ForecastNL: Charting a course for our climate, economy & society

Lay Summary 


The Harris Centre—as an independent knowledge broker and facilitator, with a mandate to encourage respectful dialogue and informed decision making— will lead a process of bringing together key stakeholders and facilitating a province-wide discussion to tackle the question: 
How can NL create economic and social prosperity while mitigating and adapting to climate change?


  1. Facilitate informed public dialogue and discussion regarding the intersection between climate, economy, and society in an effort to reframe the discussion beyond the polarization and competition of concerns;
  2. Provide a neutral platform for respectful discussion of ideas and solutions;
  3. Identify promising ideas, actions or approaches that arise during the discussion sessions and online forum, and share these findings with the appropriate organizations and individuals, and connect and facilitate further discussions where appropriate.


Project Plan:

The Harris Centre will undertake an 18-month, public-dialogue process that will provide a neutral platform to discuss ideas and solutions to create economic and social prosperity while mitigating and adapting to climate change. The process is focused on bringing forward key information, stimulating respectful discussion, and uncovering ideas and solutions. The project will engage a wide range of participants from academia, industry, community, and government, as well as the general public. Information, discussion forums, and panel presentations will be made available online, along with an online engagement platform open to all members of the public.

A demographically-representative Citizen Forum of residents of Newfoundland and Labrador over the age of 16 has been formed to provide feedback on the various panels and presentations that we will facilitate, creating an open dialogue between the presenters and the public.  Key-findings will be synthesized into a series of summative reports and presented at a final convention, to be held in Spring 2022.


Who Is Involved?

In addition to the Harris Centre team managing the events, website and facilitating dicussions, the ForecastNL project has a dedicated Steering Committee comprised of industry, community, Indigenous, and academic leaders who bring a broad range of perspectives and experience to the table; these individuals have knowledge of the economy and society of NL, as well as varying expertise related to the environment, climate change, regional development, labour, and the energy industry.


How Can I Take Part?

The Harris Centre recently launched a dedicated website for ForecastNL: Members of the public are invited to register for an account on this website by supplying their name and email address and creating a password.  This platform will feature live sessions with local and national experts, provide interesting and informative content, and provide a forum for discussion and suggestions. We hope to facilitate a lively discussion on topics related to our economy, our society, and the impacts of climate change. We want to consider how these issues relate to each other, what challenges are presented, and what possible solutions exist.

Click here to visit the website and register.


Faculty, staff, and graduate students at Memorial who study these topics are encouraged to submit their name and research to be added to the list of expert resources for the project. Click here to add your name and research topics and stay in the loop.

The Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development
Newfoundland and Labrador
Climate Change
Regional Economic Development
Politics, civic issues, social movement
Start date 
5 Feb 2021