Photo of Jennifer Robson

Jennifer Robson

Program Director, Practicum Coodinator and Associate Professor

Degrees:BA Hon. Psychology (Ottawa), MA Political Science (Carleton), Ph.D. Public Policy (Carleton)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 8384
Office:Room 2433-R, River Building

Prior to joining Carleton, Jennifer worked in the Government of Canada, and she spent nearly a decade in the voluntary sector, holding senior roles in policy development and research. Her research has included studies of social policies such as family benefits, education savings, poverty in Canada, wealth inequality, tax policy, and the financial lives of low- and modest-income persons. She is a member of the Royal Society of Canada’s COVID Task Force, a member of the Epayroll Advisory Group to the Canada Revenue Agency and she was a member of the Advisory Panel on Tax Expenditures to Canada’s Minister of Finance. She is a fellow of the Public Policy Forum, a Research Advisor to the Institute for Research on Public Policy, and she continues to collaborate with non-profit organizations through the Asset-Building Learning Exchange among others.

Recent courses taught:

POLM 5015: Public Policy for Political Advisors
POLM 5016: Applied Public Policy Analysis
PAPM 3000: Policy Research Methods
POLM 5012/PAPM 4012 and PANL 5703: Advocacy and Government Relations in Canada and Public Policy Advocacy

Selected research publications:

Publications related to poverty, benefit design, and tax administration

Robson, J. (2022). “Does Non-filing Hinder Access to the Canada Learning Bond for Low-income Families?” Canadian Tax Journal, 70(3), 615-626.

Robson, J. (2022). “The Canada Learning Bond, financial capability and tax-filing: Results from an online survey of low and modest income parents”, research report, Employment and Social Development Canada

Peetz, J., J. Robson, and S. Xuereb (2021). “The Role of Income Volatility and Perceived Locus of Control in Financial Planning Decisions”, Frontiers in Psychology, (12), doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2021.638043.

Robson, J. (2021). “Policy Forum: Should the Canada Revenue Agency also be a social benefits agency?Canadian Tax Journal (69:1).

Robson, J. (2021). “Helping low-income Canadians to file taxes and access benefits” in D. Soman and C. Yeung eds. The Behaviorally Informed Organization, University of Toronto Press.

Robson, J. & S. Schwartz (2020). “Who Doesn’t File a Tax Return? A portrait of non-filersCanadian Public Policy 46(30).

Robson, J. (2020). “EI Failed So We Made CERB: Now what should we learn?Rebuild Canada, Public Policy Forum.

Giordono, L., D. Rothwell & J. Robson (2020). “Public income transfers and wealth accumulation at the bottom: Within and between country differences in Canada and the United StatesSocial Policy and Administration 54(6).

Robson, J. (2020).“Radical Incrementalism and Trust in the Citizen: Income Security in Canada in the Time of COVID-19Canadian Public Policy 46(S1).

Ben-Ishai, S., J. Robson & S. Schwartz (2019). “Eligible Non-participation in Canadian Social Welfare ProgramsMcGill Law Journal, 64(3).

Peetz, J. & J. Robson (2019). “The Perils of Living Paycheque to Paycheque” Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.

Robson, J. (2018). “Post-Secondary Access” Transition briefing, Ontario 360, University of Toronto.

Robson, J. (2016).“Enhancing Access to the Canada Learning Bond”, Discussion paper prepared for Employment and Social Development Canada, Government of Canada.

Rothwell, D. & J. Robson (2017). “The prevalence and composition of asset poverty in Canada: 1999, 2005, and 2012International Journal of Social Welfare, 27(1).

Robson, J. (2012).“The Case for Financial Literacy: Assessing the effects of financial literacy interventions for low income and vulnerable groups in Canada”, Social and Enterprise Development Innovations and the Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy.

Frennette, M. & J. Robson (2010). “Financial Literacy of Low-income Students: Literature Review and Environmental Scan”, Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario.

Robson, J., P. Nares & R. Shillington (2011). “How Ottawa Spends and How Canadians Save” in A. Maslove ed., How Ottawa Spends: 2009-2010: Economic Upheaval and Political Dysfunction, McGill University Press.

Publications related to public administration

Robson, J. & M. Jarvis (2020). “Policy forum: Public Costing of Party Platforms: Learning from international experienceCanadian Tax Journal 68(2).

Robson, J. (2018) “Building a tax review fit for purpose: Reconciling the tradeoffs between independence and impact” Canadian Tax Journal.

Robson, J. and P. Wilson. (2018). “Chapter 5: Public servants and political staff in the digital age: Still getting along”, in A. Marland, T. Giassson and A. Lawlor eds., Political Elites in Canada: Power and Influence in Instantaneous Times, University of British Columbia Press.

Robson, J. (2015).“Spending on Political Staffers and the Revealed Preferences of Cabinet”, Canadian Journal of Political Science vol.48(3), 675-697.

Robson, J. (2015). “Did Election 2015 Prove Kim Campbell Wrong?” in Marland, A. and Giasson, T. eds, Canadian Election Analysis 2015: Communication, Strategy and Democracy, UBC Press, 86-88.

Publications related to gender and intersectionality

Robson, J., Tedds, L., eds (2022). Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Women in Canada. Royal Society of Canada

Robson. J. & J. Peetz (2020). “Gender differences in financial knowledge, attitudes and behaviors: Accounting for socioeconomic disparities and psychological traitsJournal of Consumer Affairs 54(3).

Robson, J. & J. Peetz (2018). “The impact of personality traits: A fresh look at gender differences in financial literacy“ Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.

Robson, J. (2017).“Parental Benefits in Canada: Which way forward?IRPP Study 63, the Institute for Research on Public Policy.

Disclosure statement (to supplement bio and publications list):

While it is common in most academic disciplines to refuse any partisan affiliation, in Political Management, this is more of an occupational requirement than hazard. That said, I am happy to share and discuss my research with anyone interested. In the 23 years since I left my last paid work as a political staffer, I have worked as a non-partisan public servant and as a senior staff member in two non-partisan charitable organizations. Since joining Carleton, I have provided (on a voluntary basis) occasional technical advice to the Liberal Party of Canada, spoken at a community event organized by the New Democratic Party of Canada, and I have reviewed and commented on policy documents shared by both Progressive Conservative and provincial NDP officials. I have provided occasional technical advice to the Government of Canada on a voluntary basis and have been called to testify to Parliamentary standing committees in both the Senate and House of Commons. I have not received any compensation for my participation in any federal advisory committee, but have previously received an honorarium for providing peer review services to the Department of Finance and ESDC. In 2018, I completed a contract for advice to the Privy Council Office on metrics in results and delivery priorities. My paper (listed above) on the CLB was completed as a research contract for ESDC. Research reports listed above as published by CPA Canada were written under a research contract. I am currently part of two research projects funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. I have also completed research projects funded by the Think Forward Initiative, The City of Toronto, and ESDC.