April 28-30, 2019
Toronto

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Program


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KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

The Honourable Bob Rae is among Canada’s most prominent political figures, as former Premier of Ontario and Interim Federal Leader of the Liberal Party. He is currently Canada’s Special Envoy to Myanmar, Senior Fellow to the Raoul Wallenberg Centre for Human Rights, and a partner at Olthuis Kleer Townshend LLP. He has been named Queen’s Council, appointed to the Privy Council of Canada, and is Companion of the Order of Canada.

Dr. Solange Lefebvre is one of Canada's leading public intellectuals writing about secularism and the role of religion in society. She holds the Research Chair for the Management of Cultural and Religious Diversity, Institute for Religious Studies, at the University of Montreal, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. She is also the director of an interdisciplinary project sponsored by the Québec Ministry of Immigration, Inclusion, and Diversity and  by the Research Fund of Quebec: Society and Culture. The project is called The Process of Radicalization Leading to Violence (RLV): Perceptions of the Quebec Population, and the Influence of Both Traditional Mass Media and New Social Media.

Dr. Michael Ruse is a renowned and influential philosopher of science, a self-described atheist who has sought to reconcile science and religion. He is a Professor Emeritus at the University of Guelph, and is a Professor of Philosophy at Florida State University. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

PUBLIC LECTURE SPEAKERS

(Chair) Dr. Gerald Filson is a member of the Baha'i national governing council, the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Canada. He served as Director of Public Affairs for the Canadian Baha'i Community from 1993 to 2017. He has a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, and his contributions to civil society include service as the Chair of the Canadian Interfaith Conversation 2012-16, and Chair of the Network on International Human Rights, a coalition of Canada's human rights organizations, 1999-2002. He is married with three children, and one grandchild.

Dr. Mary Jo Leddy is widely recognized for founding Romero House in 1991, and for her ongoing work with refugees there. She spent thirty years as a member of the Roman Catholic Sisters of Our Lady of Sion and, in 1973, she was the founding editor of the Catholic New Times. She is author of several books, the latest of which is entitled The Other Face of God: When the Stranger Calls Us Home (Orbis 2011). Leddy received her Ph.D. from the University of Toronto along with several honorary doctorates from other institutions. She is currently a Senior Fellow at Massey College in the University of Toronto and a board member of PEN Canada and Massey College. Leddy has received the Human Relations Award of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, the Ontario Citizenship Award, and is a Member of the Order of Canada.

Dr. David Novak received his A.B. from the University of Chicago; and from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America he received his M.H.L. degree and his rabbinical diploma. He received his Ph.D. in philosophy from Georgetown University. Since 1997, he has been the J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff Professor of Jewish Studies and Philosophy in the University of Toronto. During 1989-96 he was the Edgar M. Bronfman Professor of Modern Judaic Studies in the University of Virginia. Novak is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (F.R.S.C.) and a Fellow of the American Academy for Jewish Research. He is President of the Union for Traditional Judaism, Vice-President of the Institute on Religion and Public Life, and Consulting Scholar of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions of Princeton University. In 2017 he delivered the Gifford Lectures in the University of Aberdeen. He is married to Melva Ziman, and they have two married children and four grandchildren.

PANEL SPEAKERS

 

 

Chander Khanna (Chair) - Canadian Board of Directors, Parliament of the World's Religions

Nuzhat Jafri - Executive Director, Canadian Council of Muslim Women 

Jonathan Hamilton-Diabo - Director of Indigenous Initiatives, University of Toronto 

Dr. Kofi Hope - Senior Policy Advisor, Wellesley Institute

 

 

 

Rabbi Adam Cutler (Chair) - Senior Rabbi, Adath Israel Congregation 

Mustafa Farooq - Executive Director, National Council of Canadian Muslims 

Giuliana Natale - Director, Inclusion and Religious Freedom, Global Affairs Canada

Dr. Anna Su - Assistant Professor, University of Toronto Faculty of Law 

 

 

 

Sadia Zaman (Chair) - CEO, Inspirit Foundation

Dr. Tracy J. Trothen - Professor, Queen's University

Joseph Brean - Features Writer, National Post

Dr. Borna Noureddin - Faculty Member, School of Computing and Academic Studies at the British Columbia Institute of Technology

 


 

PROGRAM OUTLINE

SUNDAY – APRIL 28

University of St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto, Muzzo Family Alumni Hall, 121 St. Joseph Street, Toronto

7:00-8:00pm▸    PUBLIC LECTURE: UNITY IN DIVERSITY

Chair: Dr. Gerald Filson (Baha’i Community of Canada)

Dr. David Novak (Professor, University of Toronto)

Dr. Mary Jo Leddy (Founder, Romero House)

8:00-9:30pm▸     RECEPTION
 

MONDAY – APRIL 29

Multi-Faith Centre, University of Toronto, 569 Spadina Avenue, Toronto

9:00-9:15am▸   WELCOMING REMARKS
9:15-10:15am▸   PLENARY 1: RETHINKING IDENTITY

Chair: Chander Khanna (Canadian Board of Directors, Parliament of the World’s Religions)

Nuzhat Jafri (Executive Director, Canadian Council of Muslim Women)

Jonathan Hamilton-Diabo (Director of Indigenous Initiatives, University of Toronto)

Dr. Kofi Hope (Senior Policy Advisor, Wellesley Institute)

10:15-11:00am▸  KEYNOTE 1: Pluralism is a Contested Idea in Today’s World: The Continuing Threats of Populism, Nationalism, and Religious Dogmatism

Hon. Bob Rae (University of Toronto, Special Envoy to Myanmar)

11:15-12:30pm▸  WORKSHOP CYCLE 1

From Dialogue to Institutional Change: A Theoretical Framework for Inclusion of Religious and Non-Religious Identities in Higher Education

Identity, Religion, and Social Contract: Finding Common Ground Despite Competing/Conflicting Values and Priorities

Interfaith is Intercultural:
Naming Identity as Essential to Relationship Across Diversity

-INTERFAITH TRACK-

Why Work Together?: Interfaith Groups Bridging Differences for the Common Good

J. Cody Nielsen
(Founder and Executive Director, Convergence)

Richard Chambers
(Director of the Multi-Faith Centre at the University of Toronto)

Dr. Nadia Z. Hasan
(Deputy Director, National Council of Canadian Muslims)

Dr. Shari Golberg
(Senior Policy Advisor at OPS Diversity Office, Inclusion, Diversity, Anti-racism Division, Cabinet Office)

Peter Noteboom
(Canadian Council of Churches)

Moderator: Ahmet Tamirci
(National Director, Intercultural Dialogue Institute)

Moderator: Muneeb Nasir
(President, Olive Tree Foundation)

Dr. Emo Yango
(The Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning; Canadian Baptist Ministries)

Maureen Scott Kabwe
(The Forum for Intercultural Leadership and Learning; United Church of Canada)

Nil Sendil
(Organizer, Workers' Action Centre's $15 and Fairness Campaign)

Dr. John Milloy
(Assistant Professor of Public Ethics; Director, Centre for Public Ethics; Practitioner-in-Residence, Department of Political Science, Wilfrid Laurier University)

Moderator: Danielle Yett
(Canadian Interfaith Research Centre for Learning and Engagement)

Moderator: Barbara Boraks
(Steering Committee Member, Canadian Interfaith Research Centre for Learning and Engagement; Executive Director, Christian Jewish Dialogue of Toronto)

Moderator: Héctor A. Acero Ferrer
(Canadian Interfaith Research Centre for Learning and Engagement)

LUNCH

New College Cafeteria

2:00-3:00pm▸     PLENARY 2: ADDRESSING EXTREMISM AND POLARIZATION

Chair: Rabbi Adam Cutler (Adath Israel)

Mustafa Farooq (Executive Director, National Council of Canadian Muslims)

Giuliana Natale (Director, Inclusion and Religious Freedom, Global Affairs Canada)

Dr. Anna Su (Assistant Professor, University of Toronto)

3:15-4:15pm▸     WORKSHOP CYCLE 2

Countering the Rise of Antisemitism: An Analysis and Strategy

In or Out of Prison: Young People and Spirituality

Addressing Religious Intolerance in Daily Life

-INTERFAITH TRACK-
The Urban Spiritual Commons: Beyond Interfaith

Steve McDonald
(Director, Policy and Strategic Communications, Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs)

Imam Yasin Dwyer
(Silk Road Institute)

Chaplain Kate Johnson
(Queen's University)

Dr. G. Eric Jarvis
(McGill University)

Dr. Catherine Jarvis
(McGill University)

Dr. W. Y. Alice Chan, OCT
(Executive Director, The Centre for Civic Religious Literacy)

Rev. Dr. Jason McKinney
(Trinity College and Anglican Diocese of Toronto)

Michael Burtt
(Making Room Community Arts)

4:30-5:30pm▸     KEYNOTE 2: What is the Relationship Between Media and Radicalization Leading to Violence?

Dr. Solange Lefebvre (Research Chair for the Management of Cultural and Religious Diversity, Institute for Religious Studies, University of Montreal)

 

TUESDAY – APRIL 30

Multi-Faith Centre, University of Toronto, 569 Spadina Avenue, Toronto

9:00-9:15am▸     WELCOMING REMARKS
9:15-10:30am▸   PLENARY 3: TECHNOLOGY, VALUES & SOCIETY

Chair: Sadia Zaman (CEO, Inspirit Foundation)

Dr. Tracy Trothen (Professor, Queen’s University)

Dr. Borna Noureddin (Professor, BCIT)

Joseph Brean (Features Writer, National Post)

10:45am-12:00pm▸     WORKSHOP CYCLE 3

Living Clothes, Edited Humans, and Bioweapons: What is Synthetic Biology and Where is it Headed?

Autonomous Weapons Systems and Human Control

Creating Media Across Difference in an Urban Middle School

-INTERFAITH TRACK-
A Relational Ecosystem for Peace (REP) to Integrate an “Agenda of the Heart” into Dialogue Activities

Matthew Legge
(Canadian Friends Service Committee)

Branka Marijan
(Program Officer, Project Ploughshares)

Esther Maloney
(Director, Illumine Media Project)

Dr. Patrice Brodeur
(Professor, University of Montreal)

Brigitte Gagnon
(Consultant, PhD candidate, University of Montreal)

LUNCH

New College Cafeteria

1:30-3:00pm▸     KEYNOTE 3: A Meaning to Life: Darwinian Existentialism

Dr. Michael Ruse (Professor of Philosophy, Florida State University)

Response: Dr. Ronald A. Kuipers (President and Associate Professor, Institute for Christian Studies)
 

3:00-3:30pm▸     WRAP-UP