Power of the Arts

Third Annual Power of the Arts National Forum

The third annual Power of the Arts National Forum was held at Carleton University on November 6-8, 2015. This year’s theme was Sustaining Social Change.

The Forum is co-organized by the Michaëlle Jean Foundation and Carleton University’s Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. It convenes researchers, business leaders, legal experts, policymakers, urban planners, architects, youth, health practitioners, artists, and representatives of other key sectors of Canadian society.

Sustaining Social Change in 2015

The 2015 National Forum gathered 350 people for three days of meetings and stimulating deliberations. Experts presented the outcomes of their research or their ongoing projects. This includes three keynote speakers who shared their thoughts on the power of the arts and social change in society.

A diverse group of artists shared their testimonies and performances. Workshops on particular themes allowed for exchanges of information, experience sharing, and deliberations, related to strategies promoting inclusion, personal growth, community development and prosperity for all Canadians.

Focal Points for 2015


Michaele-jean-foundation logo


The National Power of the Arts Forum is the brainchild of Michaëlle Jean Foundation Co-Founder and Co-Chair, Jean-Daniel Lafond. It is the logical continuation of his engagement in defending and advocating for the arts and culture and his contribution to the mandate of his wife, the governor general of Canada between 2005 and 2010, when he created and hosted a series of fifty public debates across Canada and abroad during State visits.

Appointed Senior Scholar at Carleton University’s Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences in 2010, M. Lafond worked with past Faculty Dean Dr. John Osborne to convene an annual national conference on the power of the arts in Canada. Together, they moved from words to action. In 2013, the First Forum was held with success, which encouraged them to continue.

Learn more about the members of the Steering Committee.