Session A, April 18, 2023, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. ET
This is your PGO - We Self-regulate Together

Session Chairs:  Kristin Hanson, P.Geo., FGC and Alicia Kimberley, P.Geo.

A moderated Q & A will follow after the panel presentations.

Presentation 1: Jurisdictional Professional Geoscience in Canada – Same, same, but different

Speaker:  Andrea Waldie, P.Geo., FGC, CEO of Geoscientists Canada (GC) - SEE SPEAKER'S BIO

Geoscience is a regulated profession across Canada (ok, ok, except for two jurisdictions). But just how does that work and how does it affect you? In this brief look across Canada we’ll touch on similarities and differences between the regulating jurisdictions, your professional responsibilities, mobility, and the role of Geoscientists Canada.

Presentation 2: What is professional self-regulation?

Speaker:  Erica Richler
, Co-managing Partner, Steinecke Maciura LeBlanc- SEE SPEAKER'S BIO

Self-regulation – regulating the profession by the profession – has been described as a “privilege”, and one that comes with the important responsibility of governing the profession in the public interest. The regulation of professions around the world has been in flux in recent years, and many professions have moved away from traditional self-regulation to different models of regulation. This presentation will discuss what self-regulation means under the Professional Geoscientists Act, and what regulatory changes and trends are taking place across the country and beyond.

Presentation 3: PGO - Adapting to evolving best practices in self-regulation

Speaker:  Tony Andrews, PhD, CEO, Professional Geoscientists Ontario - SEE SPEAKER'S BIO

Canada is among a relatively small number of countries around the world whose governments have chosen to mandate the professions to regulate themselves. This is based on the view that self-regulation is the most effective means of ensuring that only appropriately qualified people are granted a license to practice, and that in their daily work, professionals ensure that they and their colleagues meet the standards of practice expected of them. Government oversight of Self-Regulatory Organizations (SROs) ensures that they live up to their overarching mandate of achieving public safety and protection of the environment.

Self-regulation is a privilege not a right and this privilege should be nurtured and appreciated by both the regulators and the regulated.

The particular mandate that governs the activities of SROs is not always well-understood, and in many cases this situation extends to the regulated professionals themselves. For example, it is not uncommon for the mandate of an SRO to be confused with that of a member-driven association. Nothing could be further from the truth.

At the same time the SRO community is undergoing significant transitions not only in how they define their mandates, but also in their approaches to governance, registration and professional regulation. This is a reflection of the fact that in recent years there has been a significant evolution in what is considered best practices and standards in these critical areas for SROs.

This presentation will provide a brief overview of PGO in the modern context of its regulatory function, the role of professional geoscientists in helping to achieve its mandate of public protection and the ongoing work of PGO’s Council, Committees and Staff to meet the challenges of adapting to the evolving best practices impacting the SRO community in Canada and abroad. 

Register online for this session or for the full Symposium.