The Climate Change Conference will feature plenary sessions by some of the world’s leading thinkers and innovators in the field, as well as numerous parallel presentations by researchers and practitioners. This year's plenary speakers include:

Alex Clapp

Alex Clapp is Associate Dean of the Faculty of Environment and Professor of Geography at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. He received his BA in Linguistics in 1983 from Yale, and MA and PhD in Geography in 1993 from the University of California at Berkeley. He taught at the University of Toronto for five years before coming to Simon Fraser University in 1998. His research interests in environmental policy range from forest conservation and remapping, to boundary organizations and the politics of adversarial science.



Kathryn Harrison

Kathryn Harrison is Professor of Political Science at the University of British Columbia. She is also a chemical engineer, and started her career working in the Canadian oil sands. She is the author of the book Passing the Buck: Federalism and Canadian Environmental Policy and co-author of Risk, Science, and Politics, and she has edited three volumes, the most recent of which is Global Commons, Domestic Decisions: The Comparative Politics of Climate Change.





The BC Experience with Climate Change Action Plenary Colloquium

Matt Horne

Matt Horne is the Pembina Institute's associate director for British Columbia. Drawing on fifteen years of experience with energy and climate change issues in Canada, he is a leading voice on the environmental impacts associated with LNG development and B.C.'s climate policies. His research into LNG has examined opportunities to limit greenhouse gas emissions from the proposed industry, and also looked at LNG and climate change in a global context. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Dalhousie University and a Master of Resource and Environmental Management from Simon Fraser University.


Werner Kurz

Dr. Werner Kurz is a Senior Research Scientist at the Canadian Forest Service (Natural Resources Canada) in Victoria, BC. He leads the development of Canada's National Forest Carbon Monitoring, Accounting and Reporting System and the Forest Carbon Management Project of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions. His research focuses on carbon dynamics in forests and harvested wood products and the opportunities of the forest sector to contribute to climate change mitigation. He co-authored six reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). He serves as adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia and at Simon Fraser University.


Thomas Pedersen

Dr. Thomas Pedersen was appointed Executive Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions beginning September 1, 2009. His previous positions included Dean of Science (2003-2009), Professor of Oceanography and Director of the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria (2002-2003), and Associate Dean, Research for the Faculty of Graduate Studies at the University of British Columbia (2000-mid2002). Pedersen holds a degree in geology from UBC and a PhD in marine geochemistry from the University of Edinburgh. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and of the American Geophysical Union. He is an internationally recognized authority on ocean chemistry, has published extensively in the field of paleoceanography, and has longstanding interests in climate change issues and the application of government policy to climate-change mitigation and adaptation.

Malcolm Shield

Malcolm Shield is Professional Engineer having completed his Masters of Engineering (Hons) at Imperial College, London, and his Doctorate the University of British Columbia. Malcolm joined the City of Vancouver in 2010 and worked on the development of the carbon reduction pathways that underpin the City’s Greenest City Action Plan. As Climate Policy Manager, he is responsible for the City’s carbon planning, management and reporting as well as the implementation of its decarbonisation strategies.


Suzanne Spence

Suzanne Spence is an Executive Director at the BC Climate Action Secretariat, and oversees the provincial Carbon Neutral Government program where she works to achieve greenhouse gas reductions and promote innovative technology across the broader public sector. Her current focus is on leading a shift to greater emissions reductions within the BC public sector. She holds a Master of Business Administration in Executive Management.

What Works in Fostering Behaviour Change on Global Warming? A Synthesis of Social Mobilization Research in British Columbia Featured Workshop


Dr. Stephen Sheppard

Dr. Sheppard is a Professor teaching and conducting research in climate change planning, public perceptions, and visualization in the Faculty of Forestry and Landscape Architecture programme at UBC. He received a BA/MA in Agricultural and Forest Sciences at Oxford, a MSc. in Forestry at UBC, and a Ph.D. in Environmental Planning at UC. Berkeley. He directs the Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning (CALP), an interdisciplinary research group using perception-testing and immersive/interactive visualization to support public awareness and collaborative planning on climate change and sustainability issues. He has over 35 years’ experience in environmental assessment and public participation internationally. He has written or co-written two books on visual simulation, and recently published "Visualizing Climate Change: A Guide to Visual Communication of Climate Change and Developing Local Solutions. This book is the first to provide a comprehensive guide to visual communication of climate change. Current research interests lie in perceptions of climate change and renewable energy, planning for low-carbon resilient communities, and video games as a community engagement/mobilization tool on climate change.

Deepti Mathew Iype

A passionate environmental sustainability and conservation professional, Deepti has over 13 years of experience working in India & Canada in education, community engagement, donor relations and project management. Deepti is currently responsible for coordinating research activities, leading outreach and extension programs, and liaising with community and other stakeholders for sustainability & climate-change related research projects at UBC’s Collaborative for Advanced Landscape Planning (CALP). Before joining CALP, she was a Development Officer within the Development and Alumni Engagement portfolio at UBC Faculty of Forestry, where she was responsible for fundraising, community engagement & alumni relations. She also has project management experience, leading strategic educational initiatives at the World Wide Fund for Nature-India (WWF-India) in New Delhi, in addition to promoting environmental and sustainability education and community outreach programs at prominent schools in India.

Impacts of Climate Change on Health: A Growing Challenge for Health Systems Featured Colloquium

Stacy Barter

Stacy Barter, M. Ed., is a Community Engagement and Learning Specialist with BC Healthy Communities. She has worked for over 20 years with a wide range of communities, not-for-profit and public sector organizations in Canada and Latin America, focusing on sustainable community development, multi-stakeholder collaboration and positive change processes. Most recently her work with BC Healthy Communities  has included a focus on public engagement for climate action,  the links between health and climate change, and processes to support healthy community development in complex environments. She is co-author of  “Building Healthy Communities at the Intersection of Chronic Disease and Climate Change” and “Health Authority Perceptions and Capacity for Action: Health Impacts of Climate Change in BC”.

Bimal Chhetri

Bimal Chhetri is a in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University and works for the BC Center for Disease Control in Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Maya Gislason

Dr. Maya Gislason is a member of the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Sarah Henderson

Dr. Sarah Henderson works for the Centres for Disease Control and University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Carl Lowenburger

Dr. Carl Lowenburger works for the Department of Biological Science at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada.

Dr. Tim Takaro

Dr. Tim Takaro is a physician-scientist and Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University. He was trained in occupational and environmental medicine, public health and toxicology, at Yale, the University of North Carolina and University of Washington. Dr. Takaro’s research is primarily about the links between human exposures and disease, and determining effective public health based preventive solutions to such risks. His current research on human health and climate change focuses on water quality, extreme weather events and gastro-intestinal illness in BC communities and building and mapping watershed vulnerability and resilience in rural Nicaragua. He is Canadian co-chair of the Health Professionals Advisory Board to the International Joint Commission on border waters, Program Committee member for the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions, and chair of the Climate Change Health Policy Group in BC. Current research collaborations include projects in India, Iraq, Mongolia, Mexico, Nicaragua, the U.S. and Canada