Canadian Research Advisory Group

The Canadian Research Advisory Group (CRAG) is an advisory body of Canadian researchers and practitioners brought together during the CIW's development phase to provide advice on specific domains and their constituent indicators, to assist in the collection of data and preparation of domain reports, and to promote the CIW concept across Canada.


Senior Research Advisor -- Development Phase

Alex Michalos

C.M., Ph.D., D.Litt., F.R.S.C., O.C., Professor Emeritus, Political Science, University of Northern British Columbia

Alex Michalos

For over 40 years I have been engaged in and tried to engage others in the difficult task of constructing a comprehensive and balanced measure of the quality of life or wellbeing broadly construed of the Canadian people. Working closely with a very talented team on the Canadian Index of Wellbeing has allowed me to get ever closer to accomplishing the central goal of my life's work.


Community Vitality Domain

Katherine Scott, Canadian Council on Social Development (CCSD)

Katherine Scott

The CIW strives to tell the story of Canadians – in all of their diversity – by asking the critical question: How are we doing? It isn't enough to just track annual change in GDP. The CIW digs deeper to measure what matters to Canadians and their wellbeing.


Democratic Engagement Domain

Heather Bernardin, Holden & Associates

Heather Bernardin

The CIW provides a made-in-Canada report card to stimulate debate on where we want to be and how to get there.



Bill Holden, Holden & Associates

Bill Holden

The CIW provides a full view of Canadian lives lived, creating a grounded base for public policy discussion.



Kelley Moore, Prairie Wild Consulting Co.

Kelley Moore

For years there has been a demand for a social-based measure to complement existing economic measures such as the GDP. The CIW provides a broad framework for measuring social wellbeing in Canada now and into the future. Regular reporting of changes in the indicators will assist researcher, policy analysts and decision makers in defining Canadian public policy.



Lenore Swystun, Prairie Wild Consulting Co.

Lenore Swystun

Understanding who we are within the context of where, what, when and how we are ... matters... to our well-being. The CIW will be an essential catalyst to frame this important conversation about who we are today and who we need and want to be as Canadians to Canadians and Canadians to the world.



Education Domain

Ronald Colman, GPI Atlantic

Ronald Colman

What we count reflects our values as society, and determines what makes it onto government policy agendas. Governments cannot lead responsibly, with vision, or in an informed way, without a full range of social, economic, and environmental measures of progress and value at hand.



Anne Gadermann, Post-Doctoral Fellow and Research Associate, Human Early Learning Partnership, University of British Columbia

Anne Gadermann

The CIW provides a unique opportunity to holistically track national progress across a wide range of domains and to promote dialogue on the values and goals of Canadian society. It gives us insights into the wellbeing of Canadians and helps us to act upon the conditions that are important for the future of our society.



Martin Guhn, Assistant Professor, Human Early Learning Partnership, University of British Columbia

Martin Guhn

In political and corporate media discourse, the current narrow focus on economic 'wellbeing' as the superordinate goal of our society is distractive and misleading. Economic factors, by themselves, are not relevant to humanity. Economic factors are only relevant if they foster our collective social relationships, our education, our health, our democracies, and our environment(s). The CIW is a tool to inform and (re)focus our dialogue on issues that are important to Canadians and to humanity.



Bruno Zumbo, Professor, Department of Educational Counselling Psychology Special Education, University of British Columbia

Bruno Zumbo

I hope that my team's work will encourage others to take up the challenge of creating the sort of comprehensive system and composite index envisioned by the CIW and hence add to the statistical system of public data. The absence of an adequately constructed and resourced system of educational indicators substantially reduces the chances of researchers raising important questions concerning education and human development. Canadian educators and Canada's youth need the CIW.



Environment Domain

Mark Anielski, Anielski Management Inc.

Mark Anielski

The completion of the CIW represents the first wellbeing index in the world, one of Canada's most important accomplishments. Governments in Britain and France have announced their plans to measure wellbeing and happiness as a compliment to Gross Domestic Product (GDP). It is time for Canada's federal and provincial governments to show international leadership by adopting the CIW as a formal measure of the wellbeing.



Alexis Morgan, Sustainability and Conservation Consultant

Alexis Morgan

We don't make personal life decisions only based on salaries, so why would we do so for our nation? I can't think of anything more important than to assist the CIW globally progressive effort to have policy makers to start making decisions that improve our collective wellbeing - from the environment to the arts - rather than just our pocketbooks.



László Pintér, Senior Fellow, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD); Professor, Dept. of Environmental Sciences and Policy, Central European University

László Pintér

The tools we use to measure progress should be rooted in the values dear to Canadians' heart. To me the CIW was an invitation for a journey to explore those values and to create a concept and a tool that can serve as a guiding light for present and future generations.



Healthy Populations Domain

Ronald Labonté, Canada Research Chair, Globalization/Health Equity, Institute of Population Health, University of Ottawa

Ronald Labonté

We've known for some time that our economic measures are important but imperfect. Wellbeing goes well beyond what our economy does. And much of what we now measure as economic progress is contributing to environmental loss and social inequality. The CIW begins to account for some of these other and vitally important dimensions of peoples' lives.



Nazeem Muhajarine, Professor and Chair, Community Health and Epidemiology, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan

Nazeem Muhajarine

The time for a real measure of progress and wellbeing has come and Canada should lead in developing such a measure. The CIW is the answer. It has the potential to engage Canadians all across this nation in determining what matters to them.



Leisure and Culture Domain

Denis Auger, Professor, Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières

Denis Auger

Les biens essentiels sont l'ensemble des biens nécessaires à chaque personne pour pouvoir choisir librement son temps, pour avoir accès au "bon temps".

Jacques Attali, La voie humaine.



Agnes Croxford, Leisure Information Network (LIN)

Agnes Croxford

Measuring wellbeing is key to delivering the benefits of recreation and we at LIN are delighted to help make that connection.



Holly Donohoe, Assistant Professor, Department of Tourism, Recreation & Sport Management, University of Florida

Holly Donohoe

My involvement in the development of the Canadian Index of Wellbeing was motivated by the opportunity to contribute to a highly relevant project with implications for research, policy, and program development in Canada as well as the opportunity to contribute to a high-profile confirmation that leisure and culture are fundamental to the wellbeing of Canadians.



Clem Pelot, Former CEO, Leisure Information Network (LIN)

Clem Pelot

Canada's leisure and culture sector is led by professionals and volunteers who recognize its contribution to Canadians' quality of life. The CIW has provided the means of quantifying and qualifying that contribution, within a broad and meaningful context.



Bryan Smale, Professor, Recreation and Leisure Studies, University of Waterloo; and subsequently named Director, Canadian Index of Wellbeing

Bryan Smale

The Canadian Index of Wellbeing (CIW) provides a great platform to bring together interdisciplinary researchers concerned with the ways in which the many domains of our lives contribute to our wellbeing. By bringing together individuals with expertise on the many different aspects of wellbeing, including health, we can begin to unravel the complex interconnections played out in our daily lives that define our wellbeing.



Living Standards Domain

Andrew Sharpe, Centre for the Study of Living Standards (CSLS)

Andrew Sharpe

The development of well-being-based metrics of economic performance and social progress to replace the current GDP-based metrics is one of the key intellectual challenges of the first quarter of the 21st century. The CIW will contribute to this development.



Time Use Domain

Ann-Sylvia Brooker, Research Consultant

Ann-Sylvia Brooker

I am interested in the translation of research into a set of tools that can shape public awareness and public policy. These comprehensive CIW indicators can enhance our understanding of the quality of life of Canadians, and of sub-populations within Canada.



Andrew Harvey, Director Time-Use Research Program, Professor Emeritus, Economics, Saint Mary's University

Andrew Harvey

The multidimensionality of well-being has influenced my research for nearly four decades. The CIW captures the multidimensionality thus providing a better basis for enlightened effective socio-economic policy.



Ilene Hyman, Research Consultant and Assistant Professor, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto

Ilene Hyman

How people use and experience time has a profound effect on their health and wellbeing. My participation in this project allowed me to 'connect the dots' between 'time use' and a host of health outcomes for individuals of different ages and life stages.



Advisors to Domain Teams and Knowledge Mobilizers

Noel Keough, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Environmental Design, University of Calgary

Noel Keough

Having worked on community sustainability indicator reporting for almost 15 years in Calgary I am thrilled that the CIW exists to promote a different way of measuring progress nationally. This will be an important tool for engaging Canadians in discussions about the kind of society we want.



Simon Langlois, Professor, Dept. of Sociology, Université Laval; Coordinator of the International Research Group on Comparative Charting of Social Change

Simon Langlois

Le CIW-ICB sera utile pour évaluer le développement de notre état-providence et les défis qui restent à relever. Évaluer le mieux-être réel des citoyens doit devenir une préoccupation permanente des états contemporains développés et cet indice placera le Canada à l'avant plan des pays qui s'engagent dans cette voie.



Gary Machan, Chair, The Resilience Collaborative, County of Simcoe

Gary Machan

The Canadian Index of Wellbeing is an idea whose time has at long last come. And not a moment too soon. For, if our civilization is to avoid a head on collision with the proverbial shoals, we will need a new compass and lens by which to re-chart our course. Much like MapQuest, the CIW allows us to zoom out and see the Big Picture, plan our route, and then zoom in to those areas where we can best effect change.



Doug May, Professor of Economics at Memorial University; Director of Concept Development for the System of Community Accounts, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

Doug May

Measuring well-being and its domains makes us thoughtfully consider what is important to us in our lives. Therefore the CIW helps us to better know ourselves and to document the progress we are making towards our social vision.



Irena Pozgaj, Research and Project Management Coordinator, County of Simcoe

Irena Pozgaj

The CIW is important because it helps us to understand what really matters to Canadians.



Malcolm Shookner, Former Chief Statistician, Community Counts and Statistics, Nova Scotia Department of Finance

Malcolm Shookner

Canadians cherish their quality of life and collective wellbeing. The CIW offers a way to measure the dimensions of well-being and track how we're doing over time.



A special thank you to the following Statistics Canada employees (past or present):

  • Marc Lachance
  • Kim Lauzon
  • Hans Messinger
  • Robert Smith
  • Leroy Stone

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