Program: Themes and Symposia

Enhancing Diversity in an Innovative Workplace

October 22, 2013 • 13:00 - 17:00

Introductory Speakers:

  • Rene Boudreau, Executive Director of the New Brunswick Research and Innovation Council
  • Dr. Dhirendra Shukla, PEng., Chair, UNB Dr. J. Herbert Smith Centre Technology Management and Entrepreneurship
  • Tamara Franz-Odendaal, PhD., NSERC Chair of Women in Science and Engineering (Atlantic Region)


To be determined


  • Christine Plourde, FEC, P.Eng., APEGNB
  • Katy Haralampides, P.Eng., University of New Brunswick
  • Tamara Franz-Odendaal, PhD., NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering (Atlantic Region)

This session is intended to discuss the importance of innovation in economic development, the key role that STEM professionals play in innovation, and how enhancing diversity in the STEM professions may help to spur greater innovation.

Following introductory speeches, panelists will discuss the following topics, and will take questions from session participants.

In your experience, do you feel increased diversity can increase the innovative capacity of a group/ workplace?
What barriers may be discouraging more diversity in some STEM workplaces?
Are there some workplaces or STEM fields that seem to attract and retain more diverse groups?
If so, why and what can we learn from them that could help enhance the diversity and innovative capacity of other STEM fields?

After the break, panelists and participants will break out into groups to further discuss these topics.

This session is sponsored by Engineers Canada and Engineers and Geoscientists New Brunswick.