Government of Canada renews Space Advisory Board

News Release

Board will advise Government of Canada on long-term objectives for space sector

April 18, 2017 – Ottawa – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada 

Canada’s world-class space sector can shape our future as a nation of innovators, while also addressing some of our most pressing challenges. 

To this end, the Government of Canada is renewing the Space Advisory Board with the appointment of new members and a new mandate. The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, today announced the new members of the board. These talented and diverse individuals from industry, the academic and research communities, and the not-for-profit sector have been appointed based on their significant knowledge of, and expertise in, the space sector. 

The new board will be chaired by Dr. Marie Lucy Stojak, Director of the School on Management of Creativity and Innovation at HEC Montréal. The members of the board are:

  • Dr. James Drummond, Professor, Dalhousie University
  • William MacDonald Evans, President, W. MacDonald Evans Consulting Inc.
  • Stéphane Germain, President and CEO, GHGSat Inc.
  • Dr. Douglas Hamilton, Clinical Associate Professor of Internal Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Electrical Engineering, University of Calgary
  • Michelle Mendes, Executive Director, Canadian Space Commerce Association
  • Dr. Gordon Osinski, Associate Professor, Western University and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Chair in Earth and Space Exploration.
  • Michael Pley, President, Pley Consulting Inc. and Chair of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada’s Space Committee
  • Dr. Afzal Suleman, Canada Research Chair in Computational and Experimental Mechanics and Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Director of the Centre for Aerospace Research, University of Victoria
  • Christine Tovee, independent consultant 

As a part of the Government’s Innovation and Skills Plan, the board will engage with Canadians to develop a new vision for Canada’s space sector and define key elements of a strategy that will be launched this summer. The advisory board’s input will inform the strategy, which will focus on using space to drive broader economic growth and innovation, while inspiring the next generation of space scientists.


“Canada’s space sector has a world-class reputation and is a key contributor to innovation. The technologies that are designed for today’s space program can be applied in the future to the everyday lives of Canadians. That means the investments we make in today’s space sector are investments in a higher standard of living tomorrow. That is why the renewed Space Advisory Board has been tasked with developing a fresh vision for the sector. Its work will result in a blueprint that will guide the development of the next generation of space technologies and inspire the next generation of space scientists.”

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Quick Facts

  • Canada’s space sector plays an important role in Canada’s economy, generating revenues of $5.38 billion in 2014. The sector employs more than 10,000 workers, nearly half of which are highly qualified personnel.

  • In 2014, the sector invested more than $146 million in research and development projects.

  • To build on Canada’s proud history in space and create opportunities for the sector, Budget 2017 proposes $80.9 million, allocated through the Canadian Space Agency, for two new projects that will demonstrate Canadian space innovations. One of the projects will focus on quantum technology, and the other will focus on technologies for the surface observation of Mars.

  • The Space Advisory Board was selected based on an open, transparent and merit-based selection process that is reflective of Canada’s diversity and guided by the Prime Minister’s process for appointments.

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Follow Minister Bains on Twitter: @MinisterISED

Karl W. Sasseville
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

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