Past Events

Below is a list of our past events.

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20-Jan-2015 Steps to Ensure Your Culture Does NOT Eat Your Strategy for Lunch Doug Eatwell, Co-founder and COO of Consilient Inc.

Values that are fully embraced and consistently applied in an organization ultimately shape its culture and determine the way decisions are made. For a successful outcome, it’s vitally important for the organization’s values to be consistent with its strategy.

In this session, Doug Eatwell will outline a practical step-by-step approach that enables an organization to discover the values that are actually embedded in its culture, identify critical gaps and inconsistencies with its intended direction, and take action to achieve the necessary alignment between culture and strategic objectives.

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10-Dec-2014 The Ethical and Business Case for Board Diversity Cathy Gallagher-Louisy, Director, Community Partnerships and Knowledge Services, Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion

Board diversity has become a hot topic of late, with some jurisdictions around the world implementing aggressive and controversial approaches to address the issue.

Here in Canada, a recent survey found 76% of FP500 board members reported that they felt their board is diverse. Yet, the Canadian Board Diversity Council?s research showed that in 2013 women held only 15.6% of FP500 board seats and board representation for other under-represented demographics was even more dismal.

In the past 12 years, the representation of women on FP500 boards has improved by only 4.7 percent. Not 4.7% per year, but 4.7% total in 12 years. The benefits of board diversity are numerous. Studies have shown that having more diversity on corporate boards is directly correlated with increased financial returns for the corporation, among other important performance drivers, and a recent study from the University of Calgary found that having three or more women on the board leads to improved sustainability performance.

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25-Nov-2014 GIVING VOICE TO VALUES: The "How" of Business Ethics Mary C. Gentile, Ph.D., Senior Researcher and Director of Giving Voice to Values, Babson College, senior adviser for the Aspen Institute Business & Society Program and the author of Giving Voice to Values: How To Speak Your Mind When You Know What’s Right

Dr. Gentile will share a ground-breaking new approach to preparing business managers and leaders for values-driven decision making. Drawing on both the actual experience of business practitioners as well as cutting edge research, GIVING VOICE TO VALUES (GVV) fills a long-standing and critical gap in our understanding of how to enable ethical practice. Rather than a focus on ethical analysis, GVV focuses on ethical implementation and asks the question: “What if I were going to act on my values? What would I say and do? How could I be most effective?”

GVV was launched by The Aspen Institute and Yale School of Management, and is now housed and funded by Babson College. Developed by Gentile, a veteran of Harvard Business School and pioneer in both ethics and diversity management curriculum, GVV has been piloted in over 650 educational and executive settings. Giving Voice to Values holds the promise to transform the foundational assumptions upon which the teaching of business ethics is based, and importantly, to equip future business leaders to not only know what is right — but how to make it happen.

Event Sponsored by:
BMO Financial Group

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13-Nov-2014 Bitcoin and Beyond: Legal and Reputational Issues Relating to Cryptocurrencies Ana Badour, Partner, McCarthy Tétrault

Bitcoin, the most popular cryptocurrency, has certainly gained a lot of attention and created a lot of controversy – heralded by some as revolutionary (“the next Internet”) while at the same time criticized by others as an asset bubble and a haven for money laundering and other criminal activity. This presentation will outline the structure of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, discuss the reputational and legal risks associated with their use, and how and whether such risks can be managed.

08-Oct-2014 Toronto’s financial sector – a growing global player with a global need for talent Janet Ecker, President & CEO, Toronto Financial Services Alliance (TFSA)

Toronto’s financial sector has done well coming out of the global financial crisis. But critical challenges remain, particularly the need to recruit highly specialized and executive talent from around the world. Just when our financial companies’ growing global reputation means they can attract the best and brightest from around the world, recent changes to Canada’s immigration system are preventing them from competing effectively in the global talent war.

17-Sep-2014 Accommodating Medical Marijuana The event is postponed. Accordingly, we will be rescheduling the event.

Janice Rubin, B.A., LL.B., Partner, Rubin Thomlinson LLP

"Is your organization ready? Please join us for this interactive presentation and learn about:"

The changes to the Marijuana Medical Access Regulation that came into force on April 1, 2014;

Whether the duty to accommodate applies to employees who have a medical need to smoke marijuana;

Necessary components of employer policies relating to medical marijuana use; and

Unique workplace issues stemming from medical marijuana in the workplace.

22-May-2014 Ethics in Public Life The Honourable R. Roy McMurtry, OC, O.Ont, QC

Ethics in Public Life: personal reflections on ethics in public life with a focus on politics and the administration of justice.

Event sponsored by TD Bank Group

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15-Apr-2014 Complying with Canada's New Anti-Spam Legislation Barry Sookman, Senior Partner, McCarthy Tétrault
21-Mar-2014 Designing Cross-sector Social Partnerships for Local Sustainability Dr. Amelia Clarke, Director, Master of Environment and Business (MEB) Program, University of Waterloo

Amelia Clarke’s research explores the emergence, role and design of cross-sector social partnerships as a strategy to solve community-wide social problems. These are partnerships involving local authorities, large corporations, business associations, non-governmental organizations, universities, and small- & medium-sized enterprises.

This talk focuses on Canadian communities, and considers different approaches to implementing a collaborative strategic plan when multiple organizations with different communications and decision-making systems, mandates and cultures are involved. Drawing on four cases, 72 interviews, and two Canada-wide surveys, Clarke draws out the perceived advantages and disadvantages of different ways of designing these partnerships.

The scope of Clarke's recent work on this topic makes it a first in Canada. The panel and discussion following the talk will explore the diverse experience of professionals involved in cross-sector social partnerships. The aim is to explore the issues and questions raised by this research, in relation to the practice of partnership as a vehicle for corporate social responsibility.

About the event:

This event launches the 2014 Canadian Business Ethics Research Network (CBERN) PhD Winter Research Meeting. This is the 3rd year that EthicsCentreCA has supported this initiative. The meeting brings together PhD students working in different disciplines from universities across Canada with senior faculty and business leaders, to discuss and develop research on topics in business and economic ethics.

Andrew Crane (moderator), Professor of Business Ethics and Director, Centre of Excellence in Responsible Business, Schulich School of Business, York University: Andrew Crane's research and teaching explore new ways of thinking about the social, ethical and environmental dimensions of business. He is particularly known for his work on the changing role of the corporation in the global economy, where he has been influential in developing a new view of corporate citizenship that addresses the political roles and responsibilities of business. He has also focused on how ideas of ethics, freedom, and responsibility are communicated and made meaningful by corporations, consumers and other stakeholders through talk and text. Finally, his work has also addressed specific application areas of corporate responsibility, such as forced labour and slavery, competitive intelligence, responsible marketing, nonprofit partnerships, and responsibilities to children.


Paul Klein, President and Founder, Impakt: Paul Klein is an internationally respected authority on the social purpose of corporations and civil society organizations. Paul has helped global corporations and leading non-profit organizations to understand and profit from their social purpose. He also writes about corporate social responsibility for Forbes, was selected as one of the Globe and Mail’s Leading Thinkers and has been recognized as one of America’s Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior. Paul sits on the Advisory Board of the Centre for Excellence in Responsible Business at the Schulich School of Business.

Hadley Archer, VP Strategic Partnerships and Development, WWF: Hadley leads a highly motivated and dedicated team that builds and stewards strategic partnerships among businesses, foundations and individuals. These relationships advance conservation through improved business practices, advancing leadership in protecting the environment and providing critical funding for WWF's conservation work.

For more information about the event, visit:

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25-Feb-2014 Doing the “right” thing. Convincing directors and senior executives that doing the “right” thing is not so bad John Keefe, Partner, Goodmans LLP

In today’s extremely competitive environment, senior executives and directors are under pressure to deliver immediate and positive results. At times, this may conflict with ethical business practices. Often, there is pressure to turn a blind eye to doing the “right thing”. Sometimes this works. Sometimes it creates a disaster. We will discuss the challenge of convincing senior executives and directors that doing the “right thing” is the right thing to do.

This event was generously sponsored by Hydro One.

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