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Developing the Developed World: Lessons in sustainability from Ecuador

Canada is a key member of the developed world, and, like other countries that hold this distinction, often relates to less developed countries in a patriarchal way. However, Ecuador has a number of similar challenges in regards to sustainability as we do, including: aboriginal engagement, resource development and increasing environmental impacts from tourism.

Can Canada adopt sustainability practices from developing countries like Ecuador? 

This seminar will follow four recent graduates from the MSc. SEDV (Sustainable Energy Development) who undertook major projects in Ecuador and how they are bringing back those learnings to Canada.

In a fireside chat format, this upcoming ConocoPhillips IRIS seminar will cover:

  • A quick overview of the projects pursued in Ecuador;
  • The primary observations and learnings as a result of those projects and their results;
  • The parallels to Canada from those projects;
  • How the international context will be applied in a Canadian context.

About the speakers:

Jillian Haneiph has worked in the energy sector as a land and business development consultant over the past nine years. Jillian is a three-time alumnus of the University of Calgary with degrees in Petroleum Land Management and International Relations and a Masters degree in Sustainable Energy Development. Her passion for continuous learning can only be rivaled by her passion for creating sustainable development opportunities for the business and nonprofit organizations that she is involved with. She is best known for her ongoing work with local Caribbean community initiatives and is currently serving as the President of Trinidad and Tobago Canadian Association of Calgary.

Connor Bedard is a current student of the SEDV graduate program at the University of Calgary. He completed his BA in Political Science at the University of Calgary in 2011. He is currently focusing his research on comparing the Galapagos Islands with the Town of Banff to identify best practices in sustainable tourism.

Jeffrey Coombes possesses over 10 years of experience in leadership development, collaborative coaching and business management. Jeffrey is also a two-time Alumni of the University of Calgary and the Haskayne School of Business. Along with a Masters in Sustainable Energy Development, Jeffrey also holds a Bachelor of Commerce.  While completing his Masters, Jeffrey worked with Dragos Energy Corporation to develop a theoretical economic assessment model for treating and reusing produced fluids from hydraulic fracturing operations in Alberta.

Cristina Vallejo moved from Ecuador to Canada in 2015 to obtain her Masters in Sustainable Energy Development at the University of Calgary. Her previous experience in international commerce brought an interest on the study of green businesses. Her research focuses on the social and environmental aspects of economic development from a worldwide point of view. She led the team of SEDV students in the Archidona project to analyze the supply of cacao produced by the indigenous community association WINAK in terms of sustainability, as well as teach a group of 80 high school students the main concepts of sustainable development and leadership.

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The ConocoPhillips IRIS Seminar Series is proudly supported by ConocoPhillips and administered by the Centre for Corporate Sustainability at the University of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary. 


April 11, 2017


4:30 pm to 5:30 pm


BMO Financial Group Forum, Third Floor, Haskayne School of Business

University of Calgary Main Campus 2500 University Drive NW

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