NABIG Congress 2016

Conference Presenter Bios

Miles Corak
Miles Corak is a full professor of economics with the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Ottawa, and a visiting professor with the Department of Economics at Harvard University during the 2015/16 academic year. His publications focus on labour markets and social policy, including child poverty, access to university education, social mobility, and unemployment. He has edited three books, and his paper, “Income Inequality, Equality of Opportunity, and Intergenerational Mobility,” examines the relationship between inequality and social mobility across countries, a relationship that has become known as the “Great Gatsby Curve.” It was awarded the 2014 Doug Purvis Prize by the Canadian Economics Association, which annually recognizes a highly significant contribution to Canadian economic policy.

His research has been used by The White House, and cited by many of the major print and electronic media. Dr. Corak completed his PhD at Queen's University. He joined the University of Ottawa in 2007 with 20 years experience in the Canadian federal government, and has held visiting appointments with UNICEF, the University of London, Princeton University, and the Russell Sage Foundation. Professor Corak maintains his own blog at milescorak.com, and you can follow him on Twitter @MilesCorak

Grace-Edward Galabuzi
Grace-Edward Galabuzi is an Associate Professor in the Politics and Public Administration Department, Ryerson University, Toronto and a Research Associate at the Centre for Social Justice in Toronto. He is the author of Canada's Economic Apartheid: The Social Exclusion of Racialized Groups in the New Century (CSPI, 2006) and co-editor of Race and Racialization: Essential Readings (CSPI, 2007) and Colonialism and Racism in Canada (Nelson/Thomson, 2009). His research interests include the experiences of recent immigrants and racialized groups in the Canadian labour market; the racialization of poverty; race, racialization and social exclusion/inclusion and the impact of global economic restructuring on local communities. He is an active member of the social justice community in Toronto and has been involved in a variety of social justice campaigns. He is a member of the steering committee of the Colour of Poverty Campaign. He is a member of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives Council, a board member of the Atkinson Charitable Foundation. He is a founder member of the African Music Festival in Toronto. He holds a Ph.D in Political Science from York University.

Leah Gazan
Leah Gazan is a member of Wood Mountain Lakota Nation, located in Treaty 4 territory. She is currently teaching in the Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg. Leah’s career has focused on community capacity building and development, dedicating the majority of her efforts to supporting the advancement of First Nations across Canada. Leah is currently serving terms as a board member on the Board of Governors at Red River College and as a council member on the Manitoba Lotteries Research Council. Leah just completed serving a five year term as the President of the Social Planning Council of Winnipeg, a non-profit organization committed to providing leadership and support in the area of social planning and socially responsible policy development. Leah has been a very active participant in social movements including as a participant in Idle No More and most recently as a founder of the #WeCare campaign aimed at working with the boarder Canadian public to participate in ensuring the end of violence against Indigenous women and girls. In 2015, Leah was one of six people across Canada to be selected for the International Leadership Program with the United States Consulate. Leah was also recently selected to present at the Standing Committee on the Status of Women in Ottawa to testify about how the federal government has fared in addressing the issue of violence against Indigenous women and girls. I April 2015 Leah was one of two representatives selected by the Province of Manitoba to make at statement at the United Nations Permanent forum for Indigenous people about the need to acknowledge injustices that were perpetrated against Indigenous adoptees during the Sixties Scoop.

Leah is also a regularly seen on local media and has been been featured and interviewed in main news broadcasts and print media throughout Canada. Leah has published chapters in books, including the Award Winning The Winter We Danced edited by The Kino-nda-niimi Collective. Leah recently completed a TedX Talk titled 'The Eye of the Colonial Storm". Her dedication towards the advancement of community self-sufficiency and self-determination has been the driving force that has guided her career in Winnipeg and First Nations across Canada.

Ron Hikel
Over five decades, and half a dozen career platforms in three countries, Ron Hikel has pursued one fundamental interest: advancing government’s capacity to serve the public interest. After teaching political science at Canadian and American universities (degrees from Boston and Columbia), he sent up and managed the Mincome experiment; then took senior civil service positions in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. From 1980 to 1998 he was with KPMG Canada (executive director, the Centre for Government), managing projects for eight governments and numerous First nations. Since retiring, numerous projects included deputy minister of health (Manitoba), deputy chief of staff to a US Congressman during the Obama administration; and work on a book on fatal failure in delivering public services.

Felicia Kornbluh
Felicia Kornbluh is an Associate Professor of History and Director of Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s and Studies. Kornbluh's book, The Battle for Welfare Rights, (University of Penn. Press 2007), is a study of the social movement for welfare rights, and its interactions with mainstream political and legal institutions, in New York City and nationally. It is now available in paperback and is used widely. She is now writing a monograph on the New York City World's Fair of 1964-1965, and on the political movements that made that fair a failure. She is also in the middle of a long-term project on disability, gender and social welfare, which focuses on the activist and constitutional law scholar Jacobus tenBroek.

Kornbluh has received fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the American Historical Association, and many other sources, and is an active member of scholarly communities in women's history, women's studies, legal history, legal studies, 20th-century U.S. history, urban history, and the history of public policy. In addition to her career as a scholar, she has a long career as an advocate and activist, especially on issues of women's and children's well-being, and has worked on these issues on Capitol Hill and at several Washington, D.C.-based research think tanks. She has written for numerous academic and non-academic journals.

Ryan Meili
Ryan Meili is a Family Doctor at the Westside Community Clinic in Saskatoon and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Community Health and Epidemiology at the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan where he serves as head of the Division of Social Accountability. He was involved in the establishment of the SWITCH student-run clinic and the Making the Links Certificate in Global Health, and is the author of A Healthy Society: how a focus on health can revive Canadian democracy. Ryan also serves as vice-chair of the national advocacy organization, Canadian Doctors for Medicare and is the founder of Upstream: Institute for A Healthy Society.

Jurgen De Wispelaere
Jurgen De Wispelaere is a former occupational therapist turned political theorist and policy scholar. He is a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Tampere (Finland), and in this capacity forms part of the Kela-led research team preparing the upcoming national basic income experiment in Finland. Previously he worked at universities in Montreal, Barcelona, Dublin and London. His major research interest is the political analysis of basic income, which was the topic of his doctoral dissertation at the University of Tampere. Jurgen De Wispelaere has published extensively on basic income in leading international journals, including most recently Journal of Social Policy, Journal of Public Policy, Politics, Political Studies, International Social Security Review and Social Service Review, as well as specialist edited volumes. He is a founding co-editor of the journal Basic Income Studies and recently co-edited Basic Income: An Anthology of Contemporary Research (Wiley 2013). Jurgen De Wispelaere is a board member of BICN/RCRG (currently taking a backseat due to his relocation to Europe) and was the co-convenor of the 2014 BIEN Congress in Montreal. He is a big fan of death metal and believes a basic income would provide much needed support for the underground music scene.

 

Speakers:

Miles Corak
Grace-Edward Galabuzi
Leah Gazan
Ron Hikel
Felicia Kornbluh
Ryan Meili
Jurgen De Wispelaere