Annual Conference 2020: Perspectives on Legislatures and Legislative Power: Past, Present, Future


Welcome to the 2020 Canadian Study of Parliament Group (CSPG) annual conference: Perspectives on Legislatures and Legislative Power: Past, Present, Future! Bienvenue!

For the first time, our annual conference is a virtual affair. We are delighted to have presenters joining us from five continents to share their ideas and research on all aspects of Parliament – from thoughts on present day practices (including how Parliament should function during a pandemic) to research on historical precedents. In addition, we have special live events that you won’t want to miss!

Conference Components

The conference has three components:

  1. Video presentations (free to all) – watch our presenters share their knowledge
  2. Live Q&As (registration required) – sessions with presenters on thematically-linked topics
  3. Live Special Events (registration required) – one-time events with special guests

Video presentations can be accessed from this page.

All live events occur over Zoom and registration is required. Each Q&A session is scheduled for 45 minutes; Live Special Events are scheduled each for an hour but may run longer.

Video presentations will have closed captions available in both official languages. Simultaneous interpretation has been arranged for all live events but cannot be guaranteed owing to parliamentary activities that may take priority.


Registering for the conference allows you to participate in all of the Live Q&As in addition to the Live Special Events. To register, click the registration button to be re-directed to our EventBrite page.

Note: Please register using the e-mail address associated with your Zoom account so as to ensure you will have access to the live events.

If you have a credit with the CSPG from our cancelled March event, you may already be registered for the Conference. Please communicate with us if you wish to confirm your registration.

Regular registration is $50 CAD. A reduced registration fee of $25 is available for retirees, students, and members of Australian, Scottish, and UK Study of Parliament Groups. Registration fees cover not only conference costs but support other CSPG programs such as our student bursaries. The CSPG is a registered non-profit organization. (If you are a presenter or special guest who has not received your confirmation of free registration and associated Zoom event links, please e-mail

Social Media

We encourage you to share and engage with us on social media – our Twitter feed can be found at @CSPG_GCEP. Our conference hashtag is #CSPG2020 in English, #GCEP2020 in French.


We thank you for your interest in the CSPG and wish to thank all of our presenters and special guests for sharing their time and insights with us! The conference committee members (Élise, Charlie, Anna, Paul, Erin) hope that our first-ever virtual offering provides a great experience for everyone -- if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to be in touch:

Conference Program

We are delighted that so many presenters are sharing their time and insights with us through pre-recorded video presentations as part of our virtual conference. The videos are available using the links below, sorted by thematically-linked panel. Live Question and Answer (Q&A) sessions will be held with each panel (registration required) on the indicated time and date (all times are local to Ottawa, Canada).

Note: Closed captioning in both official languages for each video is available through YouTube.

Live Q&A sessions have been organized to allow for engagement with presenters on their video presentations. The panels have been organized at times to allow for presenters located in different time-zones to participate at reasonable times, as best as could be planned considering some of the more extreme time-zone differences.

Each Live Q&A is scheduled for 45 minutes and will take place on the Zoom platform. Simultaneous interpretation has been arranged but cannot be guaranteed owing to parliamentary activities that may have priority.

Live Special Events (included with registration) have been scheduled – consult the below conference schedule for more details.

All times are local to Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (Eastern time)

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

6-7pm: Parliament and the Executive

John Mark Keyes (Professor – University of Ottawa, Canada)

Anne Twomey (Professor – University of Sydney, Australia)

Charlie Feldman (Parliamentary Counsel – Senate of Canada, Canada)

7-8pm: MPs In and MPs Out

Madeleine Meilleur (Former Ottawa-Vanier MPP and Attorney General of Ontario, Canada)

Louise Cockram (PhD Candidate in Political Science – Carleton University, Canada)

Zim Nwokora, Amy Nethery, Peter Ferguson and Matthew Clarke (Deakin University, Australia)

8-9pm: SPECIAL EVENT: The Dismissal and Palace Papers: In conversation with Professor Emeritus Jenny Hocking (Monash University, Australia)

Moderator: Lori Turnbull (Director of the School of Public Administration – Dalhousie University, Canada)

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

9-9:45am: Diversity and Representation in Parliament

Hugh Bochel (Professor of Public Policy – University of Lincoln, UK)

Christopher Alcantara, Michelle Caplan, Mathieu Turgeon (The University of Western Ontario, Canada)

Timothy Goodwin (Barrister – Victorian Bar, Australia) and Julian Murphy (PhD Candidate –Melbourne Law School, Australia)

10-10:45am: Parliament through a Gendered Lens

Erica Rayment (Instructor – University of Calgary, Canada)

Tracey Raney (Associate Professor – Ryerson University, Canada)

Cheryl Collier (Associate Professor – University of Windsor, Canada)

11-11:45am: Parliamentary Discussion: Who, What, Where

Chris Greenaway (PhD Candidate – University of Toronto, Canada)

Guillermo Renna (Alumnus – Parliamentary Internship Programme, Canada)

Elizabeth McCallion (PhD Candidate – Queen’s University, Canada)

Michael Kaczorowski (Former Senior Policy Advisor – Government of Canada, Canada)

1-1:45pm: Parliamentary Speech

Florence Vallée-Dubois (PhD Candidate – Université de Montréal, Canada), Jean-François Godbout (Professeur titulaire – Université de Montréal, Canada) and Christopher Cochrane (Associate Professor – University of Toronto, Canada)

Gavin Hart (University of Huddersfield, UK)

Meaghan Irons (Alumna – Ontario Legislative Programme, Canada)

Dr. Teale N. Phelps Bondaroff (Research Coordinator - BC Humanist Association, Canada), Ian Bushfield (Executive Director - BC Humanist Association, Canada), Dr. Katie E. Marshall (Assistant Professor - University of British Columbia, and Board Member - BC Humanist Association, Canada), Ranil Prasad (Campaign Manager, Researcher, and Board Member - BC Humanist Association, Canada) and Noah Laurence (Researcher - BC Humanist Association, Canada)

2-3pm: SPECIAL EVENT: Perspectives from Western and Northern legislators: What we have learned by being who we are, where we are.

Panelists to be announced and may be subject to change owing to legislative obligations.

Angela Pitt, MLA and Deputy Speaker
Rakhi Pancholi, MLA

Pauline Frost, MLA and Minister

British Columbia
Sonia Furstenau, Leader of the BC Green Party (former MLA seeking re-election)

3-4pm: SPECIAL EVENT: Author Meets Critic with Alex Marland (Memorial University, Newfoundland and Labrador)

Moderator: Anna Esselment (University of Waterloo)
Chair: Susan Delacourt (Toronto Star)
Critics: Christine de Clercy (Western University), Marc-André Bodet (Université Laval) and Jonathan Malloy (Carlton University)

4-4:45pm: SPECIAL EVENT: CSPG Annual General Meeting

Who says these proceedings are routine? Join us for our AGM!

Thursday, October 15, 2020

9-10:30am: Parliament and the Courts

John Magyar (Researcher – Travers Smith LLP, Barrister & Solicitor, UK)

Chris Oxtoby (Senior Researcher – University of Cape Town, South Africa)

Robert Leckey (Samuel Gale Professor and Dean, Faculty of Law – McGill University, Canada)

Charles Robert (Clerk - House of Commons, Canada)

Ariane Beauregard (Parliamentary Counsel – National Assembly of Quebec)

11-11:45am: Parliament in Unique Times

Robert Burroughs (PhD Student, University of New Brunswick)

Jonathan Chibois (Postdoctoral Researcher – School of Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, Paris, France)

Penny Bryden (Processor, Department of History – University of Victoria)

Steve Chaplin (Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Law – University of Ottawa)

1-1:45pm: Parliamentary Engagement

Jennifer Han (Alumna – Ontario Legislative Programme, Canada)

Alexandra Anderson (Post-doctoral Researcher – University of Sheffield, UK)

Cristina Leston-Bandeira (Professor of Politics – University of Leeds, UK)

2-2:45pm: Parliamentary Oversight

Paula Clerici (Professor, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, Assistant Researcher at the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research in Argentina (CONICET), Argentina)

Geneviève Tellier (Full Professor, School of Political Studies – University of Ottawa)

Ben Yong (Associate Professor of Public Law and Human Rights – Durham Law School, UK)

Gavin Charles (Alumnus, Parliamentary Internship Program)

3-3:45pm: SPECIAL EVENT: In Conversation with Annette Boucher, QC, Acting Clerk of the Nova Scotia Legislature (Nova Scotia)

Moderated by Élise Hurtubise-Loranger and Scott Lemoine

© 2015 Canadian Study of Parliament Group