NCIED contributes to the Victoria Forum

Miles Richardson at the Victoria Forum
Miles Richardson (right) at the Victoria Forum

From November 17-19, 2017, the inaugural Victoria Forum provided an environment for local, national, and international individuals and organizations to discuss diversity and inclusion, and to generate ideas and actions for a better world. The discussions revolved around six themes, and the NCIED played a key role in the Indigenous stream of the Forum.

With their thematic partner, Haida Enterprise Corporation, Miles Richardson, NCIED Director, and Dr. John Borrows, NCIED law faculty champion, co-chaired Economics of Indigenous Inclusiveness. For three days, the theme’s focus weaved through the Forum, from the opening plenary, with distinguished panelists, Assembly of First Nations Chief, Perry Bellegarde, Roberta Jamieson, President and CEO, Indspire, and former Prime Ministers, Kim Campbell and Paul Martin, to the closing reception, hosted by the Honourable Judith Guichon, Lieutenant Governor, BC.

The NCIED launched the Forum’s second day with the plenary session Defining the Nation to Nation Paradigm. Miles Richardson moderated the enlightening conversation with panelists, Dr. John Borrows, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Law at UVic, Ms. Ava Hill, Chief of Six Nations of the Grand River and Ms. Sophie Pierre, OC, OBC, Elder Advisor to the Ktunaxa Nation. 

On day three, three stimulating think tank sessions held in the First Peoples House engaged audience members in topics including First Nations leadership and governance; defining the Nation-to-Nation relationship; and action initiatives, including entrepreneurship. Demonstrating an impressive breadth of expertise, moderators and panelists included Kory Wilson, ED Aboriginal Initiatives and Partnerships, BCIT, Dr. Brent Mainprize, NCIED Business School Champion, Carol Anne Hilton, CEO Transformation and senior advisor to the Federal Finance Minister, Estella White, JFK Law Corporation, Dr. Dara Kelly, Post-Doctoral Research Fellow UVic, , Dr. Tim Rabould, McGill Institute, Lee Francouer, Eagle Law Group, Mohan Denetto, Director General, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada and Brian MacDonald, Assistant Deputy Minister, Government of Yukon.

Read more coverage in the Times Colonist

More about the Victoria Forum

The inaugural Victoria Forum, an interactive event, provided an opportunity for business leaders, visionaries, politicians, youth and civil society to lead a major and necessary discussion around diversity and inclusion in the 21st century. National Chief Perry Bellegarde, Assembly of First Nations, was a keynote speaker.

One of the themes, Economics of Indigenous Inclusiveness, co‑chaired by NCIED Director Miles Richardson, and NCIED law faculty champion, Dr. John Borrows, focused on the contemporary attempts by Indigenous peoples to participate in economic development while nourishing and strengthening their world-views and aspirations. Indigenous peoples have struggled against assimilation throughout Canadian history and Indigenous peoples have worked to ensure development does not further erode relationships with their lands, languages, resources, and social standing. These conditions for engagement in economic development produce challenges and opportunities for Indigenous peoples and others in creating prosperity across Canada.

Priority questions included: 

  1. Can Indigenous peoples retain their distinctive political, legal and cultural status when engaged in economic development?
  2. How can Indigenous peoples develop capacity to grow their own and other’s economies?
  3. Where might Indigenous economic development be focused to take advantage of entrepreneurial opportunities in the next 10 years?