The Executive Cohort

Collaborative learning tailored to digital-first leaders

Since 2017, FWD50 has introduced dozens of innovative formats to help public servants prepare for digital transformation. From in-the-round networking, to scannable conversation prompts, to soundproofed livestream booths, to book clubs with bestselling authors, the conference has defined what’s possible, both online and in person.

In 2023, we’ve introduced another new format, exclusively for government executives. Using a cohort-based learning model, a select group of participants will learn from special guests, collaborate with their peers, and hold candid discussions with some of the world’s leading digital pioneers.

Executive Cohort Faculty of 2023

Ima Okonny

Assistant Deputy Minister & Chief Data Officer, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)

Dorothy Eng

Executive Director, Code for Canada

Viet Vu

Manager, Economic Research, The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University

André Côté

Director, Policy and Research, The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University

Jenna McNeil

Service Designer, Button Inc.

James Duncan

Co-founder and Principal, Stance Global

Ryan Androsoff

CEO & Founder, Think Digital

Luciana Lazzaretti

Senior Analyst, Digital Academy, Canada School of Public Service

Roxane Dion

Portfolio Lead, Digital Products, Digital Academy, Canada School of Public Service

Lewis Eisen

Speaker, Consultant, Author

Mireille Ayotte

Collaborator, Code for Canada

Denise Withers

Award-winning documentary filmmaker, Innovation consultant & Certified leadership coach

Eyra Abraham

Founder & CEO, Lisnen

David McRaney

Science Journalist, Author, How Minds Change

Roy Nader

Client Relationships Manager and Digital Culture Lead, Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI)

Chris Shipley

Co-founder, Constituent Connection

Alex Benay

Associate Deputy Minister, Enterprise Pay Coordination

Alexander Howard

Director of the Digital Democracy Project

Tanya Coyle

Director of Communications, The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University

Kent Aitken

Director, Digital Academy, Canada School of Public Service

Alistair Croll (Host)

Co-founder & Chair, FWD50

Executive Cohort Agenda of 2023

Upcoming sessions

There are currently no sessions.

Past sessions

November 3, 2023

Executive Cohort

Getting our Groove Back: How to start a movement for digital transformation

With austerity everywhere, exhausted employees, and a sprint that's become a marathon, how does Canada regain momentum and deliver on its ambitious goals for a better society? See More.
Co-founder & Chair
FWD50
Manager, Economic Research
The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University
Director, Policy and Research
The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University
Assistant Deputy Minister & Chief Data Officer
Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
Senior Analyst
Digital Academy, Canada School of Public Service
Portfolio Lead, Digital Products
Digital Academy, Canada School of Public Service
Speaker, Consultant, Author
Service Designer
Button Inc.
Associate Deputy Minister
Enterprise Pay Coordination
Director of Communications
The Dais at Toronto Metropolitan University

November 2, 2023

Executive Cohort

Experiments, sandboxes, and pushing back against the waterfall

How to help learnings at the edge flow upstream to policymakers and legislators by overcoming technology fears, while ensuring that you don't run afoul of ethical and legal risks. See More.
Co-founder & Chair
FWD50
Executive Director
Code for Canada
CEO & Founder
Think Digital
Collaborator
Code for Canada
Founder & CEO
Lisnen

October 26, 2023

Executive Cohort

Transforming how we deliver

Digital transformation doesn't happen by itself. To overcome the natural inertia of a system, leaders must create new structures that encourage cultural change in order for digital approaches to dominate. See More.
Co-founder & Chair
FWD50
Co-founder and Principal
Stance Global
Award-winning documentary filmmaker
Innovation consultant & Certified leadership coach

October 24, 2023

Executive Cohort

Leadership, consensus, and authority

Leadership means collaborating and lifting up all voices so good decisions can be made by consensus. But it also means top-down authority. Digital models change how and when to shift between these two extremes. See More.
Science Journalist
Author, How Minds Change
Co-founder
Constituent Connection

October 19, 2023

Executive Cohort

Bits aren't atoms

The unique properties of digital systems—such as low friction, perfect copies, and impermanence—require leaders to readjust their guiding principles. The cost of experimentation drops; we can recover from mistakes; collaboration is easier; and we invest smaller amounts continuously once we see proof of success. To lead in a digital era, executives need to incorporate such changes into their thinking. See More.
Co-founder & Chair
FWD50
Speaker, Consultant, Author
Client Relationships Manager and Digital Culture Lead
Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI)

October 17, 2023

Executive Cohort

Breaking the complexity curse

In this introductory session, we go over the objectives of the cohort, explain how things will work, and meet our fellow participants. Host Alistair Croll will set the stage with a discussion about complexity and scale, and the role that modularity plays in overcoming the challenges of growth. See More.
Co-founder & Chair
FWD50
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