Open Source Programs Office Emma leads programs that include Open Source sustainability, leadership development, engineering standards and Code of Conduct enforcement.
Christian Medina, Global Programs Manager, Open North
Christian leads Global Programs for Open North, a not-for-profit organization based in Montreal that specializes in data governance, digital data partnerships, open and shared data, civic engagement, and open smart cities. He is particularly interested in the challenges and opportunities technology and data pose for effective, transparent, and democratic governance in Canada and abroad. Christian brings a unique academic background and professional experience in technology, conflict and international development. Recent professional highlights include promoting public participation and data governance in Ukraine, building pro-democracy and civil society capacity in Myanmar, research on the role of Open Data in Colombia's post-conflict reconstruction efforts, and supporting local government and community organizations implementing better data governance across Canada and elsewhere. Born in Colombia, Christian migrated to Canada at the age of 17. He speaks Spanish, French and English fluently.
Robin Prest, Program Director, Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue
Robin Prest is the Program Director at Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, where he builds the capacity of governments to co-create solutions for pressing issues and develops participatory methods to address declining trust in institutions. His commentary and programming have been featured in national and international forums such as the United Nations Climate Conference (COP26), the Westminster Foundation for Democracy's inaugural Environmental Democracy conference, The Hill Times and The Globe and Mail.
Examples of Robin’s work include launching the International Climate Engagement Network to help national and sub-national governments accelerate climate action, advising Canada's Treasury Board Secretariat in developing Canada’s 4th National Action Plan on Open Government, overseeing the first ever cross-Canada deliberative dialogue where a representative body of citizens made recommendations on federal energy policy and co-founding the Mitigating Wildfire initiative to support collaborative approaches on one of the most serious sources of climate risk and emissions in Canada today.
Palash Sanyal, GCB.D, Lecturer, University of Saskatchewan; Board Member, IAP2 Canada, WaterAid Canada, Trans Canada Trail, Supply Chain Canada, Royal College International
Palash is a Certified Board Director and Sustainability Professional with a passion for public participation and engagement. He is dedicated to creating a space where diverse voices can come together to address the most pressing global challenges, particularly in the area of water security. As an Advisor, Coach, and Trainer on climate change, impact assessment, and sustainability risk management, Palash is committed to empowering individuals and organizations to make a positive impact. He believes that public engagement is key to building a sustainable future, and he works tirelessly to promote this approach in all aspects of his work. Palash's commitment to public participation is reflected in his service on several boards, including Royal College International, International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) Canada, WaterAid Canada, and the City of Saskatoon’s Environment Committee and Local Immigration Partnership Advisory Table. Through his leadership on these boards, Palash is helping to create more inclusive, collaborative, and sustainable communities.
Nick Scott, CEO and Principal Consultant at ShiftFlow Innovation and Design
Nick Scott is a long-time advocate of Open Government, public innovation and evidence-informed policy. He has over 15 years of relevant experience. He served as the Executive Director of Open Government and Innovation in New Brunswick, where he led transformative public sector strategies. Nick was the Executive Director of the New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network where he co-founded NouLAB, New Brunswick’s first public and social innovation lab. He also initiated the GovMaker Conference. A co-chair of the 2016 Canadian Open Data Summit and a board member of Code for Canada, Nick continues to drive transparency, engagement, and collaboration in his current role as CEO and Principal Consultant at ShiftFlow Innovation and Design.
Charles Taillefer, Executive Director, Access to Information and Open Government Policy
Charles is responsible for leading government-wide policy work and performance reporting related to access to information, proactive publication and open government. Prior to this role, Mr. Taillefer served as Director of Privacy and Data Protection Policy at Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, where he led the legislative reform of the federal private sector privacy law, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the development of Canada's first legislative proposal to regulate artificial intelligence, the proposed Artificial Intelligence and Data Act. Charles has also worked in leadership roles in various institutions including Fisheries and Oceans, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, Veterans Affairs Canada, and Natural Resources Canada. Over the course of his career, Mr. Taillefer has played a leadership role in the development of policy in various areas such as transborder data flows, privacy impact assessment, fair information practices, use of the social insurance number, duty to assist, security screening and artificial intelligence and data governance. Charles holds a Master of Legal Studies from Carleton University and an Ontario Teaching Certificate and a Bachelor of Arts from Laurentian University.
Emily Gusba, Director General, Government Record Branch, Library and Archives Canada
Emily Gusba is an experienced information professional whose mission is to connect people quickly and easily with the reliable, trustworthy information and data that they need. She holds a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Western Ontario, and has worked in information management and libraries since 2008. She has worked in the federal government since 2010, in transportation, science, regulatory and heritage portfolios. Ms. Gusba led the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s debut into Open Government, and she is committed to robust, proactive access to information in the ongoing story of Canada.
Christopher Allison, Director General, Data Management, Innovation and Analysis and Chief Data Officer, Public Health Agency of Canada
Christopher Allison (Chris) is the Director General of Data Management, Innovation and Analysis and Chief Data Officer at the Public Health Agency of Canada. Chris has worked in government for 21 years across operations, policing, immigration, national security, policy, major projects, air travel, open source, data, development and leadership. He is a self-driven continuous learner who is passionate about people, network analytics and systems - seeing the connections between our people, our environments, our systems and our organizations.
Jeff Ball, Director, Open Government & Data Governance, Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Jeff Ball is the Director of Open Government & Data Governance at the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. He is leading the development and advancement of transparency in the interest of trust and accountability in policing. Jeff is also responsible for the development and implementation of a trusted data governance framework to ensure the responsible and ethical creation, collection, storage, use and release of high quality data in the RCMP.
Jeff has over 17 years of experience in the federal public service, leading numerous data and information services and advocating for increased transparency for public good. Jeff holds a Bachelor’s of Social Science from the University of Ottawa with specialization in Criminology and Psychology.