State of our City 2013 Rolls Out

The research phase for State of our City 2013 is nearing completion! More than 10 community volunteers were hard at work this summer, bringing new ideas and new perspectives to this work, and proving that issues such as municipal waste, pesticides (and their politics!), and approaches to childhood asthma can be thoroughly absorbing. Over the […]

Good Governance: Surprising Lessons from the Nordic Lights

This past few weeks the usually yawn-inducing topic of governance has figured prominently in newspaper headlines. Of note, Mayor Nenshi was lauded for his decision to hold off on fundraising and concentrate on governing and yet criticized for the steep entry fee to his first fundraiser; and The Economist carried a special feature singling out […]

What Is Governance? And How Does It Impact Our Lives?

by Byron Miller  What is governance?  It’s not as easy a question to answer as we might think.  Most of us, when we think of governance, think of government.  We think of “the state” and the ways in which particular governments, elected by citizens, control the activities of the state.  Our elected “governments” play a […]

Good Governance: Developing Meaningful Measures

I know what you’re thinking: you care about how your city feels, how it looks, how inclusive it is, how environmentally sustainable it is and a whole host of other things; you do not care about when that Standing Policy Committees meets, and you certainly do not want to sit in a City Council meeting […]

Democracy on the ropes

Good governance versus the black arts of persuasion Published December 13, 2012 by Noel Keough in FFWD’s Viewpoint. On December 10, city council’s legislative task force debated rules for reporting gifts to the mayor and council. We learned that though the mayor apparently has a stash of gifted coffee mugs and socks, and has never received […]

Good Governance: What does this mean to you?

If someone asked you whether you were happy with the state of  “governance” in Calgary, Alberta, and Canada, what would you say? What criteria would  inform your answer? The World Bank describes governance as the “rules for the rulers”, and the “processes by which the rules are selected, defined, linked together, and [linked] with society […]

Keystone XL Pipeline: A Homemade Crisis

Whatever the outcome of the raging Keystone XL pipeline battle, it is difficult to see a scenario where Alberta comes out a winner. If the pipeline goes ahead, we go further down the road of dependence on one of the most expensive, ecologically damaging, high-risk, mega-projects on earth. If it is halted, Albertans are left […]