Gaetan Royer

Research Associate

Gaetan’s love of everything urban brought him to hundreds of cities in 30 countries. An urban planner originally from Québec City, he received a Governor General’s Medal for his humanitarian work in Sarajevo. During his time as City Manager in Port Moody, the city received numerous awards including the International Livable Communities Award. Gaëtan was also Chief Planner for Metro Vancouver. As author of “Time for Cities,” he advocates for a better deal for cities. He is co-author of Columbia Institutes reports “Who’s Picking Up the Tab? Federal and Provincial Downloading Onto Local Governments” and “Back In House: Why Local Governments Are Bringing Services Home.” He is CEO of

Keith Reynolds

Research Associate

Keith is a policy analyst who has worked at all three levels of government, for two public sector unions and as a private consultant. His work has been deeply focused on municipal services and finance, on broader issues related to privatization and on government transparency. He has served on the national and BC boards of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) and the Board of the BC Freedom of Information and Privacy Association. Keith has authored presentations for a wide range of organizations, including the Canadian Institute, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, the BC Municipal Finance Authority and fact-finding missions from the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and the Australian Parliament. Keith holds a Masters of Public Administration from Queen’s University. Keith was the lead author on our report Back In House: Why Local Governments Are Bringing Services Home, and, most recently, Canada Infrastructure Bank and the Public’s Right to Know, which examines the proposed Bank, and government legislation that prevents public access to information. He has also penned numerous op-ed pieces for Canadian mainstream newspapers with our Executive Director, Charley Beresford.

Blair Redlin

Public Policy Researcher

Blair is a public policy researcher based in Vancouver. Blair is currently co-chair of Canada’s national Trade Justice Network.  Blair was President of the Transportation Association of Canada from 1999-2001. During the 1990’s, he was a senior administrator in the B.C. public service, serving variously as Deputy Minister of Transportation and Highways, CEO of the BC Transportation Financing Authority and Deputy Minister of Employment and Investment.  He was senior research staff at the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) untill 2012. While at CUPE, Blair focused primarily on local government issues as well as privatization, energy, water services, green jobs and free trade.

Robin Hood

Research Associate

Robin has co-authored “For the Love of Nature: Solutions to Restoring Biodiversity” in the Going for Green Leadership series, sharing her perspective on leadership in biodiversity. This perspective stems from 30+ years experience working as an educator, activist scholar and filmmaker. It also stems from extensive work with indigenous people in Mexico and Tibet, facilitation of community development processes in Brazil, El Salvador, Guatemala and BC, and participatory action research with the Rainforest Solutions team that negotiated the protection of the Great Bear Rainforest, a collaborative model led by Coastal First Nations.

Hood has a PhD in global education, specializing in curriculum development. She authored UNICEF’s, Growing Strong that has been translated into several languages and was the curriculum designer for the innovative indigenous program, Guiding Spirit. She was a Research Associate on the “Coasts under Stress Research Alliance” from 2001-2004, where she focused on a traditional knowledge research initiative. She also coordinated regional community planning, and learning community initiatives for the BC Ministry of Community Development. In 2005 she coordinated over more than 166 community initiatives to support the reconstruction efforts after the SE Asian Tsunami for the Canadian Red Cross. She has taught at the University of Victoria and held research positions at Simon Fraser University and the University of Victoria. She was also the Director of the Community Based Research Institute at Vancouver Island University.

Richard V. Gilbert

Research Associate

Richard is an independent consultant in Vancouver, who provides journalism, communications and economic intelligence services to non-profit organizations in the Western Canadian construction industry. As a freelance journalist, Gilbert writes on a wide range of political and economic issues for the Journal of CommerceDaily Commercial NewsCrane & HoistConstruction Business and Tradetalk. As an economist, he has completed public policy briefs, economic studies and white papers for clients to lobby the federal and provincial governments. Most recently, Gilbert co-authored Columbia Institute’s “Jobs for Tomorrow: Canada’s Building Trades and Net Zero Emissions” which examines climate change and the role of the construction industry in the transformation to low-carbon development in Canada.

Karen Farbridge

Research Associate

Karen served as Guelph’s mayor for eleven years. After that, she founded Karen Farbridge & Associates (KF&A) (, a consulting firm committed accelerating the transition to low carbon and sustainable cities. Drawing on Karen’s extensive experience and expertise on urban issues and in working with all levels of government and the private sector, KF&A works with cities, businesses and governments interested in building urban communities that are equally focused on generating economic prosperity and building people friendly spaces. Karen was the lead researcher and writer of Columbia Institute’s 2016 report, “Top Asks for Climate Action – Ramping Up Low-Carbon Communities.” She also assessed progress on the Top Asks report recommendations in 2017, in our first “Report Card on Top Asks for Climate Action.” Karen is an Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University and is a graduate of the University of Guelph with a PhD in Zoology. For the first ten years of her career, she was Coordinator at the Ontario Public Interest Research Group in Guelph. Click here for Top Asks @karenfarbridge

Rob Duffy

Research Associate

Robert has authored and co-authored a number of Columbia Institute publications, including reports on municipal financing for energy efficiency retrofits in Canada, downloading federal and provincial services to municipalities and building a green economy for BC. He also conducted research at the BC legislature and the national office of the Canadian Federation of Students.

Prior to joining CI, Duffy worked in legislation and communications at the Canadian parliament. He also worked on federal, provincial and municipal election campaigns, and was involved as an organizer for a number of social movements in Canada and the United Kingdom. He is currently a coordinator for the Sustainable Communities Initiative (SCI), a Metro Vancouver-based project whose work focuses on analysis of policy and regional governance at Metro Vancouver (formerly the Greater Vancouver Regional District) and TransLink. He is a graduate in History of the University of Victoria and has a Master’s in Communications from Simon Fraser University. Click here for Rob’s Columbia Institute publications.  @robduffySCI

Tyee Bridge

Research Associate

Tyee is a Vancouver-based journalist and writer. His essays, profiles and investigative features have received four National Magazine Awards and seven Western Magazine Awards since 2007. He is the founder of the literary nonfiction press Nonvella Publishing ( and Arclight Media, which assists thought leaders and values-aligned organizations with custom publishing opportunities. He is the co-author, with Joel Solomon, of the 2017 book The Clean Money Revolution. Most recently, Tyee co-authored a report “Jobs for Tomorrow,” which will be released in summer 2017. @TyeeBridge