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Brendan Haley

PhD Graduate: Sustainable energy policy; Canadian political economy; Systems of Innovation; Energy efficiency

Brendan Haley is a PhD graduate of Carleton University’s School of Public Policy and Administration. His research examined the role of traditional natural resource sectors in Canada’s transition to a low-carbon economy. He drew insights from Canadian political economy, in the tradition of Harold Innis, and new literatures on technological innovation systems and sustainability transitions.

From 2005 to 2008, Brendan was the energy coordinator at Nova Scotia’s Ecology Action Centre. He played an important role in the development of the province’s energy efficiency framework, which led to the creation of Canada’s first energy efficiency utility, Efficiency Nova Scotia. He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Efficiency Nova Scotia Corporation. In 2009, Brendan was an “expert paper writer” for a government sponsored stakeholder consultation process on renewable energy that recommended the creation of Nova Scotia’s Community Feed-in Tariff Policy.

Brendan holds an undergraduate degree in economics from Dalhousie University and a Masters in Environmental Studies (ecological economics) from York University. He is a policy fellow with the Broadbent Institute and a research associate with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.


“Low-Carbon innovation from a hydroelectric base: The case of electric vehicles in Québec” Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions (in press)

“Promoting Low-Carbon Transitions from a Two-World Regime: Hydro and Wind in Québec, Canada.” Energy Policy 73, (2014): 777-788.

“Staple Theory and the Carbon Trap.” In Staples Theory @ 50: Reflections on the Lasting Significance of Mel Watkins’ A Staple Theory of Economic Growth”, edited by Jim Stanford, 75-79: Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives (2014).

“The Bitumen Cliff: Lessons and Challenges of Bitumen Mega-developments for Canada’s Economy in an Age of Climate Change” with Tony Clarke, Jim Stanford, Diana Gibson. Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (2013).

“From staples trap to carbon trap: Canada’s peculiar form of carbon lock-in”. Studies in Political Economy 88 : 97-132 (2011).

“Energy Cost Politics and the Environment in Nova Scotia” Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – Nova Scotia Office (2010).

“Social implications of nova scotia renewable energy scenarios” Halifax: Dalhousie University Eco-Efficiency Centre (2009).

“Social democracy and ecological modernization: Swedish lessons for a green industrial policy” Masters of Environmental Studies Major Paper, York University (2005)