Elizabeth Dowdeswell

Elizabeth Dowdeswell, O.C.

Chair, Scientific Advisory Committee, Council of Canadian Academies andFormer UN Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UNEP, and Founding President and CEO of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization

November 5, 2008

Elizabeth Dowdeswell’s eclectic public service career has spanned provincial, federal and international borders and transcended traditional disciplinary lines. Currently she is a Special Advisor to the Board of Canada’s Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), following a period as NWMO’s founding President.

Ms. Dowdeswell served as Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program and Undersecretary General of the United Nations, Assistant Deputy Minister of Environment Canada, responsible for the National Weather and Atmospheric Agency and led a number of public inquiries, including into Canada’s unemployment benefits program and federal water policy. Her early career included terms as Deputy Minister of Culture and Youth for the Province of Saskatchewan, educational consultant, university lecturer and high-school teacher.

Ms. Dowdeswell is also a visiting professor in genomics and global health at the University of Toronto, was appointed a Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation mentor, is a Corporate Director, and contributes in an advisory capacity to a number of not-for-profit organizations

Ms. Dowdeswell holds a Master of Science degree in behavioural sciences from Utah State University, a Bachelor of Science degree in home economics, a teaching certificate from the University of Saskatchewan and, nine honorary degrees.

Role: Panel Chair; Panel Chair
Report: Vision for Canadian Arctic Research Initiative: Assessing the Opportunities (November 2008); The State of Science and Technology in Canada (September 2006)