Janel Smith

“In support of a range of conflict resolution and organizational management initiatives I seek out opportunities that permit me to combine my passions for research with the design, development and delivery of training programmes; consultation and project evaluation; and workshop design and facilitation”

Janel Smith holds a Masters of Arts in Alternative Dispute Resolution from the University of Victoria and an Honors Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of Toronto. Janel has presented numerous papers at international peer-reviewed conferences; publishes in books, journals and for research institutes; serves on several university committees; and is a member of a number of academic associations.

Janel is active in promoting the social economy, solidarity networks, sustainability and conflict transformation. She has led seminars, workshops and training sessions on the social economy, intra/inter-group conflict resolution, community development/planning, alliance-building, “triple bottom line” sustainability and civil society, with particular focus on the intersections between different forms of human, social, physical, symbolic, cultural, and natural capital. Recent areas of research interest include: transnational civil society, civic associations, third party dispute resolution and conflict management, solidarity networks, peace/social movements, and government/civil society sector relationships.

Previously, Janel was the Research Coordinator for the Canadian Social Economy Hub, where she facilitated a national research project on public policy supports and instruments needed to strengthen aspects of the social economy in Canada, including federal, provincial and regional legislation, policies, and programs relevant to community economic development and the social economy. She has also contributed to the development of deeper theoretical and organizational understandings of the conditions that help to facilitate transformative learning and conflict transformation. Janel recently completed a book entitled, Civil Society and the Dynamics of Transnational Alliances, which explores the inter-group dynamics of transnational civil society alliances in order to document several challenges and best practices for their organizational and operational development.  

Policy expertise includes knowledge of the public policy and international governance sectors. Janel’s work with the international and intergovernmental affairs branch of Environment Canada included specific focus on sustainability, trans-boundary policy issues in the North, and federal-provincial/territorial-municipal relations. Janel previously conducted international policy research as an Associate of the Group of 8 Research Group in which she attended several G8 Summits. In 2005 Janel co-founded the Civil Society and Expanded Dialogue Unit of the G8RG, a research group dedicated to monitoring civil society presence at G8 Summits, engaging in public outreach and conducting research into opportunities for civil society and developing country participation in the G8 process. Janel is experienced in facilitating conflict management initiatives, program coordination, conferences, and community/organizational planning meetings as well as in conflict resolution coaching and mentoring.