Conference Board of Canada
Conference Board of Canada logo.gif
TypePolitical and economic think tanks based in Canada
PurposeAdvocate and public voice, educator and network
HeadquartersOttawa, Ontario, Canada
Region served
Official language
  • English
  • French
President and chief executive officer
Susan Black

The Conference Board of Canada is a Canadian not-for-profit think tank dedicated to researching and analyzing economic trends, as well as organizational performance and public policy issues.

Describing itself as "objective" and "non-partisan", the Conference Board of Canada claims not to lobby for special interests. It is funded through fees charged for services delivered to the private and public sectors alike. The organization conducts, publishes and disseminates research on various topics of interest to its members. It publishes research reports, conducts meetings, holds conferences and provides on-line information services, which aim to develop individual leadership skills and organizational capacity.

The Conference Board of Canada was established in 1954 as a division of the American National Industrial Conference Board, now simply known as The Conference Board. The Conference Board of Canada acquired a separate legal identity in 1981, and currently has over 200 employees, mostly based out of its main office in Ottawa.[1] It is currently registered as a Canadian charitable organization and maintains a presence across Canada with an office in Calgary and an affiliate in Quebec, L'Institut du Québec.

Dr. Susan Black is the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Conference Board of Canada.


Past Presidents

Honorary Associate Award

The Honorary Associate Award is The Conference Board of Canada's highest Award and is conferred upon individuals who have served both their organization and their country with distinction during their working career. This office, the term of which is life, is the only honour conferred by The Conference Board of Canada. Honorary Associates become voting members of the corporation. The Award is given on the occasion of the Conference Board's Annual Meeting.


Selected publications


Plagiarism Controversy

In May 2009, The Conference Board of Canada was criticised over its claim to be objective and non-partisan. It released a report related to copyright regulations in Canada, which plagiarised papers published by the International Intellectual Property Alliance (the primary movie, music, and software lobby in the US).[2][3] The Conference Board responded, standing by its report,[4] which drew further criticism, claiming they ignored a commissioned report, for partisan reasons.[5][6] The Conference Board recalled the reports after conducting an internal review, which determined that there was undue reliance on feedback from a funder of the report.[7] The Conference Board hosted a roundtable discussion on intellectual property in September 2009 and published a new report, Intellectual Property in the 21st Century, in February 2010.

Stereotyping Controversy

In November 2016, a recording surfaced of Michael Bloom, the Vice-President of The Conference Board, which contained a number of generalizing statements about indigenous peoples, people of Caribbean, Asian, and middle-eastern descent. The statements were made in the presence of an employee that is of indigenous heritage. Upon learning of the recording, The Conference Board of Canada placed the Vice-President on immediate leave of absence and initiated an internal investigation.[8]

Shortly after the recording was made public, it was further revealed that a former employee commenced legal action against The Conference Board of Canada. This employee had worked under Michael Bloom and alleged a "toxic work environment." The former employee was also of indigenous heritage. A lawsuit was filed in Ontario and sought $175,000 in damages.[9]


  1. ^ The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved on 2007-10-30.
  2. ^ Michael Geist - The Conference Board of Canada's Deceptive, Plagiarized Digital Economy Report. Retrieved on 2009-05-26
  3. ^ Canadian Broadcasting Corporation - Conference Board report on copyright draws criticism. Retrieved on 2009-05-26.
  4. ^ Conference Board Press Release. Retrieved on 2009-05-26.
  5. ^ Jeremy deBeer - Research on Copyright and Innovation Archived 2009-05-30 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2009-05-26.
  6. ^ Michael Geist - Conference Board Ignored Independent Study Commissioned For Digital Economy Report. Retrieved on 2009-05-26.
  7. ^ "500 - Error".
  8. ^ Jorge Barrera - Top think tank VP facing probe over racially prejudiced remarks about Indigenous peoples, Asians. Retrieved on 2016-11-18
  9. ^ Jorge Barrera - Indigenous scholar alleges 'toxic' workplace at think tank investigating Vice-President over 'racially prejudiced' remarks. Retrieved on 2016-11-18