Home Events Massey is Missing COP26 – Part V: The Role of the Arts and Culture In Building Public Momentum for Ambitious and Critical Policies at COP26

Massey is Missing COP26 – Part V: The Role of the Arts and Culture In Building Public Momentum for Ambitious and Critical Policies at COP26

If you missed the live broadcast of this event on November 19, you are invited to watch this important conversation on the Massey College YouTube Channel by clicking here.


The first 60 minutes will be a conversation about the role of artists and cultural institutions in the climate crisis. What can they do that lawyers, scientists and politicians have failed to do? Can their radical creativity and radical collaboration inspire and empower the public and create support for collective action? What does the Royal Ontario Museum expect to achieve with its first Shiff Curator of Climate Change?

Our guests are The Honourable Steven Guilbeault Canada’s Heritage Minister and noted climate activist, Josh Basseches – CEO and Director of the Royal Ontario Museum, singer Ron Hawkins, poet Alice Major, and singer Sarah Harmer. The conversation will be moderated by Massey College Senior Fellow Dr. Dianne Saxe – SaxeFacts.com


The last 30 minutes will be a call to action, with a mini “Dragon’s Den”-style pitch sprint of opportunities for participants to get involved. Join us to learn about these organizations:

ShiftAction – Protecting your pension and the climate

CleanAir Partnership – Home energy retrofits

Guelph Tool Library – Sharing stuff, not buying

Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment – Active transportation for health

David Suzuki Foundation – Think global, act on local government

Nourish Healthcare – Plant-based diets


Join us for these invigorating discussions, to reduce your own carbon footprint, and then ask your political representatives to act on what you have learned.

To watch, The Role of the Arts and Culture In Building Public Momentum for Ambitious and Critical Policies at COP26please click here.



Minister Guilbeault joins us for Massey is #MissingCOP26

The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage, was elected the Member of Parliament for Laurier—Sainte-Marie in 2019. Minister Guilbeault is a prominent advocate in the fight against the climate crisis, and has been leading the charge from Laurier—Sainte-Marie for years.

Minister Guilbeault’s commitment to environmental issues started at the age of five, when he climbed a tree to protect it from real estate developers who were about to cut down the woods behind his home in La Tuque. Twenty-five years later, he scaled the CN Tower in Toronto to call for Canada to ratify the Kyoto Protocol.

In 1993, Minister Guilbeault co-founded Équiterre, the largest environmental organization in Quebec, and served as its Senior Director from 2008 to 2018. He also worked as a Director and Campaign Manager for Greenpeace, and was a Strategic Advisor for more than 10 years at Cycle Capital Management, a Canadian fund dedicated to the development of clean technologies. Minister Guilbeault also worked for Deloitte & Touche as well as Copticom, a consulting firm specializing in the green and social economy, and transportation.

As an activist and strategic advisor for dozens of governments and businesses in Canada and abroad, Minister Guilbeault is a pragmatist who works to make a difference by building bridges and relationships. An avid cyclist and sportsman, he has been riding his bike 12 months a year for the last 30 years.


Josh Basseches is the Director & CEO of the Royal Ontario Museum. A distinguished leader with almost three decades of experience transforming museums, Josh Basseches is known for his bold vision and strategic approach to engaging audiences, connecting museums to their communities and presenting knowledge in new ways. Under his leadership, the ROM’s Strategic Direction has set the Museum on a path to play a central role in civic and cultural life by seeking out authentic voices, engaging diverse points of view, embracing innovation, and crossing transdisciplinary boundaries.


Prior to his ROM appointment in 2016, Basseches was Deputy Director of the Peabody Essex Museum (PEM) in Salem, Massachusetts. At PEM, he played a central role in the institution’s decade-long reinvention into one of America’s leading museums, including a key capital campaign that raised more than $600 million (CDN). Before joining PEM, Basseches served as Executive Director of the Harvard Museum of Natural History (HMNH), where he launched the repositioning of the HMNH from a prestigious, but internally focused university museum, into a vibrant, public-serving institution. In addition, Basseches is active in the museum professional community, currently sitting on the board of the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), and previously spending 10 years on the board of the New England Museum Association (NEMA), including as its President. Basseches holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, an M.A. from Boston University, and a B.A. from Amherst College. He is currently completing a Ph.D. in the History of Art and Architecture at Boston University. His research and writing focuses on international artistic and cultural exchange.


Ron Hawkins joins us to discuss arts and culture at Massey is #MissingCOP26Ron Hawkins has long been revered as one of Canada’s greatest contemporary singer-songwriters.

As lead singer/multi-instrumentalist and main songwriter of Canada’s legendary Lowest of the Low, Ron Hawkins has enjoyed many accolades through the years:

In 1996, 2000 and again in 2005, Chart Magazine honoured the group’s 1991 debut album, Shakespeare My Butt, with spots in the top 10 of the Top 100 Canadian Albums of All Time. In 2000 and once again in 2015, Hawkins was voted Songwriter of the Year by NOW Magazine’s reader’s poll. Also in 2000, Ron received Toronto station 102.1 The Edge’s Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2008 The Lowest of the Low was inducted into the Canadian Indie Rock Hall of Fame and awarded gold records for Shakespeare My Butt.

Over the years, Ron has written and released seven LOTL albums, five solo discs, three records with his band The Rusty Nails, and two records (one a double album) as Ron Hawkins and The Do Good Assassins. That’s 18 albums of original material to date plus a commemorative vinyl box set called “Shakespeare My Box” – an anthology of the entire Lowest of the Low catalogue.

His latest album with The Do Good Assassins 246 was released August 28th 2020.



Dr. Dianne Saxe joins us for Massey is #MissingCOP26Dr. Dianne Saxe is one of Canada’s most respected environmental lawyers, with 40+ years’ unparalleled experience writing, interpreting, and litigating Ontario’s energy and environmental laws. An experienced team leader with substantial board experience; a skilled communicator with broad strategic vision. Hard-won expertise in government relations, corporate governance and public consultation. A can-do person always striving to make a difference. Now heading SaxeFacts Law Professional Corporation, providing legal and strategic inspiration and direction on climate, energy and environment.

Leadership training and experience: 2015 to 2019, Dr. Dianne Saxe was the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario (ECO). She was appointed unanimously by all MPPs to report to the Legislature on Ontario’s environmental, energy and climate performance, and to be the guardian of the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR). During her term, she improved the effectiveness of the Environmental Bill of Rights, increased public understanding of the urgency of climate change, and delivered 17 reports on environment, energy and climate.







Thank you for your interest in Massey’s five-part virtual climate series, Massey is #MissingCOP26. These online events are free and open to all. To learn about other events in the series and for more information, we invite you to visit our main page: masseycollege.ca/missing-cop26

Thank you to our co-sponsors!


Nov 19 2020


12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

The event is finished.

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