2017 Speakers

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Andrea Nightingale



Andrea Nightingale is a Geographer by training and presently Chair of Rural Development in the Global South at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) in Uppsala, Sweden. She is also a Professor II the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU), International Environment and Development Studies, Noragric. Her current research interests include: climate change adaptation and transformation debates; public authority, collective action and state formation; and feminist work on emotion and subjectivity in relation to theories of development, collective action and cooperation. She previously worked at the School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden and the University of Edinburgh, Geography, School of GeoSciences, Scotland. Most of Nightingale’s research has been done in Nepal and Scotland, but she also has projects in Sweden, Kenya and Mozambique. Her PhD students have worked in Tanzania, Nepal, Burkina Faso, Brazil, the Cook Islands, Canada, and Scotland. She has a MA and PhD from the University of Minnesota, Department of Geography where she was also a MacArthur Scholars Fellow, and a BSc in Biology from Bates College in Maine.


“Socio-ecological Systems, Socionatures or Something Else? Conceptualizing Resilience”

Socio-ecological systems have been proposed as a conceptual model for linking social and environmental systems in order to devise more resilient solutions to present environmental challenges. This approach, however, has serious conceptual and methodological limitations which are rarely discussed in the literature. This talk begins by probing the consequences of the conceptual separation of society from environment in modern science. It explores the contributions and limitations of SES thinking in overcoming that separation by thinking about SES as boundary objects and its contributions to resilience and adaptive learning. SES are compared to ideas of socionatures within political ecology which similarly tries to overcome the conceptual divide between society and environment albeit using a different set of analytical tools. The talk concludes by raising some unresolved conceptual and methodological issues that must be addressed if we are interested in promoting resilience on the ground.

Keywords: SES, adaptive learning, resilience, socionatures, political ecology, methodological pluralism

DR. DaisakU Yamamoto


Daisaku Yamamoto is Associate Professor of Geography and Asian Studies at Colgate University, Hamilton, New York. He holds a PhD in Geography from the University of Minnesota. His recent work focuses on community resilience, regional inequality, and uneven development. He is currently working on the project to examine the socio-economic effects of nuclear decommissioning on local communities in the United States and Japan.


“Community Resilience in the context of developmental states”
In developmental states, as seen in many parts of Asia, interregional disparities arising from rapid economic growth are often countered by state-sponsored or state-supported growth projects in peripheral regions. These projects may take various forms, such as the development of leisure resorts, industrial parks, and power sources. These projects and accompanying discourses strike communities in rural peripheries as externally originated ‘shocks,’ and local residents are usually forced to react to them. One of the major challenges then is how to absorb or counter such shocks without seriously jeopardizing the economic and social lives of those who must live there regardless of the outcomes of such shocks. I draw on a few case studies in Japan to explore challenges of and critical conditions to maintaining community resilience against developmental shocks. In particular, I highlight the potential significance of indigenous institutions and practices, which may not fit with an idealized form of democratic governance.

Pierre Dallaire



Pierre Dallaire graduated from a Mechanic Engineering degree at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi. Since he has worked in for multiple industry leaders (Consolidated Bathurst Inc., Papier Malette) and has spent the last 25 years with the paper division of Kruger Inc. He was appointed as general Manager in the past 10 years in four different paper mills, namely Kruger Place Turcot, Kruger Bromptonville, Kruger Trois-Rivières and Kruger Wayagamack.

“Paper industry in a changing time: the case of Kruger Trois-Rivières”
In his address, Dallaire will discuss the various repercussion of the 2008 crisis and the shift toward an increasingly paperless society on the paper industry, focussing on the production facility of Kruger Trois-Rivières. His experience as general manager of 4 major paper mills in Quebec provide him with a unique vantage point to the resilience of this industry, the constant innovation required, and the tenacity of people connected to it.



John Onawario Cree, Traditional Longhouse Bear Clan Faithkeeper, was born at home in Kanehsatake, Mohawk Territory and raised by his grandparents. In 2005, Onawario was hired as a Grandfather (Elder) to share traditional teachings with Indigenous inmates through Corrections Services Canada, from the minimum to the Super Maximum Special Handling Unit in Ste. Anne des Plaines, Quebec.

Onawario is happily married to his wife Linda, parents of four children, grandparents to 9 precious grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

Onawario still manages to do what he loves best – growing the “Three Sisters” – Indian white corn, beans and squash, traditional Grandfather tobacco and in the Spring, teaching his children, grandchildren, and children in the community – how to make maple syrup on his land in Kanehsatake.


DR. benoit boulet


Benoit Boulet, P.Eng., Ph.D., SMIEEE, is Associate Dean (Research & Innovation) of the Faculty of Engineering at McGill University and an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Professor Boulet obtained a Bachelor’s degree from Université Laval in 1990, a Master of Engineering degree from McGill University in 1992, and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Toronto in 1996, all in electrical engineering. He is a registered Professional Engineer in the province of Québec. Professor Boulet’s research areas include the design and control of electric vehicles and green energy systems, robust control of biomedical systems, and robust industrial control.




Murray Humphries is a teacher and researcher at McGill University in the department of Natural Resource Sciences. He currently supervises a diversified lab including undergraduate, MSc and PhD students. He is the Institut Nordique du Québec McGill Chair in Northern Research – Wildlife conservation and Traditional Food Security that will focus on the protection and sustainable development of northern Quebec’s natural resources. In particular, research will focus on how resource development and other forms of environmental change impact the abundance and health of northern wildlife populations and their contribution to traditional food security. Murray is also the McGill co-lead, with Stan Boutin of the University of Alberta, of an NSERC CREATE graduate training program in Environmental Innovation.  Through this program we are currently training graduate students with knowledge of and relationships with industry, government, and aboriginal organizations required for career-long contributions to culturally-, environmentally- and economically-sustainable resource development in northern Canada. In collaboration with northern communities, we also try to integrate traditional and scientific ecological knowledge to develop community-based wildlife monitoring programs that are closely connected to northern traditional food security.