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Jeffrey Simpson


Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Acclaimed Journalist, Former National Affairs Columnist for The Globe and Mail

One of Canada’s most respected social and political commentators, for over 30 years Jeffrey Simpson served as the National Affairs Columnist for The Globe and Mail. He is one of Ottawa’s most prolific and influential pundits. An acclaimed writer, Jeffrey has won all three of Canada’s major literary prizes: the Governor General’s Award, the National Magazine Award and the National Newspaper Award.

Keynote Speeches

Dragging Canada’s Health Care System into the 21st Century

Simpson meets health care head on and explores the only four options we have to end this growing crisis: cuts in spending, tax increases, privatization, and reaping savings through increased efficiency. He examines the tenets of the Medicare system that Canadians cling to so passionately. Here, he finds that many other countries have more extensive public health systems, and Canadian health care produces only average value for money. In fact, our rigid system for some health care needs and a costly system for other needs—drugs, dentistry, and home care—is really the worst of both worlds.

Hot Air: Fixing Canada's Climate Change Catastrophe

Simpson provides an alarming description of the climate threat to our country. He touches on the role of by our politicians, industrialists and environmentalists. Simpson lays out in convincing and easily understood terms the few simple policies that Canada must adopt right away in order to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the next few decades, and shows how it can be done with minimal negative impacts.


State of the Nation: Canadian Politics

Drawing on his extensive knowledge as the Globe and Mail’s National Affairs Columnist, Simpson takes a look at the current state Canada finds itself in. Areas of coverage include the economy, business, foreign affairs and U.S. Relations.

International Canada: Seizing the Opportunity to be a Leader in the Global Arena

Simpson suggests that although Canada has a number of advantages in establishing strong relationships globally, we are falling short in several key areas on the international scene. He believes we are in danger of becoming too complacent, too inward looking, too focused on domestic policy and federal-provincial issues. Simpson’s stance is provocative, and is sure to spark debate among audience members. Whether listeners agree or disagree, Simpson succeeds in presenting a new perspective that will encourage audiences to closely examine our public policies, and demand more from those we elect to office.

Platform Plus Presentations

Unique formats and ways to connect with audiences.
Event Moderator

Audience reviews:

  • Overwhelmingly positive reaction to your presentation. By the end of the poultry-oriented business sessions the members were saturated with industry-specific panels and speakers. It is therefore refreshing for them to hear from someone such as yourself, with insightful views into the Canadian political situation. Both your materials and your delivery were excellent and you can be proud of a job well done.

    - Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors Council
  • He was fantastic! He completely energized the crowd about skills development issues, let us know where our issues stood in terms of current political climate.
    The success of our event can be directly attributed to Mr. Simpson's energizing opening keynote address - participants' are still talking about it!

    - HR, Social Development Canada
  • Was nothing short of 5 star. His ideas were right on topic, his analysis was thoughtful and carefully put together – people loved it. His presentation style was warm and he gave people a sense of getting their money's worth.

    - CEO, Campbell Intel Services

Speaker Biography

Jeffrey Simpson is the most decorated journalist in Canada. An Officer of the Order of Canada, he also received seven honorary doctorates and numerous national writing awards, including the Governor-General’s Prize and the Donner Prize for the best book on public policy, the National Newspaper Award (twice) and the National Magazine Award. He also won the Hyman Soloman Award for public policy journalism, the Arthur Kroeger Award for contributions to public policy, the Charles Lynch prize for coverage of national politics. For 32 years, his national affairs column in The Globe and Mail was essential reading for decision-makers and informed Canadians across the country. In that column, and in hundreds of public speeches and lectures, he ranged over an enormous number of domestic and international issues, from politics to health-care, from climate-change to economic and fiscal policy, to Canadian-American relations and the Middle East. In addition to making presentations at conferences here and abroad, he moderated many conferences. He retired from column-writing at The Globe and Mail in mid-2016, but continues to lecture and speak on many of the leading issues of the day. He has written eight books, numerous magazine articles, appeared regularly on television in English and French, and was a guest lecturer at such universities as Oxford, Edinburgh, Harvard, Princeton, Brigham Young, California and more than a dozen universities in Canada. He has been a John S. Knight Fellow at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California; a Skelton-Clark Fellow and Brockington Visitor at Queen’s university; a distinguished visitor at the University of Alberta; and a member of the Georgetown University Leadership Seminar. He has been a member of the board of trustees of Queen’s University, the board of overseers of Green, College, University of British Columbia; the advisory councils of the Robarts Medical Research Institute and the Richard Ivey School of Business at Western university; and the editorial board of the Queen’s Quarterly. He was vice-chairman of the City of Ottawa Library Board and was awarded the William Watkinson Award for outstanding contributions to the Canadian library community. Jeffrey has taught as an adjunct professor at the Queen’s University Institute of Policy Studies and the University of Ottawa Law School. He is senior fellow at the University of Ottawa Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. He was a juror for the Charles Taylor Prize for non-fiction books in 2008 and for the Cundill Prize for history in 2011 and 2012. He is also a member of the Trilateral Commission.